In a recent question, community member Csawatzki was using Behr's ColorSmart app and his iPhone camera to take pictures of his wall colors. He wanted to know how to, "get close to colors without taking into account lighting conditions."
My reply addressed his photography question and how the color temperature of light changes colors of items on which the light casts ... soft white bulbs make colors appear more yellow-red, daylight bulbs reproduce colors most accurately because they produce full-spectrum light most similar to natural daylight.
We discussed that he could use lens filters to eliminate the yellow-red color or he could change his light bulbs to daylight to get the closest reproduction of the colors. But either way, the iPhone app was designed to be a starting point for color selection. I added the comment that if he wants to recreate an existing paint color his best bet would be color matching ... not the iPhone app.
I love Behr's ColorSmart app on my iPhone. Their online version also allows you to upload photos of your room and then apply test colors to the walls before you leave your home. But just like my answer about Csawatzki's photos, the online system is designed to be a starting point on the X and Y axis of the color display as The Store.
The way you see colors in your home depends upon whether you use yellow-red casting Soft White bulbs, full spectrum bulbs that are more like daylight and reproduce colors like you would see them in daylight, or a bulb which casts a color somewhere between the two.
Here is a simple chart that shows how different color casting light bulbs change the way your see your colors.
|Color Temperature*||Source||Casts||Changes Color Perception|
|1850||Sunrise or Sunset||red to violet||most|
|3000||Cool or Soft White bulb||yellow-red||more|
|6500||Diffused Daylight||pure daylight||least|
*Color Temperature is measured in degrees Kelvin.
Most bulbs display color temperature on the package or use terms like "Cool White" or "Daylight" stamped on the bulb.
In Function: Photographers, Retailers, Architects, and Designers have long used the color temperature of light to bring out the preferred color in their products.
The easiest example occurs in your local meat market where fresh cuts are displayed under approximately 2000 degree Kelvin bulbs that cast a red color on the meat ... making it appear fresh.
If you look at the lights over the table at your favorite restaurant, you'll notice they cast colors that make your food more visually appealing ... commonly soft-white light.
These practices are broadly used in business and industry and can just as easily be used in your home or office to ensure the colors you choose create the impact you intended!
ColorSmart is an excellent tool to get you started in the right direction!
NOTE: Click the link to see the full thread on Behr's ColorSmart app for iPhone and Android.