25 Replies Latest reply on Dec 16, 2016 3:28 PM by Roger Breton

    Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?

    Roger Breton

      Color Theme Panel.PNG

      Windows 10, InDesign CC 11.4.1.102 x64

      I am having a hard time ignoring the discrepancy between the Color Theme Tool floating "palette" and the Adobe Color Themes "panel". The screen capture that you see here was made by placing the small palette on the larger panel so that you can CLEARLY see the difference (Please, pay attention to the greens, the yellow appears redder as opposed to lemony, and the blue patch, on the left, turns overly bright). It is grossly obvious that these two UI elements are NOT color-managed the same way and I hope I'm not the only one noticing the difference. I can't talk for the appearance of these UI elements on the Mac but on Windows, this is very  disturbing, so much so that it takes away the usability of that tool all together. This is not a matter of Preferences... This is a matter of the Themes Panel, perhaps, being written in JavaScript, so that it can't be managed the same as the Windows "native" UI element?

        • 1. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
          Michael Witherell Adobe Community Professional

          When you are using it, is the color model the same? Is it set to Edit > Transparency Blend Space > CMYK or RGB? When you change it to RGB, do they appear to match?

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
            rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

            It is grossly obvious that these two UI elements are NOT color-managed the same way and I hope I'm not the only one noticing the difference.

            I think you have to watch out for what color mode you've selected when you create the swatches.

             

            This is what I'm seeing. I created this theme's swatches with RGB selected and set the values to be out of the CMYK gamut. Here the document's CMYK color profile assignment is US Newsprint SNAP:

             

            Screen Shot 2016-12-14 at 10.17.14 AM.png

             

            If the assignment is the default US SWOP Coated the CMYK numbers change, 0|0|255 now converts to 88|76|0|0 and if I select CMYK and add swatches I get the US SWOP Coated version of my out-of-gamut colors—the appearance doesn't match because of the conversion:

             

            Screen Shot 2016-12-14 at 10.18.14 AM.png

             

            If I add RGB swatches I get swatches with the originally created RGB values:

             

            Screen Shot 2016-12-14 at 10.18.31 AM.png

             

            Screen Shot 2016-12-14 at 10.30.38 AM.png

            • 3. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
              rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              Also, it looks like you can keep a theme's color in the document's CMYK gamut by making a manual edit in the swatch's CMYK field. So here's my out-of-gamut theme where the swatch numbers have been edited a bit and now moving the color in the picker won't allow me to choose an out-of-gamut color. I've pulled the magenta selector out to the edge and I'm still getting the closest CMYK value

               

              Screen Shot 2016-12-14 at 10.42.38 AM.png

              • 4. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                Roger Breton Level 1

                Good suggestion, Michael! Alas! That fails to effect a visual difference. By default, the Transparency Blending Space is set to CMYK and switching this around to RGB, under the Edit menu, does not make any difference that I can see. Do you get a difference at your end when you change the Transparency Blending color space? I'm curious.

                 

                Thank's!

                • 5. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                  rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                  That fails to effect a visual difference. By default, the Transparency Blending Space is set to CMYK and switching this around to RGB, under the Edit menu, does not make any difference that I can see.

                  The blend space only affects the preview of color on pages with transparency, so I would not expect setting it to RGB to change your example.

                   

                  The two green swatches in your example are clearly out-of-gamut RGB colors so if you convert them to CMYK (you have CMYK selected in the Color Theme panel), they would have to change in appearance when applied on the page.

                   

                  Also double-click the color theme tool and you get some options for applying color.

                   

                  Screen Shot 2016-12-14 at 10.52.47 AM.png

                  • 6. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                    Roger Breton Level 1

                    Rob and Michael, thank's for your help. Michael, the choice of RGB vs CMYK Transparency Blend Space is important and in a way I did not suspect before -- thank's to you, I discovered something new.

                     

                    Rob, you set me on a path of "war". So I started by creating an RGB document in Photoshop who only have five solid colored areas, red, green, blue, cyan and yellow. I assigned sRGB to the image.

                    I placed the document in InDesign, with the default CMYK Transparency Blending Space.

                    I used the Theme Color Tool to capture the nuances out of that RGB placed image.

                    I then saved the colors to my CC Cloud Library.

                     

                    As you can see, the RGB colors don't appear RGB anymore but were converted to US Newsprint using AbsCol RI.

                     

                    I can see a match between the RGB colors I manually create in InDesign compared to the placed image.

                    I can "logically" follow through the "converted" colors (CMYK now) in my CC Library panel.

                    But I still can't explain the appearance once transfered in the Adobe Color Themes panel?

                     

                    Something is getting lost in translation somewhere.
                    Color Experiment.PNG

                    • 7. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                      Roger Breton Level 1

                      Rob,

                       

                      There is a fundamental difference between how we both describe what we're doing.

                       

                      You wrote:

                      I think you have to watch out for what color mode you've selected when you create the swatches.

                      This is what I'm seeing. I created this theme's swatches with RGB selected and set the values to be out of the CMYK gamut. Here the document's CMYK color profile assignment is US Newsprint SNAP:

                       

                      So, you start FROM the Color Themes Panel, from which you SELECT the RGB or CMYK color space at the BOTTOM of the panel.

                      This is *very* different from where I am coming from.

                      I agree 100% that, starting from the Color Themes Panel, like you did, I will arrive at YOUR results. No brainer.

                       

                      But that's not where I am coming from. You see, the Color Theme Tool is designed to "capture" colors from placed images.

                      So far, I have not been able to successfully capture "RGB" colors in my CC Library with the Color Themes Panel even though the image I captured the colors from *is* an RGB image AND I have RGB Transparency Blend Space selected, which is mind boggling -- there are NO interface that I can find that would allow capturing "natively" the RGB colors, it seems that the friendly button "Add this theme to my current CC Library" is hard-coded to convert captured colors on the fly to CMYK (the last button on the right of this palette)?

                       

                      Add this theme to my current library.PNG

                      I think that's one problem. I will take a stroll down Preferences in case I missed some choice about this behavior...

                      • 8. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                        rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                        I see the problem. This came up awhile back with Kuler, and yes the appearance of saved themes in the panel is not color managed. I'm not much of a color theme user, but the conversion numbers in the panel do seem to respond correctly to the color management settings, which I don't think happened with Kuler.

                         

                        A work around with Kuler was to build and save your theme swatches in Lab mode, then color manage the colors as needed when they get added as swatches or colors in the document.

                         

                        It does look like you can save swatches with specified CMYK color values, which will hold when you save the theme and apply the colors as CMYK—it's just that they don't display correctly in the panel after the save.

                         

                        So this is the panel preview when I manually enter CMYK primary numbers with SNAP as the profile:

                        Screen Shot 2016-12-14 at 1.04.43 PM.png

                         

                        And this after I save or update the theme. Obviously 100% Cyan would never print or convert to 0|255|255 RGB:

                         

                        Screen Shot 2016-12-14 at 1.05.14 PM.png

                        • 9. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                          Roger Breton Level 1

                          Rob,

                           

                          As an experiment, I created a new color theme on Adobe Color using CIE Lab color values.

                          I saved the theme.

                          Returned to InDesignCC.

                          Updated my CC Library.

                          The new theme did appear.

                          But I could not browse its color composition.

                          So I assigned each color, one by one, to simple rectangle shapes.
                          Here is result of one such shape:

                          Adobe Kuler.PNG

                          You see, on the right, my starting CIE Lab value, 24 51 -59.

                          On the left, a rectangle I filled with the "imported theme color" within InDesign.

                          Below, you see the result in the Color palette (F6), 23 44 -61.

                           

                          I tried a few manual ICC color conversions with Photoshop but I can't obtain 23 44 -61 from 24 51 -59.

                           

                          Bummer...

                          • 10. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                            rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                            As you can see, the RGB colors don't appear RGB anymore but were converted to US Newsprint using AbsCol RI.

                            Try double-clicking the Theme Tool and set it to Convert to RGB (see my #5). I just tested an RGB image with the default Convert as Document Intent and got a CMYK theme, but with it set to Convert to RGB I got a theme with RGB swatches.

                            • 11. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                              rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                              Bummer...

                              There's definitely some funkiness when saving the theme to a CC Library. But if I Ioad a Lab theme directly in the Color Theme panel, and add it to swatches using the add to swatches icon everything matches:

                               

                              Screen Shot 2016-12-14 at 2.06.22 PM.png

                              • 12. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                                rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                Looks like the CC Libraries don't support Lab themes. When I add the same theme to swatches via the CC Library panel the swatches are added as RGB not Lab.

                                 

                                Screen Shot 2016-12-14 at 2.24.59 PM.png

                                • 13. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                                  Roger Breton Level 1

                                  Rob and Steve,

                                   

                                  It turns out color management is never obvious but I never suspected the Color Theme tool had its options selectable by double-clicking on the tool icon itself, in the Toolbar -- shame on me!

                                   

                                  To make a long story short, InDesign did exactly as instructed, all along.

                                  When I finally selected the "Convert to RGB" options, everything fell into place.

                                  Final Conclusion.PNG

                                  Thank you so much for your help and patience.

                                  • 14. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                                    rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                    Unless you always edit RGB with sRGB assigned, I think you still have to watch out for the panel's appearance. It looks to me like the appearance of the panel RGB values is always sRGB even when the document has some other RGB profile assigned.

                                     

                                    So sRGB matches but ProPhoto RGB or AdobeRGB won't. Here I'm in Photoshop with the profile assignment showing in the lower left:

                                     

                                    Screen Shot 2016-12-14 at 4.34.32 PM.png

                                     

                                    Screen Shot 2016-12-14 at 4.35.14 PM.png

                                    • 15. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                                      Roger Breton Level 1

                                      Here is my comparative analysis of sRGB against AdobeRGB.

                                      As you can see, InDesign honors the embedded RGB profile in each case, whether the Document Intent = Print or web.

                                      I did not go as far as testing using ProPhoto... I'm satisfied that it distinguishes color based on embedded ICC profiles.

                                      This is much to the honor of InDesign.

                                       

                                      You may wonder even as the Assigned Document RGB = sRGB!

                                      So, InDesign is smart enough NOT to use Document RGB as the reference for color conversion BUT the image embedded RGB itself as the Source of conversion to the Monitor space.

                                      Analysis.PNG

                                      • 16. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                                        rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                        As you can see, InDesign honors the embedded RGB profile in each case, whether the Document Intent = Print or web.

                                        Right that was my point, the appearance of RGB in the document is always color managed. You can have objects with conflicting profiles assigned and they will display accordingly.

                                         

                                        But I think your original post question and complaint was correct, the Color Theme panel does not color manage the appearance of its swatches via the document's profiles, while the Swatches and Color panels do. It's really obvious with CMYK themes, but would be less obvious with RGB themes captured from an sRGB document because it looks like the panel displays all RGB values via an sRGB like profile even when your document's space is a very different profile like ProPhoto RGB.

                                        • 17. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                                          Roger Breton Level 1

                                          Rob,

                                           

                                          I'm going to give it a try with ProPhoto because you kindly helped me initially.

                                          The demonstration I thought I was making this morning was aiming to prove the point that the color is indeed correctly managed in Adobe Color Themes Panel. I could still have this wrong (nobody's perfect) but, as you could see, different numbers and appearances were generated for both sRGB and AdobeRGB colors *inside* the Panel, according to my screen capture, and the generated visual appearances matched those used in CC Library and within InDesign.

                                           

                                          Adobe had a tall order on its hand and I'm pretty sure, now, the engineers correctly capture the image embedded RGB profile at the time of turning the swatches to the CC Library and the Color Theme Panel... But let me try with ProPhoto...

                                          • 18. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                                            Roger Breton Level 1

                                            Here's the deal, many variables and settings concur to throw wrenches in the motor.

                                            But, it "works".

                                            I had "Convert to RGB" in the Color Themes Tool selected (as extra precaution).

                                            The Document Intent was "Web".

                                            Transparency Blend Space = RGB

                                            Document RGB = ProPhotoRGB

                                            DocumentCMYK = GRACoL2013 (my own flavor)

                                            Analysr ProPhoto.PNG

                                            I am not completely crazy of the fact that the "picked" values from the image do not match the image itself (the device values are different for some reason)? But that may be a function of the nature of the Color Theme Tool algorithm itself, I don't know, even though there are only five, hard "colors" in my placed ProPhoto image.

                                             

                                            Also, the choice of Rendering Intent in Color Settings is paramount.

                                            The Color Themes Tool will return vastly different numbers depending on this setting.

                                             

                                            One thing I still need to test, to complete wrapping my head around InDesign color management, is the fate of placed RGB content?

                                             

                                            As far as the Adobe Color Themes Panel not matching the CC Library or the native page elements, Rob, I don't think you have a case. I think everything is color managed end to end. One thing, though, it's easy to be "fooled" by the white background of the Adobe Color Themes Panel as opposed to gray background of the CC Library. This difference creates an annoying visual discrepancy, I agree, and Adobe would be wise to add a option for the color of the background in a future release, in my opinion.

                                            • 19. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                                              rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                              I think your test is masking the problem because it's harder to see the color profile differences when you use RGB primaries—the difference between sRGB and ProPhoto isn't as noticeable on the edges of the RGB gamut because you are up against the monitor's gamut limit.

                                               

                                              If you test more neutral colors the panel differences are quite noticeable (at least on OSX with a saved theme). So simplify and compare all of the InDesign color panel displays when the document profile is ProPhoto and the colors are not primary. You can easily see here there's a very significant difference in the display of 200|100|200 in Color Themes vs. Color, Swatches, and the page item:

                                               

                                              Screen Shot 2016-12-15 at 3.02.28 PM.png

                                              • 20. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                                                rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                                Here's an example of why using a primary RGB swatch isn't really useful for comparing an RGB profile's appearance effect on same values. Below is the same placed image profiled with sRGB left and ProPhoto right. Very difficult to see a difference with 0|255|0 green but the appearance shift with the less saturated ocher 148|114|41 is striking:

                                                 

                                                Screen Shot 2016-12-15 at 4.52.31 PM.png

                                                • 21. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                                                  Roger Breton Level 1

                                                  I hear you, Rob. I won't debate your point.

                                                  Two things.

                                                  First, the Tool's floating palette is misleading.

                                                  Floating palette.PNG

                                                  Take this screen capture, for example. At first glance, nothing wrong BUT it only visually matches the sampled image.

                                                  I established that, out of ANY images, these 5 little squares in that palette always visually match the image colors it was sampled from.

                                                   

                                                  The problem? It's when these colors are applied. I don't know about you but, in my humble experience, so far, whether with "primaries" or other less saturated colors, there is an inevitable DUMBING down of colors going on, they are "systematically darker". Always? Regardless of the selected "Bright or Colorful or Deep or Muted or Dark" rule.

                                                   

                                                  Second of all, I also established that, when "Convert to RGB" is selected in the Tool's option, whether in a "Print" document or a "Web" document (you would think?), the "applied" (or resulting colors) are always converted to CMYK first and then to converted to RGB.

                                                   

                                                  Thank's to the Color palette, after freshly applying a color from the Theme to an object on the page, say a rectangle, switching to the Selection tool to select that object always causes the Color palette to automatically switch color space to reflect the color space the object is in. (Neat trick I'll remember to use)

                                                   

                                                  Frankly, the more I "play" with this "tool" the less I trust it.

                                                   

                                                  I experimented with images made up of "primaries" and "plain natural scenes" and the dumbing down effect I witness is always there, it's as though the Tool was programmed to decrease the Lightness level of sampled colors.

                                                   

                                                  I'll continue experimenting but I'm getting a bit discouraged.

                                                  • 22. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                                                    rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                                    are always converted to CMYK first and then to converted to RGB.

                                                    I'm not seeing a CMYK conversion. You can simplify even further and get a better grip on what's happening to values by placing an image with a single RGB fill that's out-of-gamut. If there is an RGB>CMYK>RGB conversion the final color wouldn't still be an out of gamut color, which is what I'm seeing below.

                                                     

                                                    Here I've placed an sRGB PSD filled with 20|230|20 out-of-gamut green. Also this file is not flattened so it is showing as transparent on the page. Clicking on it creates a 1 color theme. If I add it to the Swatches panel, the swatch matches the PSD RGB value. But if I check the Ignore Opacity... check box and get the theme again, I get a new set of values. Also, if I flatten the PSD, I always get the 71|228|40 change whether Opacity... is checked or not

                                                     

                                                    Screen Shot 2016-12-16 at 1.59.44 PM.png

                                                     

                                                    Kuler/Adobe Color theme has always suffered from funky color management, I think it's because it originated and still syncs with a web application. If you look at the web version the color conversions are silly and there are clearly no color profiles or CM available.

                                                    • 23. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                                                      Roger Breton Level 1

                                                      Rob,

                                                       

                                                      I tried your experiment.

                                                      First, in Photoshop, I created a ProPhotoRGB 50 x 50 pixels 20/230/20 image.

                                                      Saved out as PSD and placed in InDesign.

                                                      Turned to the Color Theme Tool and selected the image.

                                                      According to the active Rendering Intent selected in Color Settings > Conversion options, I got different results.

                                                      Rob Day.PNG

                                                      In this case, at least, the fact that this green is "out-of-gamut" does not come in play, but you had the correct intuition, I must say, that the way the Color Theme Tool works is by going through a pair of ICC profiles, which explains the importance of the Rendering Intent.

                                                       

                                                      In my case, having Perceptual selected in Color Settings, resulted in the visual mismatch you see in the middle (nothing to write home about) *BUT* with Absolute Colorimetric, the resulting CIE Lab value is, for all intents and purposes, quite acceptable.

                                                       

                                                      Granted, the "Device" values may not "match" on both side of the conversion (72/253/0 vs 20/230/20) but the "appearance" is preserved.

                                                       

                                                      That's what we get by going through the PCS ( RGB -> XYZ -> RGB), there is no saying that the ending Device value will be identical to the starting Device value -- and we don't care! As long as we get a "colorimetric" match.

                                                       

                                                      Now, I have not tried, in Photoshop, creating a 72/253/0 swatch, to see whether it visually matches the 20/230/20... You tell me what you find...

                                                      • 24. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                                                        rob day Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                                        First, I created a ProPhotoRGB 50 x 50 pixels 20/230/20.

                                                        That's not what I did. Both the image and document were assigned sRGB. And I created the swatches via the color theme tools add to swatches icon.

                                                        • 25. Re: Adobe Color Theme panel is not color managed?
                                                          Roger Breton Level 1

                                                          Sorry, I misread you.

                                                          So you started with place an "Unflattened sRGB PSD filled with 20|230|20 out-of-gamut green". OK.

                                                          1 -- Sampling with the "Ignore opacity and other effects" unchecked gets me the same 20/230/20 RGB swatches as you.

                                                          2 -- Sampling with the "Ignore opacity and other effects" checked gets me a different set of RGB values too, 136/226/29.

                                                          No idea what logic is being applied in that case.

                                                           

                                                          Flattening the PSD gives the same result as Number 2 above, 136/226/29.

                                                           

                                                          I agree it seems badly screwed up...

                                                           

                                                          Now, try this.

                                                           

                                                          Create a new "Print" document.

                                                          Select Edit > Transparency Blend Space = RGB

                                                          Make sure you use the Convert to RGB option in the Color Themes Tool options (instead of the default).

                                                          Try placing the two versions of your PSD.

                                                          If you uncheck "Ignore Opacity...." you will get the same RGB "picked" in both cases, 20/230/20.

                                                          If you do check the option, you'll get 136/226/29 in both cases.

                                                          Two different sets of appearances, no doubt,

                                                           

                                                          There is a logic behind this behavior and it has to do with the Flattener. That's all I know.