The World Series starts next week. While players and fans are gearing up for the big event, stadium groundskeepers are preparing, too. You’ve surely seen those meticulous patterns in the grass – crisscross, spiral, plaid – but do you know how the groundskeepers create them?
Thanks to a phenomenon called geometric metamerism (aka gonio-appearance), the grass really is greener on the other side. Read on to learn more about this optical illusion that can trick your eyes and wreak havoc on your color control program.
This creative use of geometric metamerism tricks the eye into thinking the flat field is concave. Image courtesy of https://growinggreengrass.net
Color is our perception of reflected light across the visible spectrum. When light hits an object, it absorbs some rays and reflect others. The color of light that reflects back into our eyes is the color we perceive. The more light an object absorbs, the darker it appears. With black, very little light is reflected.
Pure black in the presence of light wasn’t achieved until 2014 when Surrey NanoSystems announced the invention of Vantablack. This high-tech artificial substance absorbs 99.965% of all light that hits it, from the ultraviolet, through the visible and well into the infrared spectrum. When applied to an object, Vantablack makes the object look like a flat, bottomless void in space.
Here you see a crumpled piece of aluminum foil, with Vantablack covering the middle. There is so little reflection you can’t even perceive the wrinkled texture!
Image Copyright Surrey NanoSystems 2017
We frequently get calls from customers who can’t figure out why their measurements vary, even when they’re using maintained devices. Why would a sample read one way one day, then slightly different another? Many times the culprit is thermochromaticity, and it becomes an even bigger problem as the seasons change.
Every kind of material changes color with temperature. These changes cause the material to exhibit a shift in reflected wavelengths of light, which can alter our perception. Often the color shift is so slight the naked eye would never notice. But if your job is to quality check color critical products, you need to fully understand how thermochromaticity can impact your color, your measurements, and your ability pass inspection.
This thermochromatic ice cream spoon changes from green to blue when it gets cold.
If you recently invested in a spectrophotometer or colorimeter, you know there’s a lot more to learn about color measurement than just how to use your new device. To help you begin exploring the exciting world of color, we’ve compiled seven blogs that explain how to set up your color measurement device, care for it, and use it to its maximum potential.
As brand owners compete to make packaging stand out, printers are charged with achieving accurate color – on unique substrates – with shorter print runs. Many spend a lot of time mixing ink, then end up throwing it away when the color isn’t right.
If you’re stuck in this cycle, you’re essentially paying for ink twice – once when you buy it, and once again to dispose of it. What are the economics behind this waste? What’s the impact on our earth?
Today we’re demonstrating how the InkFormulation Software’s Leftover Management feature can help you reduce inventory and waste and lower your disposal costs.
Did you read our blog: Are You Using The Right Tolerancing Method? If not, check it out. Today we’re taking the topic one step further to investigate how tolerances are chosen in different industries.
A pass-fail tolerance is the amount of color variation that is considered commercially acceptable. In part, tolerances are driven by customer expectations. While color tolerances are very tight in the automotive, plastics, and paint & coatings worlds, they can be much less strict in other industries.
How many trial and error steps does it take you to formulate a color? If you answered more than three, it might be time to enlist the help of a computerized solution.
Computer-aided color formulation can bring huge benefits to your business. Out of the gate, even beginners can hit color targets faster, saving time, money and expensive colorants. Once you’ve established an accurate process, you can expect to match 95% of your color requirements within a reasonable color distance on the first try! When you consider manual mixing takes an average of 12 tries to get it right, formulation software saves labs a lot of time and money during the development and production phases.
To learn more about the benefits, check out our blog “Fast Formulation is Key to Producing Color of the Year.” Today we’re demonstrating how a portable or benchtop spectrophotometer and Color iMatch software can help you formulate paint, plastic, and textile colors faster and with less waste.
At X-Rite Pantone, we pride ourselves on our ability to help customers specify, communicate, formulate, and produce consistent color. You’re probably familiar with our major markets, like plastics, industrial coatings, and print & packaging. You may also be aware of the more “common” things we measure, like paint, printed surfaces, and textiles.
But, as you look for the emergency exit on a plane, watch a butterfly float by, or choose the freshest package of cheese from the grocer, do you consider the role of color? Today we’re stepping out of the box to highlight some very unique applications of our color management solutions to help you think about color differently.
Farmers use the Munsell Soil Color Chart to evaluate the suitability of soil for crops.
The PANTONE Color of the Year announcement is always exciting. Not only does it set the stage for upcoming trends, it also provides brand owners and designers critical guidance for marketing and product development.
However, those who are charged with manufacturing products and packaging with trending colors (like 2017’s choice – 15-0343 Greenery) know it doesn’t “just happen.” It takes time and effort to incorporate new colors. Whether you work in paints, plastics, textiles, or printing, today’s blog shares formulation solutions that will help you be first to market for the next trend.
When judging color, background can be a major distraction for the human eye. In fact, surrounding colors and patterns can actually change the perception of the color you’re trying to focus on.
One of the wonderful things about color measurement instruments like colorimeters and spectrophotometers is that they can’t be distracted. They aren’t susceptible to variables such as fatigue, age or color vision deficiency. They aren’t even aware that a surround exists – they only measure the reflected light from the targeted sample area through a system of lenses called an aperture.
If your job involves specifying, communicating, evaluating, or approving color, you need to consider aperture size in the color measurement process. Today we’ll review why that’s important and share tips to help you make the right choice for your color measurement applications.