WEBVTT 00:00:00.000 --> 00:00:31.756 Let me introduce myself; my name is Joann Eckstut. I am the co-author of *What Is Color? 50 Questions and Answers on the Science of Color*. When I'm not writing, I spend my time working as an interior designer. Today, I would like to discuss with you the transitory nature of color. 00:00:31.756 --> 00:01:06.000 There are four primary ways in which colors appear to change or shift. Number 1: Daylight is constantly changing. So, the colors we see change constantly as well. Number 2: Changing a light source changes what colors we see. Number 3: Colors appear to change depending on what colors surround them. And Number 4: Colors that appear to match in one setting do not match in another. 00:01:06.000 --> 00:01:32.211 Let's start with number one. Daylight is constantly changing. So, the colors we see change constantly as well. Although we don't necessarily realize it, millions of changes in light happen all throughout the day. Here, it's beautifully illustrated in this time-lapse image of the Statue of Liberty, which takes place just as the Sun sets. 00:01:32.211 --> 00:02:02.751 You can see that even in this short period of time there are myriad changes. We could be overwhelmed by this information about constantly changing light, but our brains help us to hold steady. So, for example, when viewing the red house in this illustration, the human brain has no difficulty in seeing it as entirely one red, even though the side in the Sun looks coral and the side in the shade looks maroon. 00:02:02.751 --> 00:02:31.072 When you isolate the colors and place them side by side, as in the two swatches here, the coral and the maroon tell a different story. Number 2: Changing a light source changes the colors we see. When we change the light source illuminating a space, the elements in the space reflect *different* wavelengths of light, causing the space and the objects in it to change their color appearance. 00:02:31.072 --> 00:03:03.509 For example, daylight emits light evenly across the spectrum, so no particular color is emphasized, while incandescent light emphasizes reds, oranges and yellows, so objects lit in this way emphasize those tones. Fluorescents have an uneven pattern of emissions, giving objects a green or a yellow-green kind of a cast; whereas LEDs are weak in violet, blue-violet and red areas, 00:03:03.509 --> 00:03:32.720 but peak in the orange, yellow and green range. In the example that we see here, the pencils on the left, lit in incandescent light, show the red as enhanced and the natural wood as pinker. The penicils in the middle, that are lit with LEDs, slightly neutralize all the colored pencils and the wood appears beige. The pencils on the right, that are lit with fluorescent lights, 00:03:32.720 --> 00:04:01.032 are more muted generally and the natural wood appears a light brown. So, the source of the light determines the way colors are perceived. Number 3: Colors appear to change depending on what colors surround them. This phenomenon is known as *simultaneous contrast*. Simultaneous contrast reveals something of utmost importance: Color is not a fixed entity. 00:04:01.032 --> 00:04:33.944 Color isn't constructed solely via particular wavelengths of light, but by a larger visual field. Simultaneous contrast can make a color look more saturated, duller, darker, lighter, or some combination thereof, depending on what color it sits next to. In the example seen here, all of the X's are printed in the same color, although they appear to change color as they are paired with different backgrounds. 00:04:33.944 --> 00:05:05.936 In the second example, the turquoise-blue in the circle on the left and the bright lime-green in the circle on the right are actually the *same color*. I know this seems impossible at first glance, but I assure you this is true. They *appear* to be completely distinct colors only because the colors they sit next to are different. Number 4: Colors that appear to match in one setting do not in another. 00:05:05.936 --> 00:05:32.194 Two materials can appear to be the same matching color under particular lighting, but no longer match when moved to a different light source. This called *metamerism*. For example, a blue carpet and a blue fabric swatch, as seen in this illustration, may look the same when observed in a showroom that is lit with bulbs that are close to daylight in temperature. 00:05:32.194 --> 00:06:05.321 *However*, inside a room lit with *incandescent* bulbs, that reflect more red, the carpet may appear to have a more purple cast and no longer match the upholstery fabric as it did in the showroom. This is the bane of every designer's existence: color appearing one way in the showroom, another in the interior where it's going to be used. So, beware! This is due to the different molecular properties of the dyes – say, a vat dye versus a pigment dye – 00:06:05.321 --> 00:06:20.680 and the different molecular properties of the fibers – say, a wool versus a nylon. So, now that you are aware of how ephemeral color can be, you will be prepared to work with it.