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Best book on COLOR?


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#1 Mihai Meda

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Posted 30 January 2006 - 12:38 PM

Hello!

I am very interested in color... and I want to read more on color. So far, I've read COLOR AND HUMAN RESPONSE by Birren, EXPLORING THE COLOR IMAGE (the Kodak booklet), INTERACTION OF COLOR by Albers and IF IT'S PURPLE SOMEBODY'S GONNA DIE by Bellantoni.

I still haven't read any of the Storaro's books because (even used) they are prohibitively expensive for me, as a film student.

I am interested in reading a book that talks about color more from a creative point of view. Does anybody know of a REAL GOOD book on color? How to use it to create mood, how it affects the audience psychologically, how to combine and juxstapose colors, etc

I realize the pool of selection can be quite large, since I am not looking for books geared necesserily towards the film medium (if it is, the better). But if anyone ever read a book on color and thought that was just great and inspiring, I would really appreciate letting me know into the secret...

Thanks a lot!
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#2 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 30 January 2006 - 01:43 PM

If you can find them, some very early good technical discussion was in the SMPTE Book "Elements of Color in Professional Motion Pictures", and "The Perception of Color" by Kodak's Ralph Evans (John Wiley and Sons, ISBN 0-471-24785-5).

Kodak also has tutorial material and programs:

http://www.kodak.com...0.1.4.9.8&lc=en

http://www.kodak.com...0.1.4.9.6&lc=en

http://www.kodak.com...1.4.9.6.8&lc=en

http://www.kodak.com...0.1.4.9.4&lc=en

Do a search for tutorials on the Internet, such as:

http://www.glenbrook...ght/u12l2b.html

http://www.cybercollege.com/tvp015.htm
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#3 Daniel Madsen

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Posted 30 January 2006 - 04:16 PM

The Elements of Color by Johannes Itten.

Also Blain Brown's books, "Cinematography" and "Motion Picture Lighting" both have sections on color theory in relation to filtration, film stock and color temperure.

A physics book always does the trick too!!
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#4 Mihai Meda

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Posted 30 January 2006 - 04:31 PM

I will check on THE ELEMENTS OF COLOR and THE PERCEPTION OF COLOR, thanks John and madsen. I've already read Blain Brown's book, they are both good.

To go back to my first point: I am not interested that much anymore in the physical properties of light/color, or simply the mechanism of vision. So no need for tutorials or physics book. As I said, I am interested to learn how people use color creatively. How color affects us psychologically, what are the cultural associations in different civilizations, and so on. How different colors (or combinations) affect people, even subconsciously.

Again - not necessarily in film. Architecture. design, painting, etc. How color affects us in general.

Thanks!
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#5 Daniel Madsen

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Posted 01 February 2006 - 07:30 PM

I wish I remembered the title of this one book about color.... it was right up your alley. It provided very specific classifications for any three color combinations. Ex. gray with dark blue and black= modern. Purely subjective but interesting just the same...I'll try to find the title.
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#6 Mike Williamson

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Posted 01 February 2006 - 10:54 PM

Bruce Block's book "The Visual Story" has the best "textbook" look at color I have yet to see, a great book overall. I found his look at color much clearer and better considered than the chapter in Blain Brown's, which I felt was one of the weaker points of his book.

I'd also recommend "Vision In Motion" by Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, it's been out of print for a long time, but you could find it at a library with a decent arts section, most universities would probably have it.
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#7 Richard Vialet

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Posted 02 February 2006 - 12:06 AM

I've been interested in getting If Its Purple, Somebody's Gonna Die. Can you all tell me what you thought of that book: was it informative, engaging, and did it provide many examples? Did it go into detail about color in regards to optical and special effects technique or was it completely just color theory and philosophy. Just wanna here some opinions...
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#8 Dominic Case

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Posted 02 February 2006 - 07:29 PM

It's a fascinating book, but strictly non-technical. It's really a book for designers. It gives very many examples with illustrations, but it relates colour to mood and message and meaning, without any real attention to the process of obtaining those colours. The cultural and emotional significance of colours is discussed in detail, particularly in relation to what the film is about.

But there's nothing on technique, either from the point of view of the DoP or the designer - or the lab or colorist for that matter.

Disappointingly the author doesn't cover "Hero" - probably it is too recent for the book's publication date, but you could almost do an entire book on that film.

But for what it does say, I'd certainly recommend the book.
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