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cataract removal - lens replacements

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#1 Tim Chang

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Posted 14 December 2015 - 09:34 PM

I recently had surgery for glaucoma. A by-product of this was having the lenses in both eyes replaced with artificial ones. My doctor says the cataracts weren't that bad, and only slightly worse than average for someone 50 years old

 

I am totally blown away by how "blue" everything looks. Especially exterior daylight, which I assume to be more UV light being passed through to my retinas. Even indoors, blue objects (especially on computer monitors) are distinclty more bluish.

 

This makes me think that the aging population of photographers are seeing images much differently than the young. In other words, if you're over 50 and think you are accurately judging the colour grading of your photography for all audiences, you are fooling yourself. All the bluer tones in your work will be boosted unnaturally fromthe point of view of someone only 20 years old, viewing the exact same image.

 

Has anyone else thought about the ramifications of this to professional photographers?

 

Tim


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#2 John E Clark

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Posted 15 December 2015 - 12:36 PM

I recently had surgery for glaucoma. A by-product of this was having the lenses in both eyes replaced with artificial ones. My doctor says the cataracts weren't that bad, and only slightly worse than average for someone 50 years old

 

I am totally blown away by how "blue" everything looks. Especially exterior daylight, which I assume to be more UV light being passed through to my retinas. Even indoors, blue objects (especially on computer monitors) are distinclty more bluish.

Tim

 

I had a long discussion with the eye surgeon on this topic. I was concerned when it was mentioned that the lenses have a 'yellow' cast. As it was I read up and in fact, as one ages, the natural lenses age and yellow. So, unless one is a teenager or younger, one may have more or less yellowing depending. Like all things there's a lot of variation.

 

Also, the 'yellow' cuts blue and some UV, both of which may promote macular degeneration. Sunglasses are recommended to really do a better job.

 

Since I had about a 2-3 week separation between lens replacements, first the most serious affected eye, then the second, I spent some time blinking back and forth between the two to see if I could detect differences... they were pretty much the same.

 

The Wife and I do these 'color' match tests, and while she is slightly better than I am... and likes to lord it over me... I'm not off in the weeds for color match.

 

I also got lenses that correct for my myopia (since 12 or so...) and stigmatism, so, I'm glasses free for distances... just need to wear reading glasses... there was an offer of a type of lens that attached to my natural eye 'muscles' for focus accomodation... but the surgeon said I'd probably need to wear reading glasses anyway, so I didn't go for the added expense.


Edited by John E Clark, 15 December 2015 - 12:39 PM.

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#3 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 15 December 2015 - 12:43 PM

I know two people who had this done - my father and a friend - and both reported noticeably increased blue response after the surgery. My dad had one eye done at a time and we were able to figure out a gel that matched the new to the old. I can't remember what number it was now, but it was a fairly deep straw. Naturally, this may vary depending on the individual. The yellowing is reportedly caused by UV exposure and is age-related; he was 71 at the time.

 

The thing is, it's not nearly as simple as that. If you're looking through a filter for a long time, your brain will compensate. Also, there are a lot of older people working quite effectively in camera departments and other colour-critical roles; it doesn't seem to affect them too badly. Also, there's evidence of people with severe undiagnosed red-green deficiency making a good living a directors of photography. The data from that study was, according to one reliable source I spoke to, carefully suppressed as it could clearly affect people's employability, a bulging resume of high-end productions notwithstanding.

 

The idea that anyone who's working in these fields needs to have some sort of golden-eyed visual perception capability is misguided. And that's before we even get into the issues of whether the perceptual sensation of what you see as red is the same as the way I see red. We have no idea.

 

In short, yes it may make a difference, no it doesn't matter. Bear in mind that there is a whole industry growing up around monitor calibration and LUT manipulation that relies on the idea that people's visual sense is completely objective and consistent between individuals, although it is now completely obvious that it is not.

 

P


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#4 John E Clark

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Posted 15 December 2015 - 03:06 PM

I know two people who had this done - my father and a friend - and both reported noticeably increased blue response after the surgery. My dad had one eye done at a time and we were able to figure out a gel that matched the new to the old. I can't remember what number it was now, but it was a fairly deep straw. Naturally, this may vary depending on the individual. The yellowing is reportedly caused by UV exposure and is age-related; he was 71 at the time.

 

This is sort of interesting. When I discussed this problem with my eye surgeon, I was offered initially a range of 'yellow' tinted lenses... I asked about the 'blue' problem and then a 'clear' lens was offered. He also said that most choose the yellow tint to varying degrees. I did research and decided for the lightest 'yellow' tint and not the 'clear'.

 

Since you are in the UK, and the OP lists NZ as their base... I'm wondering if the 'clear' is offered/preferred outside of the US, or just random luck of two reports.

 

And having been to industrial printing facilities, how 'color' is judged requires so much 'special' setup, I'd hazard that the color spectrum of the light most people use is so 'all over the place', few people really have the ability to be all that accurate... (I'm sure it's the same for a color grading bay that cost $$, but I've never been to such a facility...).


Edited by John E Clark, 15 December 2015 - 03:09 PM.

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#5 Tim Chang

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Posted 15 December 2015 - 09:55 PM

... If you're looking through a filter for a long time, your brain will compensate. ..

 

Before the surgery I, too, predicted that this would be the case. I thought I would wake up, say to myself "Wow, everything looks bluer," then after 5 minutes my brain's firmware would autmatically colour correct my vision back to the way I was used to experiencing it. Hence the reason I am so shocked that I was wrong. It's been a couple of weeks now and I am still surprised by the blueness (to be more accurate, I gues this should say, "The lack of yellowness"). I am thinking that the reason your father and your friend stopped noticing the blue was not because of psychovisual colour correction, but familiarity with the new "look" - i.e. it simply became unworthy of comment.

 

... Also, there are a lot of older people working quite effectively in camera departments and other colour-critical roles; it doesn't seem to affect them too badly.. ..

 

what happens is that the "straw CC filter" that is embedded into your aging lenses causes blues to appear darker and less saturated (not that you would be conscious of this, of course). So if you were colour grading your work to make a neutral looking scene (that is to say. well balanced with the reds and greens), you compensate for your vision by boosting the chroma in the blues and also brightening them.

 

However, the only people who would notice this would be those that are much younger than you, and even then they would probably just say to themselves, "Oh, that's just his visual style".

 

John, l also did your blink test to compare the old lens with the new one, but my results were different. I could easily tell the difference between the yellowish vision of the old aging lens and the comparatively bluish cast through the new one (This was proof that the psychovisual colour correction that the brain does is not applied separately to each eye, but to the overall "fused" image that is the combination ofleft and right.). However, I did this test by looking at a blank white sheet of paper. With normal outdoor scenery it was difficult to tell the difference because of all the confusing detail and tones.

 

Tim


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#6 John E Clark

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Posted 16 December 2015 - 01:38 PM

John, l also did your blink test to compare the old lens with the new one, but my results were different. I could easily tell the difference between the yellowish vision of the old aging lens and the comparatively bluish cast through the new one (This was proof that the psychovisual colour correction that the brain does is not applied separately to each eye, but to the overall "fused" image that is the combination ofleft and right.). However, I did this test by looking at a blank white sheet of paper. With normal outdoor scenery it was difficult to tell the difference because of all the confusing detail and tones.

 

Tim

 

 

I will say that during the period between the surgeries I was still wearing 'glasses' with the lens of the right eye taken out... and and the left still having the lens... I don't think my glasses had any tinting... never did get into sunglasses or any form of tinting... although these days I now wear sunglasses for long drives across some of the 'vast' desert areas here in the So Cal... snow... what snow... that's up in the mountains where it belongs...

 

I do think that you may have gotten the 'clear' lens version, as the surgeon did say that those to got the clear lenses, did have some comment on the bluish cast of everything. He did not indicate if they ever 'accommodated' the cast and finally began to not see it...

 

One idea if you are truly worried about this is to use a light yellow filter to subtract out the blue a bit. This is not unlike using a Wratten 90 filter to 'see' B&W tonalities... actually a heavy amber... but was used by photographers and cinematographers in the olden days to get an idea of what the B&W monochromatic tonalities would be...


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