Re: car colors Myth

Mike Brock <brockm@...>

Andy Carlson notes:

"I think the most fundamental difference in perceived
color is light intensity. An average train room is lit
about 7 or more F-stops less than the good ol
outdoors. In a marginally lit indoor train room,
lightening the color could be argued as being best FOR
THESE CONDITIONS. However, if one is to view the
exquisit models members of this list are creating
under real sunlight, I maintain the most accurate
color is the one the prototype used."

Perhaps. A couple of things. First, perception indoors is not driven just by the amount of light, it is driven just as much by the type of light. I use florescent warm white to help produce the very reddish look of southeastern Wyoming. Oddly, I paint outside and I've certainly encountered the different appearance of painted objects under 5300 kelvin [ if I recall the temp of sunlight correctly ] and my indoor florescents. Next, as I've said before, the color is very dependent upon atmospheric conditions and sun angles. Having spent a great deal of time shooting photos of Daylight 4449 and "J" 611, I can tell you that the appearance does change. Again, at Toccoa, GA, at around 5PM I turned to watch 2-8-4 2716, painted black, move by at about 100 yds away and was amazed at how grey it APPEARED. Last...while there may be those that build and paint for viewing in direct sunlight, I don't know any.

Regarding Tim's photos and "waning" light, I guess I don't quite get the point. Of course in darkness dark subjects are going to appear dark. So are light colored objects. OTOH, sun angles produce very different results. At midday the side of a black engine will look damn dark. At 5 PM in May in Georgia the side of a black engine will look quite light colored...some shade of grey... if viwed with the sun to your back. The other side will look damn black. Same thing will happen to any other color.

Every 15 months we all seem to get on here with our color ideas. No problem...just a fact. Each modeler has the opportunity to go out in the real world with some painted object, turn it in different directions to the sun, cover it with dirt or dirty water and turn it again. Then they can do it at different times of the day. They can decide for themselves if they think the object's appearance changes with changes in sunlight, sun angle, dirt etc. They then have the difficult task of replicating the colors they think they see inside a train room lit up by all kinds of possible light sources. It's what we do...I guess.

Mike Brock

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