Digital Color and Paint Testing
Two very important subjects
Digital color accuracy and paint color testing
Disclaimer- digital color accuracy
Lighting makes the difference in how color looks, whether through your monitor or in your home. Despite all our care it is possible that the presented colors, color charts and color visualization differ from the original color samples of paint manufacturers and the final color that is used in real life. As with all digital imaging processes, there is no guarantee of color accuracy. In using paint we always recommend testing the product in the space it will be used, and on an actual surface if exterior, or one similar to where it will be used.
Regarding color accuracy and longevity of the painting, professional application procedures with highest quality coatings should be followed to achieve the best results.
Test paint colors before you paint
A recommended professional practice is to test your paint colors, using the actual brand, color, and finish you want to see. Be sure you can view the colors under the same lighting conditions you will be seeing them once painting is done. Use an appropriate substrate. One great product is Small Wall, which you can use for a very smooth look. It is a ready-to-use paint sample board that you can re-coat with a different color, and it even has a re-positionable adhesive strip on the back. I like this so much that I offer it as an option when you want to order sample cards painted with EcoHues Full Spectrum Paint.
Getting ready to paint? Testing paint colors on a surface large enough to see the color is critical to making your best color decisions. Now, Small Wall is finally available from Amazon…you don’t even have to go to a store to get it. No primer needed to test any paint colors you choose, using this new product that personally I am very excited about.
1. Use a foam or microfiber roller, 4″ or 6″ size is fine, to apply paint to your Small Wall boards. Do NOT use a brush of any type, even a foam brush. Evenly cover the surface of your Small Wall sample board. Use 2 coats of paint, just as you would if painting your own walls. Color always comes out better with the 2nd coat and using the roller will give you a smoother, more evenly colored result.
2. Don’t expect all deep-base colors to cover in 2 coats. Because of the way paints are made, the deep base colors are often less opaque, so you just need more applications.
3. Then, where you’re ready to paint on your walls, use the right primer. In the case of deep base colors, you can get the primer tinted to the same formula as your top coat. Then, 2 coats of finish will probably do it!
4. Enjoy! Small Wall can be moved around your room, repositioned to see the color from many angles. There are 2 to a pack, so you can do 2 pieces of one color or 1 piece of 2 colors.
NOTE about the best size of test area
Ideally, especially for exteriors, you will test a minimum of area 4 feet square. If you can do it in an area adjacent to trim as well as in a more open section of the building, that’s even better.
- Remember that color appearance increases in intensity and changes in other ways, as the area becomes larger. That’s why a small color chip or sample is not a good representation of actual color in use.
- Be sure to use large areas of any colors that are near each other, since adjacent colors always have mutual affect on appearance.
- The best way to see color on your building exterior is to apply your large test sections on each side of the building, to see how the color appears relative to changing light throughout the day.
Read some of Barbara’s client comments here, and then enjoy the results of Barbara’s professional expertise for your own home or commercial space. As an IACC accredited color consultant, Barbara is particularly knowledgeable about using color for maximum effect and benefits in creating supportive environments.