Short courses in color imaging for industry

The Norwegian Colour & Visual Computing Laboratory is offering a programme of professional short courses for industry in colour imaging topics from May 2014. The courses cover colour management, colour measurement, process control and PSO certification. The programme is led by Dr Phil Green, Professor of Colour Imaging at HIG.

A. Colour measurement

Colour measurement plays a fundamental role in many industries. Where in the past densitometry provided an adequate means of process control, users are now finding colorimetric and spectral data essential tools in design, device calibration, profiling and reporting. The adoption of international process control standards based on colorimetric references, together with the increasing demands for high quality colour reproduction of both images and spot colours, makes a colour measurement a vital skill in today’s market.

The course is intended to provide in-depth training for users of colour measuring equipment. It covers both the theoretical understanding of colour metrology and the practical use of the equipment. It is based at Hogskolen in Gjovik, using the outstanding international expertise and facilities of the Norwegian Colour & Visual Computing Laboratory.

The instruments that will be used include a range of hand-held and bench spectrophotometers with the two widely used measuring geometries, 0:45 and 0:diffuse. We will also use telespectroradiometers and radiometers for precise measurements of self-luminous surfaces such as colour monitors, and for measurements that include ambient illumination of the viewing environment.

The course is structured so that Day 1 provides a grounding in the basic practical techniques and underlying theory, while Day 2 addresses more advanced topics. Participants may register for one or both days.

What you will learn

Participants will learn how spectral radiation is detected and the resulting signals transformed into quantities that consistently model the human visual response using the internationally-established CIE system. They will learn how the difference between two colours (such as a proof and a print) can be quantified and how production aim values and tolerances are established. The limitations of colorimetry will be discussed, and participants will be shown how to determine the accuracy and repeatability of the instruments used.

The practical sessions will cover a range of activities that are of relevance in industry today. These will include the correct setup and operation of instruments, measurement procedures for isotropic and non-isotropic materials, planar and 3D surfaces, reflective and self-luminous materials, measurement of samples for process control, and the assessment of differences between colours.

Who should attend

The course is aimed at all those who need to make accurate colour measurements and interpret the results.

B. Colour Management

Colour management has become an essential component of the colour imaging workflow, and continues to become more important with converging media technologies. Whether in photography, print, video, cinema or the web, professionals now routinely use colour management to control how their images are reproduced.

However, implementing colour management in a high-quality environment is not straightforward, and many users have been dissatisfied by the results they have achieved. This course aims to develop a deeper understanding of the elements of colour management so that participants are not only able to create high-quality ICC profiles but are also able to correctly calibrate equipment, test and edit profiles and determine solutions to implementation problems. The course focuses on high quality colour reproduction for display and print, and also covers colour management for a range of applications such as soft proofing, medical imaging and the web.

The basic principles of characterisation and calibration will be demonstrated, together with the use of a wide range of commercial colour management software.

The course is structured so that Day 1 provides an understanding of the colour management architecture and hands-on profile creation and use, while Day 2 focuses on more advanced topics including use of ICC v4. Participants may register for one or both days.

What you will learn

Participants will learn how to calibrate and characterise a range of colour devices. They will develop an appreciation of the issues that restrict the ability of a device to create a perfect match to an original image, and about how these are compensated for in the device profile. They will also learn how to install and use profiles in practical applications, and how to edit profiles for optimum results.

The practical sessions will cover the creation, editing and testing of profiles for a wide range of input and output devices, including cameras, scanners, displays, proofing systems, digital printers, and conventional presses.

Who should attend

The course is aimed at all those who are intending to implement colour management solutions, whether as colour specialists or as advisors to industry in a sales support or consultancy role.

C. Advanced colour management and the ICC profile specification

A new version of the ICC specification, v 4.3, is now available from ICC. Like the previous version, 4.2, it was published simultaneously as an ISO standard (ISO 15706-1), and is backwards-compatible with previous revisions.

The ICC profile format is widely used in transforming colour data between different devices, encodings, and colour spaces. Ambiguities in the previous version were resolved in the v4 specification, which also introduced a Perceptual Reference Medium to provide a well-defined intermediate gamut as a target for gamut mapping and re-rendering between source and destination data.

Since the first publication of the v4 specification, there have been a number of important amendments that extend the functionality of the ICC architecture and support smart, dynamic and programmable colour management systems in addition to the original static processing model.

This course outlines the features added to the profile specification through recent amendments. These features can potentially be extended to provide a range of colour processing capabilities that are not currently available, including channel preservation and multi-spectral transforms.

Full use of the profile format, including the recently-adopted elements, has the potential to support a much wider range of potential colour management applications, and also to overcome some of the implementation problems that users encounter.

This course is also aimed at colour professionals and software developers who need to be able to generate or modify profiles without relying on commercial profiling tools.

The course is structured so that Day 1 provides an understanding of the v4 format, while Day 2 addresses more advanced topics including creating profiles directly from measurement data without using commercial software, and features of the planned v5 profile format. Participants may register for one or both days.

What you will learn

Participants will learn how to measure a print or display and convert these measurements into a colour transform, understand the datatyping and encoding requirements of the profile format, and be able to create fully-conforming and interoperable profiles which embody these transforms.

Who should attend

The course is aimed primarily at advanced users, software developers and researchers.

D. Process control and PSO certification for print

Many printers now aim to print in conformance with ISO 12647-2, the standard for sheet- and web-offset, to achieve tighter process control, reduce waste and comply with quality expectations in the international market. PSO certification is a means of showing that the company has a quality assured production flow and can produce according to the international Process Standard Offset (PSO). PSO is composed of elements from a number of ISO standards, assembled into a comprehensive but achievable package that allows printing and prepress businesses to fulfill the requirements of ISO 12647-2 in a timely manner. ISO defines the objectives while PSO defines the methods. PSO certification confirms that the company is able to print to ISO 12647-2 and that the entire workflow is aligned to produce according to ISO standards .

HIG offers training in collaboration with UGRA to provide PSO certification.

The course is structured with lectures and practical demonstrations. The following features of the workflow are subject to PSO certification and are reviewed in detail in the course:

1 Organization and documents

2 Receipt of electronic materials

3 Custom manufacturing of electronic materials

4 Monitors / soft - proofing

5 Proofing

6 Preparation of printing plates

7 Press

8 Standards for visual assessment

What you will learn

Participants will gain basic knowledge of standardization in printing, together with the benefits of the PSO programme. Participants will understand all the features of the workflow that will be the subject of PSO certification and how to comply with the requirements. After completing the course, participants will have acquired the skills to start the PSO process in their own company.

Who should attend

Business owner, manager, quality manager, production manager and project manager of printing and prepress companies; consultants offering training in prepress, print and process control.

Forthcoming dates:

A. Colour measurement 20-21 May 2014

B. Colour Management 22-23 May 2014

C. Advanced colour management and the ICC profile specification 26-27 May 2014

D. Process control and PSO certification for print 28 May 2014

Registration and pricing of the short courses will be available soon. For more information please contact


The course is delivered by the following members of the Norwegian Colour and Visual Computing Laboratory.

Phil Green has worked in research and education in colour imaging since 1997. He is the author of several of the leading textbooks in the subject, including ‘Understanding Digital Color’, ‘Colour Engineering’ and ‘Color Management’. Phil has been Technical Secretary of the International Color Consortium since 2005.

Dr.Peter Nussbaum has taught digital image reproduction and color management at HIG since 2000. He completed a PhD degree in “Colour Measurement and Print Quality Assessment in a Colour Managed Printing Workflow" in 2011. He represents Norway in ISO TC130 Graphic Technology. 

Aditya Sole  has been Laboratory Engineer at the Norwegian Colour & Visual Computing Laboratory since 2008, and is currently undertaking a PhD on Soft metrology of non-diffuse materials. He completed an MSc in Digital Colour Imaging at London College of Communication, UK in 2007.

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