Linear Workflow (Color Management) in 2.5

Hi! I’m confused: do I still have to ‘gamma-pre-corrected’ textures when using Color Management or do I just go along with the ones like I see them on the screen? Not pre-corrected at all?

I don’t think you need to do anything to the textures before rendering with color management on, Blender should have converted everything to linear color space for rendering for you.

No need to degamma the textures or to gamma the renders. When “Color Management” is ON, Blender will take care of all that for you.


2.5 has internal color correction.

but it is still good to know about in particular about color target spaces


I read that in the pre 2.5 era for a linear workflow you’re basically changing gammas left and right and it would be best that your textures are hdr textures, as they do not suffer from gamma corrections.

Is this still the case? Would having hdr textures be better ?

Blender taking care of all that is not how I experience it. I still have little knowledge of the subject, but no matter what I do, the only thing that doesn’t work for me with linear workflow are the textures. So after some reading I kinda got the idea that preparing the images (in some way) was needed.

When using linear workflow the initial render always looks light with low contrast EXCEPT for the textures. I always tweak the render with color balance to get better light dark balance. However, every time this makes the textures way too dark with over saturated colors (in example below the image loses color information in the shadow parts)

Thanks guys. Thought so, but wasn’t sure. Now I have to redo all degammaed textures :slight_smile:

Could anybody show some examples, where unprepared textures in linear workflow do work?

If the idea of linear workflow is that you adjust the gamma during postpro, then it will also change the image textures being used. And since I’m using unprepared image textures, this will give unsatisfying results


I’ve never understood why you get washed out shadows in your renders when you use colour management.

I’ve never understood why you get washed out shadows in your renders when you use colour management.

Actually it would make sense if you need to degamma your textures before rendering

I can get good dark shadows with color management in 2.5x the biggest culprit in washing things out is usually the enviroment lighting option. I assume this is just ambient lighting by another name so I just leave it off. The Digital Lighting and Rendering book recommends not using Ambient style lights and this is a recommendation I have heard repeated by other lighting tutorials and books I have read and thats what I follow.

Perharps enviroment lighting in the render branch is different from that in trunk but I have never used that particular branch.

tyrant monkey, I’m not so sure if you’re on topic. We’re merely wondering if image textures should be prepared when working in linear workflow.

I’m still betting image textures need to be uhm… degamma…tized, but no certainty here

This is disappointing. I was always under the impression that Blender had a truly transparent linear workflow. Having to manually prepare textures prior to being used isn’t that. Ideally, the renderer gamma corrects the textures at render time so the user doesnt have to. In all fairness, Maya doesn’t do that, but vray for maya does. :slight_smile:
Or am I not understanding the process correctly? would help if people read things every now and then instead of yelling :wink:

Sago, if we assume that Blender is rendering that top image correctly perhaps your material settings are off? Try Shadeless and see if the colours come through at the same value as the input texture.

I was just trying to point out to a washed out pic might not be due to color management been on but rather due to enviromental lighting.

But to answer you question and to stay on topic this time if color management is on your textures should be have a gamma. The get converted to linear space automatically by Blender. I think its the same thing with the color picker non linear but your colour pick is converted to linear color space also automatically by Blender.

I stand corrected. That article looks like Blender has implemented a linear workflow almost perfectly.

So - that’s what I’ve been fighting when trying to make a chrisp, contrasty image! Damned auto-management. Turned it off and suddenly my renders are a whole lot better!

To be honest I’ve never really understood this linear flow thingamie. Just that for some reason, a gamma of 0.75 is normally needed… kind of use this knowledge like people tend to use Ambient Occlusion as a magic button to solve their bad renders. Wish I did know it better, but the “non rocket science” tutorials out there do indeed seem to be rocket science.

That’s what I did before to compare linear and non-linear workflow.
original texture___ non-linear______ linear_________

So this is my problem. Both linear and non-linear are exactly the same. But in my linear workflow renders I always adjust the gamma and contrast for better results, which is my preferred way. Unfortunately my image textures also go through that adjusting, which gives poor results.

So I guess my light setup isn’t good enough. Quite strange because even the default light with AAO gives light low-contrast results (which I thought was supposed to be)

Looking at the first images, it really just looks like spec spread…