Soft proof your images
Correct unprintable colours to look similar to what you see on screen
We processed the colours and tones in the landscape photograph shown below to reveal more detail in the image and create more attractive vibrantlooking colours. However, after processing a photo to look good on screen, it can then be frustrating to end up with a print that looks less bright and vibrant than the digital version of the photo.
Your printer may struggle to reproduce the processed picture’s colour accurately. This is because computer displays produce millions of colours by mixing reds, greens and blues (RGB) together, while most domestic printers combine cyan, magenta, yellow and black (CMYK) to create a narrower range of colours. Colours that can’t be printed are referred to as ‘out of gamut’ colours. The image on your monitor is also brightly illuminated, leading to vibrant colours that can look comparatively drab on paper.
Lightroom’s Develop module has a handy Soft Proofing mode that’s designed to help you identify the out-of-gamut colours that a printer can’t reproduce, so that you can adjust them to fall within the printable range. To demonstrate soft proofing, we’ll use the bright and colourful processed version of our image as a starting point.
Lightroom uses the sRGB (standard RGB) colour space that’s designed to display colours on screen. After selectively adjusting problematic colours in an sRGB colour space, we’ll demonstrate how to force Lightroom to use a narrower, more printer-friendly colour space – Adobe RGB.