Document Detail

Adaptation and the color statistics of natural images.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  9425544     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Color perception depends profoundly on adaptation processes that adjust sensitivity in response to the prevailing pattern of stimulation. We examined how color sensitivity and appearance might be influenced by adaptation to the color distributions characteristic of natural images. Color distributions were measured for natural scenes by sampling an array of locations within each scene with a spectroradiometer, or by recording each scene with a digital camera successively through 31 interference filters. The images were used to reconstruct the L, M and S cone excitation at each spatial location, and the contrasts along three post-receptoral axes [L + M, L - M or S - (L + M)]. Individual scenes varied substantially in their mean chromaticity and luminance, in the principal color-luminance axes of their distributions, and in the range of contrasts in their distributions. Chromatic contrasts were biased along a relatively narrow range of bluish to yellowish-green angles, lying roughly between the S - (L + M) axis (which was more characteristic of scenes with lush vegetation and little sky) and a unique blue-yellow axis (which was more typical of arid scenes). For many scenes L - M and S - (L + M) signals were highly correlated, with weaker correlations between luminance and chromaticity. We use a two-stage model (von Kries scaling followed by decorrelation) to show how the appearance of colors may be altered by light adaptation to the mean of the distributions and by contrast adaptation to the contrast range and principal axes of the distributions; and we show that such adjustments are qualitatively consistent with empirical measurements of asymmetric color matches obtained after adaptation to successive random samples drawn from natural distributions of chromaticities and lightnesses. Such adaptation effects define the natural range of operating states of the visual system.
M A Webster; J D Mollon
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Vision research     Volume:  37     ISSN:  0042-6989     ISO Abbreviation:  Vision Res.     Publication Date:  1997 Dec 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1998-02-02     Completed Date:  1998-02-02     Revised Date:  2007-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0417402     Medline TA:  Vision Res     Country:  ENGLAND    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  3283-98     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Psychology, University of Nevada, Reno 89557, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Adaptation, Ocular / physiology*
Color Perception / physiology*
Contrast Sensitivity
Dark Adaptation
Models, Psychological
Grant Support

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