The New York Institute of Photography is the world’s largest online photography school, and because we are, we often publish fun and useful photography tips. Please enjoy!
If the colors of your printed images appear dull or just plain inaccurate, you may have used the wrong color space. Check your camera menu right now. Does it say Adobe RGB? If so, you have just found the cause of the problem. Simply change it to sRGB in your camera menu and don't look back. The reason is simple; it gives the most consistent results. Not only does it work well for printing, but also for images shared on the web. Now there will be some experts who proclaim Adobe RGB to be superior as it technically captures more colors. While this is true in theory, it does not translate well in practice as most printers and devices are set to sRGB. If you're not sure, ask the lab what color space they recommend.
If this sounds a bit daunting, don't worry, you're not alone. This subject is one of the most common sources of frustration for photography students. While it may appear unnecessarily technical at first, it's not nearly as complicated as you might imagine. With this one simple change, you’ll immediately enjoy more consistent results with rich vibrant color.