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Preparing the Image

Professionals know the value of having color-compensated monitors and color-printing profiles (you may remember color profiles from Chapter 8, “Monitors and ColorSync”), which guarantee that what you see on the screen is as close as possible to what you will see on paper. Because the process of mixing colors for a screen is inherently different from the process of mixing colors for print, what seems to be just the right color for an object when you chose it onscreen may appear altogether wrong on paper. Likewise, if you're designing graphics for use on the Web, the proper colors for one brand of monitor or even one resolution may appear completely wrong when seen on another monitor or at another resolution.

Elements solves this problem by giving you the power to invoke a background process called color management. This process translates the color you see when you're creating your image into a color that's as close to the original as possible for the finished product. For color management to work, you first have to turn it on. Doing so is a one-time process that is very simple and applies to all your work in Elements from that point on—or at least until you turn color management off. Here's how to turn it on:


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