[OPTICAL REVIEW Vol. 9, No. 3 (2002) 132-139]

Color Appearance of a Patch Explained by RVSI for the Conditions of Various Colors of Room Illumination and of Various Luminance Levels of the Patch

Mitsuo IKEDA, Yoko MIZOKAMI, Sachi NAKANE and Hiroyuki SHINODA

Department of Photonics, Faculty of Science and Engineering, Ritsumeikan University, Nojihigashi, Kusatsu, Shiga 525-8577, Japan

(Received September 25, 2001; Accepted February 12, 2002)

Whenever we enter a space illuminated differently from a previous space whether in color or in illuminance, we can quickly adapt to the new atmosphere and can again perceive white for the originally white object; this is known as color constancy. This phenomenon is explained by rotation of the recognition axis of the recognized visual space of illumination (RVSI) toward the illumination color. The explanation then predicts that the color appearance of a test patch changes radically toward the opposite direction from the color of illumination when the physical property of the test patch is kept unchanged at a neutral white. This prediction was confirmed by Experiment 1, where eight different colors of illumination were employed. The test patch appeared very vivid in color and shifted toward the opposite direction from the color of the illumination. In RVSI theory the light source color mode is explained by the release of the test patch from the restriction of RVSI. The release can be achieved by increasing the luminance of the test patch and the color appearance of the patch should then return to its own color as it is no longer controlled by RVSI. In Experiment 2 these predictions were investigated by increasing the luminance of the test patch to a much higher level than that of the objects in the lit room fixed at an illuminance of about 100 lx. The color appearance of the test patch indeed became the light source color and returned to the original neutral white. Emphasis was given in the course of the experiments that the subjects were observing the test patch presented in a real 3D space where the subjects also stayed inside so that they could properly construct RVSI for the space.

Key words: color appearance, color appearance mode, object color, light source color, recognized visual space of illumination, illumination, elementary color naming method