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Grokking The Gimp
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6.2.7.3 The Hue-Saturation Tool

The Hue-Saturation dialog is shown in Figure  6.27.

  
Figure 6.27: The Hue-Saturation Tool
Figure 6.27

This tool is more complex than either the Color Balance or Brightness-Contrast tools, and its action cannot be simply reproduced using Curves. Nevertheless, there is rarely any reason to use this tool for touchup or enhancement. The Hue-Saturation tool allows hue, lightness, and saturation to be adjusted for an image. The adjustment can be made for the entire image or for any combination of the image's red, green, blue, cyan, magenta, or yellow components.

The reason Hue-Saturation is not useful for color correction is that it is difficult to know how to make adjustments with it to enhance an image. With the Curves tool, the measurements made with the Color Picker can be used to make precise changes that will result in predictable improvements to an image. By contrast, there is no way to measure what is wrong in an image in a way that can then be used to make precise corrections with the Hue-Saturation tool. Furthermore, as has already been pointed out, color problems are rarely uniform over the shadow, midtone, and highlight regions. The Hue-Saturation tool has no capability for varying color components in different ranges of the image.

Thus, for color correction, the Hue-Saturation tool is of little use. Nevertheless, unlike Color Balance and Brightness-Contrast, the Hue-Saturation tool can be used to do useful and interesting things that would be difficult to do with any other color tool. Figure  6.28

  
Figure 6.28: Hue-Saturation
Figure 6.28

illustrates an application of the Hue-Saturation tool which doesn't fit into the category of touchup or enhancement but is of considerable stylistic and artistic interest.

Figure  6.28(a) displays a beach scene consisting of vivid colors, and Figure  6.28(b) shows the Hue-Saturation dialog where the Saturation slider for the Cyan radio button has been adjusted to -100%. The result, shown in Figure  6.28(c), is to completely desaturate the sky and water, while leaving the color of the beach untouched. Similarly interesting modifications can be made with the Hue and Lightness sliders. Try experimenting!




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