Gemstone Colors

Color is the main factor in evaluating gemstone's quality and value. It is a complex issue mainly because the perception of color is subjective and personal. At the same time, color is a physical property that can be measured objectively. Albert Munsell created the first scientific color model at the beginning of the 20 th century.Click here to read more about it here: http://www.handprint.com/HP/WCL/color6.html#m u nsell

We analyze colors by three basic scales: hue, saturation and tone.

Hue: the spectral color name.

Close your eyes and imagine a rainbow. Actually, this is not exactly a rainbow but a long arc (spectrum) that goes from green to cyan, blue, violet, purple, magenta, red, orange and yellow. This is called the hue scale . You can use the spectrum to find the color of your gemstone. The biological structure of the human eye makes it more sensitive to green, red, and blue. For more information about human color perception, click here: http://www.handprint.com/HP/WCL/color1.html#m a mmalian

Saturation: color brightness or dullness.

Saturation is the intensity , or brightness versus dullness of a color. A saturated color is high in intensity it is bright. A color that is dull is unsaturated or low in intensity. The Latin term for saturation is chroma. Thus, color without any brightness (no hue) is achromatic (black, white and/or gray).

Tone: the levels of lightness and darkness of color.

All colors exhibit these properties. Hues have a natural tone where they look the purest. Some colors, like yellow, are naturally light. Some, like violet, are darker. In case of gemstones, the amount of light absorbed by the stone determents the tone. The more light reflected to the human eye, the lighter the tone will be, and vice versa. Tones can exist without hue (see achromatic). Black, white and gray are colorless tones.

All colors exhibit this property. Hues have a natural tone where they look the purest. Some colors, like yellow, are naturally light. Some, like violet, are darker. In the case of gemstones, the amount of light absorbed by the stone determines the tone. The more light reflected to the human eye, the lighter the tone will be and vice versa. Tones can exist without hue (see achromatic). Black, white and gray are colorless tones. Please note that when it comes to evaluating gemstones, the surrounding light must be seriously considered.

In our descriptions we decided to focus on hue (color) and saturation level. We provide images of our gems, from photos taken with a Canon Coolpix 950. The images are not enhanced; they are only compressed.

If you have questions regarding specific items please contact us. Do not forget to mention the item catalogue number along with your inquiry.

Thank you
The Gemcal team.