I am surprised by all these new Schemes. I think, doing decisions regarding lights and materials are bound to fail big time if the reference around is anything but 50 percent grey at an average on the screen. That is my experience from doing print-work where colors are vital in the CMYK sphere. It was -my- responsibility to deliver correct colors to various print-services.
Much the same is true now when doing work for film, TV , visualization of events and making Digigobos used by light-crews around the world.
What -could- be interesting (I think) is to take a look at the ergonomics. Most of our work is done for many long hours in front of the monitors. Leaving good chairs, fresh air and adjusted light conditions aside there are -many- things that could help the work flow by trimming the functions of Cinema and placement of you monitor/s for instance. A few bucks more for a better monitor will pay of. Setting the ratio correct is another one. My monito,r set to 1152 x 870, will give me a 1:1 ratio in real life. One centimeter -in- screen is one centimeter -on- the screen, using Illustrator or CAD apps.
First, our eyes are super precision organics with muscles that need to workout constantly not to detoriate. So having the focus set to a few feet for a long time will wear them out, - fast. A good solution is to have about two meters of space behind the monitor so you can look at something from time to time, changing focus.
Second. We are very sensitive to -contrast-. It is easier to spot a white dot on a dark surface than the other way around. You will “see” a bright object on the sides of your head very early. This means that any point of interest should be brighter than the rest. ( This is all regarding active/backlit sources, such as TV´s and monitors. Passive/reflected sources, like paper, are the other way around, for the same reason - contrast. A “proof” of that might be that spellchecking documents that are printed goes way faster than on screen.)
This might lead to: A medium dark screen (that shoots little light on our faces, not blending us) with “white spots” where the “action”/point of interest is, would suit us fine. These spots could be: Active Tabs, Menus and edit-fields. And any Point Of Interest (POI) should be lighter than its own background.
So starting with the desktop and Cinema interface at 50 percent (grey). Then the Viewports at maybe 53-55 percent (3-5 percent lighter) to give us a big soft focus at our work.
The next level would be inactive Tabs and Manager Menus. Add a few percent so we can locate them, but not more.
Time for Active Tabs/Menus. Make a bigger jump. We might be up to 65-70 percent by now. I suggest here that all not selectable fields should be at 50 percent. ( Since they are not a POI)
At all these levels I have the text set at all most black (around 10 percent). The text , per se, is not a POI. But it is still easy to read since we are not blended.
Time for our “Top Level”. That is when we make active choices. Opening a Menu would be a Top Level. Since we don´t want to go brighter, we will now “swap” and use the best tool we have: Contrast. When opening a menu we are searching for some thing. So here, and only here we use white text on dark background on the field that is under our mouse pointer. The other fields ( in the same menu) keep their medium dark w black text.
The dark field lead our eyes in our search and what we see is an easy readable highlighted text.
Thats my view of that anyway.
Next big issue: The distribution of Managers, Viewports and Tools on the screen/s.
I´m right handed so these ideas goes from that fact.
By default many of the important tools are at the most left side of the screen. So having to “cross” the whole screen to pick up Tools is somewhat stressfull for our mind and body.
Picture having the shifting rod at you left/wrong side in your car…
They have to be somewhere else. To the right maybe? Maybe not. A common movement ( at least for me) is between the ViewPort and the Object Manager. The area in between them are a good placement, since I´m there all the time anyway.
Next issue could be: What is needed -all- the time. Both visually and selectable. I´m trying to have no Tool or Selection more than one “layer”/click away. I do use two monitors so it is not -that- hard, putting up a third when animating gets hard.
Also I gradually fill the contextual menus as needs arise, making me have more and more directly under the mouse buttons.
That´s it for now. I´d love to hear any other experiences.
Take care of your eyes and bodies