In photography, painting, and other visual arts, middle gray or middle grey is a tone that is perceptually about halfway between black and white on a lightness scale; in photography, it is typically defined as 18% reflectance in visible light.
Middle gray is the universal measurement standard in photographic cameras. To calibrate light meters, whether in a camera or hand held, the 18% gray card was conceived. It is assumed that the measurement taken by a meter gives the exposure for a shot so that some of the light reflected by the object measured is equivalent to middle gray. However, many note that modern cameras generally treat 12-13% gray as "middle gray".
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- Daniel Coit Gilman, Harry Thurston Peck, and Frank Moore Colby (1903). The New International Encyclopædia. Dodd, Mead and Company.
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