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Colorspace Management and Distribution


Defines the distribution of colors and OCIO config during publishing. Once colorspace data are captured and integrated into representation loaders could use them for loading image and video data with correct colorspace.

Color Management (ImageIO)

Adding the imagio settings schema is required for any host or module which is processing pixel data.

Data model

Published representations that are extracted with color managed data store a colorspaceData entry in its data: representation_doc["data"]["colorspaceData"].

It's up to the Host implementation to pre-configure the application or workfile to have the correct OCIO config applied. It's up to the Extractors to set these values for the representation during publishing. It's up to the Loaders to read these values and apply the correct expected color space.


  • colorspace - string value used in other publish plugins and loaders
  • config - storing two versions of path.
    • path - is formatted and with baked platform root. It is used for possible need to find out where we were sourcing color config during publishing.
    • template - unformatted template resolved from settings. It is used for other plugins targeted to remote publish which could be processed at different platform.


"colorspace": "linear",
"config": {
"path": "/abs/path/to/config.ocio",
"template": "{project[root]}/path/to/config.ocio"

How to integrate it into a host

  1. The settings for a host should add the imagio schema. Ideally near the top of all categories in its /settings/entities/schemas/system_scheams/host_settings/schema_{host}.json so it matches the settings layout other hosts.
"key": "imageio",
"type": "dict",
"label": "Color Management (ImageIO)",
"is_group": true,
"children": [
"type": "schema",
"name": "schema_imageio_config"
"type": "schema",
"name": "schema_imageio_file_rules"

  1. Set the OCIO config path for the host to the path returned from openpype.pipeline.colorspace.get_imageio_config, for example:

    • set the OCIO environment variable before launching the host via a prelaunch hook
    • or (if the host allows) to set the workfile OCIO config path using the host's API
  2. Each Extractor exporting pixel data (e.g. image or video) has to inherit from the mixin class openpype.pipeline.publish.publish_plugins.ColormanagedPyblishPluginMixin and use self.set_representation_colorspace on the representations to be integrated.

The set_representation_colorspace method adds colorspaceData to the representation. If the colorspace passed is not None then it is added directly to the representation with resolved config path otherwise a color space is assumed using the configured file rules. If no file rule matches the colorspaceData is not added to the representation.

An example implementation can be found here: openpype\hosts\nuke\plugins\publish\

  1. The Loader plug-ins should take into account the colorspaceData in the published representation's data to allow the DCC to read in the expected color space.
from openpype.pipeline.colorspace import (

class YourLoader(api.Loader):
def load(self, context, name=None, namespace=None, options=None):
path = self.fname
colorspace_data = context["representation"]["data"].get("colorspaceData", {})
colorspace = (
# try to match colorspace from file rules
or self.get_colorspace_from_file_rules(path, context)

# pseudocode
load_file(path, colorspace=colorspace)

def get_colorspace_from_file_rules(self, path, context)
project_name =["projectName"]
host_name =["hostName"]
anatomy_data =["anatomyData"]
project_settings_ =["project_settings"]

config_data = get_imageio_config(
project_name, host_name,
file_rules = get_imageio_file_rules(
project_name, host_name,
# get matching colorspace from rules
colorspace = get_imageio_colorspace_from_filepath(
path, host_name, project_name,

A custom OCIO config can be set per asset/shot and thus it can happen the current session you are loading into uses a different config than the original context's colorspaceData was published with. It's up the loader's implementation to take that into account and decide what to do if the colorspace differs and or might not exist.