Valued at nearly US 7.5 billion, the global textile industry continues on a growth trajectory. Printed textiles represent a major segment of the market, and are making significant contributions to the overall expansion of the industry. Historically, screen printing has dominated the printed textile market, but digital technologies continue to make inroads (Hayward, 2016).

One of the problems encountered in the textile industry is obtaining the desired color. Studies have shown that the texture and finishing of a fabric can have an impact on the way the ink sets on the fabric and in turn effect the quality of image. Valentini (2012) concluded in her study that the quality of the image is an important consideration for buyers. However, defining image quality attributes that correlate with the human perception of overall quality can be difficult. Hence, the present study is rooted in the early works of Engeldrum (2004) who stated that image quality depends on the “nesses“ (e.g. colorfulness, lightness, sharpness) rather than on physical image parameters. According to him these “nesses” relate to human perception of quality. Building on Engeldrum’s work, Pederson et al. (2010) formulated a more practical approach by distilling image quality attributes into the five most meaningful (i.e., colorfulness, lightness, contrast, sharpness and artifacts). In addition, Pederson et al. (2010) recommend researchers operationalize overall image quality as a separate construct, recognizing that it encompasses the other five attributes. These have been deployed in the present study.

A Likert scale was developed and thirty participants were recruited for a psychophysical experiment. A test form was printed on four fabrics of different texture and sheen combination and the participants were asked to rate these fabrics based on the six image quality attributes. The data obtained was statistically analyzed and the results indicate that a Low Texture and Low Sheen fabric was preferred the most and Image Sharpness is the most effective image attribute for consumers. The study also led to the conclusion that image quality is subjective and observer dependent and also implies that the structural properties of fabrics or substrates can have an impact on the perceived image quality.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Textile fabrics--Optical properties; Imaging systems--Image quality; Visual perception; Psychophysiology

Publication Date


Document Type


Student Type


Degree Name

Print Media (MS)

Department, Program, or Center

School of Media Sciences (CAD)


Bruce Myers

Advisor/Committee Member

Christine Heusner


RIT – Main Campus

Plan Codes