Conventional shape from shading (SFS) algorithms are unable to deal with multi-color image satisfactory. This is because the assumption of constant surface albedo in the algorithms is not applicable to multi-color images. This paper proposes a new SFS approach for multi-color images through a segmentation-based shading recovery technique. With this technique a gray image is firstly extracted from the multi-color image containing better shading information compared with other color-to-gray conversion methods. The shading is recovered in the gray image as if the objects were made of single color. Shape of the multi-color object can then be recovered by classical gray-scaled SFS methods. Experimental results with synthetic and real multi-color images are presented. The obtained results corroborate that the proposed scheme is able to deliver better performance compared with other color SFS methods.