Wednesday, 3 December 2014

OUGD504 Studio Brief 04 Augmented Design Colour For Commercial Print Photoshop Workshop

Thinking in terms of Inks is the most important consideration when preparing a design for commercial print. This will be particularly relevant to me because my campaign may well be very image based. The colour mode of an image is displayed on the image tab on the top of the window. The default mode of image is RGB. However, we need to work with commercial print so CMYK needs to be considered. It is possible to create colours in RGM colour gamut that cannot be reproduced in print.

You can use the Gamut warning to show the areas of the image that are un printable colours.

 The first option is to simply convert the image automatically into the CMYK Gamut.
However, this is arguably not a very precise method. You can change the brightness and contrast levels to pull back the vivid colours that are only RGB. This can also be done with hue and saturation. Doing this with the gamut warning allows you to see where the problems are and when they have been solved.
You can get a preview of the CMYK print colours by activating proof colours. This allows you to work in RGB but instantly see the effect in a CMYK gamut.

The main reason we edit in RGB is because it is a smaller file size which makes editing quicker and more effective. It is also photoshops preferred way of working, working in CMYK there are certain things that photoshop will not allow you to do.


Using swatch pallets can be useful for defining and ensuring colour continuity throughout screen and print.

When using the eye dropper tool in the new photoshop a new temporary swatches in the row along the top so if you forget to make a swatch but need to use a colour again. You can empty the swatches by holding down alt and clicking on every swatch.

You can save your custom swatches to the swatches folder, you can reset the swatches to default in the drop down menu and replace these swatches with a swatch pallet you have previously used.

You can use the colour dropper tool to select colours from the image and then simply click the empty area in the swatches box to create new swatches.

When using the colour picker, warnings sometimes appear that tell us that the colour is not in the CMYK gamut, that the colour is not web safe. we can adjust this by hand in the colour picker or by clicking the box we can opt for the computer to choose the closest safe colour.


Spot colours are often used to get around the limitations of CMYK printing when you want to produce bright and unusual colours. Consistent colour is achievable through a pantone reference number, it can be much cheaper to produce work with two inks rather than four process inks. Things like glue can be applied through spot colour printing for flocking etc. Colour libraries is where we access spot colours.

Mostly the colours are dictated through the pantone system and there are many stock differentiations that are available. You can simply type directly onto the key board withe the reference number of the colour that you want to use. Once you click ok the colour becomes your foreground colour ready to apply. You cannot however apply this directly onto that image because the colour will simply be included in the main CMYK print. There needs to be a way to signify the code for the spot colour.

The first way to do this is to set the mode of the image is grey scale. Then select duotone in the image menu.

In the3 window that opens you can choose you spot colour through the colour library .

 A you can see the colour code comes up as well in the ink menu.
By selecting duotone in the image you can add another colour to the image.

Levels can be adjusted to dictate the application of colours over the original grey tones of the image.

Introducing a third colour can add further depth.


Using the channels (layers of colour in the individual colour modes).

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