Jump to content

How do I make global/spot colours from specific Pantone/CMYK colours


Recommended Posts

I am using just three printing inks at my printer, PMS 464 U, PMS 3005 U and Black (0/0/0/100). To make these three global/spot colors must I create them from the CYMK sliders or can I choose them by scrolling down in the swatches panel? I have read all the instructions I can find which state that I must create a Document Palette and then "create" the colors, I know the cymk setting for these colors but am not sure if that will work or if I must have the actual PMS names in the Document Panel. I can get one PMS color up but do not seem to be able to add the other two to the same panel. Since I will use the Document Panel many times in the future I would like to have it complete with all three PMS colors.

A succinct Affinity video on this process would be helpful. Thanks!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You would pick PANTONE 464 U and PANTONE 3005 U from the inbuilt Pantone Formula Guide Solid Uncoated v4 palette. These swatches would then have the outlook of the actual inks without you needing to specify CMYK values for them. You could alternatively also create global colors manually, give them the names you wish (like PMS 464 U and  PMS 3005 U) and specify them to be spot colors, and then give them the visual outlook by specifying CMYK values for the swatches. They would then be used and exported similarly as swatches created from the inbuilt spot color palette.

As for the black ink, I assume that you mean standard black process ink. This ink, when exported, is by default overprinted when it is used as compact 100% solid ink (you can turn off this behavior by emptying the "Overprint black" option under the More settings of the PDF Export dialog box, and then specify separately a global black that overprints in case you wish to have certain black parts to overprint and other to knock out). On the other hand, you can also pick black ink PANTONE Black U from the spot color palette, in which case the ink would by default knock out underlying colors instead of being overprinted.

The video below illustrates this behavior:

Note that when you create spot inks, they have a separate spot ink name that would show in exported PDF as a separate ink as above in the Adobe Acrobat Pro Output Preview, and swatch name that would just show in the Affinity palette. You can separately rename both. Spot colors picked from the inbuild palette would not automatically be added in a document palette (except if you do not have a document palette, as then a new one would be created for you and the spot color picked added there with a name like "Global Color 1").

UPDATE:

This is how you might have these inks showing in your document palette. You can make a document palette as a default for e.g. CMYK documents so that you have the palette automatically created whenever you create a new document in the specified mode:

threeinks_ui.jpg.ed24acc7c98ce869619be7cca9d2993e.jpg

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks much, Lagarto, for your message and examples. As your first example shows (in Acrobat's Output Preview) I do not want any Process CYMK but only Spot colors. 

My problem is as follows.  Jim

CREATING A PALETTE OF THREE PANTONE COLORS - In my complex maps I have a myriad of layers and sublayers for objects  (names, curves and raster tif). I am trying to put the Pantone colors (3005 U, 464 U and Black U=0/0/0/100 9 and no process colors) in a palette so I can simply assign them to the appropriate layers/objects. These are the three inks on our printer's press. in printing these maps. I do use CYMK in many other docs and have special color palettes for various documents, but it looks like it is impossible to put these Pantone colors in a palette via Swatches panel. The only method appears to be your second example, i.e., create the CYMK equivalent via sliders, go the global/spot color route and rename each color the appropriately.

I have tried to get these three colors into a palette as you show in your second illustration. Could you outline how you created the palette? I find no way to go from choosing Pantone 3005 U and adding it to my palette as a global/spot color, and then adding the other two colors to the same palette. It might be so simple that I am missing something. 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You're welcome! I am not sure, however, if I undestood your problem correctly. If your printer really prints with PANTONE inks, the easiest method would be using the inbuilt PANTONE Formula Guide Solid Uncoated palette. This video shows how you would do that (here a document palette where the swatches are wanted to be saved has already been created):

 

But if you'd rather create spot color swatches manually, you can do this as shown below (the CMYK values used here are the reference values from Pantone web site; these are probably based on US Web Uncoated, or are abstractions and basically irrelevant as you would be using special inks):

 

It does not really matter which method is used as long as the spot colors are marked so that they really get printed in special inks rather than mixed from standard CMYK process inks. The benefit of using the latter method would be that you can use any visual color to mark the spot colors. E.g. when using the Black from the standard palette, or the reference values given by Pantone web site (which is a four-color rich black value), it has grayish outlook to simulate the black on uncoated paper, and might not be very realistic simulation, so you could give it a darker visual outlook by adding more color to it, or defining it as K100 (and no CMY values). This might then look also better if you create local prints or digital versions. Often a process ink (making it possibly knocking out rather than overprinting) is used as a kind of a spot ink (it might be cheaper than using a special ink). 

As can be seen from the screenshot below, the inbuilt spot colors have different visual outlook than the manually created swatches using Pantone reference values. Spot inks also by default always knock out underlying colors. But when using black (e.g. to print text or notes), you might want the black to overprint instead of knocking out (as when trapping is not used, small registrations errors would show as thing white gaps where the colors meet). For that purpose you would need copies of swatches and then apply them the "Overprint" attribute from the context menu of the Swatches panel.

 

I have attached below a Publisher document with both kinds of swatches, and the PDF produced from the document:

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Not to butt-in on Lagarto's generous attempts to help, but it seems that a very common general misconception about the basics of working with Spot inks may be at play in this thread. So please forgive my attempt to re-phrase part of what has already been explained:

I emphasize inks instead of saying Spot colors because software users confuse 'swatches', 'colors', and such with inks, and thereby think working with Spot inks is more complicated than it is.

Even when talking about CMYK process, color-separations for prepress production are not imaged in colors; they are imaged to film or directly onto the press plates as grayscale or bitmap images. The 'color' is all about what inks are loaded into the press.

When you define a 'Spot color' in software, all you're really doing is telling the software to specify that an additional grayscale separation be generated and labeled by that name. Any objects in the file to which that same label is applied (by selecting the defined Spot color swatch named by that label), get sent to that extra grayscale separation.

It really has nothing whatsoever to do with selecting a Spot ink from a 'library'. The Spot 'libraries' are nothing but a convenience for selecting the ink manufacturer's recommendations for how to approximate their inks' colors on an RGB monitor.

Functionally, it's literally "all in the name." What color gets printed is entirely just a matter of what physical ink the pressman loads into the inkwell of the press.

As Largato explained in other terms, you can specify how a 'Spot color' or a 'Spot swatch' appears on-screen any way you want: by selecting it from a pre-defined 'Spot color library' or by just coloring it with literally any mix of RGB or CMYK values you want. Either way, so long as it's defined as a Spot swatch, it's not going to affect its printed color. Objects assigned that color are simply going to be associated with the additional grayscale color-separation by that name.

Consider the context of a Spot metallic ink: No combination of RGB values are going to enable your monitor to look anything even close to a translucent physical ink that has reflective metallic powder in it. That, in fact, is one of the main reasons Spot Inks even exist. But that doesn't matter one whit.

You can select 'Pantone Metallic 8007' from a 'library' list in the software, or you can just set a new swatch that you've set as Spot and then 'mix' your own on-screen display of it. No matter how you try, you're not going to make it look like the actual copper-ish metallic ink that the pressman loads. All that matters is that the 'swatch' is defined as Spot, and is named 'Pantone Metallic 8007', so that's how the associated grayscale film or plate will be labeled when printed as color-separations.

This is why I (and no doubt countless others) routinely simply define a commonly-used Pantone spot ink (e.g.; PMS 185) using my own display values (100y 100m), instead of Pantone's library recommendations. It doesn't make one bit of difference in the printed results. The pressman is simply going to load Pantone 185 ink into the inkwell because that's the name of the color-separation plate.

When working for print--and especially when working with Spot colors--much confusion is avoided by always thinking in terms of inks, instead of 'colors.'

JET

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks much, Lagarto, for your message and examples. As your first example shows (in Acrobat's Output Preview) I do not want any Process CYMK but only Spot colors. 

My problem is as follows.  Jim

CREATING A PALETTE OF THREE PANTONE COLORS - In my complex maps I have a myriad of layers and sublayers for objects  (names, curves and raster tif). I am trying to put the Pantone colors (3005 U, 464 U and Black U=0/0/0/100 9 and no process colors) in a palette so I can simply assign them to the appropriate layers/objects. These are the three inks on our printer's press. in printing these maps. I do use CYMK in many other docs and have special color palettes for various documents, but it looks like it is impossible to put these Pantone colors in a palette via Swatches panel. The only method appears to be your second example, i.e., create the CYMK equivalent via sliders, go the global/spot color route and rename each color the appropriately.

I have tried to get these three colors into a palette as you show in your second illustration. Could you outline how you created the palette? I find no way to go from choosing Pantone 3005 U and adding it to my palette as a global/spot color, and then adding the other two colors to the same palette. It might be so simple that I am missing something. 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Lagarto - Your method of choosing the color for a drawn object (your rectangles) and then adding it to the palette worked well. My mistake was simply trying to put the Pantone colors directly into a palette as I have done with CYMK colors. I should have realized that was not possible. Thanks for your help!

Jet - Thanks so much for taking time for such a full explanation. Somehow I missed it before my last question to Lagarto. 

Yes, at the printer my three plates are always just grey scale and the inks do the job. In specifying the spot colors in AffPub I did not want to go searching the Swatch panel for each of my many layers but wanted a simple palette. Thus my query on palettes.

Since we are dealing with inks via spot colors, I always go through Acrobat Pro's Output Preview befpre submitting the doc to my printer, to be sure no CYMK got through. The maps were in Adobe Illustrator before bringing them over to AffPub. In Illustrator I could assign PMS 464 to my map relief, and I had no problem (see my former Output Preview attached).

882843891_OutputPreviewviaIllustratorPDF.png.9c30d44b5a30d4030c7512572e774153.png882843891_OutputPreviewviaIllustratorPDF.png.9c30d44b5a30d4030c7512572e774153.png882843891_OutputPreviewviaIllustratorPDF.png.9c30d44b5a30d4030c7512572e774153.png

Question: How can I avoid my PMS 464 map relief from appearing as a CYMK combo rather than a spot PMS 464?

Output Preview via AffPub PDF-1.png

Output Preview via AffPub PDF-2.png

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Repost since my attachments appear to have covered my full text, at least when I checked them in "all activity,"

-- -

Lagarto - Your method of choosing the color for a drawn object (your rectangles) and then adding it to the palette worked well. My mistake was simply trying to put the Pantone colors directly into a palette as I have done with CYMK colors. I should have realized that was not possible. Thanks for your help!

Jet - Thanks so much for taking time for such a full explanation. Somehow I missed it before my last question to Lagarto. 

Yes, at the printer my three plates are always just grey scale and the inks to the job. In specifying the spot colors in AffPub I did not want to go searching the Swatch panel for each for each of my many layers but wanted a simple palette. Thus my query on palettes.

Since we are dealing with inks via spot colors, I always go through the Acrobat Pro's Output Preview befpre submitting the doc to my printer, to be sure no CYMK got through. The maps were in Adobe Illustrator before bringing them over to AffPub. In Illustrator I could assign PMS 464 to my map relief, and I had no problem (see my former Output Preview attached).

In AffPub, however, I must use a different method to apply PMS 464 to my greyscale map relief by bringing the greyscale into AffPhoto, creating a new fill layer with my PMS 464 and then merging them via a special blend mode. My exported tif from AffPhoto always shows up in Acrobat Pro's Output Preview as a CYMK (see attached below). I may be able to 

Question: How can I avoid my PMS 464 map relief from appearing as a CYMK combo rather than a spot PMS 464?

PS: My attachments are out of order but I'm sure you can figure them out.

Output Preview via AffPub PDF-1.png

Output Preview via Illustrator PDF.png

Output Preview via AffPub PDF-2.png

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 minutes ago, Jim Monson said:

Lagarto - Your method of choosing the color for a drawn object (your rectangles) and then adding it to the palette worked well. My mistake was simply trying to put the Pantone colors directly into a palette as I have done with CYMK colors. I should have realized that was not possible. Thanks for your help!

You're welcome. Yes, that is a bit cumbersome, but having the auxiliary objects and then using first the "Add Local Swatch" helps, as it uses the actual ink name, and then just afterwards applying the global attribute to make them behave as regular spot inks (so that you can give them tint values).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 minutes ago, Lagarto said:

(so that you can give them tint values).

Exactly! I had to do this to apply a 20% 3005 tint to the sea fills. BTW, if you want to see the maps we make you can go to the links below. Are you still making maps of Greece and the Aegean as I believe you once told me?

https://www.biblicalbackgrounds.com/copy-of-study-materials

https://www.biblicalbackgrounds.com/your-quick-view

Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, Jim Monson said:

I had to do this to apply a 20% 3005 tint to the sea fills. BTW, if you want to see the maps we make you can go to the links below. Are you still making maps of Greece and the Aegean as I believe you once told me?

Quite impressive, especially those Geobasics maps!

I think I may once have used a map from the mentioned area just to demonstrate a specific map printing (or perhaps a drawing issue, when creating a map from a large amount of object data), but we have not actually produced such maps for printing. We do have projects in the field of surveying sciences and to some extent also work with (old) maps, but merely for illustration purposes -- we specialize in graphic design of art books and ones dealing with cultural history. Years ago spot ink jobs where pretty common as a cost-saving printing method, and occasiionally we could use them also for duo/tritone jobs to enrich printing of black and white photos and illustrations, and those were interesting and challenging projects. Unfortunately we have not had these kinds of jobs in years, and more and more nowadays gets published digital only. But we still use duotone methods every now and then to tint grayscales in coherent ways, also for print jobs, even if they eventually get printed in CMYK.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, Jim Monson said:

Question: How can I avoid my PMS 464 map relief from appearing as a CYMK combo rather than a spot PMS 464?

I have experimented to some extent with spot colors trying to simulate duotone / tritone productions with Affinity apps, but using more than one ink basically involves applying Multiply blend mode to get tinted grayscales mixed and have a kind of a duotone effect, but it is not satisfactory, and I think it also requires using PDF 1.6 or later to allow unflattened transparencies, and I would not be confident enough with this to go to print. But I'll revisit my experiments to examine this closer.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for the background and explaining your Affinity simulation trials, Lagarto. Very interesting.

I should add that I  took my map relief tiff in Adobe that showed no CYMK but only PMS 464 in Acrobat's Output Preview. When I pasted this into my AP doc, the 464 color remained but Output Preview came up as no spot colors, only CYMK. 

I may be wrong but It appears that Affinity does not recognize Adobe's generated PMS 464 raster relief as a spot color. I'll have to see if my printer's RIP can remap it for the relief plate. that may be the only solution.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, Jim Monson said:

I may be wrong but It appears that Affinity does not recognize Adobe's generated PMS 464 raster relief as a spot color. I'll have to see if my printer's RIP can remap it for the relief plate. that may be the only solution

I am not sure if you mean spot color channels in a bitmap? If so, no, they are not recognized. You can assign a spot color on a grayscale bitmap (or make e.g. an RGB bitmap behave as a grayscale image and then assign it a spot color), but I think the challenge is in superimposing multiple raster images and have them separated as spot colors, especially if overprinting is not wanted. Do you have the blue ink (rivers etc.) in vectors or in raster?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Have a look on the attached PDF and Affinity Publisher files:

 

 

I used the blue ink for rivers that are placed in a grayscale TIFF with transparent beckground, but have the text in K100 -- the other of the texts is overprinting and the other knocks out.

This needs to be exported using PDF v 1.6 or later. But I think this could work. Because of not needing to use Multiply blend mode, the top spot inks do knock out the underlying colors, but can of course be defined to overprint, if needed.

Here is for comparison how you would do this in InDesign: the rivers would be a monochrome bitmap on which you would assign the blue spot ink, while the zero bit would be transparent (instead of ussing a grayscale with transparent background, which you cannot use for tinting in InDesign). So shades would not be supported but instead you could assign a tint (like below, at 47%) or a gradient spot ink on the foreground color (which you cannot when you use grayscale in an Affinity app), and you could export using any PDF version and have a flat device CMYK print file.

 

(And if you would like to blend spot inks or accentuate certain shades with a specific spot ink, you would to this in Photoshop, instead, and use duotone curves and ink printing specs...)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

15 hours ago, Lagarto said:

I am not sure if you mean spot color channels in a bitmap? If so, no, they are not recognized. You can assign a spot color on a grayscale bitmap (or make e.g. an RGB bitmap behave as a grayscale image and then assign it a spot color), but I think the challenge is in superimposing multiple raster images and have them separated as spot colors, especially if overprinting is not wanted. Do you have the blue ink (rivers etc.) in vectors or in raster?

Again, thanks, Lagarto. You are very patient in all of this.

I am very interested in your remark above that "You can assign a spot color on a grayscale bitmap (or make e.g. an RGB bitmap behave as a grayscale image and then assign it a spot color)". I have assigned PMS 464 to my grayscale image (map relief) and it is recognized as such in my swatches (see attached), but the color is not reflected on screen. Should it show on screen? I tried the channel mixtures but only black really responds to changes, plus as you state, superimposing multiple raster images is would be iffy.

In order to clarify how this particular map production works, here is a summary of how I create the three color/ink maps docs seen at https://www.biblicalbackgrounds.com/regional-study-maps.

1. PLATE ONE: Rivers, wadis (dry stream beds), lakes, swamps and seas are all vector curves (some tint filled) that I have drawn. Thus there is no problem assigning a spot color (100% or tint) of PMS 3005 (Blue). This is the ink that feeds this plate on press. Since all of these objects are vector (curves), they appear as a spot color in Acrobat's Output Preview and on paper come out clean and crisp (non-rasterized). Thus the blue plate is not a problem.

2. PLATE TWO: The same is the case for all text, routes, borders, etc.that appear of a second press plate that is fed by the 100K ink. Again, these are not my problem.

3. PLATE THREE; Beneath Plates 1 and 2 above is my map relief on a separate, a tiff that always showed up as PMS 464 spot color in Acrobat's Output Preview when I assigned 464 via in Adobe Illustrator. However, in Affinity I must colorize my grey scale tif via a different method by blending it with with a 464 spot color in AffPhoto. This 464 tif does not appear as a spot color in Acrobat's Output Preview - nor does my spot 464 tif from Illustrator. Thus, it appears that Affinity does not recognize a spot color tif but somehow coverts the spot to CYMK. This is my problem since the press has no CYMK ink but only PMS 464. Unless I am missing something, the only way to solve the problem is for my printer to remap the CYMK color to be a spot color and assign it to this third plate.

I hope I'm not just repeating something you already know. If so forgive me. I just wanted to be sure that any one reading this understood exactly what I am doing in preparing my doc so that the three printer plates and inks above will do the job.

Again, thanks!

Screen Shot 2021-09-22 at 3.46.54 PM.png

Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, Jim Monson said:

However, in Affinity I must colorize my grey scale tif via a different method by blending it with with a 464 spot color in AffPhoto.

I am not sure if you are working in Affinity Designer, Publisher, or Photo when composing the layers but it does not really matter. You should simply just apply spot color fill on your grayscale map, and it should take the spot color (and stay as such when you export). The layer must be (Image) layer, not (Pixel) to be able to do that. [EDIT: See how this is done in the Publisher document in my post above; it applies the blue on a grayscale TIFF with a transparent background that would be required if you had rivers etc. in raster, but as you have them in vectors, this is irrelevant; but the actual map layer that gets the brown ink is simply just a regular Gray/8 bitmap as (Image) layer that has been given a spot color fill.]

EDIT: As you have your blue in vectors, you should have no problems producing your maps in perfect quality, so you can use tints, and the color knocks out perfectly, or overprints, according to your definitions. And you can also export without restrictions, e.g. using PDF/X1.a:2003, flattening all transparencies.

EDIT2: I forgot to mention that you should apply the spot color fill in the app which you use to produce the map, not applying it e.g. in Photo and then trying to place a raster image that already has the spot color applied. So just place plain Gray/8 bitmaps and assign them the spot color in the app where you create the map.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Again, thanks, Lagarto,

Here is the problem in a nutshell.

1. Attached is a snap of the readings in my APub doc. The relief is an image with the spot color PMS 464 as you can see. The relief is part of a larger map, thus the fact that it does not appear to be selected.. This should be what is required as per your instructions above. The Spot 3005 (blue) for the drawn sea is 100% shore and 20% fill. Both of these 3005 come out fine in the PDF Outline Preview below.

2. From this APub doc I exported a PDF, being sure that "Honor Spot Colors" was checked in the "More" export panel.

As you see by opening this PDF in Acrobat's Output Preview, the 464 does not appear and the relief has been shifted to CYMK. Any idea what cold have caused this?

SpotTest_210924.png

SpotTest_210924.pdf

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 9/25/2021 at 1:34 AM, Jim Monson said:

The relief is an image with the spot color PMS 464 as you can see.

What kind of an image is it? If it is Gray/8 it should be fine to be used for tinting with a spot color as it is. If it is an RGB file, you first need to turn on the "K-only" button on the context toolbar so that the file is handled as if a grayscale image.

EDIT: Based on intensity of the screenshot, it seems the image could be an RGB image. Please note too that if you have transparent parts in the map, you need to export using PDF version 1.6 or later (e.g. PDF/X-4 when using PDF/X based presets).

EDIT2: I downloaded the PDF, opened it it Publisher and replaced the embedded JPG (which had converted to CMYK), and converted it to Gray/8 and the reassigned PANTONE 464 U to it, and exported to PDF/X-1a:2003 (PDF v 1.4, the lowest supported by Affinity apps), and it exports correctly.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am slowly understanding the bits and pieces of achieving this from your words kindly posted above, Lagarto, and from other links in which you have written, e.g., https://forum.affinity.serif.com/index.php?/topic/134136-k-only-button-in-ad-desktop-missing/. Thanks for bearing with me as I sort out the procedure (below)

1. Via APhoto I checked that my original tif was in generic grey scale format and I exported  as a tif.

2. I created a new AD doc. In Document Setup I checked to be sure the document settings were were CYMK/8 color format and a U.S. Sheetfed Uncoated v2 color profile. The color profile was what we use and not necessarily required as such.

3. I placed this tif in the above AD doc so that AD would recognized it as an image and not a pixel layer. AD states (in light grey) that it is an image. This Affinity video was very helpful. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IVlhZYcPZ_E

4. In AD the “K Only” button appeared (hurrah!) in the context toolbar and I activated it.

5. This allowed me to assign spot PMS 464 to the tif, as you see in the doc attached.

6. I then added a vector circle with a PMS 3005 fill in order to have both colors appear Adobe’s Outline Preview as spot colors. Without the second color the tif will appear as black in Adobe’s Outline Preview although it is 464. Beware, folks!

7. To be sure the tiff was embedded I opened the above AD doc in APub and embedded the tif via APub's Document/Resource Manager. I am attaching this APub doc for your review.

8. I rejoiced that Adobe’s Outline Preview at last showed both 464 as a spot color on my map relief, together with the blue 3005 circle. For anyone listening, as I've said, be sure to have at least two colors in your doc in order to see both colors in Adobe’s Outline Preview.

Your patience and help are much appreciated, Lagarto. I wish there had been a specific Affinity video detailing this procedure. It would have saved me ten days of frustration. Perhaps you should ask Affinity if you could do a video for them on this, especially since in this post above, much is assumed and not made specific with the entire procedure. Jim

PS: I have taken note of your note on exporting if one had transparent parts of a map =
Please note too that if you have transparent parts in the map, you need to export using PDF version 1.6 or later (e.g. PDF/X-4 when using PDF/X based presets).
 

Outline Preview snap.png

JET Tif-CRP-GenGreyScale.afpub

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 9/26/2021 at 6:02 AM, Jim Monson said:

Thanks for bearing with me as I sort out the procedure (below)

You're welcome. I am happy that you managed to find a way that allows you to continue producing the maps similarly as with Adobe apps.

The "K-only" feature is really a bit confusing, and I think that what might have happened in the document a PDF export of which you had attached in your earlier post is that after you had placed a grayscale image in the document, you then clicked the "K-only" button. If you do that on a grayscale image, it effectively turns off the feature which handles an image as grayscale, because when you place a grayscale image in an Affinity app, "K-only" button is already turned on! (That is because Affinity apps actually open grayscale images as RGB images, so if you turn off "K-only", the image will be treated as an RGB image, and contrary to e.g. Adobe InDesign, you can apply a fill color also on an RGB or a CMYK image to colorize it). It does not help that it is really hard to tell whether the button is on or off!

The "K-only" behaves as follows:

1) If you place an RGB image (RGB/8 or an indexed RGB), turning on "K-only" lets you treat the image as if it were a grayscale image and apply it a color (including spot colors) to tint (colorize) the image.

2) If you place a CMYK image (CMYK/8), "K-only" takes only the K channel of the image, so if nothing is there, nothing will be output, either.

3) If you place a grayscale image (Gray/8), the "K-only" is by default turned on (= equivalent situation to one where you have an RGB image that has "K-only" turned on). If you turn off "K-only", the grayscale image is treated as RGB, so if you apply a color fill in this state, it actually overlays the image with a selected fill color (it does this in RGB mode so if the document is in CMYK color mode it is not obvious how the colors are blended). 

The attached PDF demonstrantes the dffierence when the spot color 464 U is applied on a grayscale image K-Only button turned on (default for grayscale) and turned off (manually):

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...
On 9/19/2021 at 5:44 PM, JET_Affinity said:

Not to butt-in on Lagarto's generous attempts to help, but it seems that a very common general misconception about the basics of working with Spot inks may be at play in this thread. So please forgive my attempt to re-phrase part of what has already been explained:

I emphasize inks instead of saying Spot colors because software users confuse 'swatches', 'colors', and such with inks, and thereby think working with Spot inks is more complicated than it is.

Even when talking about CMYK process, color-separations for prepress production are not imaged in colors; they are imaged to film or directly onto the press plates as grayscale or bitmap images. The 'color' is all about what inks are loaded into the press.

When you define a 'Spot color' in software, all you're really doing is telling the software to specify that an additional grayscale separation be generated and labeled by that name. Any objects in the file to which that same label is applied (by selecting the defined Spot color swatch named by that label), get sent to that extra grayscale separation.

It really has nothing whatsoever to do with selecting a Spot ink from a 'library'. The Spot 'libraries' are nothing but a convenience for selecting the ink manufacturer's recommendations for how to approximate their inks' colors on an RGB monitor.

Functionally, it's literally "all in the name." What color gets printed is entirely just a matter of what physical ink the pressman loads into the inkwell of the press.

As Largato explained in other terms, you can specify how a 'Spot color' or a 'Spot swatch' appears on-screen any way you want: by selecting it from a pre-defined 'Spot color library' or by just coloring it with literally any mix of RGB or CMYK values you want. Either way, so long as it's defined as a Spot swatch, it's not going to affect its printed color. Objects assigned that color are simply going to be associated with the additional grayscale color-separation by that name.

Consider the context of a Spot metallic ink: No combination of RGB values are going to enable your monitor to look anything even close to a translucent physical ink that has reflective metallic powder in it. That, in fact, is one of the main reasons Spot Inks even exist. But that doesn't matter one whit.

You can select 'Pantone Metallic 8007' from a 'library' list in the software, or you can just set a new swatch that you've set as Spot and then 'mix' your own on-screen display of it. No matter how you try, you're not going to make it look like the actual copper-ish metallic ink that the pressman loads. All that matters is that the 'swatch' is defined as Spot, and is named 'Pantone Metallic 8007', so that's how the associated grayscale film or plate will be labeled when printed as color-separations.

This is why I (and no doubt countless others) routinely simply define a commonly-used Pantone spot ink (e.g.; PMS 185) using my own display values (100y 100m), instead of Pantone's library recommendations. It doesn't make one bit of difference in the printed results. The pressman is simply going to load Pantone 185 ink into the inkwell because that's the name of the color-separation plate.

When working for print--and especially when working with Spot colors--much confusion is avoided by always thinking in terms of inks, instead of 'colors.'

 

Hello @JET_Affinity. Hello to all. Yes, you are right. In French printers, spot colours are called direct tone colours.

If I can just give one or two small examples.

When preparing files that require finishing, gilding, embossing, fulling, selective varnish, obviously we create a spot colour, and we define very conspicuous colours that make visual control easy. What is the precise colour of a varnish, a gilding, an embossing? It doesn't matter.

The second example is that, all too often, our graphic designer friends use the available Pantone colours without limit. Not with the idea of separating them, but just because it's convenient and the colour pleases. These colours will then be separated to be printed with the primary colours. And here there are often problems that arise depending on the processing applied by the different processing streams. Separation or substitution by the Pantone color in the database/separation?

One last example for the road. We can use a chart in which two colours are defined, "orange" and "red" :).
If we print in Pantone, we specify their correspondence, otherwise we use the mix specified in the spot colour. One colour, two uses.

One last detail, current processing workflows have a habit of making modifications to the files supplied.
The two main modifications, a white overprint colour, the workflow will remove the overprint feature. Everyone understands why!
A colour set to pure black (0/0/0/100), the flow applies the overprint. To avoid this, a colour (which can be spot) is created with the mixture 1/1/1/100. The 1% (cmj) is likely to "disappear" and the black will make a reserve (or we contact the person processing the pdf)

@Lagarto Thanks for the explains.

Good evening to all.

*****

Bonjour @JET_Affinity. Bonjour à tous. Oui, vous avez raison. Chez les imprimeurs Français, les couleurs d'accompagnement sont nommées couleurs de tons directs.

Si je peux juste apporter un ou deux petits exemples.

Lors de la préparation de fichiers qui nécessitent de la finition, dorure, gaufrage, foulage, vernis sélectif..., évidemment on crée une couleur de ton direct, et on défini des couleurs très voyantes qui rendent facile le contrôle visuel. Quelle est la couleur précise d'un vernis, d'une dorure, d'un gaufrage !? Peu importe.

Le deuxième exemple est que, trop souvent, nos amis(es) graphistes utilisent sans limite les couleurs pantone disponibles. Pas dans l'idée de les séparer mais juste parce c'est pratique et que la couleur plait. Ces couleurs seront ensuite séparées pour être imprimées avec les couleurs primaires. Et là, il y a souvent des problèmes qui interviennent en fonction du traitement appliqués par les différents flux de traitement. Séparation ou substitution/séparation ?

Un dernier exemple pour la route. On peut utiliser une charte dans laquelle sont définies deux couleurs, " orange " et " rouge " :).
Si on imprime en Pantone, on spécifie leur correspondance, sinon on utilise le mélangé spécifié dans la couleur d'accompagnement. Une couleur, deux usages.

Un dernier détail, les flux de traitement actuels ont pour habitude d'effectuer des modifications sur les fichiers fournis.
Les deux principales modifications, une couleur blanc en surimpression, le flux va supprimer la caractéristique surimpression. Tout le monde compend pourquoi !
Une couleur définie en noir pur (0/0/0/100), le flux applique la surimpression. Pour éviter cela, on crée une couleur (qui peut être d'accompagnement) avec le mélange  1/1/1/100. Les 1% (cmj) ont toutes les chances de " disparaitre " et le noir fera une défonce.

Bonne soirée à tous.

Windows 10 Pro 21H1 - Intel Core i7-3630QM CPU @ 2.40GHz - 16 Gb Ram - GeForce GT 650M - Intel HD 4000
Affinity Photo | Affinity Designer | Affinity Publisher | 1.10.4.1198

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Please note there is currently a delay in replying to some post. See pinned thread in the Questions forum. These are the Terms of Use you will be asked to agree to if you join the forum. | Privacy Policy | Guidelines | We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.