Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
JGD

PANTONE gradients that properly separate

Recommended Posts

Hi all.


 


Maybe this is too much to ask at this time, and I know I've already mentioned this earlier, but I've been testing Affinity Designer periodically for proper spot colour gradient support (sometimes I miss a beta or two and I may skip the one that finally brings that feature to the table, hence my method).


 


I cobbled up two similar files in Affinity and Illustrator, with gradients from spot colour to spot colour, spot colour to white, and spot colour to 0% opacity spot colour, and exported them to .PDF. For good measure, I also threw in a 50% opacity spot colour as a control swatch.


 


After opening both files on Acrobat Pro and checking the Output [separation] Preview, I was a bit disheartened to see that Affinity still supports flat spot colour transparency only, whereas gradients are all converted/flattened into CMYK.


 


For now, I can accept this omission, and the fact that it may be due to technical limitations in Affinity's engine or something, but I'm obviously expecting much more from it in the future (and that may include Affinity Photo duo/multitone support too, perhaps?), especially for colour-critical work like in logos, where tight budgets for print production more often than not call for the use of spot colours (and, yes, that also includes spot colour gradients).


 


Though this would be fairly easy to correct (especially for simpler artwork) via a small trip through Illustrator before sending my work to the printing shop, I would really love to ditch it altogether from my workflow, and this would be yet another proverbial nail in its coffin.


 


Can you comment on the feasibility of such a feature and maybe give us a rough ETA?


 


Thanks guys. Once again, kudos for your great work!


Pantone test.afdesign

Pantone Test-AD.pdf

Pantone Test-AI.pdf

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Our PDF Export is based on PDFLib. Unfortunately that does not support the DeviceN colour space, that would be needed to output spot colour to spot colour gradients. It also only supports gradients of two colours. We will surely fix these limitations at some point, but probably not for a long time as we have so may other things to do.

 

With those caveats, you can actually achieve the other results, albeit in 1.4.1 not as simply as it could be. Spot colour to white you can achieve by replacing white with a zero tint of the spot. Spot colour to 0% opacity you can achieve by making the fill a solid spot colour and then using a separate gradient transparency for the alpha. In the forthcoming 1.5.1 beta, both of these transformations will be applied automatically.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Our PDF Export is based on PDFLib. Unfortunately that does not support the DeviceN colour space, that would be needed to output spot colour to spot colour gradients. It also only supports gradients of two colours. We will surely fix these limitations at some point, but probably not for a long time as we have so may other things to do.

 

With those caveats, you can actually achieve the other results, albeit in 1.4.1 not as simply as it could be. Spot colour to white you can achieve by replacing white with a zero tint of the spot. Spot colour to 0% opacity you can achieve by making the fill a solid spot colour and then using a separate gradient transparency for the alpha. In the forthcoming 1.5.1 beta, both of these transformations will be applied automatically.

 

So, I suppose that by doing a convoluted manual plate separation (in separate files, that is), I could conceivably achieve the same two spot colour cross-gradient effect…

 

It wouldn't be as straightforward as I would like, but it certainly beats separating those plates in black, as print shop people may get confused with spot colour reassignments; having the final artwork exported in .PDF with the proper PMS codes embedded is a way safer bet. Actually, I used that same technique when doing something similar in Corel Draw, way back in 2001, for my very first poster.

 

Nevertheless, I expect you to get around that at least on Affinity Designer v2.x, which I will probably buy if you keep this development pace and if it becomes the industry standard I reckon it will on account of the Windows port. ;)

 

Anyway, do you think I could overlay those two objects fading to 0%, in the same document, without having them become separated into CMYK, or is that a default PDFLib behaviour?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×