How spot and process color can work together.
For most printing jobs you’ll use either spot color or process color. But sometimes it’s necessary or beneficial to use both methods. For example, many corporate logos have their own specific Pantone colors, like Starbucks’s green or the red of the McDonald’s sign, which can’t be created using CMYK colors. “In that case, you’d use a four-color process plus a Pantone spot color,” Weinberg explains.
There can also be artistic advantages to using both methods. For example, some spot colors can be overlaid on one another to create new colors when they blend. “Spot colors like magenta and cyan have a really interesting overlap effect to create this cool purple that I use in a lot of the illustrations I do,” Weinberg says.
How to create print-friendly images.
When you’re designing your image, you can take steps to save yourself some stress when the time comes to print.
“If I’m doing a print, it’s going to be just three colors. That creates a little structure around what I’m thinking,” Weinberg says. “The interplay of warm and cool is really important, and make sure the colors all have good contrast.” Making careful choices about the number of colors you use will help keep the print costs of your project under control.
It can also be helpful to make swatches, samples of the mixed-together colors you plan to use in your piece. Using a program like Adobe Photoshop, you can create swatches to preview how colors will look using the CMYK process and tweak them so you can be sure your design looks as good on the page as it does on your screen.