Adding Pantone color swatches
Video: Adding Pantone color swatchesOnce you've decided to use a spot color, how do you get them? So, here I am in Illustrator, I go to my Swatches panel, I have a global color that I've used for the orange on all these little orange shapes, but that's still a process build. And my client has told me that they want to use Pantone 021, which is very vibrant orange. Because orange is one of those colors that really doesn't render well in CMYK. You can come close, but you can't get a really vibrant orange. So, I know what color they want, now I have to add it to my Swatches panel and apply it to all these shapes. The lower left hand corner of the Swatches panel in Illustrator, there's the Swatch Library, and you'll see that there are a ton of them in here. When you're looking for a Pantone color though, your first temptation, I think, is to look in the P's and there's no Pantone.
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While most printing today is accomplished via a four-color process, there is a wide range of practical and creative options available when you add an additional color or varnish. This course teaches how these additional colors are made and shows some examples of finished projects that use these colors. Author Claudia McCue also dives directly into Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, and other creative apps and shows how to build documents correctly for printing.
- Why spot colors are necessary
- Making a decision between spot and process colors
- Choosing a spot color
- Understanding the effects of stock on color
- Printing spot colors digitally
- Using varnishes
- Creating a multi-tone image in Photoshop
- Adding Pantone color swatches to Illustrator
- Creating spot varnishes in Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign
- Using preflight profiles in Acrobat
Adding Pantone color swatches
Once you've decided to use a spot color, how do you get them? So, here I am in Illustrator, I go to my Swatches panel, I have a global color that I've used for the orange on all these little orange shapes, but that's still a process build. And my client has told me that they want to use Pantone 021, which is very vibrant orange. Because orange is one of those colors that really doesn't render well in CMYK. You can come close, but you can't get a really vibrant orange. So, I know what color they want, now I have to add it to my Swatches panel and apply it to all these shapes. The lower left hand corner of the Swatches panel in Illustrator, there's the Swatch Library, and you'll see that there are a ton of them in here. When you're looking for a Pantone color though, your first temptation, I think, is to look in the P's and there's no Pantone.
That's because they are under Color Books, and that's because Pantone is not the only ink reference available. Although you'll find it's the most widely used one, ANPA for example is used in newspapers, TOYO is used in Japan, TRUMATCH is actually not a spot color reference at all, it's actually a book full of process swatches. And in fact Pantone dopesn't necessarily mean spot, you can see that there's Pantone CMYK Coated and Uncoated. The Color Bridge is great resource, It shows you spot colors, next to the closest CMYK equivalents, then of course metallics and pastels, and so forth.
The most commonly used one, is the Pantone Solid reference. You'll notice that they're solid coated, and Solid Uncoated. Now that doesn't refer to the ink. The Pantone O21 that I plan to use is Pantone O21 regardless of whether it's being applied to coated stock, or uncoated stock. It's just that when an ink is applied to uncoated stock it tends to spread a little, and it looks a little darker, and it looks a little duller. So, these two libraries try to replicate on screen the way the ink's going to look. Now, you probably know that your monitor and a printed piece are not going to be identical.
I'm going to tell you, generally speaking, I just pick from the solid coated. I know what color I want, I don't count on the screen to tell me exactly the true story, so at least I know I'm specifying the right ink. Let me show you something nice that started in Illustrator CS6. This find field, at the top of the little library window, lets you immediately type the number that you want, but if you're using an older version of Illustrator you're not going to see that. You're just going to see this and you're looking at all these little squares and you're trying to figure out which one is the color you want. Well you could do this, you could choose Small List View from the Panel Menu, then at least you get to see the names, but you can see how it goes on and on forever.
So, the quick way to do this, if you're using an older version of Illustrator, is to show that Find Field. So, this little phrase makes no sense when you first see it, Show Find Field, until you know that there's something called the Find Field and you need to show it. So, when you choose that, this will show up. Remember, in CS6 we got this for free. Now, after all these years we could finally have the find field, so I know I want 021, so I'm going to type 021. But while I'm here I want to show you what I considerd to be a little bit of a bug in Illustrator. Let's say that I wanted Pantone 485, that's a very commonly used color, It's a red.
So, I highlight this and I type 485, and Illustrator says, how about a nice 1485? Now that's pretty, but that's not what I wanted. I wanted 485, so I try it again, 485, no it wont do it. So, this little bug will drive you nuts. You don't have to scroll down to find that color though. There's a way to trick it into doing the right thing. It's a little crazy but this works. If Illustrator doesn't give you the right number, but you can see that it's hearing part of it. Do this, hit your Spacebar, then type the number. So, when I hit spacebar, and then 45, then it gives me the color I want.
Why it's like that? I don't know, I'm just telling you that, because it's a way to get out of it, when it's driving you crazy, when your trying to pick a color and it wont let you. So, I know I'm at, want my 021, and it's been added up here, so I'm going to close this up. And I want to select all these little orange shapes, and apply that 021. Now I could Shift+Click and get them all, frankly I think the easiest way is to come up here to Select and choose Same, in this case they all have the same fill, so I'm going to say select everything that uses the same fill color. And then I'm going to add that 021. There, that's much better.
Now, let me double check, it's a pretty simple page. I don't think I've missed anything, but it's always a good idea to use those forensic tools that are available to you. So, under View > Overprint Preview. All right, everything looks good. And under Window, when I choose Separations Preview, I can turn off that 021 and everything that ought to go away, goes away. Oh, but I have these extra colors and that's kind of confusing me. So, it's a good idea to clean everything up. I'm going to come over here to my Swatches panel, and I'm going to say that I want Illustrator to get rid of everything that I haven't used.
Select all unused and then when you hit the Trash Can you get this little alert. But I'll show you a trick. If you choose Select All unused and then you hold down the Option or Alt key and hit the Trash Can, then you don't get the little alert. And that saves you a little bit of time. So, now there's my little spot color, I know that my job's going to print correctly. And now you know where to go shopping to find your Pantone colors. Just go under Color Books And then most of the time as I say you're going to go to solid coded at least no you know where to find all of these
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