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Using RGB for the web

From: Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals

Video: Using RGB for the web

In this exercise we are going to discuss the world of RGB, that is Red, Green and Blue, the primary colors of light, and these are the primary colors that you want to work with if you are creating an illustration for the Web or you are making something that is going to become part of a screen presentation, or kiosk, or you are going to film. Or you may want to think about employing RGB if your final output destination is an inkjet printer, just because inkjet printers are designed to work with RGB images. So I'm still working in this Tone-Po Shapes.ai file that I've made an absolute mess of, and we haven't done anything meaningful with it. So if yours looks quite messy too, that's just fine. And I'm going to Shift-click on this first color swatch up here in the Control palette. We see the CMYK sliders. I'm going to switch over to RGB just by choosing it from the flyout menu, and then we see the RGB equivalence of this chocolate brown color. And I want to show you something. Everything is basically turned upside down. So for example, I'll go back to CMYK, and let's go ahead and set all these values to zero. So I'll tab between each one of the values, 0000, and notice that we get white, because as you add ink, you darken up the color, as you take away ink, you lighten the color, you make it lighter that is.

Using RGB for the web

In this exercise we are going to discuss the world of RGB, that is Red, Green and Blue, the primary colors of light, and these are the primary colors that you want to work with if you are creating an illustration for the Web or you are making something that is going to become part of a screen presentation, or kiosk, or you are going to film. Or you may want to think about employing RGB if your final output destination is an inkjet printer, just because inkjet printers are designed to work with RGB images. So I'm still working in this Tone-Po Shapes.ai file that I've made an absolute mess of, and we haven't done anything meaningful with it. So if yours looks quite messy too, that's just fine. And I'm going to Shift-click on this first color swatch up here in the Control palette. We see the CMYK sliders. I'm going to switch over to RGB just by choosing it from the flyout menu, and then we see the RGB equivalence of this chocolate brown color. And I want to show you something. Everything is basically turned upside down. So for example, I'll go back to CMYK, and let's go ahead and set all these values to zero. So I'll tab between each one of the values, 0000, and notice that we get white, because as you add ink, you darken up the color, as you take away ink, you lighten the color, you make it lighter that is.

Whereas it's exactly the opposite with RGB. If I choose RGB, the values for white are full on Red, Green and Blue, because when you shine red light and green light and blue light at that same surface you get white light. So we go from 0-255 this time around, because we are talking in luminous levels, we go from 0, no light, to 255 full on light. That's just the way it works in the world of luminous levels, and if we are to back off all of these colors, take them all down to 0 like so. Notice that we would get a black so dark that it is darker then strokes right next to it. It's darker than the black strokes that are surrounding the nose and the lips and so on.

All right, so I'm going to dial in a really bright color, let's say full on green, notice how bright that green is right there in the slider bar, and then mid way up on blue. Let's say something like 125, so 255 green, 120 blue, it should look like this color right there in that location midway on the blue slider bar, and instead, it looks murky, it looks like this. what gives. Well, while we are mixing RGB colors, which is fine, you can work with any color sliders you want inside of Illustrator, but we are still working inside of a CMYK document.

So I'm going to go to the file menu. And I'm going to choose Document Color Mode. And notice that we are looking at CMYK. So what Illustrator is doing? Is its clipping this color? So that it fits inside of the CMYK spectrum. If that's how what you want, if you want to create a Web graphic for example, that's the most common kind of RGB graphic, then choose RGB color. Now you might expect that color to all of a sudden brighten, instead nothing changed on screen. This is before, if I press Ctrl+Z or Command Z on the Mac, this is after. If I press Ctrl+Shift+C or command+Shift+C on a Mac, none of the colors changed on screen.

That's very important. We will see how different that is from switching back to CMYK, in just a moment. Then if I Shift- click on this icon once again in order to bring up the Color palette, I'll see completely different color values. Because what Illustrator is saying is " oh, I get it. You really want to work inside the RGB spectrum. You of course didn't want any of your colors to arbitrarily switch inside of your illustration, so here are the real RGB values that are associated with this thing that went from RGB to CMYK and back RGB." It ended up becoming quite a different color. All right, so I'm going to change red to 0, oh, AMPA green is 255 again, dial in 120 for blue, and there is our color. Now that is an un printable color in the world of CMYK, and a case it leaves you to believe wow, RGB can produce much brighter colors than CMYK can, very much true. So there are some colors that you can achieve with CMYK that you can't achieve with RGB, but there are far more colors that you can achieve with RGB, and you can't with CMYK. So RGB is the larger more dynamic spectrum, and to achieve anything like this bright green here, you would need something along the lines of a neon spot color.

Anyway let us see how RGB mix together. If you go full on Cyan and Blue, notice that you get this very bright Cyan color, this is an RGB Cyan, and then you could back off green for more blue colors if you wanted to, and then sort of sky blue colors, and then if you backed off a blue, you would get your sort of sea green colors right here. Let's now take a look at mixing blue with red, blue and red together full on is going to give you an RGB Magenta as you see right there. If you back off of Blue, you are going to get more of these Red colors if you back off of Red you are going to get first sort of purplish color, and then more of a violet color, and then so on. If you want a deep rich violet like what we are seeing in the background here, then you would back off of both slider. So anytime you want to darken something up. You don't have anything resembling a black slider in RGB.

All you do to darken up colors is back off of your numerical value, so take him down. And then finally you can get your Yellows and your Oranges by using Red and Green mixed together. So Red and Green at full volume give you Yellow, and then if you want things like Chartreuse, you should back off of Red. More likely you want something in the Orange neighborhood, so you would back off of Green, which will take you eventually down to a kind of Scarlet color. All right, so what I'm going to do, I'm going to dial in a really bright Magenta, like this one right here, and let's go ahead and fill this guys with Red, Green and Blue by themselves, and let's see how quickly I can do this.

255-0-0 for the first one tab in order to apply that value, and then for this we will do Green which of course is 0- 255-0, press Return key or Enter key here on the PC, and then for Blue we will go at 0-0-255, nice, and then we could change this to white, but I'm even going to worry about it, but why would actually I'll worry about it, because I brought it up white is of course 255, 255, we have already seen that, but that is the maximum color that you can crate inside the world of RGB. Now here is what I want you to watch, let's Shift+Tab away the palettes, move this illustration over to the right a little bit, so that we can see it.

As we go to the file menu, choose Document Color Mode, remember when we went from CMYK to RGB we didn't see any of the colors change on screen, now we might have seen some slight changes depending on the colors that we had inside the illustration, but they are going to be awfully darn slide. Whereas when we go from RGB to CMYK if we later decide after creating this bright vivid illustration here we decide, this is going in the print, and I want to get a sense of how it's going to print, then you will choose CMYK color, and bang! Just like that you are going to mute a lot of the very bright colors inside of your illustration.

So this was before, look at all of them, this was before. Even Red loses some color, Blue loses a ton, and Green just goes dormant. And then of course your Purples, you are losing those as well, and this is after, that was much more diminished colors. But that's the way it is. CMYK is a lesser color space. In the next exercise we are going to escape all this theory, and I'm going to show you some very practical color palette tips and tricks.

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This video is part of

Image for Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals
Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals

182 video lessons · 37874 viewers

Deke McClelland
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 42m 7s
    1. Welcome to One-on-One
      1m 58s
    2. The Welcome screen
      3m 2s
    3. Creating a new document
      5m 6s
    4. Advanced document controls
      4m 43s
    5. Saving a custom New Document Profile
      8m 46s
    6. Changing the document setup
      4m 21s
    7. Special artboard controls
      4m 58s
    8. Accepting artboard changes
      2m 19s
    9. Saving a document
      4m 33s
    10. Closing a document
      2m 21s
  2. 1h 0m
    1. Adobe Bridge
      56s
    2. Opening an illustration
      4m 45s
    3. Modifying an illustration
      6m 27s
    4. Saving changes
      4m 58s
    5. Introducing Adobe Bridge
      8m 41s
    6. The all-important file type associations
      3m 20s
    7. Navigating inside Bridge
      4m 23s
    8. Previewing and collecting
      5m 55s
    9. Using workspaces
      6m 41s
    10. Customizing a workspace
      6m 14s
    11. Cool Bridge tricks
      8m 17s
  3. 1h 4m
    1. Preferences, color settings, and workspaces
      35s
    2. Keyboard increments
      5m 12s
    3. Scratch disks
      3m 48s
    4. Changing the user interface and setting Appearance of Black
      4m 14s
    5. Best workflow color settings
      9m 17s
    6. Synchronizing settings across CS4
      3m 2s
    7. Working inside tabbed windows
      7m 14s
    8. Organizing palettes
      5m 4s
    9. Saving a custom workspace
      4m 12s
    10. Zooming and panning
      4m 19s
    11. Using the Zoom tool
      3m 3s
    12. Navigating the artboards
      5m 5s
    13. Nudging the screen image
      3m 3s
    14. Scroll-wheel tricks
      2m 8s
    15. Cycling between screen modes
      4m 39s
  4. 1h 22m
    1. The Wedjat (or Eye of Horus)
      55s
    2. The line tools
      2m 57s
    3. Introducing layers
      5m 10s
    4. Creating ruler guides
      6m 18s
    5. Creating custom guides
      5m 16s
    6. Snap-to points
      5m 25s
    7. Organizing guides
      5m 43s
    8. Making a tracing template
      3m 42s
    9. Drawing a line segment
      4m 29s
    10. Drawing a continuous arc
      5m 28s
    11. Drawing a looping spiral
      6m 5s
    12. Cutting lines with the Scissors tool
      6m 20s
    13. Joining open paths
      7m 31s
    14. Aligning and joining points
      6m 34s
    15. Drawing concentric circles
      4m 41s
    16. Cleaning up overlapping segments
      5m 34s
  5. 1h 4m
    1. The anatomy of a shape
      1m 1s
    2. Meet the shape tools
      3m 5s
    3. The traceable Tonalpohualli
      2m 52s
    4. Drawing circles
      4m 38s
    5. Enhanced Smart Guides
      4m 1s
    6. Aligning to a key object
      4m 29s
    7. Creating polygons and stars
      5m 4s
    8. Using the Measure tool
      3m 47s
    9. The Select Similar and Arrange commands
      3m 56s
    10. Rectangles and rounded rectangles
      6m 8s
    11. The amazing constraint axes
      5m 26s
    12. Grouping and ungrouping
      3m 35s
    13. Flipping and duplicating
      4m 12s
    14. Combining simple shapes into complex ones
      5m 24s
    15. Cutting and connecting with Scissors and Join
      3m 31s
    16. Tilde-key goofiness
      2m 53s
  6. 1h 41m
    1. The ingredients of life
      54s
    2. Fill and Stroke settings
      4m 22s
    3. Transparency grid and paper color
      5m 47s
    4. The None attribute
      5m 4s
    5. Color libraries and sliders
      3m 39s
    6. Industry-standard colors
      4m 38s
    7. Using CMYK for commercial output
      6m 39s
    8. Using RGB for the web
      7m 23s
    9. Color palette tips and tricks
      7m 18s
    10. Creating and saving color swatches
      4m 35s
    11. Trapping gaps with rich blacks
      6m 46s
    12. Filling and stacking shapes
      5m 38s
    13. Dragging and dropping swatches
      5m 0s
    14. Paste in Front, Paste in Back
      4m 54s
    15. Filling shapes inside groups
      5m 28s
    16. Pasting between layers
      4m 41s
    17. Joins, caps, and dashes
      6m 50s
    18. Fixing strokes and isolating edits
      7m 12s
    19. Creating a pattern fill
      4m 57s
  7. 1h 50m
    1. The power of transformations
      1m 20s
    2. From primitive to polished art
      2m 42s
    3. Using the Blob brush
      5m 46s
    4. Resizing the brush and erasing
      4m 15s
    5. Selection limits and methods of merging
      6m 39s
    6. Cloning and auto-duplicating
      6m 45s
    7. Customizing keyboard shortcuts
      3m 7s
    8. Moving by the numbers
      5m 15s
    9. Using the Reshape tool
      7m 47s
    10. Modifying, aligning, and uniting paths
      7m 14s
    11. Using the Offset Path command
      4m 43s
    12. Styling and eyedropping
      5m 28s
    13. Making a black-and-white template
      2m 27s
    14. Scale and clone
      4m 57s
    15. Enlarge and stack
      5m 46s
    16. Positioning the origin point
      6m 59s
    17. Using the Rotate tool
      3m 55s
    18. Using the Reflect tool
      4m 15s
    19. Series rotation (aka power duplication)
      6m 48s
    20. Rotating by the numbers
      6m 12s
    21. Transforming the tile patterns
      7m 52s
  8. 2h 4m
    1. Next-generation text wrangling
      55s
    2. Placing a text document
      5m 38s
    3. Creating a new text block
      6m 1s
    4. Working with point text
      3m 57s
    5. Selecting the perfect typeface
      5m 48s
    6. Scaling and positioning type
      8m 57s
    7. Leading, tracking, and lots of shortcuts
      5m 54s
    8. Adjusting pair kerning
      6m 55s
    9. Eyedropping formatting attributes
      3m 54s
    10. Flowing text from one block to another
      8m 28s
    11. Creating and applying a paragraph style
      7m 39s
    12. Rendering the text in graphite
      5m 55s
    13. Creating a scribbly drop shadow
      5m 17s
    14. Advanced formatting and bullets
      7m 43s
    15. Setting Area Type options
      4m 57s
    16. Justification and the Every-line Composer
      5m 52s
    17. OpenType and ligatures
      7m 19s
    18. Fractions, numerals, and ordinals
      9m 7s
    19. Swashes and small caps
      5m 40s
    20. The amazing Glyphs palette
      8m 12s
  9. 1h 18m
    1. Points are boys, handles are girls
      1m 20s
    2. Placing an image as a tracing template
      6m 56s
    3. Drawing a straight-sided path
      6m 8s
    4. Moving, adding, and deleting points
      6m 50s
    5. Drawing spline curves with Round Corners
      9m 7s
    6. Smooth points and Bézier curves
      8m 29s
    7. Defining a cusp between two curves
      6m 59s
    8. Replicating and reshaping segments
      8m 30s
    9. Converting anchor points
      7m 55s
    10. Deleting stray anchor points
      5m 1s
    11. Separating and closing paths
      5m 43s
    12. Eyedropping template colors
      5m 55s
  10. 1h 40m
    1. Paths never rest
      1m 34s
    2. Exploring the Appearance palette
      9m 54s
    3. Snip and Spin
      8m 3s
    4. Adding a center point
      4m 12s
    5. Keeping shape intersections
      3m 42s
    6. Lifting fills and selecting through shapes
      5m 54s
    7. Saving and recalling selections
      6m 20s
    8. Rotating is a circular operation
      8m 32s
    9. Lassoing and scaling points
      5m 28s
    10. Using the Transform Each command
      4m 11s
    11. Using the Magic Wand tool
      8m 1s
    12. Eyedropping live effects
      9m 58s
    13. Merging strokes with a compound path
      6m 50s
    14. Selecting and scaling independent segments
      7m 59s
    15. Scalloped edges with Pucker & Bloat
      5m 16s
    16. Expand before you merge
      4m 17s
  11. 1h 26m
    1. The new pleasures of printing
      44s
    2. Outlines and artboards in CS4
      7m 35s
    3. Setting trim size and bleed
      7m 17s
    4. Creating custom dynamic crop marks
      3m 41s
    5. Working with the Separations Preview palette
      7m 42s
    6. Trapping an object with an overprint stroke
      8m 20s
    7. Placing multiple artboards into InDesign
      5m 17s
    8. Working with the Print Tiling tool
      4m 55s
    9. Setting the General Print options
      6m 9s
    10. Setting printer marks
      5m 16s
    11. PostScript-only output and graphics
      9m 10s
    12. The Color Management options
      6m 56s
    13. Adjusting the Flattener settings
      7m 32s
    14. Setting the Raster Effects resolution
      5m 32s
  12. 1h 32m
    1. Illustrator does pixels
      51s
    2. Illustrator, PDF, and Save As formats
      8m 15s
    3. Saving an illustration for the web
      6m 13s
    4. Saving a continuous-tone JPEG image
      10m 1s
    5. Saving a high-contrast GIF graphic
      6m 26s
    6. The versatile PNG format
      4m 45s
    7. Saving a scaleable Flash (SWF) graphic
      11m 0s
    8. Opening and placing an Illustrator file in Photoshop
      12m 44s
    9. Exporting a layered PSD from Illustrator
      12m 57s
    10. Exporting to Microsoft Office and PowerPoint
      7m 24s
    11. Sharing with InDesign, Flash, and Photoshop
      12m 12s
  13. 1m 4s
    1. Until next time
      1m 4s

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