Join Justin Seeley for an in-depth discussion in this video Adjusting Illustrator's color settings, part of Illustrator for Web Design: Core Concepts.
- I realize it's not the most exciting topic in the world but I think it's worthwhile for us to take a moment to talk about how to adjust the color settings inside of Adobe Illustrator before you get started with your web design projects. So the first thing we're gonna do is go up to the Edit menu and we're gonna go down to Color Settings. You can also bring that up with Shift Command K on the Mac. Shift Control K on a PC. And once you get in here there's a couple of things that I want you to be aware of. Number one the settings up here at the top. Most likely these are gonna say North American General Purpose 2 if you are in North America. If you're not it may say something different.
You could see all of the different ones that are available to you including something called North America Web and Internet. If you choose that you can see that certain things will change. So let's jump between these, let's see here. North American General Purpose 2, North American Web and Internet, and so basically what it is saying the difference between these is right here, the RGB space. Do you preserve embedded profiles of graphics? Or do you convert them over to the working space? What exactly does this mean? Well, the working space for the RGB settings in this particular profile are set to sRGB and they're set that way because sRGB is probably the most common web color setting across the web.
Most browsers adopt sRGB and it's the one with the widest color gamut of any of the ones that we have available to us. So if you don't have sRGB selected right here I suggest that you do so. And you don't necessarily have to start off with one of these presets up here you can actually just develop your own. So if you wanted to, just choose sRGB from the drop down here and then right here under Color Management Policies. This means "Okay, we've defined what color we want to "use inside of Illustrator now what do you want me "to do if you bring in a graphic that has another "color profile assigned to it?" Well, you have the option to preserve the embedded profiles which means it will just maintain it's current look and try to adapt it once it comes in or you can convert it to the working space.
This may cause a bit of a color shift in some cases but it will help because then you will have a true representation of what the color is going to look like upon export if you keep it in the working profile space. So what I want to do here is convert it to the working space. I don't have to worry about CMYK values in this case because I'm only working on the web for now. If you were doing something that was going to be going to print or web you would definitely need to worry about CMYK but for now, I do not need to worry about that at all. Now, Profile Mismatches. What do you want to do? Profile Mismatches do you want to ask when opening? And this will actually explain it to you at the bottom.
"When enabled, you will be notified whenever the "embedded color profile in a newly opened document "does not match the current working space, "and given the option to override the policy's "default mismatch behavior." Basicallly? If someone sends you a file and you open it up and it's in, let's say Adobe RGB, and you're running sRGB as your working space, Illustrator will pop up and say "Hey, this document is currently in "whatever the RGB space is, "you're currently working in sRGB.
"What do you want me to do?" So you will have the option to either keep the existing or override it with your own. You can also ask when pasting from one document to another. So if you are copying from an Adobe RGB document into an sRGB document, what happens? I actually like having it turned on to ask me. For most of these. Because I want to be able to choose what happens each and every time. Chances are my answer is gonna be the same but I always want the option. Same for Missing Profiles. So basically if you have a document or an object that you bring in that has no profile associated with it.
What do you want to do? Well, I want it to ask me. So I'm just gonna keep that just like this. And so now, I'm just going to hit OK and so hopefully now I've got all my color settings exactly like I want them. I'm working in the sRGB space which means I'm gonna be working in the closest color space to most modern web browsers. I also have Illustrator set up to ask me what to do any time it opens up a document that's not in that space or any time I cut and paste something into Illustrator that's not in that space. So I've covered all my bases, I've got my color settings and now, it's time to go to work.