As professional printers, we are responsible for making sure your artwork is setup properly (print ready) based on the type of printing to be done.  Those recently graduating from graphic design school and inexperienced designers often find they have files rejected over and over because they have set up the artwork for CMYK when it should be SPOT, or they have incorrectly mixed the two.

It takes years to learn how to properly set up artwork for the various types of printing processes.  Artwork must be set up either 4-color process or spot color.

4-Color Process Printing

Often, this is where the less experienced make mistakes when 4 color CMYK is mixed with spot colors.  CMYK is:  Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black. 

These four colors can be blended in varied percentages to produce a wide range of full color spectrum colors.  Your hear this referred to as full color printing.  This process is necessary when printing items such as photographs.

Spot Color Printing

Spot color printing is based on using one or more pre-mixed ink colors.  You may have heard the term, Pantone.  Pantone is a color system of solid pre-mixed colors. Unlike CMYK, these colors do not change from one print run to another. 

Companies who want a very consistent presentation of their logo and artwork often go to the extra expense to print in spot colors.  It isn’t possible to exactly reproduce spot colors on digital printing devices.

Download our Pantone reference sheet as a guide to Spot printing.

Budget Often Decides

Digital CMYK printing has become extremely popular because of the low cost of printing with this method.  When using less than 3 colors, Spot color is not too expensive, but typically more than full color CMYK digital.

The Good News

Twin Water Design has more than 30 years experience in the design and printing industry and we ensure your print files are set up correctly.  We review the requirements for each design project and advise the customer of the best option for printing based on their goals and budget.

Contact us at 623-218-7006 or use our contact form to discuss your color needs.

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