Post # 1
Here’s my situation:
I’ve designed our invitations myself. I am going to have them printed through Cards and Pockets more thank likely since they have no problem with non standard (um, 2 5/8″ square) sizes and are inexpensive but the quality is still good (at least to me).
There are a few design elements that I would like to match (in color) to an envelope that we are buying through Paper Presentation. Paper Presentation offers a color chart that says the CMYK value of each color of paper they stock (or close to it). I initially designed our invitations using that color, but it looked wayyyy off on my monitor. Like…really far off. It’s a shade of green (emerald, if you want to look it up on their website), but my monitor was reading it as really dark. So I figured it was maybe my monitor and did a calibration – but it still looked dark. So I figured I would just print it and see what it looked like. It still looked really dark. So I messed around with color values and eventually got a green that matched the envelopes almost exactly when I printed it out at home. Perfect!
Now I just got my quote back from Cards and Pockets for printing and was reading the info they provided when I realized that maybe I should haven’t messed with the initial CYMK color that Paper Presentation offered. I realize what I get at home won’t match exactly what I get from C&P since they’re different printers, but it should be similar, right? My printer at home is one of the normal printers with a cyan, yellow, and magenta cartridge – so that means it’s printing in CYMK, right? Or is it RGB? Or am I overthinking this way too much?
Like I said, it doesn’t need to be a perfect match to this envelope, but similar – it’s our main wedding color and it’s important to me that they look cohesive.
Post # 3
Printers only do CMYK – it stands for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black. These are typical printer ink colors (there are no RGB printers).
RGB is for monitors – Red, Green, Blue; it’s about light rather than ink.
The colors aren’t the same because ink mixing doesn’t work the same as light mixing. I.E. if you put all ink colors together you’d get black(ish), if you put all light colors together you get white light.
If you are designing on the computer, it’s important that your document (to be printed) is set to CMYK colors so they match up to the printer better. You can check this in the documents settings, and there are plenty of tutorials to learn how to change it in most graphic design programs. An RGB document will not print quite the same from a printer – the colors are often muddier.
Can you get a sample invitation to make sure the colors come out right?
I mean a phyicial invite – not a screen shot of what it’s going to look like.
What you get at home will MOST LIKELY be similar to their printers (since all printers do CMYK) but with such an expensive project it’s better to be safe and get a printed sample than be sorry.
Post # 4
Yes, the difference is will you be looking at the image on paper or on a screen. CMYK is for paper. RGB is for computer screens.
Post # 5
@StL.Ashley: While all printers print CMYK – home printers ONLY have black (why K = Black i don’t know) wheras professional printers (like the one I have at my office) had MK, PK and G (Matte Black, Photo Black, and Grey) so we have 6 ink cartridges instead of 4 making the mix much more precise.
I would go with the CMYK code that you were given and then ask C&P to do a test print for you!
Post # 6
@MsGinkgo: I’m definitely going to get a test- they offer one for $8- totally worth it. I just don’t want to be the crazy girl making a million color revisions. I guess I’ll just have them do a test with what I have now (aka what matches when I printed at home) and if that doesn’t look right switch it to the values suggested.
Post # 7
@MsGinkgo: and thanks for clearing up the K/black thing. I was trying to figure out what it was!
Post # 8