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Pantones in Photoshop??

Discussion in 'Printing & Print Design Forum:' started by Jamo, Jun 10, 2009.

  1. Jamo

    Jamo Member

    O.k, so I am no expert in Illustrator and although Photoshop is not ideal it is my weapon of choice. I am designing some business cards for my business in CMYK, I also want to use a metallic silver, how do I do this in PS, is it possible?

    A step by step would be greatly appreciated :icon_smile:

  2. 1. Get on with Illustrator as soon as you can, there is a reason everyone uses's ace! But failing this read on...

    2. Using spot colours in Photoshop, You need to specify a 5th colour.
    3. To do this you can create an extra channel. If your file is CMYK, you wil have 4 channels already. 1,Cyan 2 Magneta, 3,Yellow and 4,Black.

    4. Next there is an option to have a multichannel file. So In Photoshop under Image>Mode>Multichannel

    5. Open the Channels pallet. "often connected to layers" here you will see the individual channels as mentioned before.

    • Each one represents the Inks that are printed. "Try clicking them on and off see how colour seperation of your file works."

    • Here you can create a new channel for your 5th ink. Like layers look at the bottom of the pallet and click the "new" icon (the one like a new page being turned).

    • This layer will be called an alpha channel. (You can use these to create masks and allsorts of useful things with aplpha channels.)

    4. Double click your new channel. You will see some options in a dialoouge box, click spot colour , then Click ok.

    5. Double click your new channel again and this time a differnt dialouge box will appear.
    • There is a section called Ink Characteristics, there will also be a little red (I think this is default?) box with "colour" written next to it.

    • Click once to activate the colour picker. Here you can specifiy any colour you want. So Grab your spot silver pantone colour if you have choosesn one!

    • Then on the colour picker dialougue box, click the colour libraries button.
    • Choose the library your pantone is in. (often pantone solid uncoated?)
    • Then OK all the windows to get back to your file and Hey presto your 5th colour!

    6. Where is is opaque red is where the ink will go. (by default the whole thing!)

    7. If you have text you can type directly onto the channel or copy and paste images or designs onto this channel as if it where a layer. Infact it is often easier to create the art work you want before you start this process, hide the layer, then once you create the 5th colour channel copy and paste your art onto the new channel.

    Hope this helps let me know how you get on! : )

  3. Jamo

    Jamo Member

    Hi Ruari

    Thanks for such a detailed response, very much appreciated. :icon_smile:

    However :icon_biggrin:

    I have designed my artwork in CMYK, I have followed your instructions with regards to adding the 5th channel which has worked fine, basically what I have now is my original artwork with the opaque red layer over the top, this is the part I am now struggling with, how do I now make the parts that I want to be silver on the original design silver?

    Hope you can advise.
  4. Well that would very much depend on how your design is set up and what you want in silver.

    In trying to guess a solution for your needs see if this helps.

    you could re art work the details straight on to the spot colour channel.
    Make a selecion of all the details you want in silver and remove it from the channel.

    Make a selecion of all the details you want in silver
    Then go to your new 5th channel, click on the thumb nail.
    Then delete the selection from this channel.
    Oops! remember the red area is the area that will print silver. selecting and area then removing from a channle like I have suggested could have specified the inverse area to fill with spot colour. But the easy fix is to invert (command + I) the channel this will switch the opaque red around.

    Or you could inverse your selection before you delete it from the alpha channel.

    If you want you could send me your PSD with a note at to the areas you want in sliver (photoshop has an annotation tool in the tool bar.) and I can make better judgement from there. other wise good luck.
  5. Jamo

    Jamo Member

    BIG THANKS to Ruari who took the time to show me how to do this via e-mail, definitely knows his stuff :icon_cheers:

    Going to take his advice and get off the donkey (Ps) and onto the stallion (Illy) :icon_biggrin:

    What a great forum.
  6. Salieri

    Salieri New Member


    While Ruari obviously has elite skills in this area, I do think he is selling you a bit of a lemon telling you to set artwork up in Illustrator. The logo for your business card should be done in Illustrator, the card itself should be set up in InDesign, and the pictures of yourself comped together with your new card and the Laker girls is one for Photoshop.

    Seriously, graphic designers who insist on setting everything they touch up in Illustrator are a constant source of amusement/frustration in the studio where I work.
  7. Selling lemons or constructive responses?

    I totally agree. The Full Creative suite is most powerful when using all its applications. However the question was "I am designing some business cards for my business in CMYK, I also want to use a metallic silver, how do I do this in PS, is it possible?"

    My Answer was correct, accurate and tailored to get the results asked for and teach more about these skills required. After a few private emails we established quite allot between us. I also gave advice to enrich their knowledge and give purpose to their personal development, and I believe that's why the poster prompted the response "What a great forum. "

    Through my years industry both teaching and work experience, I have recognized that both excellent students and designers always start with the same basic habits "Setting work up in Photoshop" It is in my experience that the sooner a "user" masters basic key tools (All found in Illustrator and by doing basic Illustrator exercises that are motivating and fun.) a designer gains confidence to learn more and work more effectively. This then gives people the confidence to step into the other applications and work more professionally.

    I believe I sold a whole barrel of apples, not a single lemon was amongst them.

    Perhaps your studio should find a new attitude and pride itself on helping young or unaware designers to learn more instead of finding them and I quote "a constant source of amusement."

    Best of luck in the future, hope you never run into your own attitude when you next need help.


  8. Salieri

    Salieri New Member

    Don't be so touchy, like I say your experience is obviously apparent from your replies and from the happiness of the OP. He was quite right, this is a great forum. It's just that without the benefit of seeing your entire correspondence someone passing through the thread as I did and especially seeing the final post may come away thinking, gosh why do I need Photoshop at all? I can just do it all in Illustrator...

    I'm sorry if you think my attitude stinks but just last week I had to spend hours resetting artwork that had been originally set up in Illustrator, it's a problem that never goes away.
  9. Setting art work...

    My apologies for sounding touchy. I don't think your attitude stinks, it worries me that your entire studio has the attitude and it may rubbing off on you. Further more, I do not envy any one who has the thankless task or resetting art work! you have my sympathy, we have all been there, and believe me it never goes away.

    Oh and there is no rule that says you cant set art work in Illustrator, best to be flexible and professional in dealing with any of your clients files. I totally agree with you about inDesign I love the program, there are allot worse programs to set art work in dare I say Corel Draw, Microsoft Publisher, you should count your self lucky!

    I guess the best attitude is to make sure the file get dispatched to final output to the best quality you can with out exceeding the work load. Get the boring work out the way and get on with the good stuff!

    Keep on truckin'
    Ruari : )

  10. pcbranding

    pcbranding Member

    Just read this thread...why use 3 applications to set up artwork when one will do?
    If the artwork can be laid out solely in Illustrator, then why not? Why do you need to involve InDesign?
    Presuming that everything that needs to be printed has to be output via Pagemaker (old school), Quark, InDesign is archaic!
    I'm not suggesting that you set a document such as a brochure in Illustrator, but packaging graphics, stationery, posters, flyers - in fact anything that is based on a single canvas is perfect for Illustrator.
    Importing EPS/TIFFs into InDesign then means you have linked files to potentially deal with.

    Anyway I've only been doing this for 17 years. Just my input!:icon_smile:
  11. Best practice?

    Actually I agree. I have always set packaging in Illustrator.

    However, should you use allot of linked files in Illustrator, she can create some incredibly cumbersome and inefficient files. So assembling and thinking clever with a page setting app can be a time and space saving practice allowing more efficient work flow.

    I feared this was going to happen, this point opens discussion further to; how software "should" be used, "Can" be used and "best" be used. I also know full well that there are usually heaps of different ways to do any one job. I always say that there is rarely a right or wrong way to use software, so long as it gets the job done. But there are often moral reasoning and good practice to these uses and each job is different. For example;

    When setting documents InDesign I mainly use logos, placed in a picture box and most often an EPS file. Which is an old school, but tried and tested, here to stay method of working technically "best practice". But Indesign can handle ai files just as well, if not better, as it display's a better quality preview that is more efficient to display. (Seems to out put well enough too!)

    In my recent experience, I have seen that new to industry young designers are without these practices, often prefer to copy and paste vectors straight from Illustartor into InDesign! I was shocked to say the least. (this isn't a blanket rule just I have been surprised at the amount of people doing this.) This does work (sometimes) however it can cause issues with effects in the art work, problems during ripping to output and even worse, the pasted graphic will be editable in InDesign and can be changed, editing an element that should be left well alone, therefore the art work can change and be inconsistent with other designs! Danger! Danger!

    In light of this it is best practice to have well managed files and linked elements. I think this old school method is essential to studio practice, with many benefits, such as uneditable elements, updated-able links, better file management and better performance from your machine. But then this is just my preference and recommendation that sees me right.

    Like I say there is rarely a right or wrong way, but always be prepared, that one day we can and may have to change our minds or our methods.

    I took great delight in abandoning Quark for Indesign 2.0 and never regretted it, I like to be adaptable and experimental and then I will always benefit and never stuck in the stone age. Even after 17 years, I bet you are still learning?

  12. LovesPrint

    LovesPrint Member

    I haven't got a problem with using illy for single pages..but there are certain things InDesign is better for. For example a business card - you can use master pages in InDesign for many names of the same design. I've had files given to me where a person creates many business cards on the same artboard which I then have to split down to process. As you mentioned multipage documents are better set out in a page layout programme.

    I have issue with the way some use Illustrator (ie not properly, with thousands of unnecessary masks & embedded pictures which make the file enormous etc.) If used properly it's fine. :icon_smile:
  13. pcbranding

    pcbranding Member

    Of course I'm still learning :) and I'm not arguing either.
    Was just sounding out the fact that work doesn't have to be 'output' via InDesign and just because it's in InDesign doesn't mean it's been set up any better or worse!
    Understanding linked files and file sizes etc. and how they are managed is a good thing and so is which application is best for a certain type of job.

    Applications now cross over so much in terms of what they can produce and all of the professional ones can effectively handle most types of work.
    Perhaps it was easier when things were:
    Quark - Layout
    Illustrator - Drawing
    Photoshop - Retouching
    and they were a 3 step process before having to run through an Adobe application to get crop marks put on them!
  14. and one more thing...

    I must learn how to not sound "argumentative" although it has generated discussion which I guess is why we use this forum? but honestly guys and or gals. I'm not arguing I just have passion and gusto, and enjoy the banter, Been a pleasure discussing with you all.

    speak soon.

    : )

    (Abandons the thread until something catches my attention.)
  15. bigdave

    bigdave Moderator Staff Member

    Just my 10p's worth but PhotoShop is for photos, Illustrator/freehand is for illustrating & Indesign/ Quark/Page Maker are for banging it all together and making it look pretty!
  16. SparkCreative

    SparkCreative Member

    What Dave said. Of course, there will always be exceptions, but if you learn that as a basic working method, then you can learn when it's appropriate to do it a different way.
    The main reason it's a good idea to set things up properly for me is that printers will not be particularly happy with someone who sends them a photoshop cmyk file with spot silver - it'll cause them headaches and loads of potential cock ups, even though the method described worked fine.
    It's becoming an issue. Everyone, particularly web 'designers' seems to be wanting to set stuff up in photoshop, even logos. Illustrator and Indesign handle type and output so much better for print.

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