Erin Shirreff exhibition catalog
The CMYK color model is a four-color printing process that uses (C)yan, (M)agenta, (Y)ellow, and blac(K) ink to produce a full range of colors. This is the industry standard for virtually all forms of commercial and offset printing. Making changes on press is difficult, time consuming, and very expensive, so this information is critical to a job's run.
Getting your images perfectly optimized before going to press is the best practice for optimal results. Having a verified contract proof that is made to the same standards as the press and simulates the press conditions accurately is a critical step to ensure you will have a successful and predictable print run.
Virtually all images begin in the RGB color space, especially images from digital cameras and scanners. These devices create RGB data, which has a wider gamut of colors than the CMYK color space (and inks). As a result, the CMYK conversion will often result in an image that has lost some color and contrast. Using Adobe Photoshop and other software, files can then be adjusted and optimized to counter these changes and maximize the CMYK color gamut, so files will reproduce as well as possible.
The converted file can be viewed on a calibrated high quality monitor using an ICC color profile in order to "soft proof" and view the press conditions on screen. However, this cannot be done on the average display monitor and the soft proof is not as simple to share with others who may not have a calibrated monitor or suitable software. In addition, the way in which a screen dims and dulls in order to emulate paper as a soft proof can be confusing.
While the simulation is informative and accurate, watching your file lose contrast and look muddy can create confusion. Moreover, monitors and paper are incredibly different by nature. Soft proofing is helpful step while previewing and working on file adjustments, but it will not give the same sense of control or be as useful as a contract proof.
While soft proofing is quite accurate if done properly, the soft proof colors cannot be verified or "proven" to be accurate. In order to "prove" that colors are accurate, a printed or "hard proof" must be made with an industry standard color bar which can be read and measured, objectively verifying the accuracy.
A "hard proof" or contract proof is a printed copy that accurately represents the files in the CMYK color space with printing conditions while also taking into account the brightness of the paper. A media wedge of specific colors is printed at the bottom to be measured to strict tolerances. If the resulting measurements of these values on the media wedge are within these preset tolerances, the proof passes and is "verified". The resulting proof is a technically accurate representation of the way the image will print on press.
With careful planning and execution, proper rendering intent, and ICC profiles, a CMYK color proof can help ensure that the final print product meets all expectations.
Our team of experts uses the latest training, methods, software, and technology powered by EFI Fiery RIP. Our process carefully produces proofs with colors that are measured within strict tolerances, and are only verified if it passes the measurement step. Your press run should be predictable and without surprise.
We can also help edit, convert, and optimize images for a book or print campaign in order to give the same sense of control we provide for our fine art clients. Our team at Brooklyn Editions will ensure verified, accurate communication between your creative vision and a commercial printer with consistent results every time.
At Brooklyn Editions, color accuracy in printing is a fundamental element in everything we do. We can help ensure that your images and other printed materials are accurately represented.
Just as we help clients with involved individualized service and a collaborative approach for fine art prints, we can provide support for clients printing art books and media campaigns to make sure the files reproduce perfectly and according to their vision.
Our proofing process can be customized for each client including specific rendering intents, custom CMYK conversions, or exclusive simulations of various print conditions, to ensure our proofing services provide guaranteed color accuracy.