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Graphics help needed - Drinking from the Fire Hose — LiveJournal
and trying not to drown

Date: 2009-05-21 12:58
Subject: Graphics help needed
Security: Public
Music:Nothing but motors and fans
Tags:graphics, work
For the past couple of weeks I've been struggling with getting new business cards printed for the company. I use gimp as my graphics program, which means I get to specify color in RGB (and changing to a different graphics program is not an option). The printer, naturally, specifies its colors in CMYK. The company logo is supposed to be Pantone Blue. According to something I found somewhere on the web, Pantone Blue is 0.96,0,0,0 in CMYK. And according to http://web.forret.com, this translates to 10,255,255 in RGB (or, in hex, OAFFFF).

In an attempt to get the company logo to print in the correct shade of blue, I changed the blue of the logo from whatever it was in the graphics file (which turned into a muddy purple blue when the first set of cards came back from the printer) to OAFFFF.

Being a suspicious sort, I sent email to the printer with the new graphics image attached and asked them to look at it and tell me if it would print in Pantone Blue (or something reasonably close) before I ordered another full set.

I received a reply saying "The OAFFFF color is a bright sea green and when I convert it to CMYK, it is a darker bluish-green color." To my eye, looking at a swatch of Pantone Blue in the Pantone Color Guide, Pantone Blue is not at all green. I know that colors appear differently on different computer hardware, so the fact that the 0AFFFF version of the logo appears to be a very bright turquoise on my monitor does not mean much. But it still disturbs me that my printer rep sees the logo quite differently on her screen and that she tells me that it will print as bluish-green.

Having said all of that, should I go with the OAFFFF version of the logo? Should I change the logo to some other color and if so, what RGB do I use to end up with a logo that will print in a blue that looks like Pantone Blue?
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User: mrs_sweetpeach
Date: 2009-05-21 21:00 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Yes! *Exactly!* That's how my head's been for the last two weeks. I am so confused it's almost funny.

Today's thought was to create fake 4x6" photos and send them over to Costco for printing. Fake photos containing various screencaptures, such as part of the pdf file johnridley pointed me to, plus text in various hex color codes for blue. I'll try matching those against the old business cards tomorrow to see if that gives me any hints.

Although for all I know, the photo printers used by Costco have nothing in common with the printers used by folks like 123print and I'll have basically thrown away my afternoon and one of my own dollars buying the photos.
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