If you have followed us on Facebook at any point in time, there’s a high probability you have seen this strange word pop up in your news feed. You might have no idea, however, about what this term means or the actual way it pertains to design. Originally a commercial printing company in the 1950s, Pantone didnt gain much recognition until 1963 once they introduced the worlds first color matching system, a completely systemized and simplified structure of precise mixtures of varied inks to be used in process printing. This method is typically called the Pantone Matching System, or PMS. Lets have a brief look at the advantages and disadvantages of utilizing Pantone Color Book.
Any organization professional is familiar with the word CMYK, which means the 4 common process colors (cyan, magenta, yellow, and black) used in most professional printing. Just like once you were a child mixing red and yellow finger paint to help make orange, CMYK colors are created by mixing different percentages of such four primary pigments. CMYK printing is both inexpensive and efficient, making it perfect for printing brochures, catalogs, or another type with a lot of images. However, CMYK colors are not always consistent across jobs or printers, raising a really common question: How do I explain to my printing company the exact colors that needs to be in this project? Sure, you could send an image via email, but everybody knows that virtually any color wont look the same in writing because it does on screen. Thats where Pantone comes in.
The PMS was made to serve as a typical language for color identification and communication. When you say for the printer, I want to print an orange 165C, you can be sure that he knows exactly what color you mean. Often referred to as spot colors, Pantone colors are precise and consistent, and are often used in relationship to corporate identities, in order to insure that this brand will not vary from printer to printer. Each Pantone color could be referenced in a swatch book which contains specific numbers for every color, in addition to a CMYK breakdown that best represents that color.
Hopefully this sheds some light on what could have been a mysterious thing called Pantone, and maybe our colors of every week could have more significance for you personally. Our brains have learned how objects need to look, and we apply this data to everything we see.
Take white, as an example. Magazine pages, newspapers, and printer paper are common white, but if you lay them together, youll observe that the each white is really quite different. The newsprint will show up more yellow, and near the newspaper the printer paper will probably look even brighter than you originally thought. Thats because our eyes often capture the brightest part of the scene, call it white, and judge all the other colors in accordance with this bright-level.
Heres an awesome optical illusion from Beau Lotto that illustrates how our color memory can completely change the appearance of a color. The colors a physical object absorbs and reflects is dependent upon its material will it be metal, plastic or fabric? as well as the dyes or inks employed to color it. Changing the fabric from the object or the formulation from the dyes and inks can change the reflective values, and thus color we have seen.
Think about assembling headphones with parts that were produced in different plants. Achieving the same color on different materials is not easy. Just because the leather ear pads, foam head cushion and printed metal sides seem to match under factory lighting doesnt mean they will likely match under the stores fluorescent lights, outside in the sun, or perhaps in the new owners new family area.
Nonetheless its essential for the consumer that they DO match. Would you take a bottle of vitamins if one half of them appear a shade lighter as opposed to others? Would you cook and eat pasta in the event you open the box and half eysabm this is a lighter shade of brown? Probably not.
In manufacturing, color matching is vital. Light booths allow us to place parts next to one another and change the illuminant so that we are able to see the way the colors look and whether or not they still match minus the mind-tricking outcomes of surrounding colors.
The center squares on the top and front side from the cube look pretty different orange on the front, brown on the top, right? But if you mask the remainder of the squares, you will notice the two are in reality identical. Thats because our brain subconsciously factors inside the light source and mentally corrects colour on the front in the cube as shadowed. Amazing isnt it?
Without a reason for reference, we each perceive color inside our own way. Differing people pick-up on different visual cues, which changes the way we interpret and perceive colors. This is actually essential to understand in industries where accurate color is essential.