Digital Media Arts 2 - Class Notes
Syllabus | Notes Index


Check junkpile exercise.


Work individually with students on Logo project for half of class . If you are DONE with your logo project, then choose one exercise out of CIAB that we haven't done and do it. You will get extra credit for this

Fills can be:
Process color(cmyk), RGB, spot color (global or not), gradient, pattern.
Strokes can be:
Process color(cmyk), RGB, spot color (global or not), gradient, pattern.

Document Color Mode

Review where to pick colors: Tool palette, Color Palette, Swatches Palette
dragging a color from fill to stroke and vice verse.
Going to default fill and stroke.

The Color Wheel (do in AI on screen).
Additive Primaries: Red Green and Blue (used for light)... start with a dark screen and add colors. If you shine the color red, red is being bounced back to your eye.

Subtractive Primaries: Cyan, Magenta, Yellow (used for print)... start with a white page and add colors. It's called "subtractive" because the pigments subtract-from (almost like covering up) the white light that is being reflected off of the page. When the color is added to the page it absorbs light. If we add magenta to a page, all of the other colors are abosorbed and magenta is the only color that is bounced back, if I then add cyan to that, the color that is bounced back switches and blue (-ish purple) is bounced back.

Where does black come in? Talk about "rich black"

Where does white come into play?

The Color Palette: Grayscale, RGB, HSB, CMYK, Web Safe RGB, Invert, Complement

Grayscale: used if you are creating a b and w peice for either print or the screen

RGB: Used for working in screen environment

HSB: fine tuning...

Also fine tuning with option>drag.

Invert (takes out black) and Compliment (keeps the value the same):

Web Safe RGB:Web safe colors are sets of colors that will not be altered (dithered) when shown on browsers running on a 256-color browser (or an 8 bit monitor).  
Web safe colors seem to be irrelevant for today's computers, but back when the web was invented, many people still use graphics card which supports only 256 colors (or less). Actually there are only 216 web safe colors that are cross platform. Actually these web safe colors are more relevent to Adobe Illustrator that to other programs in that many times we are designing "hard edged" icons that will be saved as .gif files for the web. .gif files don't deal with dithering as well as .jpeg files, so therefore it is best to stick to the web safe palette for this... BUT, more on this later.

Out of Web Color warning, out of Gamut color warning (color shift). Going from RGB to CMYK, going back again... show.

CMYK: Printing...
HalftonesThe term Halftone Screen refers to the pattern of dots of varying sizes applied to an image of varying tones, or same sized dots applied to a tint of colour, when output to - film for the printing processes - or laser printed artwork etc.

Screen Frequency more often called Line Screen... a good safe bet is to do twice the ppi as the line screen.
However, you don't need to worry about ppi in Illustrator because it is resolution independent.

Color halftone:

What is a moire pattern?

In homework, it had you create color separations where you saw the four prints of C, M, Y, and K... any questions with this? More often than not, the printer will do the color seps for you. The Homework was a good exercise in that printer's do love it if you send them color seps with a color proof (talk about below), plus you can make sure that you are not inadvertently printing a fifth plate.

What is Process Printing used for?

So what is the process that we go through regarding color when we go to the printer (offset lithography) with CMYK:
1. create artwork
(talk about difference between what you see on the screen and what you get at the printer)
2. Get a color proof, an iris print or a rainbow
3. See if the colors jive
4. Color correct the artwork
5. Get another color proof
6. Send that color proof (with correct colors) to the printer with your artwork on disk (you can send color seps if you want)
7. Most printers are going direct to plate now which means that the file is "etched" directly onto the printer plates as opposed to going to film first
8. Do a press check (talk about)

Color Managment... the goods and the bads and why we are going to go onto this later.

What are Spot colors: Basically PMS or Pantone colors.
Spot colors are inks mixed according to formulas. The ink mix fills one print drum. It is safe to say that when you are printing just one or two colors, print them as spot colors. Otherwise see "process colors." Please specify the color by using Pantone® numbers. Please set up that ink in your computer file as a special "spot" color. If it is set up as a process color by accident it can be costly because it will run through the press four times.

When would you use a spot color (pass around example)? Talk about pantone---1963, leader in the industry

How do we go about using Pantone colors. What are Pantone Process colors? Which library do we pick? What is "coated" and "uncoated", why does it matter.

The books as well as the software (adobe illustrator) can be kind of confusing regarding this because it allows you to set up a CMYK color as a spot color. You SHOULDN'T do this (it will run as a different plate), unless you think that you want to go and take a bucket of cyan, magenta, yellow and black and mix your own color to throw on the press...unlikely.

Which brings us to... The Swatches Palette
(depends on the current doc color mode as to what it is displaying)

The default swatches: give a tour of the palette.

Saving a swatch: click new swatch button or sdrag color into palette.

Swatch options: the spot or process choice. The global or non-global choice.

Changing colors globally, also, dragging a new color onto an old swatch.

Other places to pick colors: double click on the swatch in the tools palette. Why would we do this?

The last color button (if you have a fill of none):

Color Management:


Color Filters (Blend Front to Back, etc.)

Okay... COLOR MANAGEMENT. UGH. We are not going to go into this very far in that I think that our time is better suited to different topics in illustrator.
Edit>color Settings. US Prepress defaults.
View>Proof Setup>Custom...
go from US SWOP coated to Euroscale Uncoated and check out the difference.

Choosing File>Print... depends on what kind of printer drivers you have installed... take a look at what we have.
Crops and bleed, doing manually, doing in theprint dialogue box.

Sep Colors: Output
In-RIP Separations

If there is a Pantone color---you will get five pieces of film unless you convert it to Process (click on icon next to color name)

Show, talk about different examples.

Homework: finish up logos... start thinking about final projects