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Your computer monitor has a different color spectrum than a printer does. Understanding colors in the print world will help you with your artwork.

RGB color

Television screens & computer monitors use RGB color, or Red Green Blue. Using combinations of these three colors, they can display many variations of color. One thing to take into account is that different monitors display colors differently. Have you ever gone to an electronics store and seen a display of many TV's? You'll notice that each has a different contrast & brightness, depth of color (saturation), and slight variations in color (hue). Computer monitors are the same way. A light blue color on one monitor may appear turquoise on another.

The other thing to consider is that that RGB spectrum on you monitor doesn't always translate to the CMYK spectrum of printing, so some colors on your monitor may not be possible.


CMYK color

Printers use CMYK ink which stands for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black. Some advanced printers add Light Cyan and Light Magenta to increase the depth of the color spectrum.


How can you know exactly what color you're specifying if monitors display differently and CMYK printing colors are different from RGB colors? Pantone color swatches.

Pantone color

There are color swatches available with defined colors called Pantone color swatches. The swatches are fairly expensive and Local Hero recommends them only for reference. We don't usually do color matching to exact colors, we can do our best to get close.

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