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I need to figure out whether to print my shirt design as 3-color or 4-color. So far, I've been making iron-on transfers at home and this has never come up, but now I need to print up an order of shirts through an acquaintance. His printer needs to know these things (and of course they affect the cost).

I'm completely out of my depth with garment printing and Illustrator files. When I opened this in Photoshop, there seemed to be no way to reduce the pallette to 4 colors without the result being quite ugly, but I bet 3-color or 4-color printing doesn't refer to pallette size.

Anyway, if someone can take a look at the AI below and give advice on which to choose from 3-color or 4-color, I'd appreciate it:
http://www.ayalagoebb.com.br/obama/barack_obama_20085.ai
 

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If you're printing on white tees, you could even get a way with 2 color. You'll just have a 50-60% blue for the lighter blue.

If I was printing this tee on a white shirt, i'd use one red and two blues. (3 color)

if on a colored tee, i'd add the white for 4 colors.

and it'd probably take me a year to separate it properly in illustrator. (otherwise i'd do it for you.)
 

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If my monitor is correct I count 4 colors not including the white. Red, Dark blue, Light blue and grey. you could do it 3 color on white and try to simulate the grey with the dark blue but I think your best bet would be the 4 color. all depends on the client. At the end of next month those shirts will be grease rags regardless of who wins as the election will be over and the statement won't matter anymore. So I guess it comes down to what the customer wants and how much they are willing to pay.
 

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when you say seperate ,what exaxctly do you mean? could it not be printed directly like that? why would it take so long? thanks
i'm a dummy and assumed that the poster's printer was using screens. you know what they say about assuming...


Matto- good eye on the grey. i thought it was just the blue fading out when i looked at it...
 
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