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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I'm sending my shirts to be design and printed over seas. They're asking for the pantone color. I know in photoshop where to find the pantone colors but on my designs theirs like hundreds of them, because of the gradients and tones.

My supplier laughed and said nvm, we'll just do a digital print, but I'm going to need to do this in the future.

Does anyone know what exactly do they mean? I'm sure Its like a set of 3 or 5 numbers that they would use, I just don't know where to find it. I have illustrator too, and im thinking about getting a pantone book to help

Thanks again!
 

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you will need to get an actual Pantone printed color book Pantone - PANTONE Color, products and guides for accurate color communication. looking at pantone swatches on a monitor in Illustrator or Photoshop is not going to give an accurate refference. The swatches in the Pantone books are printed with pantone inks. If you want a light blue color you can just look at the Pantone book and select a color like 291C, your printer can open their Pantone chart, look up 291C and know exactly what shade of blue you are talking about. Pantone gives you and the printer a standardized reference when referring to colors
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
oh ok well I'll get that taken care of, but what I'm wondering is do I give them all the pantone colors for the image? I ended up sending them a txt file of close to like 30 chars (fig1) and they were like what the heck,that's so many colors. Was that the right thing to do?

fig 1 lol
( Cool Gray 1 C
Cool Gray3 c

Process Black C


warm gray 3 c
warm gray 2 c
warm gray 11 c
warm gray 5 c
warm gray 6 c
warm gray 7 c
warm gray 1 c

black 7 c
heaxachrome black c

400 c
426 c
411 C
410 c
407 c
409 c
404 c
....)


Edit:
I'm guessing it would be smarter to design with one or two primary colors. The artwork above was a black and white photo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I believe so, they said they needed it for a silk screen print. This was their response:

"There are so many panton color in your text.... usually when do silk screen print, we need to pay set up fee, one color is $19.53. the more color, more expensive will be..."
 

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Without looking at your artwork, can't say for certain, however with halftone work, it won't (shouldn't) be all those individual pantones. Halftones create varying tones.
It concerns me that they aren't steering you better on this.....how many (tens of) thousands are they printing for you? Certainly with high numbers, they'll provide you with a test print for approval.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
their minimum is pretty low, so I went with digital prints until I can get an understanding on this.
I've gotten test prints, but again its digital prints.

The only thing I've done with the artwork is set it to 300dpi. I may have this one set to 75dpi since this was made sometime ago but I've changed it.

I've uploaded the image in reference to the pantone colors I posted before.
 

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that's what the final print will look like? that's just a one color black halftone.

if you are printing black on white your printer doesn't need all that info. you should be able to send them that file and they should output it for no fee and it should come out looking close to that image. (remember you set it at 300 dpi).
 

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right now what we are talking about really is color separation. what i'm saying is you could print that a single color (black) as a halftone. the solid blacks would print black and as it turned to gray it wouldn't print grey it would print black in halftone patterns to make up the gradients of the one color.



of course we are talking black ink on white shirt here.
 

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okay so from what I'm understanding is if I didn't set it to 300dpi, then I would be looking at something like
Cool Gray 1 C, Cool Gray3 c, Process Black C..etc etc

Am I understanding this correctly?
Not really.

The dpi relates to the quality of the image, which has nothing to do with the color separation. In this case, your art can be printed as one color (black). The shades, known as halftones, will give the illusion of many gray tones. But only one color of ink (black) is used. And that means only one screen is used, so you will only pay for that one screen. All of this applies to your art whether it's 300dpi or 75dpi, although you should definitely use the 300dpi version.

Now, let's say your art was a little bit different... the black stripe was red; the "test font" was yellow; and the word "legend" was blue. The art would then need to separated into 4 colors... black for the background image, red for the stripe, yellow for the test font and blue for the word legend. You would then assign Pantone color for each, for example... PMS Black, PMS 187 Red, PMS 123 Yellow and PMS 293 Blue. Each colors would require it's own screen and you would need to pay the additional set up fees for that. The print shop would then use the correct ink colors for their respective screens.
 

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You will need to learn about halftones for sure. Everyone has to start somewhere.
 

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Does anyone know what exactly do they mean? I'm sure Its like a set of 3 or 5 numbers that they would use, I just don't know where to find it. I have illustrator too, and im thinking about getting a pantone book to help

Thanks again!
Pantone is a color library. You can add the pantone library to you adobe illustrator program easily but there's more than one depending on the colors.

CMYK uses 4 colors to mix the color you want. Pantone matches without direct contact with one another. There can be so much variation in color using CMYK that Pantone created a system that allowed for consistent color.

Always listen carefully to your manufactures. If they want pantone then use pantone. Otherwise they will not come out right.
 
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