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InDesign color management workflow Assistance

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Max Stein
InDesign color management workflow Assistance
on May 1, 2012 at 3:57:45 pm


I recently had to create a 60 page color booklet for a University on a very tight schedule. The booklet was to be printed to press. I was not given any specifics as to the output specifics.

So, I was creating vector graphics in Illustrator as CMYK, and importing them in InDesign. And receieving e-mail with bitmat images in formats from JPG, TIFF, PDF, PNG. and I would place them directly into InDesign. If I had to do any photoshoping of a picture, I would conver the sRGB original to CMYK.

I have been reading discussion about color management workflow. But I am still not clear what I should have been doing with the roughly 100 image files sent me to be in the booklet?

Somewhere I read the way I did it was okay, as long as I let InDesign handle image conversion on the output? Is this correct? When I went to make my Package for the printer, I did get the Triangle "warning" that some images were sRGB. The PDFs looked great.

What should I have done as all these images came in? It was a crazy deadline. I can't imagine having to open every image in Photoshop -Convert to CMYK-Adjust colors and resave and import?

And what do you do if you don't know the specific output printer? I default to SWOP.

So, will InDesign, convert any incorrect (sRGB etc) images on the final output to the proper colorspace to be printed properly?



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Kelly Johnson
Re: InDesign color management workflow Assistance
on May 14, 2012 at 4:29:39 am

This is a huge topic. Despite all the advances made in InDesign and really all the programs, I still prefer to process all the images myself via Photoshop and not let InDesign handle any color.

However, I have used the workflow suggested by Deke McClelland at the tutorials.

The main thing is to have all color settings across all adobe apps the same. You don't want a conversion to happen in Photoshop or Illustrator and then something else in InDesign which could then be overridden via Pdf settings or printers' settings..etc.

In Photoshop, you just make an Action on one image and then let the action run all the other images. Waaaay faster! Open an image. Start recording (view the Actions palette) and go to whatever color format/space you need. Choose the format for saving then stop the action. Then you just Batch(under file>Automate) choose that action and point to the folder w/all the images. Just pay attention to the boxes..or search for "photoshop actions"...there is also, under the File > Scripts > Image processor where you can select a folder of images and choose a format to convert them all to tiff and then make an action.

Either way, if you do use InDesign to manage color, just make sure the color settings are either all the same or turned off ("do not manage colors") in all but InDesign.

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Max Stein
Re: InDesign color management workflow Assistance
on May 14, 2012 at 4:54:35 am

Very interesting. Thanks.

I tried the PDF X1a to convert all the color spaces to the CMYK for the ptrinter, But I found some 5% black to appear magentaish oon screen at least. So I don't think that was a great output option.

Again the problem is getting many different source files, formats with a short deadline and layout and get the doc to the printer.

But if you are correct, that i should have taken the time to run everything through PS then lsy out in Indesign.

Could you give an example of the steps.

I have some High res Tiffs from a digital camera, some processed PDFs with a image file I need to use. Various web based JPG, PNG images.

So I convert all to Tiff AdobRGB. In this example this doc will be printed on a press. So would I do my CMYK conversion in PS?

Lay everything out in InDesign, and output the PDF with out any conversion, to prserve the work done in PS?

I did delivery the native file to the printer. Is it safer (without have a specific printer profile to target) to let them prep the file to their press?

By the way. With CMYK having a smaller color gamut, would youi also soft proof in PS to CMYK, make adjustments before going to ID?

The problem is having crazy deadlines, and relying on InDesign's ability to "fix" any problems on output.

Thanks for your advice!!

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