Can I avoid PMS colors?
After 33 years of printing, I wish I could say I’ve seen it all. Well, I haven’t. In fact some things occur all too often. Like asking myself, “why in the world did they do that?”
One of the most common instances is someone needlessly picking a P.M.S. (Pantone Matching System) color for their brochure, in addition to 4 color process.
Now if your corporate logo is PMS specific, like the orange in Home Depot or red in McDonalds, you are totally within your rights. In this case where your color may be so closely associated with your brand, you should use PMS or “spot color,” as it’s often referred to.
But when you just want a nice blue border around the edges of your piece, or green capital letters for each paragraph, why not just create it in C.M.Y.K.? Time after time, I continue to see people pay extra money for a PMS color when they didn’t need to.
When I look around the press room and see a pressman pulling a sheet from a job he is running with the look as though he had just bitten into a lemon, I already know what he is thinking: “Why did they do that?” He knows there was no reason for there to be a PMS ink on that job. Why pay for 5 when you can accomplish the same thing with 4 – colors of ink that is.
Is there any greater faux pas than that? You bet! A giant red flag for me is when I see a brochure that has only a screen of a PMS ink. Screening is designed to lighten a color. If you want a lighter color, why not just pick a lighter PMS and print a solid of exactly the color you want? There is a time and place for PMS colors, but that’s a different topic for a different day.
PMS? Be smart, and know when to say when.
If you need help determining when to use a PMS color and when it can be replaced with CMYK colors, please send us an email at email@example.com or call us at 1-888-922-0699.