io design & illustration, inc.
fun and functional design & illustration services for print and web

You are currently browsing the Aliceios Blog category.

Why Use Rich Black Ink Mix?

LEFT: Rich Black vs. RIGHT: 100% K Black

Question: Why use a “Rich Black” ink mix in a layout?

Answer: You will get a denser looking black area.

Rich Black = C, M, Y, K mix vs. Black = 100% K, which means that you are packing more ink into the area and our eyes see that density as deeper or richer.

Follow Up Question: When should Rich Black be used?

Answer: Definitely when there is a lot of area that is to be printed black.

Follow Up Question 2: What C, M, Y, K mix should I use?

Answer: First, I would ask the prepress department of your printer if they have a recommendation. They know their presses and should be aware of the paper you are using and other factors that may effect how your job prints. In the example shown: Rich Black = C 50, M 41, Y 41, K 100 (as recommended by Daniels Graphics).

Note: The difference in the appearance of the black area was not obvious in layout through InDesign (even when changing the Preferences on how black is displayed on screen), but became apparent when exporting the print pdf. I have found this to be true with various potentially problematic items. InDesign is forgiving on screen, so I recommend you always review your print pdfs carefully.


Posted in Aliceios Blog by alice

InDesign Problem: Not Able to Move Selected Items

PROBLEM: Unable to move items with direct select tool in an InDesign existing layout.

I sat down to work with a client, just to reposition a few items on a rack card, and much to my annoyance I couldn’t move anything in the InDesign (CS 6) layout. I could select, but not move things. They behaved as if they were locked in place, which they were not. Rebooting the program did nothing, rebooting the whole system did nothing to fix the issue. Of course I had sent my client away with a promise to email them with discussed changes as soon as I got things working again.

SOLUTION: Reset InDesign Preferences – hold down Shift+Option+Command+Control while starting InDesign, click “Yes” to delete preference files.

Having done the immediately obvious steps to no success, I called a friend who works in prepress at a local printer and is super knowledgeable on software snafus. She said she had the exact same problem that morning as well – weird – but that reboot had fixed the issue. Drat.┬áSo onto the Adobe Forums I went and did find a reference to the same issue posted in 2010. Seemed like various things had been tried by people, but the one that had the most success was to reset the InDesign preferences. Yes, it did mean I had to reenter my preferences, but I was able to get the project back to the client and kept on schedule.


Posted in Aliceios Blog by alice