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Using the right color model for your design

The world of colors is something we experience every moment of our lives, yet some things are still a mystery. When it comes to creating, categorizing and labeling them people have come up with several, and all useful ways to solve the problem. Let’s identify these different methods and understand how and why they are used.

RGB

Red, Green and Blue.

Have you ever looked at a T.V. screen up close? You’ll notice that the entire screen is made up of tiny little red, green and blue colored dots. These primary colors emit light and are used for designing media and files that are meant to be used in digital form.

Some examples are elements to be used in a website, phone app, youtube channel,  web banners, e-marketing material etc. The RGB color scheme is an additive model, wherein colors are added and mixed together to create a wide spectrum of colors.

CMYK

Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black.

Have you ever taken a close look at a printer? Or changed its ink cartridges? All home and office printers as well as professional printers are equipped with this color scheme. Anything designed to be printed should be saved in CMYK. The CMYK color scheme is a subtractive model wherein white is the color of the paper or the background, black is achieved when all four colors are combined, and every other color is created by fully or partially removing one or more colors from Cyan, Magenta, Yellow or Black.

Brochures, invitations, business cards are all printed with CMYK color and as the designer you must make sure to save these files with this color scheme to avoid any printing surprises!

What else is out there?

Both the RGB and CMYK model are not perfect, but despite its imperfections they are the most widely used models for digital and print design today. There are other models as well such as Pantone, HSB, Lab Color, GrayScale, Black and White, Indexed Color and more! But the 2 most often used in everyday life are RGB and CMYK.

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