W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-svg@w3.org > November 2001

Re: SVG, CMYK

From: Simon St.Laurent <simonstl@simonstl.com>
Date: 13 Nov 2001 20:24:53 -0500
To: Chris Lilley <chris@w3.org>
Cc: www-svg@w3.org
Message-Id: <1005701094.878.14.camel@localhost.localdomain>
On Tue, 2001-11-13 at 17:08, Chris Lilley wrote:
> > I'm trying to find a good way to deal with color printing of SVG
> > images.  SVG's RGB-centric approach is great for screen, but difficult
> > for print.
>
> No, not at all. After all, its not 'just RGB'. Firstly, its calibrated
> sRGB so it can be converted by a color management system to LAB and thus
> to any other colorspace. Secondly, apart from filters, color clamping is
> late as possible and thus, out of sRGB gamut values are preserved so
> 'can print but can't view' colors can be accomodated. Thirdly, paint
> properties allow an arbitrary ICC colorspace to be used (with an sRGB
> fallback) so for example CMYK, Hexachrome, duotones or whatever you want
> can be accomodated.

Thanks, Chris, but let's slow down a little.  These aren't SVG images
I've created, and I don't have a lot of tools for processing them.  I
feel much like I did about ten years ago when I was working at a
Manhattan Kinko's trying to make color photocopiers work.  I don't have
control over color space, don't have a clue what hexachrome is, and
mostly know about color from long and traumatic experiences with Adobe
Photoshop 3 and the joys of creating separations.

The color information in SVG seems to suggest that sRGB magically solves
everything, but are there any simple tools for working with sRGB - for
instance, to approximate colors specified as RGB in forms that will work
in CMYK?

I'm looking at this through a very narrow window, not a full collection
of powerful graphic tools.
 
> Not that isn't 'generic CMYK' either, but a specific CMYK color profile
> for a particular device, paper, ink set, dot gain etc and under a given
> illuminant.

I'll settle in this case for roughly tolerable CMYK as a circa 1994
color copier (Xerox or Canon, I don't mind) might produce.  There's
color management and then there's "wow!  this banding in the gradients
looks hideous" or "why exactly do you make your designers work under
cheap fluorescent lights?"

> > I'm aware of the rendering-intent attribute, but are there any tools
> > designed to make the color issues any less painful?
> 
> Color management systems in general make this less painful. Ensure that
> you are using such a system and that you have profiles for sRGB, for
> your screen, and for all the printers you intend to use.

Is color management incorporated into any of the existing SVG toolkits? 
I know the Adobe SVG Viewer has some color management, but it doesn't
seem oriented toward print, even relatively simple print.

-- 
Simon St.Laurent
"Every day, in every way, I'm getting better and better." - Emile Coue
Received on Tuesday, 13 November 2001 19:21:45 GMT

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