The Pantone Color Institute just announced PANTONE® 18-3838 Ultra Violet as the Pantone Color of the Year 2018! This news is always exciting because it sets the stage for upcoming trends for everything from housewares to fashion to packaging design. In fact, we have already seen shades of Color of the Year used in packaging and graphic design by forward-looking brands in the CPG, luxury, and beauty worlds as well as by personalities and artists seeking to stand out. Part of butt...

Posted December 11, 2017 by Mark Gundlach

In a highly competitive marketplace, brands and packaging designers are looking for ways to differentiate their products on the shelf. This increasingly goes beyond color to include embellishment options such as foils, special varnishes, soft touch finishes and more. Designers are also using more intense solid colors, fluorescents and iridescents. And not just with conventional print – embellishment options and special colors and finishes are also available in digital solutions that allow ...

Posted December 08, 2017 by Ray Cheydleur

If you work behind a paint counter, you know customers can surprise you with interesting and unique objects to color match. Many samples are relatively easy to measure, but when a customer shows up with a curved baseboard panel, a square of shag carpet, or a plush toy, things can get a little tricky. A few years ago, we learned just how challenging it was for our retail paint customers to color match unique samples. We took in a bag with textured and multi-colored items and asked the person behi...

Posted December 04, 2017 by Tim O'Rourke

Recently we blogged about how appearance affects color. In this article we look at some of the characteristics that impact an object’s appearance, such as texture, gloss, transparency, and special effects, and explain why it’s crucial to describe appearance in the early stages of the design workflow.  While 3D programs have attempted to address appearance aspects for years, there has been a missing link in virtual product design: the ability to integrate characteristically &ldqu...

Posted November 29, 2017 by Thomas Meeker

You think you’re doing everything right, but your color isn’t consistent. Why? Through the years, designers have used many tools to help them specify color. Color swatches, style guides and product prototypes have been effective, but with the advent of the digital world, these physical tools are no longer enough. To be efficient, designers need to be SPECIFIC. X-Rite Pantone President Ron Voigt recently published an article in MediaPost that explains why. To be effective, designers n...

Posted November 17, 2017 by Cindy Cooperman

Appearance is more than simply color. It’s a comprehensive look at everything inherent to each unique material we come in contact with, including texture, gloss, transparency, and special effects. Each of these characteristics plays a part and has an effect on overall appearance and understanding in relation to a single material. Objects may have several elements that affect appearance, such as the material’s surface texture, construction, overall geometry and micro-surface. The environ...

Posted October 24, 2017 by Thomas Meeker

Color is our perception of reflected light across the visible spectrum. When light hits an object, it absorbs some rays and reflect others. The color of light that reflects back into our eyes is the color we perceive. The more light an object absorbs, the darker it appears. With black, very little light is reflected. Pure black in the presence of light wasn’t achieved until 2014 when Surrey NanoSystems announced the invention of Vantablack. This high-tech artificial substance absorbs 99....

Posted October 13, 2017 by Mike Huda

I spent a few years working in Paris, where the Seine River has played a pivotal role in the shaping of the city’s personality. As I stayed longer and got to know the city and its people better, one of the things that became clear to me was that the Seine River physically separated two distinct cultures of the city. Image courtesy of www.aparisguide.com The left bank, including the Latin Quarter, Montparnasse, and Sorbonne, is all about creativity, design and ideation. The right bank is more sop...

Posted August 01, 2017 by Ron Voigt

FUSE 2017 provided a wealth of valuable industry insight by showcasing how today’s brands are not only surviving, but thriving. While each scenario presented unique challenges and obstacles, one constant seemed abundantly clear:  brands must create a human connection between themselves and their consumers. Humanizing brands reinvigorates (or, in some cases, generates) a level of trust from consumers that is currently eroding. Speakers at FUSE highlighted a few specific examples of ways companie...

Posted July 19, 2017 by X-Rite Color

In an effort to better understand YOU, YOUR business, and YOUR color challenges, we’re inviting you to be a part of the new X-RITE LAB. Our research and design teams are asking for YOUR input as we look for new and exciting challenges to solve. The X-RITE LAB is a group of professionals who are interested in voicing their color challenges and emerging as thought leaders. Regardless of industry, role, or years of color knowledge, we’re looking for individuals whose professional goals resonate wit...

Posted June 30, 2017 by Shoshana Burgett

When someone says “apple,” do you think red, green, or yellow? What do you do if a customer asks you to produce a color using descriptions that are not specific enough? Check out how something as seemingly simple as color communication can determine whether your color program succeeds or fails. A picture may paint a thousand words, but words alone do not paint a thousand colors. Circular conversations about color happen everyday. They generally start with someone asking for a sligh...

Posted May 26, 2017 by Cindy Cooperman

Have you seen the Academy Award-Winning La La Land, where the stars dance through the cosmos and experience alternate realities? Or the commercial, where a famous freestyle dancer slides down the street, up the walls, over the marquee and beyond, transported by his next-gen earphones? Maybe you’ve seen this Russian packaging that superimposes conflicting scales. Surrealism is bleeding into our reality, and I kind of think it’s a zeitgeist. Simply defined, surrealism strives to reconcile our dre...

Posted March 22, 2017 by Ron Voigt

At X-Rite Pantone, we pride ourselves on our ability to help customers specify, communicate, formulate, and produce consistent color. You’re probably familiar with our major markets, like plastics, industrial coatings, and print & packaging. You may also be aware of the more “common” things we measure, like paint, printed surfaces, and textiles. But, as you look for the emergency exit on a plane, watch a butterfly float by, or choose the freshest package of cheese from the grocer, do you con...

Posted February 23, 2017 by Mike Huda

At X-Rite Pantone, we love color, and we’re passionate about helping you get yours right. That’s why we offer a full-service training program, staffed with Color Experts from many of the industries we serve. From beginner to advanced, lowest investment to highest return, we offer a variety of options to teach you everything you need to know to be successful. Are you new to color, wondering where it fits in your business objectives? Do you already have a color workflow, but wish it was more eff...

Posted February 09, 2017 by Joel Schick

You say color is important, but do you know why it’s so important? In reality, color is a critical element in the manufacturing process. Unfortunately, many manufacturers are realizing that getting color right is much harder than it used to be, and the brands they support are asking them to meet tighter tolerances. Here’s why. While advances in color technology – think metallic packaging, pearlescent finishes, custom fabrics and vibrant new colors – entice customers, they also make it much more...

Posted February 07, 2017 by Shoshana Burgett

If ensuring color consistency is part of your job description, you’ll want to learn more about PantoneLIVE. Our customers report that it helps them get products to market an average of four times faster! PantoneLIVE is an end-to-end, digital color communication ecosystem that helps everyone involved in a packaging workflow visualize and communicate color. It shows which colors are achievable, and which are not, across everything from flexible packaging to corrugated board. And, since the digital...

Posted February 02, 2017 by Chris Halford

If you didn’t catch my Industry 4.0: What Commercial Printers Need to Know article, you’ll want to check it out now. Today’s blog is a continuation, touching on the most interesting color management tie-ins: PQX, iccMAX, mobile control and new materials. Here’s what on the horizon for color-managed workflows. Image courtesy of Esko.com. Print Quality eXchange PQX was a global effort developed by Idealliance, and is now moving to ISO to be issued as a standard. It is the first of two parts ...

Posted January 25, 2017 by Ray Cheydleur

If you’re a commercial printer who wants to improve color quality and consistency and stay current on industry trends, you need to be aware of Industry 4.0. Industry 4.0 can mean different things to different people, but it generally refers to the fourth industrial revolution, which incorporates trends in automation, data exchange, smart systems, and the Internet of Things. Image courtesy of Christoph Roser at AllAboutLean.com. Today I’ll explain what Industry 4.0 means for commercial printers. ...

Posted January 24, 2017 by Ray Cheydleur

Looking forward to the X Games? Kicking off next week in Aspen, the annual sporting competition draws thrill seekers from around the world to participate in Xtreme events, such as skiing, snowboarding, and snowmobiling. Image courtesy of www.bleacherreport.com. Of course, this living-on-the-edge lifestyle isn’t for everyone. Luckily, with X-Rite you don’t have to be a daredevil to enjoy Xtreme color! Here’s a list of our most innovative solutions to help you achieve the greatest possible results...

Posted January 17, 2017 by Tim Mouw

Earlier this week my colleague, Shoshana Burgett wrote about six manufacturing trends to watch for in 2017. It’s now time to look into my crystal ball and see what trends converters, commercial printers and graphic designers should be following in the next 12 – 18 months. Extended/Expanded Gamut 2017 could be the year where extended gamut printing really breaks out. This year both industry professionals and standards organizations have been taking a look at printing beyond traditional 126...

Posted January 10, 2017 by Ray Cheydleur
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