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Flexographic Color Fundamentals

Learn the basics of color and its place in flexographic printing in “Flexographic Color Fundamentals.”

This instructor-led course consists of three classes taught by FTA Director of Education Joe Tuccitto and SmileyColor & Associates’ Steve Smiley.

All classes are 90 minutes in length and taught in FTA’s Virtual Conference Center. Those who attend all three classes will receive a certificate of completion.

Upcoming Dates Announced Soon

Be notified when dates are announced. Contact Director of Education Joe Tuccitto.

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Essentials of Color Theory

Color, in a way unlike any other subject in visual communication, is very complex and frequently misunderstood. It has physical, psychological and learned behavioral attributes, and can shape effective visual communication in packaging.

As a flexographer, you must learn the fundamental logic of color structure. This class will help you to train your eye to recognize, describe, define, replicate and memorize color in everyday experiences, specifically in the flexographic environment.

After completing this class, you will be able to:

  • Describe the evolution of color theory
  • Identify color terminology and how to communicate it
  • Recognize various color systems and the ways they are applied in flexography
  • Identify and define the 3-dimensional structure of color (hue, saturation and chroma)

Principles of Color Formulation

Color is formulated both digitally (process color) and physically (spot color). Digital color is formulated successfully with specific color profiles from output devices used throughout the workflow and is printed using CMYK and/or CMYKOGV. Physical color formulation, in contrast, employs a recipe guide like the Pantone book and is printed as a spot color using a single print station.

This class will cover the essentials of process color reproduction as it relates to FIRST Methodology and CGATS TR012 2020, and will identify specific spot color formulations as they compare to industry-specific recipes.

After completing this class, you will be able to:

  • Utilize your measurement instruments to successfully manage process color output
  • Utilize your measurement instruments to successfully manage spot color formulation and output
  • Describe how L*a*b*/L*c*h°, spectral data, density, spectral density and SCTV metrology specifications are used to manage process and spot colors

Measuring and Controlling Flexographic Color

Process control is essential to ensure quality flexographic color reproduction. When it comes to controlling color (process or spot), the primary instruments used are the spectrophotometer or spectrodensitometer. These devices, combined with a solid understanding of the L*a*b* colorspace, can repeatably and consistently define color coordinates.

This class will cover the measurement devices used in flexography to measure, monitor and control color throughout the workflow.

After completing this class, you will be able to:

  • Communicate the methods and tools required for managing flexographic color
  • Develop, select and use the proper control targets for the color output employed
  • Measure charts and run targets to interpret results and perform corrective actions to assure a stable print condition