from many colors, two
March 16, 2010 12:34 PM   Subscribe

There used to be a Photoshop plugin that would separate a full-color RGB/CMYK image into spot colors appropriately (or inappropriately, as the case may be) - for example, a predominantly tan and blue image of a person standing in water to just those spot colors. I think it made the images into DCS multichannel files ... anyway, is there anything like that for CS4? Or is there a relatively easy way to do it manually?
posted by luriete to Computers & Internet (6 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Can you just make it into a duotone or a tritone? That's what we did to get spot plates from dumb clients' CMYK files back in the days of the dinosaurs (i.e., 1996).
posted by wenestvedt at 1:15 PM on March 16, 2010

Response by poster: But doesn't doing that necessitate making the image grayscale first, and then distributing (evenly or based on a custom curve) the two inks across the whole image based only on gray levels?

What I'm talking about would specifically assign spot values - or a mix of spot values - to certain areas based on their RGB or CMYK color value.

It does seem like PS should be smart enough to let you go from color to duotone without the gray intermediate stage, but i don't think it can.
posted by luriete at 1:32 PM on March 16, 2010

I don't think it's exactly what you're looking for, but Image > Adjustments > Posterize... and wind it down to 2. Might get you the effect you're after.

The other way would be Image > Mode > Indexed Color... and use adaptive with a pattern and maybe 4 or 5 colors. Again, not quite, but maybe close enough...
posted by DaveP at 3:52 PM on March 16, 2010

Response by poster: Dave, that's also a good one. I guess you could then break it into different channels and give each a spot color.
posted by luriete at 4:18 PM on March 16, 2010

Best answer: It looks like you're thinking of Powertone, but it's not developed anymore. It gets mentioned here with some talk of a similar product called Markolor and it's not around either.
posted by the biscuit man at 11:25 AM on March 17, 2010 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: TBM, that is indeed it. Yeah, Powertone was the product I was thinking of.

I'm surprised nobody's making a plugin to do this - gives you enormous latitude when using photographic images and spot colors.

I ended up producing a job - the job I wrote this question to help me with - by using spot channels and adjusting them until I got it just right, but it took a loooong time.
posted by luriete at 3:37 PM on April 29, 2010

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