A Better Blend from Color to Black

Answered by Jay Nelson, Editor and Publisher, Design Tools Monthly

I'm never happy with the result when I use a gradient that progresses from a color to black. The areas in the middle are muddy, and I sometimes get a stripe of gray in the middle as well. Should I find a new output provider, or is there something I can do to fix this problem myself?

You don't need a new output provider. You do need a new second color that isn't black. Try creating a new color that's a mixture of 100% Black and 100% of the first color. This will print much better and avoid that gray stripe through the middle of the blend.

Why does this fix the problem? Your original blend essentially creates two gradients: one from 100% color to 0% color, and the other from 0% black to 100% black. They cross over in the middle. By replacing the 100% black endpoint with 100% black + 100% color, you're creating just one gradient: 0% black to 100% black, ON TOP OF the solid color. The result is true color throughout, getting darker and darker toward one end.

Logical, yes?

This question was answered by Jay Nelson, Publisher & Editor, Design Tools Monthly. We love DTM's tips and advice and think you will, too. For a free sample PRINTED issue, contact Design Tools Monthly at 303-543-8400, e-mail info@design-tools.com, or go to their website: www.design-tools.com.
© Copyright Print Buyers Online.com, Inc.