CMYK, also known as process colour and four colours is a colour printing system. CMYK refers to the four colours used; Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black. Black is K as this stands for keyline or key plate. CMYK uses percentages of each of the four colours to make different colours. For example, a pink would have Magenta as the highest percentage. CMYK colours can also be used specifically, so Cyan would be: C=100 M=0 Y=0 K=0
Spot colour is another colour printing system using pantone references, for example Pantone 205 C. This is a more specific colour matching system than CMYK. The difference between Pantone 205 C and 205 U is that one is for coated stock and the other is for uncoated stock. (Gloss and matte). Brands will tend to have pantone references for their logo and identity.
It helps if you can send through an ai or eps file (Illustrator) as then the document is the correct format to begin with. JPEGs can be used but they aren’t usually good enough for print quality, unless the file size is large.
Artwork is set up in Adobe Illustrator and must be set up in a CMYK format, whether the artwork uses spot colours or CMYK. Matte or Gloss is specified on the artwork as well as whether it is going to be printed spot colour or CMYK. Pantone references must be given if it is spot colour. Sometimes percentages will be given for CMYK references, but not always depending on how many colours are in the artwork. Prints with photographs etc will be printed CMYK as there are so many colours.
For artwork approval we upload artwork to our order tracking website which enables you to check and approve artwork online. You should refer to pantone reference books for colours as colours do not show up on screen the same colour as they will be printed. Our artwork approval form states that there may be a +/- 10% colour variation on CMYK. We would advise using spot colours if colour matching is essential.