Book Design and Imaging

Softproofing

I’m just designing my first book with Blurb and have been softproofing my images ready for book design.

 I should say that I do understand softproofing and colour management. I’ve used Photoshop for softproofing for books, magazines and CMYK inkjet prints for years, but the strange thing is that I’m kind of suprised just how little the image changes when viewed under softproofing with the Blurb profile.  

Normally I’m ready the initial shock of weak blacks, grey whites, poor saturation which I tweak with curves and Hue/saturation adjustment layers. But with the Blurb profile, there is hardly any difference. Perhaps slightly paler blacks and an overall slight lightening of the image – but nothing worth bothering about.

 Anyone else agree? Or have a missed something fundamental? I’m using a profile called "Blurb_ICC_Profile.icc". Elsewhere I’ve seen references to a HP5000SemimatteExpo5 profile, but I’m guessing that Blurb has changed that?

I’ve got black point compensation checked, simulate black ink checked, simulate paper colour unchecked and with rendering intent as Perceptual. I’m viewing on a very good quality Eizo monitor calibrated with hardware viewing at about 110 cd/m2.

 So, if you share my experiences, what actually do those of you who softproof actually change within the image? Are there any particular colours you look for that always go out of gamut?

Any advice or shared experiences appreciated. Thanks.

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Posted by
ImageNation
Apr 28, 2010 12:39pm PDT
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ImageNation
 

Basically any bright colors shot in strong and contrasty light I find I have to adjust when soft proofing sRGB against the Blurb profile.  Yellows, lime greens, reds, blues…

If the light is flat there is little change when looking at the soft proof.

I get about the same result as you on contrast loss. On most images there is a definate, noticeable difference but if I don’t compare to the original it looks fine even without making any curve or other adjustment. 

My workflow (which I hope is proper):

I open files from LR into PS and they open in proPhotoRGB. I convert to sRGB. I turn on soft proof. I turn on out of gamut warning. I use H-S-B controls to bring out of gamut color back in to gamut with the fewest moves possible. I almost never adjust the Hue. It usually requries balancing the saturation by toning it down along with the brightness.  In some dark out of gamut areas brightness must be increased.

 I then save the files back to LR. Ideally I do a "save as" because I can then uncheck incude ICC profile (apparently Blurb recommends not including the profile in the file).  Sometimes I forget and just "save" which saves the files to LR but includes the ICC profile.  I then output the resulting TIF file from LR as a jpg, 100% quality, sRGB (which it already is).  I then import all the files into Booksmart.

 

Posted by
gh3423
Apr 29, 2010 6:29pm PDT
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gh3423