I am a young designer with little experience in book publishing. Currently I am working on a catalog of an artist. It consists of oil paintings and water colors. But preparing the CMYK images for watercolors is a bit tricky for me. There are many watercolors with very subtle tints of color wash, and from my previous experience these light watercolors tend to lose their luminosity after printed. So, I wanted to get a little extra advice on how to prepare the best images for printing watercolors in book.
There are several different adjustment tools in Photoshop such as Brightness/Contrast, Levels, Curves, Exposure, and Vibrance etc. But I don’t know which one is more suitable to make the punch the colors a little more and add a little more contrast.
If you know any other links in this topic, I will be happy to read more.
I wonder if you've ever heard of hexogram printing? You will never be able to replicate a painter's palette using CMYK alone. Printing presses are limited to the amount of ink they can lay down, but I tend to think you are trying to match some pastel type variants in press. There are also certain types of paper you might consider. Paper that will absorb the ink and have some tooth to it. You do not mention how the images are captured. Are they digital pics or scans? I've read your post and I think you need to look beyond Photoshop, a little outside the box, if you will. There are specialty printers, book printers who specialize in archival type work and do a phenominal job reproducing fine art. Of course, there are tools in Photoshop that can enhance an image. You should get Dan Margulis' "Photoshop LAB Color" and "Professional Photoshop". Very, very good references to optimizing images and they have several different approaches to some common problems.
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