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Process and Global Pantone Color Swatches in Illustrator

Process and Global Pantone Color Swatches in Illustrator

Pantone Plus Series has improved the way Adobe applications uses spot colors and swatches from color book manufacturers. Adobe Illustrator, along with InDesign and PSD, uses the Pantone Plus Series color books. The latest being in TPG and TCS format. Pantone Plus includes the latest PMS colours which are frequently updated as new colors are developed. Each new book has more accuracy than the earlier.

Adobe Illustrator has three types of color swatches:

  1. Process Color Swatches
  2. GlobalColor Swatches
  3. Spot Color Swatches
Pantone in Illustrator global swatches tool
Pantone Swatch Representation in Illustrator global swatches tool.

Process and global color swatches are inter-related to the document color mode of those swatches. Modifying the document color mode from CMYK to RGB converts the process and global colors as per the need. Changing the document color mode back again is a second conversion, since there may be loss of some accuracy and effeciency and is not a replacement to the original color which was converted in the first place.

The process and global Pantone color swatches do not preserve the color modes in which they were developed whereas Spot color swatches preserve the definition and color modes (CMYK, RGB, LAB, Grayscale, HSB, or WebSafe RGB) in which they are created.

Color swatches in Illustrator/PSD can be created by either of the following:

  • users
  • color book manufacturers such as Pantone / RAL / Britsh Color Standards

The Pantone Plus Series in Official PSD has ten libraries:

  • 4 with global color swatches
  • 6 with spot color swatches using Lab values and codes.

The file extension names of these color books is in .acb format in the latest Editions.

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