Monday, January 18, 2016

T-Shirt Color Separation Guide

To purchase the PDF download, go to this page:

If you are a beginner or an intermediate artist and want to know how to do art for t-shirts and have the tools and knowledge that you will help guide you, then The Art of T-Shirt Color Separation is the best and least expensive way to start.

Photoshop is a fantastic program for designing art for T-Shirts.  It is also a great tool to build Color Separations in Channels to make that design a great image on a T-Shirt.  This book teaches how to accomplish that goal in simple and easy step-by-step exercises,  using different methods to make these separations come back together on the press to duplicate the design on the computer.

More Than Just a Book!  Discover How To:

 Separate colors for printing on black shirts
 Cross between RGB and CMYK channels
 Simulated and 4 color process
 Splitting channels to place separately into a vector program
 Outputting channels as an EPS composite from a vector program
 Create halftones without a rip software program
 Understanding the characteristics of individual channels
 The tools, palettes, hot keys and much more

No DVD! FULL Photoshop files are downloaded from the cloud at the click of a mouse as you need them for each exercise.

This is a design for an annual event that I have separated for many years. The client works with 3D models and then brings the images into Photoshop to compose a T-shirt design. My job is to separate the colors to print on the press. I do this manually without a separation program. This one took me about 2 hours. (Click on Picture to enlarge)

Original Photoshop Design

Print on a T-Shirt

You have to think of color separations like the "Transporter" from Star Trek. It takes molecules, breaks them apart and sends them to a destination where it puts them back together again. With color separation, you take a design and decide how many colors need to print on the press that will simulate the original image. This requires a little experience and an eye for color. This particular design, I decided was 9 colors. So the goal is to break the design down into those 9 colors then reassemble those colors when they print on the press to end up with the image on the shirt.

Below is the sequence that the design prints on the press and is very similar to how it looks as it's printing. These images are demonstrating how each plate looks individually as the design comes builds back together. (Click on Picture to enlarge)

Base White




Light Cyan


Based down Black for Mixing

Highlight White

25% Medium Black

Mitch Different  is a working artist.  He teaches and mentors talented artists who want to learn a field of art that is not covered in formal training at colleges and institutes.  His resume' includes his own company, Be-Bop T-Shirt Shop, Carrousel Productions, Big Ball Sportswear, Sunline products, Different Creative and his freelance art on the Web. He currently resides at Canyon Lake, Texas.

Free Vector Downloads:

Much thanks to Terry Combs and Aaron Montgomery for inviting me as a guest on their
podcast show on January 10th.

Workshop for Live Hands-on Training

And,  IMPRESSIONS magazine,  click  here Impressions

Special Thanks to Deborah Sexton for the great press! She has been a strong supporter for the Screen Printing Industry for many years through her articles and writing for many of the industry's top publications. . . Google her: Deborah Sexton

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Pen and Ink in Illustrator

Here is an illustration that I worked up for the Art Department at River City in San Marcos, Texas, which is my new employer since I have moved to Canyon Lake, Texas. They are all about the Art, and they are loaded with a staff of very talented artists. 

I began with a rough pencil sketch in Photoshop on a Wacom. Once I was happy with my final sketch, I dropped the sketch in Illustrator and made a custom calligraphy brush. One brush that I change thickness through pressure sensitivity on the Wacom and changing the stroke from .5 to 3, depending on the part of the design I am inking. This has all of the look of inking on paper, except if you screw up or want to change something you can correct it in the blink of an eye!

Once I was happy with the inking in Illustrator, I decided on the style of coloring I wanted to do, so I chose to bring the inked art in Photoshop and created it in layers.

After deciding the colors would look awesome on black shirts, I had to make a few adjustments to look finished on black.

Normally, this would be a separated in 7 colors for screen printing, but since it will not be a huge, massive order we will print direct to garment on a "Kornit" printer.

I offer freelance design and one-on-one training on art and separations for beginning to intermediate artists who want to learn something that takes years to acquire at a warp speed in 8 hours. If you are interested, contact me:

If you are interested in learning separations yourself without a software program that cost a lot and can't compare to what you can do, then download the book to guide you as you learn to do manual color separations in Photoshop Channels! $29.99 USD