The printer for an event is requesting that all submitted files not include transparency but the only way I know of printing a good gradient of 2 Pantone colors is to use the overprint method. The method uses a solid Pantone underneath and a Pantone gradient of another color from 0 opacity to full opacity on top.

Is my understanding of transparency off? Will the printer be able to accept this? Or do I need to find another method? If you just drop in 2 Pantone colors into the gradient panel, you get an ugly gray band every time.


1 Answer 1


You don't need opacity.

Set the bottom color to a gradient from 0% color to 100% color. Then, set the top gradient from 100% color to 0% color and set the top color to overprint. (No transparency is needed.)

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Note that the "ugly grey" you get is due to on screen previewing since apps can't "mix" Spot colors effectively for previewing on an RGB device. If the file color separates properly that "muddy grey" won't be there off press. You need to become accustomed to avoiding opacity alterations and seeing that grey on screen for print work when using spot color to spot color gradients.

That "muddy grey" is only ever an issue for work destined for screens, in which case, you would not be using spot colors.

What you probably do not want to do is have a solid base color with an overprinting gradient. That will change the gradient color.

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