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Design in 60 Seconds: RGB and CMYK Color Modes Explained

This post is part of a series called 60 Second Video Tutorials.
Illustrator in 60 Seconds: How to Use the Pathfinder Tool
Photoshop in 60 Seconds: Seamless Patterns
RGB and CMYK Color Modes Explained

Welcome to our Design in 60 Seconds series, in which you can learn a new design skill or technique in just a minute!

Design in 60 Seconds: RGB & CMYK Explained

This time around we're looking at the RGB and CMYK Color Modes. If these have ever seemed confusing to you, we've got a quick 60-second video to help out. Then you can move ahead with confidence knowing when to use RGB images like the colorful Lab Stock Photo from PhotoDune, or a print template in CMYK.

How to Use RGB & CMYK Color Modes

The standard Color Mode for Photoshop is RGB for Red, Green, and Blue.

RGB Color Mode in Adobe Photoshop

The RGB model creates color by lighting up pixels on a screen, using 256 levels of each primary color to create millions of colors on a digital display.

Using RGB Color Mode

The CMYK Color Mode, used primarily for printing, uses Cyan, Magenta, and Yellow, and then adds in Black. 

CMYK Color Mode in Adobe Photoshop

This mode also produces fewer colors than the RGB Mode, leading to the occasional color shift when converting from RGB to CMYK.

RGB and CYMK Comparison

Want to see this idea in action? Check out the video above to see this lesson at work!

A Bit More Detail

Want to learn more about Adobe Photoshop's vast tools and settings? Check out these tutorials below:

60 Seconds?!

This is part of a new series of quick video tutorials on Envato Tuts+. We’re aiming to introduce a range of subjects, all in 60 seconds—just enough to whet your appetite. Let us know in the comments what you thought of this video and what else you’d like to see explained in 60 seconds!

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