You'll have to excuse me, I've had no formal graphics design or printing training. Everything I know in Adobe and for design is partially self-taught. This brings me to my question.
Color proofing. If I need to do this for an ad submission into a magazine, what I am expecting here? Is this a file that is saved after doing something?
I have played around with the View > Proof Setup/ Proof Colors and done a google search, but nothing is really explaining in any simple terms, what I should be doing and what I should expect to see. If I turn Proof Colors on and then save it as a PDF, I'm just looking at my document. Is there something I'm missing? Should there be an extra file? I saved a custom Proof but it saves a different format file in the AppData folder.
In short, what you are supposed to see is a simulation of how the document looks under the limitations of the final printing conditions. That simulation is possible only if you have a color profile for the final printing conditions (i.e. the magazine’s press setup) and only if you set the options correctly. The profile tells Photoshop about the printing conditions so it will know how to simulate the final output.
The document will usually look worse with Proof Setup on, because most printers cannot come close to the color reproduction of a computer screen. It’s just telling you the truth about how much worse it will look. That is where the Proof Setup simulation is useful: By seeing the limitations of the printing process compared to the screen, you can make further editing decisions to make the most of the specific printing process you will be using.
Here is a good introductory article explaining the Proof Setup options and what to expect:
Soft Proofing in Photoshop by Bruce Fraser
It was written for Photoshop 6 (21 years ago), but the Proof Setup options have not changed much.
That makes sense. The magazine I am submitting to uses Heatset Web Offset. I'm not exactly sure then what device I would select to simulate if that's the process being used.
You need an ICC profile for the process. To soft proof or convert to make a proof. That's the first step. Gotta have a conversation with the printer handling the job.
You would ask the magazine if they have an ICC color profile that represents their proofing (or printing) conditions. If you’re lucky they will send you a profile you can install where Photoshop Proof Setup can see it. Don’t be surprised if it’s a cryptic abbreviated name like HS_WEB_OFST_2021.icc as an example.
However, it is also possible that they will say they don’t have one. If so, you can ask what would be the closest choice in Proof Setup under “Device to Simulate.” They might say something like “Oh, use FOGRA39, that’s close enough.”
The more the magazine cares about accurate color reproduction, the more likely they will have a profile to send you.
Clearly they don't care too much about accuracy in color reproduction because they don't have an ICC color profile and they don't even make suggestions for which device to simulate could be used. XD
Essentially if it's not too orange and is running 300dpi per image, it'll work for them.
I guess the printer they use is in another state too.