Tips | The Art of Brighter Sublimation Printing

Tips | The Art of Brighter Sublimation Printing

Hola! Your Subbing Amiga Irma here again, bringing you another useful article to help you on your sublimation journey!
As we know, sublimation is a great way for businesses to showcase their products and ideas in an eye-catching manner. Using the right materials and the correct printing technique, you can create vibrant sublimation designs that stand out from the crowd. This article will discuss how to make your sublimation design brighter and more vivid by implementing key strategies. Follow along to get started.


Choose Bright and Vibrant Sublimation Transfer Paper

Sublimation transfer paper plays a crucial role in creating bright and vibrant prints. Look for transfer papers that have a high transfer rate and produce sharp and vivid prints. It's important to choose a high-quality transfer paper that will produce accurate color representation and retain its vibrancy over time.

Make Sure Your Printer Settings are Optimized for Sublimation Printing

Creating vibrant, eye-catching designs with a sublimation printer is an incredible way to express yourself. However, to get the most out of your projects, it is paramount that you optimize your printer settings for the best results. To make sublimation brighter and more vivid, there are a few simple steps to follow.
  1. Ensure you select the highest quality available on your printing software interface. This may be called 'High Resolution,' 'Best Quality,' or something similar, depending on the program used.
  2. It may be necessary to adjust the color profile of your image before printing - if this option exists within the software being used, then tweak it until optimal colors are achieved.
  3. Tweak the saturation levels in your printer settings. This can be done by increasing or decreasing the value depending on your desired effect, and you may need to do this multiple times until you get the perfect level for your work.
  4. Adjusting other color values, such as hue or contrast, can also help create more vibrant colors when printing with sublimation inks.

Use Fresh, High-Quality Sublimation Ink
The quality of your sublimation ink can greatly impact the vibrancy of your prints. Make sure to use sublimation ink that is specifically designed for sublimation printing. This type of ink will provide rich, vibrant, and long-lasting color.

Also, it's important to ensure your ink is always fresh. Pay great attention to the expiration date on the sublimation ink you purchase, as old or expired inks can cause duller colors.

Pro Tip: Always store your inks at room temperature and away from direct sunlight or other heat sources, as these conditions can contribute to faster degradation of the ink's quality. If your sublimated prints still appear dull despite properly storing new inks, consider switching brands for a brighter result.

Print on a Polyester or Polymer Coated Surface
Sublimation printing is most effective on a polyester or polymer-coated surface. These surfaces have a receptive coating that allows the sublimation ink to be absorbed, resulting in bright and vibrant prints.

Image Correction

Adjust the Brightness and Contrast Levels of the Image
Before printing, consider adjusting your image's brightness and contrast levels to make it more vibrant. You can use image editing software like Adobe Photoshop to make these adjustments.
Enhance the Saturation of Colors in the Image
Increasing the saturation of colors in your image can also make it appear brighter and more vibrant. Use your image editing software to enhance the saturation of individual colors or the overall image.

Convert the Image From RGB to CMYK Color Mode
RGB and CMYK are two different techniques for making colors. RGB is for computer screens and TVs, while CMYK is for printing with special inks. When printing for sublimation, we need to change the colors from RGB to CMYK so that the final print will look correct and not have any funny colors.
If your image is in RGB color mode, use your image editing software to convert it to CMYK.


Printing Process

Use A Good Sublimation Printer
When looking for a sublimation printer, consider if the printer comes with an ICC profile for the specific sublimation paper you are using. This is important because each type of paper has unique color characteristics, so having this profile will ensure your colors come out as accurately as possible.

Use the Recommended Temperature, Pressure, and Time Settings
It's important to use the recommended temperature, pressure, and time settings for your heat press to get the best results. You can find these settings in the user manual or from the manufacturer.

Print a Test Print Before Printing a Large Batch
Before printing a large batch of sublimation prints, it's recommended to print a test print to ensure that the colors are vibrant and the image is properly transferred. This allows you to make any necessary adjustments before printing a larger batch.

Inspect the Test Print and Adjust Accordingly
After printing your test print, inspect it closely to ensure that the colors are bright and the image is properly transferred. Make any necessary adjustments to your printer settings or image, and repeat the printing process until you are satisfied with the results.

After-Print Care

Let the Print Cool Down Before Handling it
After completing the sublimation printing process, it's important to let the print cool down before handling it. This will prevent any damage or smudging to the image.

Store the Print in a Cool, Dry Place
To maintain the vibrancy of your sublimation prints, store them in a cool, dry place. Avoid storing them in humid or high-temperature environments, as this may cause the colors to fade or bleed over time.

Avoid Exposing the Print to Direct Sunlight or Extreme Heat
Direct sunlight and extreme heat can cause the colors in your sublimation print to fade. Avoid placing your prints in direct sunlight or an environment with high temperatures to preserve their brilliance. If you need to display your sublimation prints in a bright or warm environment, consider using UV-resistant glass or a protective cover to reduce the impact of light and heat.

By following these steps and taking the necessary precautions, you can make sublimation prints brighter and more vibrant. A little extra care and attention can go a long way in ensuring that your sublimation prints are of the highest quality and will last for years to come. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different materials and pressure settings to find out what works best for you. Finally, remember that sublimation takes practice and patience, so don’t give up if it doesn’t get perfect the first time around. Feel free to check out our Facebook group Subbing Amigas & Amigos where you will find encouragement and inspiration to help you along the way on your sublimation journey. Looking to fast-track your sublimation business growth? Let's work together and make it happen - schedule a meeting with me now!
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