CMYKCMYK is a color model that is used to represent colors when printing.
CMYK stands for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and blacK, and the system works by mixing varying amounts of ink of each these colors to produce a wide range of colors.
The underlying idea is that we start with white paper (which reflects all colors), and then the Cyan, Magenta and Yellow inks subtractively remove colors.
In theory, combing Cyan, Magenta and Yellow should produce black. However, in practice the inks do not quite subtract enough, and to achieve a good solid black, black needs to be printed separately.
Additionally, ideally a file format would simply record the Cyan, Magenta and Yellow colors, and the printing device would determine how much black to add itself. This type of system is not practical however, and hence the amount of blacK is usually stored as well (as blacK duplicates the effect of mixing the other colors, this makes the CMYK system less efficient in terms of storage than RGB).
As a final note, when printing, it is sometimes necessary to prepare separate files containing the areas to be printed with each ink. This is known as color separation.
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