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01 RGB vs... CMYK Learn the difference between colour modes. 02 CONSIDERING AND SELECTING STOCK Learn what size and weight stock is appropriate. 03 PRINTING SYSTEMS Learn all the different ways to commercially print and work out which way is relevant. 04 USING TINTS Learn how to use tints and their benefits within the print process. 05 FILE FORMAT Learn how to save and import you work in the correct format and resolution.

06 COLOUR SEPARATIONS IN PRINT Avoid accidents by learning to work with overprint. 07 PRINT FINISHES Learn about different print finishes and the effect you can achieve with them. 08 PROOFING Learn how to proof your print before sending it to the printers. 09 COSTING Learn how to deal with the costing of print. 10 DON’T BE A KNOW IT ALL Learn about the designer to printer relationship.



Colour works differently in different areas of design. It works in an entirely different way for print than it does for screen based work. RGB (Red, green and blue) is the colour mode used when designing for screen. Screen based design could be anything from full websites to small icons that appear on your desktop! The RGB spectrum is large and the more colours that are mixed together the lighterthe colour becomes. This is referred to as additive. However, we need to know about print! For print the colour mode should always be CMYK. (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Key/black.) These colours are the colours normally used for print. The more colours layered the darker the colour becomes. Eventually it will become black. This is referred to as subtractive. However, sometimes other specifically mixed colours can be used such as spot colours. One of the major colour systems for print is PANTONE. The Pantone Matching System or PMS is a system that uses specifically mixed inks to achieve colours outside of CMYK. These are called spot colours. Fluorescent or metallic colours can be achieved using the pantone system.

Some yellow ink being applied in the litho print process.



Considering & Selecting

Coated Available in Satin, Gloss or Matt. Sharp, Bright, Reflective e.g...... Brochures. Uncoated Not as smooth, available in a range of finishes, colours and weights. Wove Uniform surface. Faint mesh, patterned paper for stationary/books. Laid - Premium quality, similar to hand made paper. Common business stationary stock. Bond - Economic paper for copying or laser printers. Weight - GSM: Grams per square meter. Photocopier: 80 Letterhead: 120.

A0 841 x 1189mm

A6 105 x 148mm

A1 594 x 841mm

SRA0 900 x 1280mm

A2 420 x 594mm

SRA1 640 x 900mm

A3 297 x 420mm

SRA2 450 x 640mm

A4 210 x 297mm

SRA3 320 x 450mm

A5 148 x 210mm

SRA4 225 x 320mm



Lithography 4 Colour process - CMYK  Also possible to use spot colours Printing process through which the inked image from a printing plate is transferred or offset to a rubber blanket roller, which is then pressed against the substrate. When the plate passes under the ink roller, non-image areas that have a water film repel the oily inks that stick to the image areas. Used for -  Flyers, Brochures & Magazines Disadvantages - Only available for long print runs to justify the hours of setting up machines and plates. For long print runs image quality can deteriorate due to wear on the plate. Gravure 4 Colour Process - CMYK Also possible to use spot colours The image is engraved onto a cylinder because it uses a rotary printing press. An indirect image carries such as gravure cylinders, the ink is applied directly to the cylinder and from the cylinder it is transferred to the substrate. It uses copper plates Used for - Magazines, postcards and corrugated (cardboard) product packaging

Web Uses stock that is supplied on massive rolls rather than individual sheets which allows for...

Lithography Printer at Duffield Printers.


...higher volume printing speeds and a lower production cost. Webs can be used with lithography, but more commonly with relief printing methods such as rotogravure and flexography as their plates are more durable. Used for - Newspapers, catalogues, magazines and books Disadvantages - Due to the scale and cost of the production it isn't suitable for low-volume print runs.

Flexography 4 Colour Process CMYK with spot colours available The printed image is achieved by means of a soft, flexible plate which contains the image to be printed in relief, much like a rubber stamp. The plate is attached to the roller (cylinder) and placed on the press. Used for - Food Packaging (wrappers), labels, adhesive tapes, envelopes, newspapers, plastic bags, milk and beverage cartons etc

Disadvantages - Not the best print quality but because its used for disposable packaging its not much of an issue. Pad Printing process that can transfer a 2-D image onto a 3D object. Using an indirect offset (gra-

vure) process, the image is transferred from the printing plate via a silicone pad onto the substrate. Used for - Medical packaging, Automotive, promotional, apparel, electronics, appliances, sports equipment and a large majority of 3D objects. Screen-printing Relatively low volume printing method in which inks are passed through an exposed image on a screen. Although its a slow and expensive printing method it allows printing onto a large variety of sources. The viscous inks allow specific colours to be applied and can also be used to create a raised surface that adds a tactile element to a design. Disadvantages - Time Consuming, expensive Digital Inkjet or laser printers deposit pigment or toner onto a variety of substrates. Because it doesn't use plates and can be printed directly from a computer it saves a lot of money but isn't suitable for longer print jobs because of the high costs for Toners and inks. Used for - Printing onto paper, photo paper, canvas, glass, metal

Disadvantages - Expensive inks and toners, not suitable for long print runs

Crisps - Flexography USB - Pad Printing Newspaper -Gravure


In color theory, a tint is the mixture of a colour with white, which increases lightness, and a shade is the mixture of a colour with black, which reduces lightness. Mixing a colour with any neutral colour, including black and white, reduces the chroma, or colourfulness, while the hue remains unchanged. When mixing coloured light (additive colour models), the achromatic mixture of spectrally balanced red, green and blue (RGB) is always white, not gray or black. When we mix colorants, such as the pigments in paint mixtures, a colour is produced which is always darker and lower in chroma, or saturation, than the parent colours. This moves the mixed colour toward a neutral colour—a gray or near-black. Lights are made brighter or dimmer by adjusting their brightness, or energy level; in painting, lightness is adjusted through mixture with white, black or a colour’s complement. tints can be very useful as all tints can be created from the same printing plate. This can be economically beneficial as if you are using a spot colour(specifically mixed and non cmyk)a seperate plate has to be made. But you can use all the various tints of that spot colour on the piece of design and use the same printing plate. This allows you to keep costs down but still be visually effective. Tints are also useful when keeping to a colour scheme and adding consistency.


Use & Benefits



What resolution should I be working in? 300 Dots Per Inch (dpi) What colour mode do I need? CMYK What format should images coming into inDesign be? .tiff/.psd What format should illustrator images be coming into inDesign? .ai

Comb Binding - Spine of plastic rings that bind and allow a document to sit flat Spiral Binding - Spiral of metal wire that winds through punched holes allowing the publication to open flat (left) Wiro Binding - Spine of metal (wiro) rings that bind and allow a document to open flat Open Bind - Book bound without a cover to leave an exposed spine Perfect Bound - The back sections are removed and held together with a flexible adhesive, which also attaches a paper cover to the spine, and the fore edge trimmed flat. Commonly used with paper backs. Saddle Stitch - Signatures are nested and bound with wire stitches, applied through the spine along the centre fold. Belly Band - A printout that wraps around a publication, often used with magazines or flyers, a quick and cheap option of holding work together.



File>Print>Output>Colours> Separations: This shows you the effect of what printing does to each component. Deleting any unused spot colours will avoid accidents. If you intend to print in overprint you must check with the printer the maximum print limit. This lets you know how many layers of ink can be put down before the stock becomes too wet. Window>Output>Attributes>Overprint fill then Seperation Preview>Ink Limit Red indicators show whichc areas are exceeding the print limit.


Duplexing - The bonding of two stocks to form a single substrate with different colours or textures on each side. Foils - A process whereby a coloured foil is pressed to a substrate via a heated die. Also called foil stamp, heat stamp or foil emboss, allows the designer to add specific design elements such as title text. Embossing - Uses magnesium, copper or brass die holding an image to stamp the stock and leave an impression. As the design has to push through stock, designs are usually slightly oversized, with heavier lines and extra space between the letters in a word. Die cutting - Uses a steel die to cut away a specified section of a design. It is mainly used to add a decorative element to a print job and enhance the visual performance of the piece. Laser Cutting - Uses a laser to cut shapes into stock rather than use a metal tool. Laser cutting can produce more intricate cut outs with a cleaner edge than a steel die although the heat on the laser burns the cut edge. Faster set up times mean faster job turn around.

Die Cut Machine at Duffield Printers


PROOFING Getting It Right

Proofing is an obvious but vital part of designing for print. There is nothing worse than sending a piece of work off to print for 10,000 copies for the client to come back to you and point out a simply spelling mistake. Make sure that everything is alignes properly, spelt correctly, and get hold of a printers proof to check for errors. Not only will this make sure your work is perfect but it will give you an idea of how your final result will look. It is also important that you show this proof to a client and get them to sign it off. Obviously if a problem is found with the design after it has been printed it is going to cost you money. If the work has been signed off then any errors are the fault of the clients! This can save you money but you should always try and help the client rectify the problem.



Costing is also very important when designing for print. Below are some factors that you shoudl always bare in mind when considering print costs. Early Quotes - Make sure you acquire an early quote so when you approach a client you have an idea of costs. 3 Quotes - Always compare and contrast quotes to get the cheapest. Learn rough costs! - This will allow you to seem knowledgeable with the client. Minimum Quantities - Find out the price for the smallest quantities Author Corrections - Be weary of the client making alterations. This can be costly. Delivery - Make sure you take in to ac- count how much it will taker to deliver the prints.

Examples of foil blocking, die cutting, spot colours and stock subtrates.



Although your knowledge may now be at a whole new and incredible level regarding print processes and design for print, never walk into a printers thinking you know everthing because that is a printers nightmare. There is a rumour that Designers and Printers have arguments and find it difficult to agree. But this doesn’t have to be the case! As a designer you can learn a lot from the printers and it is inyou intrest ot do so as they have the complete power to make your work look brilliant or the complete opposite.

Designer vs Printer

They are the professionals; take their advice and listen and you will develop a strong, reliable relationship. Now get printing!

Digital Printer at Duffield Printers


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