Tutorial: print

print tutorial

Typography > > > > the art of arranging type

General Terms

Complete set of all characters (uppercase, lowercase, numerals, punctuation marks and special characters). Originally, a font was considered to be one typeface at one specific size. Due to the digital typography, the contemporary definition of the term includes sizes.
Font family
A collection of individual typefaces that were designed to be used together (italic, narrow or condensed, expanded, bold, black, light, etc.) e.g. Helvetica Family
A unified design for type characters, e.g. Helvetica. What most people mean when they say 'font' nowadays.
Pronounced as in 'led' is the vertical space between lines of type.
Adjusting the horizontal spacing between a pair of letters.
Mean line
An imaginary line marking the tops of lowercase letters, not including the ascenders.
Similar to kerning, which operates on pairs of letters, tracking is the process of optimizing the space between all of he characters in a word.
A font style with decorative strokes at the end of letters. Georgia, New York or Times New Roman are serif typefaces. Traditionally were considered to be more conservative, serious and suitable for long blocks of text (i.e. in books).
This is a typeface without serif details such as Helvetica, Futura or Verdana. Web typography tends toward sans-serif faces, previously associated with modernist design and headline text, as it's generally considered more legible on low-resolution devices such as television sets and computer monitors.
The height of the lowercase letters in a font, excluding characters with ascenders and descenders. It is easily measured on lowercase x.

Using fonts

Traditionally it is considered that in print, old-style fonts tend to be far more readable and pleasing for the eyes than any other type of fonts. Also in print, following the classical tradition, most of the headings are using sans-serif fonts, sometimes bold or thin versions of the sans-serif font. But in the recent years, more and more designers started using sans-serifs fonts—Helvetica, Din, Arial, Futura, etc.—for the body copy. To my mind, in many cases (especially of modern, light and 'breathing' print pieces) using of sans-serif typeface is fully justified, and to my eyes it is easier to read such page then if would be with serif font, and it also gives subtle modern elegancy to the piece.
For on screen use, such as websites, presentations, and CD-ROMs—it's better to use sans-serifs, and for the web titles that are not too small—it is possible to use serif fonts. Verdana looks its best at really small sizes, 11px and smaller. At larger sizes, Verdana tends to look be a bit hard to read. Also, Verdana is much wider than many other fonts, and so tends to take up much more space. For websites, the best recommendation is to stick with a main set of fonts that are available on the vast majority of computers. These include Verdana, Arial (Helvetica and Geneva on the Mac), Times New Roman (or Times), Georgia, and Courier New. The good thing about web is that you can specify multiple fonts, so if one font is not available on somebody's machine, the computer can try the next one, or just get a font from the generic font family (sans-serif or serif). Because you can not control screen resolution and settings of your readers on the web, and can not control how each specific browser will display your text, there is not too much you can do about typography on the web, so the simpler you go (Verdana) the better.


classification of fonts

Old style

Times New Roman, Book Antiqua, Palatino and Garamond

Originally developed almost 600 years ago (and still in development), sometimes old style fonts are generically called serif fonts, because of the horizontal strokes or serifs that are located at the corners and tips of the letters.

Classical old-style fonts have the following characteristics:

    little thick/thin contrast of the letters
    terminals (endings on the bottom edges) are shaped like teardrops
    no bracketing of serifs (bracket is the curve connecting stem and terminal of the letter)
    often cupped serif (the top of the letter looks like it was spooned out)

Usually, Italic version of the font (especially Serif) is a separate typeface design with more curved letterforms slant to the right
In traditional typesetting terminology, oblique means to take a standard font and slant it (while italic is its own type of slanted curly font).
Baskerville, Century—Serif typefaces created in the 18th century, they are forming a transition between the Oldstyle Garalde and Modern Didone styles.
    finely bracketed serifs (bracket is the curve connecting stem and terminal of the letter)
    no left-right contrast

The brightest example of Modern font would be a Bodoni. Modern fonts are characterized by:
    extreme contrast of thick and thin in weight of the stem and hairline of the letters
    no bracketing of serifs (bracket is the curve connecting stem and terminal of the letter)
    terminals are cut at a straight line, no curves

Clarendon, Rosewood—Usually these fonts are used for posters. Egyptioan fonts are also called 'slab serifs', 'mechanistic', 'square serif'. They are featuring:
    no thick/thin contrast
    little or no bracketing

Helvetica, Arial, Gotham, Din
    absense of serif
    hairline (stroke) optically even
    terminals square like

print prepress

Prepress > > > > prepare your document for print!

What to pay attention on

in Photoshop

Always check all similar images that you use with the Eyedropper Tool in Photoshop — it will prevent those images from being different after being printed, the difference between them might be invisible on the screen, but it will show off after your project has been printed. So take your time and check all of your similar images for the equal ammount of Black, Cyan, Magenta and Yellow (keeping your eyes on the info pannel, while moving your Eyedropper Tool across your images).

It is necessary to check for pixellation on the 'doubtful' photos of your document through the channels: on Mac press Command1, Command2 Command3, Command4 (for CMYK) and Command1, Command2, Command3 (for RGB) and this will give you the opportunity to see shortcomings of the image more clear and get rid of them, blurring the image on those channels which are too 'sharpened'. After finishing go back to CMYK or RGB pressing Command~. On PC use Ctrl instead of Command.

Test the new font > > > >

for all the characters

Need to test a new font and know how all the characters in it will look like? Try these phrases:
    A quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog. (for English fonts)
    Съешь ещё этих мягких французских булок, да выпей чаю. (для русских шрифтов).
Wondering what is this about? These phrases contain all the letters of the latin and cyrillic alphabets.

Tips and Tricks for > > > >

Digital printing

Today, digital printing sometimes looks as good as offset (well, almost). And, there are some tricks to make it look better. For example, in order to make Ink glossier and to make it stand out more on matte paper, it is possible to "fool" the printing machine and set digital printer to print on a 'heavier' paper stock that you actually use, this will give more heat for the ink, so the ink will "stand up".

US standard bleeds = 0.125 (1/8) inch.
European bleeds = 5 mm

print prepress

Prepress > > > > prepare your document for print!

what to pay attention on

in Quark and InDesign

For fine prints such as brochures, calendars, magazine ads, etc. all images must be saved at 300 pix per inch (or about 120 pixels per centimeter) to be used in QuarkXPress or InDesign. Then it might be possible to enlarge them but not more than 170%. For a newspaper ad resolution of 150 pix will work alright.

If there are Pantones (e.g. if you are using Silver, Gold or additional plates) in your document for print, it is necessary to check them in Colors panel (Edit—>Colors) as Spot color (in QuarkXPress).

To make a final check for the colors in your document, you should print it in separation mode. (choose "print separations" in Quark in Page set-up). For example, after printing separations of your document which has two Pantones (plus all CMYK colors), if you have more then 6 pages going out of your printer for any page, it means that you have used more then 2 Spot colors in your document.

Or, latest alternative to printing (let's all go green at last!!) your color plates, would be to check colors visually in your final PDF document. Open your document in Acrobat, from the top menu select Advanced—>Print Production—>Output Preview. You will see the panel with your current colors, plus Pantones if any. Click on the checkmarks along with each color, to see exactly what is going to print for this or that plate.

For expat-designers working in Russia, I would remind that before bringing your files to the printers' office (or, much better, before starting working on your files — if you know already where you are going to print your work), make sure to contact your printers and ask them specifically, what format they preffer. There are some printers working only on PCs in Russia. Some are persistently using only old versions of Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, etc. Some might ask for your files to be prepared in PageMaker (a program for PCs only, working a little bit similar to QuarkXPress) — and in this case you will have to look for another printer if you work on Mac. But on a positive side, most of the printers will accept high-rez PDFs these days usually.

All TIFFs used in Quark Document should be saved in Photoshop without LZW compression if possible—if you have to submit not PDFs, but the actual file with images (in case of any corrections that Printer might have to do or other situations). It is especially necessary to be attentive while creating EPS in Illustrator. I would recommend to save your eps graphics in Illustrator 8.0 or (in case of transparency) parse them in Photoshop (open them), and save them as TIFFs or EPS from Photoshop.

Coatings, Colors, and More: tricks

You should use matte or dull coatings for protection of an uncoated sheet — at least for the sake of not seeing fingerprints on your printed piece. Gloss, satin or u.v. coatings are not advised for uncoated surfaces because the gloss adhere to the high points on the paper, and the ink will look mottled. To create high and even gloss on the uncoated stock of paper, you could use two hits of gloss varnishes, and then apply u.v. gloss coating (with this you will achieve the same efect that u.v. has on the coated stock of paper — i.e. even and high gloss).

Gloss and dull aqueous coatings won't go yellowish in time on the white paper, so you might concider using it instead of gloss or dull varnish.

When using big fills of Black, use so-called Rich Black — a mix of black with other colors for creating an effect of rich and deep Black. For example, use 100% of Black, 30% of Cyan, 20% of Magenta and 20% of Yellow. You could also consider using 2 hits of super pigmented black black ink with no under-color support.

Sometimes you'd like to emphasize one specific color in your print piece, but you should not consider pushing the density of this color too high because this way this ink can plug your image. If your budget allows — and today most of the Printers have 6-color presses anyway, 4 for CMYK, 1 for coating and 1 for Pantone, so it could be even almost the same price — consider using one of the plates (in case if you'd like to exaggerate Red, use Magenta plate, etc.) for running on it additional emphasizing Red Pantone — like fluorescent PMS 806 — this way your Red Sunset will look as though it is burning on the paper in your hands.

If you are creating a gradient from any color to black, instead of using just black color make a mixed one — 100% of the first color and 100% of black. Result will look better — your will not have grey tones in the middle of your gradient.

When using Silver Pantone in the document one should use more contrast difference for creating shadows or other effects in Quark, for example 90% or even 80% of Silver Pantone will not have visual difference with 100% Silver, so in order to make these accents in silver visible, make them 60% or 50% of Silver on 100% of Silver.

Gold and blue solids never dry evenly with varnish (it might take up to 10 days for the color to settle and dry), that is why usually it is necessary to UV such solid fills.

Most frequently used Pantone Books are: Pantone Solid Coated and Pantone Solid Uncoated. Coated means that Pantone goes on the glossy stock of paper, and Uncoated Pantone colors are printed on the matte, uncoated paper stocks.

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