One for the Designers!

Designing for print can be one of the most satisfying projects a designer can take on. Seeing your artwork come to life in physical form is amazing… but receiving print with unwelcome changes or alterations is a common frustration. Understanding how the print process affects the way you design can really enhance your artwork and opens up new ways you can use the form to create stunning work.

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Understand the print process

If there is one rule designers are told about designing for print, it’s that you should use CMYK instead of RGB. That’s a standard. Yet why you must use CMYK is often overlooked. Actually understanding the printing process will help you design better, especially if you often switch between digital and print.

Large runs of print are produced with an offset lithographic printing press, which lays down a coverage of ink from plates in the four colours cyan, magenta, yellow and black on the stock, mixing like a traditional artist to overlay and change the colours. Of course, the more colours that are mixed, the darker the colours will become. Colours with a high percentage (over 280%) of cyan, magenta, yellow and black in your design programme will become oversaturated. This results in dark, muddy colours as the ink doesn’t dry and transfers from one sheet to another.

This also means you shouldn’t mix too many colours when dealing with fine artwork and fonts. Keep colours simple to avoid a “fuzzy” look as the ink saturates the paper stock, blurring lines and making it difficult to read.

Re-evaluate your colour percentages

The more accurate and refined your colour percentages are, the better quality your print will be. It can be a case of trial and error if you’re struggling to achieve a certain hue, but there are quick fixes you can use straight away.

Are your blues being printed with too much purple running through? Increasing your cyan to 30% more than your magenta value will help cancel out the pesky purple for a clearer blue.

C0, M0, Y0, K100 would logically make a clear black. Yet when applied to print as a background colour, it will appear a dark grey. Then if you press D on Photoshop and reset the foreground, the automatic black is more of a C75, M68, Y67 and K90 mix. This makes up to an almost 300% coverage which is a lot of ink to transfer to paper! The perfect solution for a rich black that can be spread across as a solid background colour use C30 K100. Believe us, you’ll notice the difference.

The actual stock of your paper will also affect the way your colours are printed. If you use a cream stock, a light colour will sink in and become much darker so take this into consideration and discuss stocks with your client before you start to design.

Use the best quality images you can get your hands on

DPI is the output resolution of a printer and needs to be considered even more when designing for print than for web. The correct print quality will really only be achieved from images with a resolution between 300-400dpi (but never go above 400dpi in greyscale).

The leap between how a bad picture looks on screen to how it looks on paper is huge. Every dot you can fit into each inch will help improve how crisp and clear your image is. Vector illustrations are always recommended, followed closely by original digital images that haven’t had their quality or size compromised. Images you take from the web or from printed documents are usually lower in resolution which reflect onto the final printed product.

How to avoid banding

Banding is a universal annoyance for many a designer. Prevent headaches with banding by avoiding gradients with small ranges. Instead, add blur or soft noise effects and don’t use JPEG compression.

Banding is the presence of extraneous lines on a page and occurs when the colours are passed over multiple times. Cull banding at the design phase by avoiding gradients with small ranges. Blurring and soft noise effects should be used instead to keep colours uniform and avoid using JPEG compressions of files.

Does your artwork need overprinting?

Overprinting stops colour mixing when they are printed on top of each other. Colours “knocking out each other” are a common frustration for designers and results in weird results from what you see on your screen! Overprinting will stop this from happening by ensuring nothing is unwantedly overlapped. Unsure whether your artwork needs overprinting? Just check with your printer to make sure.

Fonts work differently with print

The printing presses control how much ink is placed on the paper by using a lower density of dots in those areas which don’t actually need much coverage. This does mean that really tiny text can become faint and blurred. To avoid this, use fonts no smaller than 6pt so your design is sharp and clear when printed. If your chosen font uses very fine, delicate lines, it’s vital to add thicker strokes just to boost visibility.

Take into consideration font formatting as well as your sizing. Converting your text to outlined during the process will help avoid blurring and help the text to keep its shape. This is especially important with large format items such as Roller Banners and signs!

Lastly, always embed your fonts when you create a PDF. This means even if the person opening your file doesn’t have that font, they are able to process and proof the file correctly. It’s a simple trick that saves heaps of time further down the line.

Check the preview for mistakes

Fixing an issue on the web is easy. A typo can be changed in a split second, a misplaced box moved in moments. Any designer who has opened a box of 5000 booklets which they’ve ordered for their client, only to spot a missing letter or a wonky shape would not wish the sinking feeling on their worst enemy.

Print preview should be taken seriously. You can use your PDF to check for any unwanted spot colours with (Advanced > Print Production) and always check for typos! Letters can be missed when pasting into Photoshop and even if you spot one that wasn’t your fault, you client will appreciate you picking up on it!

Folded items can be tricky!

Heavy ink coverage over a folded line can cause cracking. A high-density colour means a large volume of ink is absorbed by the stock which when folded, can crack and cause unwelcome breaks in your design! Always use lighter colours that aren’t mixed too heavily for a faultless finish.

Just a few reasons to choose leaflets from Print & Copy Centre

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There’s a lot to love about our leaflet range. Whatever the reason, we have a range of stocks, sizes and finishes to suit all. Here are just a few reasons how we can help you spread your message.

 

A6 double sided 350gsm silk

a6 ds 350gsm

Our most popular leaflet, often used by clubs and bars to convey a sense of quality when promoting their events. Add matt, gloss or soft-touch lamination for an extra touch of luxury,

 

A5 double sided 150gsm silk

a5 ds 150gsm

Great for cost-effective campaigns and often used by the likes of charities, festivals and events for reaching wide-scale audiences.

 

A4 double sided 150gsm silk

a4 ds 150gsm

The ideal choice for when you have lot to say. With a slight sheen and smooth finish, it can also double up as a gig poster or takeaway menu.

 

DL double sided 250gsm silk

dl ds 250gsm

Perfect for communicating short, snappy messages. With the option of adding lamination the DL is our sleekest option, often used by salons, shops and bars for price lists, menus and vouchers.

 

Get in touch to see how we can help you! Call us on 01472 350442 or email info@printcopy.co.uk

Laser Die-Cut Printing

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Bespoke cut-out shaped printing used to be an expensive addition to a marketing campaign.Well, not any more! With our experienced, cost-effective techniques and new laser die-cut machine, that’s a thing of the past. You’ll pay a fraction of the usual cost and still receive a high quality product. Be different, make your printing stand out from the competition!

Laser die-cut printing can be adapted to suit your needs. Essentially, we can cut to any shape required. Different weights of paper and card are available. Our helpful team can advise you on what will suit your business best. We can even design it for you. If you have your own design, that’s not a problem either. We are here to help and get the job done as efficiently as possible.

For more information or if you would like us to send you a sample pack, please do get in touch. You call us on 01472 350422 or 01472 241498. Alternatively, if you’d prefer, you can email sales@printcopy.co.uk and we’ll be more than happy to deal with any enquiries you may have.

15% Off Ultimate Folders

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15% Off Ultimate Folders

Our Folders are now printed on ultra heavy board. The new material is proving especially popular with our ‘Folder Regulars’ who report that their latest folders have been even better received than normal.

We are keen for more and more people to ‘experience the difference’ and so during May and June we are delighted to offer our Ultimate folders at distinctly inferior prices.

Our offer is on any quantity of Folders up to 500, Litho or Digitally Printed, and includes any finishing required, such as Lamination or Digital Embossing.

Please note: Offer is available on 450gm Litho and 400gm Digital Folders only and for quantities up to 500. This offer available on orders placed between 1st May and the 30th of June and cannot be used in conjunction with any other promotion. Cannot be used on bespoke quotes.

To take advantage of this Offer please enter voucher code 15FFLDS at the Shopping Basket at http://www.printcopy.co.uk
Offer runs from the 1st May until to 30th June 2015.
Terms & conditions apply

Special Price Digitally Embossed Business Cards

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Digital Embossing has been described as ‘Spot UV on steroids’, delivering not just selective gloss reflectivity but also a high raise, which takes cards into the third Dimension and gives them a sensual feel which begs to be touched.

If you have ever looked at our luxury Digitally Embossed Business Cards with envious eyes then May and June is the time to turn that yearning into reality, and if the concept is new to you then now is the time to experience DE for yourself.

Why? Because for two months we are making owning a set of these ultimate cards much easier on the pocket.

Our special offer is on our most popular Matt Laminated on both sides and Digitally Embossed on the Face side and on our three most popular quantities.

  • 250 just £84.67
  • 500 just £86.75
  • 1000 just £149.20

All prices are plus VAT but including delivery.

Please note:Offer limited to the specific quantities detailed. This offer is available on orders placed between 1st May and the 30th of June and cannot be used in conjunction with any other promotion. Cannot be used on bespoke quotes.

To take advantage of this Offer please enter voucher code DEBCDS at the Shopping Basket at http://www.printcopy.co.uk
Offer runs from the 1st May until to 30th June 2015.
Terms & conditions apply

Free Folding on Leaflets

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The spring is always a good time to circulate leaflets. The blooming of the natural world lifts the spirits and puts people in a receptive mood for fresh ideas.

This spring is an even better time than usual because we are offering to fold your leaflets free of charge during March and April.

Our Leaflets are already exceptional value but with FREE folding on top they become simply irresistible.

Better still, you can use this special offer as many times as you like throughout the two months of the offer

Please note:Offer available on any quantity of 115gm, and 150gm Full Colour Leaflets up to a quantity of 10,000. Not to be used with any other offer. Free Folding offer available on orders placed between 1st March and the 30th of April.

To take advantage of this Offer please enter voucher code FRLFT2015 at the Shopping Basket.
Offer runs from the 1st March until to 30th April 2015.
Terms & conditions apply

Up to 25% off Booklets

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Our latest tiered offer on Books and Booklets is certain to make you happy, with up to 25% off. 

Between now and the 30th of April we are offering fantastic discounts, with up to 25% off. Our offer is on any Standard Booklet* of up to 48 pages.

    • 25% off when you order up to 2,500 Booklets*
    • 15% off when you order up to 5,000 Booklets*
  • 10% off when you order up to 10,000 Booklets*

Please note: Digital Embossing, Custom Size Booklets and Perfect Bound Booklets are excluded from the offer. Turnaround agreed at the time of order for Offer Booklets. Offer runs between 1st March and the 30th of April. Offer cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer. Bespoke Book quotations are excluded from the offer.

To take advantage of this Offer please enter voucher code FEBDISBB at the Shopping Basket at http://www.printcopy.co.uk
Offer runs from the 1st March until to 30th April 2015.
Terms & conditions apply

20% off Postcards

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20% off
Postcards

We have recently upgraded our Full Colour Postcards to 450gm Card at no extra charge!!

To celebrate this major enhancement & encourage you to see just how fantastic Postcards look on the new stock we are offering you a massive 20% off our prices throughout March and April.

Better still, our discount applies to any finishing you would like on your Postcard, including Digital Embossing.

Please note: Offer applies to any Full Colour Postcard order on 450gm material up to A4 size and up to 2500 quantity. This offer available on orders placed between 1st March and the 30th of April and cannot be used in conjuction with any other promotion. Cannot be used on bespoke quotes.
To take advantage of this Offer please enter voucher code 20POST2015 at the Shopping Basket at http://www.printcopy.co.uk
Offer runs from the 1st March until to 30th April 2015.
Terms & conditions apply