Tips, Tricks & Technical Guides for Getting the Very Best Out of Your Print
Looking back at some of our older blog posts, it’s clear that we have some pretty good printing-related guides and resources on the site. So, we thought we’d pull them all together in a handy ready-reference for our readers — a complete library of useful print-related resources at your fingertips. These tips, tricks and technical guides cover things like creating better design, preparing technically correct artwork, using the most appropriate colour spaces and generally making better choices to ensure that you get the very best outcome from every printed job. Some guides are even downloadable for you to keep. Here are the first 15 of 30 guides …
1. A Guide to Preparing Print-Ready Artwork:
One of the most important and popular guides on our site: how to prepare print-ready artwork that is technically correct in its set-up, to give you the very best printed results. View or download the PDF guide here. Also, see #13 below.
2. The Best PDF Settings for Your Artwork
Covering similar ground to #1 above, but in far more detail, we next have a guide to the settings that you should use when saving your artwork in PDF format. View or download the PDF guide here. More information is also available to read online here.
3. The Difference Between CMYK and RGB
A guide explaining the difference between CMYK and RGB colour modes and when to use each, for example when saving your full colour images. View or download the PDF guide here. More information can also be read online here and here.
4. Digital vs. Litho Printing
At Firstpoint Print we’re lucky enough to have both litho (or ‘lithographic’) and digital printing. But which technology is best for your particular print job? View or download the PDF guide here. More information is also available here and here.
5. Using Transparency in your Printing
Modern page layout and image manipulation software now allows you to control the level of transparency in your images and artwork layers. However, there are some pitfalls to avoid if you’re intending to print with transparency effects. View or download the PDF guide here. More information is also available to read online here.
6. File Formats
A handy guide to understanding which formats are used for different types of content and how they are each associated with different programmes. View or download the PDF guide here.
7. Specialist Printing Finishes & Effects
A guide to some of the more popular, specialist, print finishes, for example embossing, spot UV varnishing and more. Learn how to utilise them to make your printing really stand out from the crowd. View or download the PDF guide here. More information is also available to read online here.
8. Vector vs. Raster Graphics
This guide explains the difference between the two forms of digital image and when to use each in your design and artwork. View or download the PDF guide here. More information is also available to read online here.
9. Fonts — Using Them Reliably in Artwork & Printing
The fonts in your digital artwork files will look the same in your finished printing, won’t they? Well, only if you follow some important guidelines. View or download the PDF guide here. More information is also available to read online here.
10. File Sizes and Quality
Commercial printers regularly receive artwork from customers that includes low quality images, photographs that have an inadequate resolution (often taken from the web) and are then expected to be able to print them at photographic quality. This guide should help to clarify why this isn’t always possible and how to ensure that you get a sharp printed image from your supplied artwork. View or download the PDF guide here.
The humble booklet comes in various forms and can be used for many applications including anything from sales and marketing collateral to technical guides, newsletters and prospectuses. There are, however, some important practical considerations to bear in mind when designing your booklet. View or download the PDF guide here.
12. Stock Options
Here’s a guide to some of the many options you have when choosing the paper or card stock for your printed project. Whether you want something smooth, textured, off-white, cream, oyster or 100% recycled, we have something to fit virtually any need. View or download the PDF guide here. More information is also available to read online here.
13. Preparing Artwork for Print – A Refresher Course
We’ve previously posted information on various technical matters and guidelines for producing artwork in the best possible way (e.g. see #1 above). Here’s a refresher, though, available to read online here. More information is also available online here.
14. Digital Embossing (yes, DIGITAL embossing!)
Technology never stops moving and this is also true within the printing industry. Embossing (raised printing) used to be possible only through the use of metal ‘dies’, which were used to punch into the paper, or substrate involved, at such high pressure that they left a permanent raised impression in the surface. However, Firstpoint Print now has the ability to offer raised print — with a surprising degree of control and flexibility — using digital embossing (no expensive metal dies needed!). More information is available to read online here.
15. A Guide to Using Rich Black in Print
Rich black uses colour from all four CMYK plates to produce a richer, deeper black with a more uniform coverage on the paper surface. Here’s how.
Watch out for Part 2 of this print-related resource library in the first half of May. There we’ll cover the second half of our 30 guides. These will include topics like foil blocking, printing jargon and what it means, more options for raised print, folders and the surprising number of formats available, plus a whole lot more. It’s juicy stuff! These guides are a goldmine of print-related information and represent decades of experience and expertise. So …
Don’t forget to bookmark these guides (or this post!) — you never know when you might need to look up some technical information relating to design, artwork and printing!
And, when the time comes to print, remember that Firstpoint Print has 3 offices in Central London and supplies litho printing, digital printing, large format printing along with a whole host of other print-related services. Give us a try for your next project! Contact your nearest branch here.