CMYK vs. RGB for printing


CMYK vs. RGB for printing

Here’s a recap on the technicalities of Additive and subtractive colour reproduction…
or RGB and CMYK as you’ll probably know it.



RGB light from a prism


RGB stands for Red, Green and Blue.  It’s the colours which lie roughly at either extreme and the middle of the spectrum of light after it passes through a prism.  It’s sometimes called ‘additive’ colour, because the three added together actually form pure white light – imagine them passing back through the prism in reverse.

The important thing to realise is that RGB is how your monitor (or your TV or mobile phone) displays colour, though activation of red, green or blue pixels.  If the monitor is to display white, it will activate all three colours at that point.

Obviously one cannot print in RGB.  Inks added together or printed over each other, as every schoolchild knows, doesn’t result in white, so the whole concept of the display and the print would be incompatible.



CMYK paint pots


That’s where Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Key (black) come in.  Sometimes called ‘subtractive’ colour, cyan, magenta and yellow have been found to allow the closest approximation to RGB in print.  Supposedly, these colours added together should produce black, but it usually comes out as a muddy grey; a black is therefore added, called Key (to distinguish it from blue).


In Print

As printers use subtractive colours, your photos and graphics will Read more

A guide to fonts in print


A guide to fonts in print

Due to a recent request, here is a recap of some technical points (pardon the pun) about typography in the real world of print

This article doesn’t deal with the design side of typography, we’ll approach that in a future post.  This article is concerned with the technicalities and real-world considerations a designer faces before the work goes to print.

People are often annoyed and confused when their carefully-chosen typeface does not resemble that which has been printed and delivered to them.  We try to avoid this by proofing all of our work and warning clients if there are font problems, but let’s get to the root of the problem.


The problem

The assumption is that what you see is what you get (referred to as ‘WYSIWYG’) when it comes to fonts—much like colour, layout, resolution etc.—which simply isn’t the case unless you know what you’re doing.

In reality, the fonts you’ve chosen for your design only look the way they do ON YOUR SYSTEM, because you’ve used fonts which are INSTALLED on your system.  They may happen to be installed on the printing company’s system and then there’s no issue, but it’s more likely that they will change subtly or will be substituted for another font entirely.

Many fonts are practically universal and should not cause a problem, but there’s no real way to be sure that the printer has the exact same font as you.  The problem is exacerbated by the use of unusual fonts or those which you have yourself downloaded and installed.  Luckily, there are ways around this.


System fonts

Some fonts are included in virtually all systems and are known as system fonts.  These fonts include Read more

Are people sick of eshots?

Are people sick of eShots?

Are people sick of eshots?

This article may seem a little odd (read: hypocritical, confusing, contradictory, self-deprecating yet self-serving) but bear with us. It is merely looking at both sides of the argument.

We have already talked about eShots (HTML marketing/informative emails) and their benefits and technicalities, and we’re sure to return to them at a later date as well. Here we aim to look at the other side of the coin.

There’s no denying it, this is a digital world and everyone (within reason) is connected to one another by the internet, communicating in one way or another via the World Wide Web (not the same thing, F.Y.I.).  What sensible person would not attempt to use this pervasive, ubiquitous medium to communicate their business services to the masses? Well, there are three operative words in that sentence, carefully chosen to illustrate exactly we’re trying to make: Read more

A guide to print-ready artwork

A refresher course

A guide to print-ready artwork

We’ve previously posted information on various technical matters and guides to producing artwork, etc.  A quick reminder has been requested, so here is our guide to producing print-ready artwork, including a link at the end to a downloadable PDF guide…

You’ve designed your artwork and it looks perfect.  Congratulations, you’re halfway there!  The other half of the battle is ensuring that your masterpiece will more or less look on paper the way it looks on your screen. Actually, this needs to begin before you even start designing. This article will cover some of the issues involved. Read more

Happy Summer!

Summer is here…

Happy Summer!

…finally.  No, it’s been a pretty good year, all told.We’re not ones to say it’s too cold then complain about the heat!

So, what can you do to make the most of the serotonin-fueled Summer spirit?  Or, considered another way: what can you do when your customers are wallowing in a lethargic, sweaty slump with no energy for any actual work?  Well, you need to advertise.

This is the perfect time for a quick marketing campaign or burst of eshots or leaflets.  Why not think of an attractive Summer promotion – people are saving money for their holidays, remember.

Here at FirstpointPrint we can help you with:

  • Posters
  • Flyers
  • Leaflets
  • eShots

…and anything else you can think of to get your customers into the Solstice Spirit! Read more

Promoting Your Business

Promoting your business

Promoting Your Business

By ‘promoting your business’, we’re not limiting the reference to companies – we mean ‘busy-ness’ in the literal sense.  Sure, you may be a multinational, blue-chip company or you may be a quirky artist raising exposure for their work; you may even be a not-for-profit charity.  Whatever your business, it will only increase if it is exposed to the people to whom it is relevant.  There are limitless ways to do this, but it is often best to start with a few tried-and-tested methods.

At Firstpoint we can help you to get your business activities out in the open.



This is where it all starts.  A recognisable brand is Read more

Raised print

Raised print

Raised print

There are two ways to create the impression of three dimensions in design/print: one is to use special effects in the design itself (as in the intro image above); the other is to actually make it three dimensional. A raised (or lowered) print can really make an impression (pun intended) and give a design more depth (…sorry) and a whole new dimension (OK, enough).

Print technology has come a long way over the years and this post describes a few finishes which, in some cases, have been with us for a long time.  However, they have been refined and perfected and can be used to create some classic, interesting and eye-catching design.

Whilst there are others, the most commonly used are these:

  • Embossing / Debossing
  • Digital Embossing
  • Thermography
  • Die-cutting


Embossing / debossing

This is a well-known technique and can be Read more

Get ready to spring into action

Put a SPRING in your step

Get ready to spring into action

Spring has finally sprung!  It’s a time of growth and new beginnings.  What better time for that new campaign or marketing push?  Maybe it’s simply time to give your advertising ideas a Spring clean.

At Firstpoint we can help you to launch your business out of the dark months in a few important ways…

Clarify your message

Has your company’s message been reaching the right people?  Have you been getting the responses you want from customers who can further your business?  Maybe this is the time to refine your targeting or even choose new targets altogether.  Let us help to redirect your message to the right place.

Whilst we’re not market strategists or PR wizards, we do have some experience in what works and what doesn’t.  We can work with you to streamline your approach and work out a design/print/digital plan to maximise your business.


This may sound extreme, but sometimes it can really inject some life into a weary, ailing business.  It doesn’t need to be a total change of direction, it may just be a matter of refreshing the logo design whilst keeping it recognisable. Read more

Happy Easter

Happy Easter

Happy Easter

Find the Easter egg to win!



We’re hiding cards with Easter eggs printed on them in random clients’ packages.  If you find one, get in touch to find out what you’ve won.

It’s time to remind you to get your print projects in so they can be ready for Easter.  If you’re planning an Easter campaign or just an Easter postcard for your clients, you have a week to get them out.  That means giving us the artwork or the brief at the beginning of next week (Monday 14th).

We can take care of practically any print job you throw at us, but the most relevant in this case would be things like…

even HTML eShots…
wishing your customers a happy Easter (much as we are now)

Don’t forget that if you want something really fancy, such as embossing or spot UV, we really would need the artwork at the beginning of the week, as these special finishes take longer to produce. Read more

Happy Mothers' Day from Firstpoint Print London

Here’s to all the mothers out there!

Happy Mothers' Day from Firstpoint Print London

Don’t poets know it, Better than others? God can’t be always everywhere: and, so, Invented Mothers.

Sir Edwin Arnold


Mother’s Day

The holiday in honour of mothers that is celebrated in countries throughout the world. In its modern form the day originated in the United States, where it is observed on the second Sunday in May. Many other countries also celebrate the holiday on this date, while some mark the observance at other times of the year. During the Middle Ages the custom developed of allowing those who had moved away to visit their home parishes and their mothers on Laetare Sunday, the fourth Sunday of Lent. This became Mothering Sunday in Britain, where it continued into modern times, although it has largely been replaced by Mother’s Day.

Anna Jarvis of Philadelphia, whose mother had organized women’s groups to promote friendship and health, originated Mother’s Day; on May 12, 1907, she held a memorial service at her late mother’s church in Grafton, West Virginia. Within five years virtually every state was observing the day, and in 1914 President Woodrow Wilson made it a national holiday. Although Jarvis had promoted the wearing of a white carnation as a tribute to one’s mother, the custom developed of wearing a red or pink carnation to represent a living mother or a white carnation for a mother who was deceased. Over time the day was expanded to include others, such as grandmothers and aunts, who played mothering roles. What had originally been primarily a day of honour became associated with the sending of cards and the giving of gifts, however, and, in protest against its commercialization, Jarvis spent the last years of her life trying to abolish the holiday she had brought into being.

Festivals honouring mothers and mother goddesses date to ancient times. The Phrygians held a festival for Cybele, the Great Mother of the Gods, as did the Greeks for the goddess Rhea. Likewise, the Romans adapted the practice to their own pantheon. Some countries have continued to observe ancient festivals; for example, Durga-puja, honouring the goddess Durga, remains an important festival in India.

Courtesy of Encyclopaedia Britannica


So what can we do?

There’s still time to create a special card for that most special lady in your life. We can create a bespoke design for you and include Read more