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Casey's Print Dictionary

The Printing Industry is full of jargon that serves to confuse and frustrate customers and outsiders. Below are some common terms used in the printing industry.

Against the grain: Folding or feeding paper at right angles to the grain direction of the paper. On some stocks folding against the grain can result in quality control issues.

Aqueous Coating/Flood Coat: A coat of varnish applied to a sheet on press that protects a printed piece from scuffs and scratches.

Basic size: All papers have an assigned basic sized. For example; 25 x 38 for book papers, 20 x 26 for cover papers, 22 1/2 x 28 1/2 or 22 1/2 x 35 for bristols, 25 1/2 x 30 1/2 for index.

Basis weight: The weight in pounds of a ream (500 sheets) of paper at basic size (see above). Example, 50# Book paper: 500 sheets at basic size of 25" x 38" weighs 50 lbs.

Blanket: A rubber-surfaced fabric wrapped around a cylinder that is used to transfer an image from the plate to the paper. A primary component of offset printing.

Topics: General Info Tips & Tricks tips and tricks Print

How to choose the right paper for your printing job

Print is unique amongst all other forms of communication in that it is textural as well as visual. Both the “look” and the “feel” are benefits of print.

Paper selection is one of the most important aspects to consider when designing and producing a printed piece. Paper selection can have a profound affect on the finished quality of a job, and yet it is often overlooked. Paper selection is not as easy as choosing the most expensive paper available for high quality jobs, or choosing the cheapest paper in order to cut costs. By remembering a few important steps you can ensure that right paper is being used for your job. 

Topics: paper Tips & Tricks tips and tricks Print

Correct Usage of Quotes



In a recent typography class, I had the opportunity to learn about typographers quotes. Although the type of quote that is used is a fairly minor component of a document, using the correct type of quotes is an easy way to make sure that your document is the best that it can be.

The most important thing to remember when you are using quotes within a document is that 66 comes before 99. This means that the opening quotes should be the ones that look like a 66 and the closing quotes should look like a 99.

Topics: Design Tips & Tricks tips and tricks Typography

How should I size my images?

One of the most common mistakes that people make when they are preparing images for print is that they incorrectly size their images. Making sure that your image's size and resolution match is one of the easiest ways to ensure that your project will look its absolute best.

When you are preparing pictures for publication, it is important to think about how it will be reproduced. The two different methods that I usually use are print and internet.

Images destined for the internet are simple. Computer screen images are made up of little red, green, and blue dots that are placed right next to each other. There are 72 rows of these dots per inch, and therefore a 72 dpi image is sufficient for the web, or any other graphic that stays on your computer.

Topics: Adobe Design Design Tips Tips & Tricks tips and tricks

How to Use Paragraph Styles in InDesign

Last week I was asked to help out teaching Adobe InDesign at King City High School. I was trying to figure out what the most valuable features of the software could be for a high school and then it came to me - styles.

I think that styles are some of the most under-utilized features of Adobe InDesign, however they are really easy to set up and even easier to use. In this post, I will show you the basics of how to use paragraph styles in InDesign.

A great way to learn how to use styles is to create a mock document. To demonstrate, I will create a layout for a very basic newsletter page. Hopefully by following the steps below, you will have a better understanding of how styles work. Of course if you have any questions, or need help building your design, you can get answers by hitting that "Talk to an Expert" button below.

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Topics: Adobe Design Design Tips tips and tricks