Starting your desktop publishing project at the end
The only place where you can find the beginning to start at the end is during a typical desktop publishing project. As one designer would relate, for all practical purposes, the process of culling information starts at the end in the printing process.
These are technical aspects of design for desktop publishing. Let's remember and review them:
Step 1 > Gather information from the printer.
This part of the process is even before you start composing your document file. You have to understand and consider how your commercial printer will reproduce your file.
There are different strokes for different folks. Different presses have different production requirements, and each company has its own way of doing things. It doesn't matter if your printer is a service bureau or not. The issues that you have to consider are the reproducing color, screen frequency and angle, type of output, and scanning photographs.
It is best to ask your commercial printer on these so that you could already tailor your document file according to the specifications of the printer and avoid costly errors later on.
Step 2 > Get information from your service bureau.
You need to combine the requirements of both your printer and your service bureau. After knowing what your printer needs, nest step is to gather information from the firm that will output your file on a high-resolution imagesetter.
Information you need to find out are: platform and software support, equipment profile, font availability, compatible characters, program files versus printer files, linking versus embedding graphics, scanning photographs, resolution, color trapping, maximum dimensions, and assigning responsibility.
In addition, find out from your service bureau what documents do you need to hand over. Most often, a service bureau would need it's output form and a final, color separated laser printout at 100%. If there would be reduction in your printouts, just make sure to take not of it.
Step 3 > Set up a template.
It's now time to set up your template. As a refresher, a template is the document file that has the basic layout, paragraph styles, and as many as the information we have listed above that your program will allow you to include in your file. So that you won't have to start from scratch when you come up with a similar document, you can save the document as a template before adding the text and graphics.
To further save time and money, you can ask your service bureau to run a test file by having them develop test pages before you prepare the final document file.
Step 4 > Prepare the document file.
When the template is complete and tested, rename and make a copy to use as the document file.
Step 5 > Check your output.
Finally, before handing over the final output to the printer, review everything to make sure that the document matches your selections. Things to check for are output quality, density, scratches, and the registration of color separations.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Granny's Mettle is a 30-something, professional web content writer. She has created various web content on a diverse range of topics, which includes digital printing topics, medical news, as well as legal issues. Her articles are composed of reviews, suggestions, tips and more for the printing and designing industry.