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Join author Claudia McCue on a journey that introduces the printing process and reveals the keys to designing a document that prints as well as it looks onscreen. This course takes you on the floors of two commercial print houses (BurdgeCooper and Lithographix), to better understand the life cycle of a print job and observe printing presses in action. Along the way, discover how to better communicate with your printer, choose the correct paper, inks, colors, and fonts for your project, and how to correctly lay out your documents in Adobe Illustrator and InDesign. This course is designed to help you and your printer produce a professionally finished print job, whether it's a business card, brochure, or multipage magazine.
lynda.com thanks the BurdgeCooper and Lithographix printing companies for access to their facilities and permission to film on site. Learn more at www.burdgecooper.com and www.lithographix.com.
Sometimes simple straight edges just aren't enough. If you want to create a piece with interesting shapes, then you've to start planning for die cutting. Now it could be something simple, like this flat piece, but it looks really interesting, doesn't it? Well, I'm sure you've seen lots of pocket folders. So here is a fairly standard pocket folder. Now this one has two pockets inside. But you have got to keep in mind that anytime you're creating anything more complex than something like these pocket folders or simple flat die cuts, it becomes sort of a special reasoning exercise.
For example, something as complex as a little perfume box. Here's the flat version of it, and you can see the little fold-in white panels, those you're going to fold inside the box. These little flaps that are hanging out, those are where glue is going to be applied. So there can't be any ink there. No artwork can print on those little flaps. Otherwise, the glue won't adhere. So let's look at what this looks like. Fold it up. There is the bottom and then the top, if I can do this correctly, turns into a little flower. Now if you think it's tough to fold this up by hand, think what's involved in engineering for binder equipment that can score this and fold it up and create a finished piece like that.
It's really pretty impressive. So part of what happens is that a die is used to crease the paper and to cut out that shape. So before you ever start creating something like this, you need to obtain die line art from your printer. Or if you're building something complex like this package, you may have to commission that die to be created by somebody who specializes in such work. So the die line is something you use as guidance on screen. But what is the die itself? It's actually very complex arrangement of blades that crease and blades that cut paper or paperboard, and there are specialized craftsman that create them.
They're very complex to design. They have to allow for the kind of stock they are going work on. Sometimes they are mounted on the cylinder, sometimes they're on wooden base. But that's actually the shape of the piece that's going to get cut out. Now when you start designing, if you're designing something like that pocket folder, you have to consider that you're probably going to have art on both sides of the piece. For something like that little carton it's just going print on the outside. And here is a little project that we're working on, and this is a little mock-up of the potential pocket folder. So here is what we think it's going to look like when it's finished.
There is the outside, there is a front cover, and there is the back, and then we have some artwork come the inside and then the little folded up pocket. So as we design this we have to keep in mind that folding up later. So front cover, back cover, and then inside we have some artwork, and then there's the inside of a little pocket. You can notice that it's not printed. And then when you look at the little flap, remember I said you can't have any artwork where there is going to be glue. That's blank so that the glue will adhere.
If you're thinking about working on something like this, see if you can find a similar piece and then take it apart. That will show you how glue is applied, you get an idea how the little panels interlock, and hold the piece together. In fact, taking apart a cereal box can really be sort of an education. When you find yourself moving beyond flat pieces, your planning does become more complex. But the results can really be stunning. So it's well worth the extra effort, and your client will be impressed, and guess what. Your printer will be thrilled when you submit such a well-prepared job.
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