Glossary of terms

Accordion fold  Folding paper by bending each fold in the opposite direction of the previous fold creating a pleated or accordion effect.

Aqueous Coating  This clear coating is used to protect your printed pieces. It provides a high-gloss surface that deters dirt and fingerprints. Aqueous coating improves the durability of postcards as they go through the mail, and protects business cards as they ride around in people’s pockets. It also looks beautiful on brochures, catalog covers, and stand-alone flyers.

Artwork  The original physical materials, including photos, graphic images, text, and other components needed to produce a printed piece. Can also now refer to the electronic or digital components needed for preparing a printed piece for production on a press or copier.

Back-Up  How an image on one side of a printed sheet aligns with the image on the other side.

Balloon  In an illustration, any line that encircles copy or dialogue.

Bindery  A business or department within a printing company that does the cutting, folding, collating, drilling, and other finishing operations used on printing projects.

Bleed  Any element that extends up to or past the edge of a printed page.

Blind emboss  A design or bas-relief impression that is made without using inks or metal foils.

Bond  A grade of durable writing, printing, and typing paper that is erasable and somewhat rigid.

Book Paper  Types of paper usually used for printing books. Book paper text weight and is divided into uncoated or offset paper, and coated paper, which includes matte or gloss coating.

Bristol  A board paper of various thicknesses having a smooth finish and used for printing or drawing.

Bullet  A boldface square or dot used before a sentence to emphasize its importance.

C1S and C2S  Acronyms for Coated One Side and Coated Two Sides paper stock. A cover stock with a glossy finish on one side and uncoated on the other, usually between 8pt (.008″) and 18pt (.018″) in thickness.

Carbonless Paper  Paper that is chemically treated to transfer the impression from the first page to the subsequent pages.

Clip art  Graphic images, designs, and artwork in digital form that can be used in a digital document.

Coated stock  Any paper that has a mineral coating applied after the paper is made, giving the paper a smoother finish.

Coil Binding  Where a metal or plastic wire is spiraled through holes punched along the side of a stack of paper. Commonly used for reports, proposals, and manuals. Documents bound with coil have the ability to lay flat and can rotate 360 degrees. Also called spiral binding.

Collate  To gather sheets or printed signatures together in their correct order.

Color correction  Using a computer to adjust, change or manipulate a color image, such as retouching, adjusting color balance, color saturation, contrast, etc.

Comb Binding  Binding a stack of paper together by inserting the teeth of a flexible plastic comb into holes punched along one of the edges. Commonly used for catalogs, reports, and manuals.

Cover  A term describing a general type of paper used for the covers of books, pamphlets, etc., also used for business cards and postcards.

Coverage  The extent to which printing ink covers the surface of a printed sheet. Ink coverage is frequently expressed as light, medium or heavy.

Crop  To reduce the size of an image.

Crop marks  Small printed lines around the edges of a printed piece indicating where it is to be cut out of the sheet. Sometimes referred to as cut marks.

Cyan – Cyan is also one of the common inks used in four-color printing, along with magentayellow, and black; this set of colors is referred to as CMYK as in spectrum(s)

Die Cutting  The process of cutting paper in a shape or design by the use of a wooden die or block in which are positioned steel rules in the shape of the desired pattern.

Drill  The drilling of holes into paper for ring or comb binding.

Dummy  The preliminary assemblage of copy and art elements to be reproduced in the desired finished product, also called a comp.

Dye sublimation  A photographic-looking color print created by heating dyes on a substrate instead of using inks. Often used for proofing.

EPS  Encapsulated PostScript. A standard file format used to transfer postscript formatting information between applications.

Foil  Thin metal sheet that is applied to paper using the foil stamping process. Frequently gold colored, but available in many colors.

Foil Embossing  Stamping a thin sheet of metallic foil onto a sheet of paper and then embossing a pattern under it, creating a three-dimensional raised area, usually text or an image.

Foil Stamping  Impressing metallic foil onto paper with a heated die.

Font  The characters that make up a complete typeface and size.

FPO – For Position Only  Low resolution or mockup images used to indicate placement and size in a design, but not intended for final production.

Ganging  The combining of two or more different printing projects on the same sheet of paper.

Gate fold  A three or four-panel fold where the two outside panels fold inward to meet in the center. In an open gate fold, there are three panels, the bottom of which is twice the size of the folded panels. In a closed gatefold, there are four panels of roughly equal size where the outer panels are folded inward together.

Gripper edge  The side of a piece of paper held by the gripper fingers as it passes through a printing press. Nothing can be printed in this area.

Halftone  Using small dots to produce the impression of a continuous-tone image. The effect is achieved by varying the dot size and the number of dots per square inch.

Indicia  An image and/or text pre-printed on mailing envelopes in place of a stamp.

Insert  A piece of printed material that is inserted into another piece of printed material, such as a magazine or catalog.

Italic  Text that is used to denote emphasis by slanting the type body forward.

Lamination  Applying thin transparent plastic sheets to both sides of a sheet of paper, providing scuff resistance, waterproofing and extended use.

Landscape  A document layout where the width is greater than the height. (the opposite of Portrait)

Layout  A rendition that shows the placement of all the elements, images, thumbnails etc., of a final printed piece.

Magenta  One of the four process colors, or CMYK, the M is for magenta. Magenta is a predominately red color with some blue. Magenta, cyan and yellow are also the three subtractive primary colors.

Magnetic black  Black ink containing iron oxides, used for magnetic ink character recognition used for check printing.

Matte finish  A coated paper finish that goes through minimal calendaring.

Natural  A term to describe papers that have a color similar to that of wood, also called cream, off-white or ivory.

Newsprint  A light, low-cost unbleached paper made especially for newspaper printing.

Offset printing  The most commonly used printing method, where the printed material does not receive ink directly from a printing plate but from an intermediary blanket that receives the ink from the plate and then transfers it to the paper.

Offset paper  A term for sometimes used for uncoated book paper.

Overrun  Quantities of sheets printed over the requested number of copies.

Plastic comb  A method of binding books whereby holes are drilled on the spine, and a plastic grasping device is inserted to hold the pages together.

PMS  The abbreviation of the Pantone Color Matching System.

Portrait  A document layout in which the height is greater than the width. (the opposite of Landscape)

Pressure-sensitive  Self-adhesive paper covered by a backing sheet.

Process printing  A system where a color image is separated into different color values (cyan, magenta, yellow and black or CMYK) by the use of filters and screens or digitally with a software program and then transferred to printing plates and printed on a printing press, reproducing the original color image.

Ream – 500 sheets of paper.

Register  The arrangement of two or more printed images in exact alignment with each other.

Register marks  Any crossmarks or other symbols used on a press sheet to assure proper registration.

RGB  The color space of Red, Green and Blue. These are the primary colors of light, which computers use to display images on your screen. An RGB computer file must be translated into the CMYK (the primary colors of pigment) color space in order to be printed on a printing press.

Saddle stitch  The binding of booklets or other printed materials by stapling the pages on the folded spine.

Scoring  To crease paper with a metal rule for the purpose of making folding easier.

Self cover  A cover that is the same paper stock as the internal sheets.

Spiral bind  A type of binding where a metal or plastic wire is spiraled through holes drilled along the binding side of a document.

Stock  A term for unprinted paper.

Synthetic papers  Any non-wood or cloth paper, usually petroleum (plastic) based.

Thermography  A printing process whereby slow drying ink is applied to paper and, while the ink is still wet, is lightly dusted with a resinous powder. The paper then passes through a heat chamber where the powder melts and fuses with the ink to produce a raised surface.

Tri Fold – Folding paper into three is usually a technique used for brochures, invitations and fliers.

Trim marks  Marks placed on the printed sheet to indicate where cuts should be made.

Trim size  The final size of a printed piece after being cut from the sheet of paper that it was printed on.

Typo  A spelling mistake in printed material resulting from a mistake in typing or setting type.

Up  A term used to describe how many similar pieces can be printed on a larger sheet; two up, four up, etc.

UV Coating  A very shiny and durable high gloss coating applied to printed material. Applied as a liquid then cured with ultraviolet light.

Vellum  A finish of paper that is somewhat bulky and is slightly rough.

Washup  The procedure of cleaning a particular ink from the unit of a printing press.

Watermark  A translucent mark or image that is embossed during the papermaking process, or printed onto paper, which is visible when the paper is held up to the light.

Web press  A printing press that prints on rolls of paper passed through the press in one continuous piece, as opposed to individual sheets of paper.

Wove  A smooth paper with a gentle patterned finish.

Writing paper  Another name for bond paper.

Xerographic paper  Papers made to reproduce well in copy machines.

Yellow  One of the four process colors of ink, or CMYK. The Y is for yellow.

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