Your friendly neighborhood graphic designer reports from inside the walls of a print shop
You may send jobs to get printed professionally on a regular basis – but have you ever set foot inside a print shop?
I was once in your shoes. I’ve been a graphic designer off and on for about a quarter century – long enough to remember what print was like before the digital age. In the early days, I took a couple of quick tours of print facilities, but they mostly left me with the vaguest impression of giant machines operating at many decibels and breathtaking speeds.
Basically this is the cartoon image I had:
And then I was hired to run Blackbuck Marketing, a design and marketing agency that’s a sister company to 360 Press Solutions. My office is right here in the same building with 360, and this is what I see out my office window:
To the untrained eye, this might look like any factory floor, but to a designer, this is a small slice of heaven. Down on that floor are the machines and the expert staff who know how to turn my digitally created design into a real, tangible thing. Without them, my work would remain 1’s and 0’s. Which is fine for those times you’re just sharing your work online. But sometimes your work needs to be made manifest.
In this blog series, “Designer in the Printer’s Den,” I’ll bring you inside the print shop so you can learn alongside me. There are a thousand mistakes you can make when designing a piece for print, and I guarantee you that I’ve made just as many as you have.
Let’s avoid them together. I’ll be back later this week to tell you why you should think twice before printing a giant photo on the front of that envelope you’re designing.