Category Archives: General Design

Articles on General Design Interests

Preparing for Print: Tips, Techniques and Best Practices

Going to print for the first time can be a nerve-wracking experience. It doesn’t have to be! We’ve all learned some valuable tips on what to make sure to do and what to avoid at all costs. Let’s share some of those with each other and the new print designers out there.

I’ll get us started with some basics. Why don’t you add your best printing tips here, too!

Check Out These Great Design Links!

It’s been a while since I’ve been able to get out into the blogiversosphere. Maybe it’s been too long for you too? Jump back in with these fantastic design posts from the past few weeks, including some announcements of InDesign CS4 features! Woo!

Time to Restore the C&P Letterpress!

Graphic design is tons of fun, but it’s also work—and it takes a lot of mental energy. Sometimes you just have to get away and play. So how do you play and relax?

As many of you know, one thing that I’m enjoying a lot at the moment is letterpress. I’ve successfully restored a Vandercook SP-15 press, and today I cleaned up the C&P (not sure the model number or size at the moment. I know there’s a chase somewhere, but I haven’t measured it yet). And again, I must say, Evapo-Rust is a wonderful product!

Check out the results of the Evapo-Rust and see what I’ll be printing as my first official project on the Vandercook!

6 Design Tips for Large Format Printing

Whether it’s a giant banner or a tradeshow backdrop, large format printing presents unique challenges for designers. Here are six handy tips for smoothing out the process.

You generally only get one shot at printing a large format piece. Large format printing is EXPENSIVE and you more than likely won’t get a mock or preview piece. Be sure you go over all the details with a fine-tooth comb and this list for best results.

In-House, Studio or Freelance Designer?

For graphic designers, there are three main job situations: an in-house art department, a studio/firm/agency, or freelance.

I remember when I was close to graduating college in 2006, the professors asked us which situation appealed to us the most and why. At the time, I wanted to be an in-house designer because I thought a situation like that would afford me the most stability without the huge time commitment that I had always heard was required of studio designers.

Now that I’ve been an in-house designer for almost 3 years (I started working before I graduated), I’m wondering what the pros and cons really are for other positions.

Parent Sheets, Paper Grain and Saving Money

Something sparked my interest in parent sheet sizes yesterday. I don’t remember what it was, but I was rather disappointed to not find much information when I searched for parent sheet imposition and prepress tips.

When you’re thinking about sizing and folds for a new design, particularly for brochures or invitations, you have to take into consideration what will be the most economical to lay out on parent sheets when printing.

Parent sheets are the large sheets that printers initially print a project on. These are usually set up so that cutting and folding of common paper sizes (like 8.5×11) are easy.

The usual parent sizes are 17×22, 19×25, 23×35, 25×38 and 26×40 for the U.S., and A2, A1, and A0 for Europe and other countries that use ISO sizes.

The Most Important Thing About Graphic Design is…

What do you think the most important thing about graphic design is?

knowing what graphic design is (or isn’t!)?

learning about the Elements and Principles of design?

being flexible and adapting to be what the client needs, be it illustrator, designer, copy writer or web developer?

a set of rules or a creed?

just practicing?

problem solving skills?

your title?

Come join the discussion!

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