Printing Services

Glossary - Design Terms

Acrobat:
Acrobat is part of a set of applications developed by Adobe to create and view PDF files. Acrobat is used to create the PDF files and Acrobat Reader is used to read the PDF files.
alignment:
How the text appears in a printed piece. Common types of alignment are rag right (an even margin on the left only) or rag left (an even margin on the right only, justified (even margins on both sides) and centered.
artwork:
A general term used to describe photographs, drawings, paintings hand lettering and the like prepared to use in printed matter.
author's alterations (AA's):
Customer corrections and/or changes made in type at the proof stages; these are not due to the printer's error and are therefore chargeable to the customer. All corrections should be marked in red ink. AA's are expensive and should be kept to a minimum.
bleed:
When the printed image extends beyond the trim edge of a sheet of paper.
dpi:
Stands for dots per inch. DPI specifies the resolution of an output device such as printers and image setters or monitors
EPS:
Encapsulated Post Script is a standard format for saving object-oriented graphics. Some common packages that support EPS files are Illustrator, Freehand, and CorelDraw. EPS is the preferred format for printing output. If you are submitting digital files to Printing Services, all EPS files must be submitted on your digital file in a folder named "graphics".
export:
To save a file in a different format (that of another program). For example, many Adobe Photoshop files are exported to become GIF or JPEG files.
flush:
Even with, usually refers to typeset copy.
font:
A font is a complete set of characters in a particular size and style of type. This includes the letter set, the number set, and all of the special character and diacritical marks. If you are providing digital files to Printing Services, all fonts must be submitted on your digital file in a folder named "fonts"
four color process:
The four basic colors of ink (yellow, magenta, cyan, and black) which reproduce full-color photographs or art.
FTP:
Stands for File Transfer Protocol. FTP allows you to copy or send files from one computer to another via the internet.
GIF:
Graphics Interchange Format. Compressed bit-mapped or raster graphics, limited to 256 colors. Current popular use is for web pages.
gripper edge:
Lead edge of the paper that moves through a printing press. No printing can take place on the gripper edge. A 3/8" margin (minimum) must be left for the gripper.
halftone:
Picture with graduations of tone formed by dots of varying sizes. This process is used to reproduce art such as photographs or continuous tone drawing.
hard copy:
A paper print out of a file from a disk. Usually required from customers who are providing their own key strokes on a disk.
JPEG:
Joint Photographic Experts Group. A compressed file, usually of a photograph, that reduces the amount of data needed to display a full-color bitmap. Usually results in loss of quality. JPEG images allow for more colors than GIF images and are usually smaller in size. Also used for web pages.
leading:
Vertical space between lines of text. Also known as line spacing.
PDF:
Stands for Portable Document Format. Created by Adobe Systems in its software program Adobe Acrobat as a universal browser. Files can be downloaded via the web and viewed page by page.
Postscript:
A page description language that converts text and graphics into a form compatible with output devices such as printers, image setters, etc. Includes typefaces as well as graphics and placement of text.
sans serif:
A type face without "feet" or "tails", such as Helvetica.
serif:
The "feet", "tails", and "swashes" seen on such typefaces as Times. Increases readability of the copy.
solid:
An area completely covered with ink, of the use of 100% of a given color.
spot color:
Printing using black and one or two additional colors of ink.
trim size:
The final size of a printed page after excess edges have been cut off. Crop marks to indicate where to cut are printed in the edges that are then trimmed after printing.
typeface:
A typeface contains a series of fonts. For example, the typeface Arial contains the fonts Arial, Arial Bold, Arial Italic and Arial Bold Italic.
vector graphic:
A graphic image drawn in shapes and lines, called paths. Images created in Illustrator and Freehand are vector graphics.