Usually overlooked, this is a key process with any successful project. Although this process usually starts when the creative and designs are done, this is an art and craft which requires a strong affinity for visual design, and great deal of attention to detail. This process takes the project from what the designer envisioned to the final print product, anticipating any pitfall, working seamlessly with creatives and vendors, and achieving the highest quality possible.
Print production is the process of building digital files which can be printed. This process is called building mechanicals or preflighting. With this process I verify that all the folds, glue, binds, sizes and trims are correct, no matter the material. That all the assets needed like fonts, images, graphics, color profiles, etc., are available and in the right format according to vendor specifications for print. Your print jobs will run smoothly, deadlines will be met, and most importantly the stress quotient will go down.
This is a process to confirm that all the digital files and assets required for the print process are present, valid, correctly formatted, and of the desired type, keeping quality and consistency of brand identity all across the projects.
I build mechanicals for print with an emphasis on quality. I produce a variety of presentation materials keeping consistency of brand identity, and ensuring that projects are on budget and meet established deadlines and launch commitments.
Clients provide me with the digital files which are translated to Adobe InDesign, Illustrator or Photoshop. These files are prepared to ensure they are ready to be sent to the RIP (Raster Image Processor). This is an important step because it prevents production delays caused by missing or improperly prepared materials. Once the incoming materials have passed the preflight check, they are ready to be put into production and sent to the printer. This process of preflighting a file helps reduce the likelihood of rasterization problems that cause production delays.
• Files match vendor specifications
• Verify consistency of brand identity
• Fonts are accessible to the system
• Fonts are not corrupt
• Fonts are in a compatible file format
• Images and graphics have been provided and are available to the application
• Image files are of formats that the application can process
• Image files are of the correct color format
• Image files are of the correct resolution
• Image files are not corrupt
• Required color profiles are included
• Confirm that the page layout document size, margins, bleeds, marks and page information, all fit within the constraints of the output device and match the vendor specifications
• confirm that the correct color separations or ink plates are being output
Other, more advanced preflight steps may also include:
• Removing non-printing objects, hidden objects, objects outside the printable area and objects on layers below
• Flattening transparent objects into a single opaque object as needed
• Converting fonts to outlines
• Collect embedded image and graphic files to one location accessible to the system
• Compressing files into an archive format
At the end of each project, I deliver the master files and all the assets needed ready for the vendor to print. Saving time, money, and ensuring that your projects achieve the best quality possible.