The site for prepress & print devotees

Prepressure covers design techniques, PDF, PostScript, fonts, JDF and numerous other prepress topics that have to do with printed communication and graphic arts

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Friday flashback: In those days, men were men and presses were made of German metal –

Heidelberger Zylinder 54x72 cm offset press


Rich black is black to which cyan or magenta is added to make it more dense, more black. Below is an example of what happens if you forget to do this. Look at the hair of the guy which is grayish wherever it does not overprint any of the other elements. The irony is that this image is taken from the cover of a brochure for an introduction to graphic arts. The training promises to teach businesses how to spot quality issues and is taught by a well-known professor. I guess it did not take him long to spot the problem since a fixed version of the same graphic appeared in all subsequent brochures.

rich black missing

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Friday flashback: David Pelham creates the iconic book cover for ‘A Clockwork Orange’ –

David Pelham book cover

The phototypesetting era

I’ve lately gotten interested in phototypesetting – the typesetting systems from the 60’s, 70’s and early 80’s. Expect some more updates of the history of prepress pages about that era.

Compugraphic Compuwriter II

A beautiful bookstore

Dezeen published a fascinating series of pictures of the Zhongshuge bookshop in Yangzhou, China. Books are displayed in a tunnel-like entrance with a mirror floor that adds to the eerie ambiance of the place. It is encouraging to see such designs now that my own favorite bookstore has gone bankrupt.

Zhongshuge bookshop in Yangzhou, China

Illustrator and QuarkXpress turn 30

Earlier this month Adobe Illustrator turned 30. Boing Boing posted links to three videos about the history of Illustrator. It is funny that most of the comments on the article are from people who still have fond memories of FreeHand, its main competitor for so many years.

QuarkXpress 1.0 splash screen

QuarkXpress also celebrates its 30th birthday. The above 1.0 splash screen is briefly visible on the anniversary page and I’ve also added it to the 1987 prepress history page.

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Friday flashback: Thou shalt commit adultery! –

Wicked Bible

Investments in presses

I accidentally stumbled upon the drupa global trends reports. Here is one of the 2016 infographics that I found interesting, showing which print technology various types of printing companies invest in.

2016 printing press investments

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Friday flashback: when it comes to I do not mind stereotypes –

paper stereotype

GWG 2017 PDF survey

The Ghent Workgroup is an industry association dedicated to advancing the print, publishing and packaging industries. They’ve set up a survey about the use of PDF to better understand how processes have changed over the years, which specifications are being adopted, and how workflows vary. Please participate to help them improve the solutions they offer and maybe win a price along the way.

PDF survey

Font versus typeface

The type snob is an informative article about typography. It focuses on web design but a lot of the recommendations apply to print design as well.

font versus typeface

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Friday flashback: The Macintosh IIfx, the best computer I ever worked with. Period. –

Apple Macintosh IIfx

The poll: photo calendars

Each year my employer creates a beautiful calendar, using a variety of inks, substrates and printing techniques. That limited edition is popular with customers but I wonder how many people still value printed calendars at home. That is why the new poll to the right asks if you still use one at home.

The previous poll asked visitors which version of Acrobat they use.

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Friday flashback: Louis Braille publishes his alphabet for the blind in 1829 –




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23 April 2017

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