Thoughts on Print

The choice of print can impact on artwork considerably and it is sometimes worth contemplating before you embark on a design. There are however so many options when it comes to print types and paper qualities that it can be difficult to know where to start. Here's a small guide to some of what's available out there.

Digitally printed onto Tintoretto Gesso 300gsm card.

Digitally printed onto Tintoretto Gesso 300gsm card.

PAPER TYPES

Textured card is available in many different varieties and thicknesses, it can be costly but it does lend to the quality of the item.  I'm a big fan of simple uncoated card. Like textured, it gives artwork a softer, tactile look, allowing the natural attributes of paper to shine through but it's a cheaper option if you're on a budget. I also love the rustic look of kraft card. You can be limited to using ink colours darker than the paper itself but a simple one colour design can be extremely effective.  If you're looking for an air of luxury colourplan card, available in paperweights of 300gsm-700gms, is a sturdy yet elegant choice.

Digitally printed on to Kraft Card.

Digitally printed on to Kraft Card.

DIGITAL, LITHO & SCREEN PRINTING

Offset litho printing is generally used for larger runs. For posters, flyers, leaflets and brochures it's a great low-cost option. You can also choose to embellish designs with special spot colour inks. Transparent gloss, metallic and even florescent ink is available using this process so you can really get creative. Litho printing can accommodate paper weights from 60gsm to 500gsm. Digital presses will run from 80gsm to 300gsm. My wedding stationery is mostly digitally printed using 300gsm stock card on a HP Indigo press.  A gloss or uncoated finish is available as well as an option for textured or kraft card. Digitally printed items can also be individually personalised so perfect for table names and numbers. Screen printing is another option that can be cost effective if you consider the process at the design stage.  Each colour used in the design requires it's own screen and ink is laid down a colour at a time. The versatility of surfaces you can print onto is it's main advantage. I also love the finish and the process is fun too. Creating your own screen prints is incredibly satisfying, a real fun, hands on experience.

Copper hot foil blocking on 600gsm colourplan card

Copper hot foil blocking on 600gsm colourplan card

LETTERPRESS AND FOIL BLOCKING

For simple, single colour designs letterpress and foil blocking have a most impressive finish.  Letterpress, dates back to the 15th Century and is a technique of relief printing using a printing press. It produces a beautiful crisp look and also allows for embellishments such as embossing and debossing. Foil blocking and foil edge gilding is available in copper, gold or silver . It does come at price but the quality of print creates a highly desirable object.

 

If you'd like a quote for any of the print methods mentioned here just get in touch via my contact page. I'm also happy to pop samples in the post.