Glossary of terms used in graphic design, printing, press advertising and publishing

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Here you will find definitions of common technical terms used in graphic design, printing, press advertising and publishing. Most will be in current use, but some will have been rendered redundant by advances in technology. Tap on any term in the list below to find its definition. Hope it helps you in your quest for knowledge, but if you don’t find the definition you want, please feel free to get in touch for help.

‘A’ Sizes

See ISO Paper Sizes.

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Alignment

The vertical arrangement of lines of text. This can be left aligned (also known as ranged left or left justified), right aligned (also known as ranged right or right justified), centred, or justified (also known as fully justified) where the text is aligned both left and right. The opposite of justified is ragged, so text that is ‘left justified’, or ‘ranged left’, is also ‘ragged right’.

Text alignment - shows text ranged left, text centred, text ranged right and text justified

Text alignment

Justified text in a narrow column width can lead to unsightly rivers opening up in the text.

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American Quarto

A standard US document size, also known as Letter, which measures 11 x 8.5 inches (279 x 216 mm). See also Quarto.

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Anchor

An element in the HTML code of an electronic document (denoted by the <a> tag), that enables a piece of text, or area of an image, to be made live for redirecting the reader to another page, or another place in the document. See also Hyperlink.

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Artefacts

Jagged or smudgy areas in a digital image, caused by file compression. The higher the level of compression, and the more times the file is saved with compression applied, the more prominent the effect.

JPEG artefacts - shows how the quality of an image degrades with data compression

JPEG artefacts

See also Lossy.

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Art Paper

See Coated.

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Artwork

See Finished Artwork.

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Ascender

The part of a lowercase letter that extends above the x-height.

Letterform features - shows ascender, counter, serif and descender

Letterform features

See also Descender.

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Asset

A photograph, graphic, or font, available for use in a document. Ideally, the creator of a document should own the rights to the assets they use in it, so copyright is not infringed.

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‘B’ Sizes

See ISO Paper Sizes.

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Barcode, Bar Code

A striped graphic that expresses an item’s unique catalogue number. In book publishing, the graphic is usually placed on a book’s back cover, and expresses the book’s ISBN. These codes are useful, mainly, for retailers that use EPOS (Electronic Point-of-Sale) systems.

ISBN barcode

ISBN barcode

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Baseline

The imaginary line on which a typographical character sits.

Typesetting features - shows baseline, cap height, x-height and point size

Typesetting features

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Bézier Curve

A line or path in a vector graphic.

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Bitmap

See Raster.

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Black, K

One of the four process colours used in full colour litho, digital and screen printing. There are any number of reasons why K is used to represent black. B would be confused with Blue in the RGB colour model. K could stand for key colour, kohl (a black substance) or simply be used as it’s the last letter of ‘black’! See also CMYK.

CMYK process colour model - shows how cyan, magenta and yellow blend with each other to make red, green, blue and black when overlapped

CMYK colour model

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Blackletter

Also known as Gothic Script or Old English, this is a design of letterform that originates from written scripts of the Middle Ages.

Type styles - shows examples of the main type style categories: serif, sans-serif, slab serif (Egyptian), blackletter, copperplate script and handwritten script

Type styles

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Bleed

The extension of print beyond the intended finished page size, prior to trimming, so as to allow print to extend to the very edge of the page in the finished document.

Page artwork features - shows aspects of finished artwork and markings added to artwork to aid correct printing, such as trim marks, type area, gutter, registration marks, trim area (page size) and bleed area

Page artwork features

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Blind Embossing

Pure embossing, not combined with any other process such as printing.

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Board

Heavier weights of paper, characterised by thickness and stiffness—as a rule-of-thumb, anything over 220 gsm in weight. Also known as card.

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Body Text

The main text, or style of the bulk of text, in a document. See also Paragraph Style.

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Bowl

In typography, the curved part of a letterform, which creates, and encloses, the counter.

Letterform features - shows ascender, counter, bowl, serif, descender, and baseline

Letterform features

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‘C’ Sizes

See ISO Paper Sizes.

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Cap Height

Abbreviation of capital height. The height of the uppercase (or capital) X of a font.

Typesetting features - shows baseline, cap height, x-height and point size

Typesetting features

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Caption

Text positioned on, or adjacent to, an illustration or photograph, to describe it or comment on it.

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Cartridge (paper/stock)

A high-quality paper used for drawing and stationery.

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Character

A typographical letter, symbol or punctuation mark.

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Character Style

A named text style, specified within a software application by the user (or already existing within the application) to be applied to individual characters, words and phrases. Parameters within the style will include things like font, font size, font weight, and character spacing. These styles can help the user achieve consistency of presentation throughout their document. In an electronic document, such as an e-book, the equivalent of the character style is the ‘span class’. See also Paragraph Style and Style Sheet.

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CMYK

The colour model most commonly used to replicate full colour in print, especially in litho, digital and screen printing. Uses four colours of ink, overlaid in varying tints; the colours are Cyan (C), Magenta (M), Yellow (Y) and Black (K). Also known as full colour, process colour, and full colour process. See also RGB, Spot Colour.

CMYK process colour model - shows how cyan, magenta and yellow blend with each other to make red, green, blue and black when overlapped

CMYK colour model

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Coated (paper/stock)

A paper or board, also known as art, which is coated with a compound, to give smoothness of texture, and uniformity of thickness. Common variants are gloss, matt and silk. See also Uncoated.

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Compression

Reduction in the amount of data used to describe a bitmap (raster) image, resulting in a lower file size, but also in a reduction in image quality. The most commonly-used image file format allowing compression is JPEG. See also Artefacts, Lossy.

JPEG artefacts - shows how the quality of an image degrades with data compression

JPEG artefacts

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Concertina Fold

A zigzag-type fold giving a pleated effect. See also Roll Fold.

Fold types - shows two types of fold: concertina fold and roll fold

Fold types

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Copy

The text content of a document, advertisement or web site. See also Copywriting.

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Abbreviated to ©, this is the automatic establishment of the intellectual property rights of the author, or creator, of a piece of work. This bars any use of the work in whole, or part, by unauthorised individuals or organisations, for a period of time.

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Copywriting

The writing of text for a promotional or informative document, advertisement, or web site. See also Copy.

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Counter

In typography, the closed space within the bowl of a letterform.

Letterform features - shows ascender, counter, bowl, serif, descender, and baseline

Letterform features

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Creasing

The indentation of a material (e.g. paper or board) to enable clean folding and to minimise cracking.

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Crop Marks

See Trim Marks.

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CSS

Cascading Style Sheet. See Style Sheet.

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CTP

Computer to Plate; a technology that allows litho printing plates to be made directly from computer files, without the need for an intermediate film stage.

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Cutout, Cutout Image

An image of irregular shape, isolated on a transparent background. See also Squared-Up Image.

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Cutter Guide

Artwork indicating the shape, and configuration, of a cutter or forme. See also Die Cutting.

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Cyan, C

One of the four process colours used in full colour litho, digital and screen printing. See also CMYK.

CMYK process colour model - shows how cyan, magenta and yellow blend with each other to make red, green, blue and black when overlapped

CMYK colour model

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Deboss

The reverse of an embossed surface.

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Dedication

In publishing, a tribute to an individual, a group of people, or an organisation, given by an author. This is usually placed on its own dedication page near the start of the book, just after the Title Page and Verso.

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Descender

The part of a lowercase letter that extends below the baseline. See also Ascender.

Letterform features - shows ascender, counter, serif and descender

Letterform features

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Desktop Publishing, DTP

The original term for page layout, and graphics creation, using computer applications.

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Die Cutting

The process of cutting a special shape out of a material, such as paper or board, using a cutter or forme. See also Cutter Guide.

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Digital Print

A printing method that uses either inkjets to apply coloured inks to a substrate, or laser heat to adhere coloured toners to one. Suitable for printing full colour in small to medium quantities.

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Dot Gain

The increase in dot size in a printed halftone image due to ink absorption.

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Dot Screen

The original mechanical method for creating a halftone of an image or a tint of a colour.

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Drop Shadow

A shadow placed ‘under’ a graphic object, to give the appearance of it being raised over what’s behind it.

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DTP

See Desktop Publishing.

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Duotone

An image using two base colours to create its range of tones.

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Dust Jacket

An additional protective outer cover, wrapped around the fixed cover of a hardback book. Often printed with graphics akin to those on a paperback book cover.

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Embedding (image)

The placing of an image or type asset, such as a photograph, graphic, or font, within a document, so that all the information needed to render it is contained within the document itself, as opposed to linking the asset.

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Embossing

Raising the surface of a material (e.g. paper) by use of a punch or die. See also Blind Embossing.

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Encapsulation

Sandwiching a material between two clear plastic layers. See also Lamination.

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EPS

Encapsulated Post Script; a digital image file format that can include vector and/or raster components, and supports spot colour. If purely vector, it will reproduce cleanly and sharply at any magnification. It is the ideal base file format for line art.

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Finished Artwork

The final layout of text and images, ready for press and/or publication.

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Foil Blocking

See Thermography.

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Font

One variant of a typeface, e.g. Helvetica Bold Oblique.

Shows the difference between a font and a typeface

Font or typeface?

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Forme

Configuration of metal blades, used to cut a special shape out of paper or board, and/or to place creases. See also Die Cutting.

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Full Colour

See CMYK.

CMYK process colour model - shows how cyan, magenta and yellow blend with each other to make red, green, blue and black when overlapped

CMYK colour model

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Gamut

The range of possible colours within a given colour model.

Colour ranges/gamuts - shows the range of colours achievable in the spot colour, RGB and CMYK colour models

Colour ranges/gamuts

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GIF

Graphics Interchange Format; graphics format which allows a range of 256 colours and supports transparency. Good for simple web graphics.

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Gloss (paper/stock)

A coated paper or board with a gloss finish.

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Gradient

See Graduation.

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Graduation

Also known as a gradient; an area of colour tint that blends smoothly from one colour to another, or through multiple colours.

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Grain (paper/stock)

The direction of the fibres within a paper or board. Folding a sheet along the grain rather than across it can limit cracking. A sheet of board trimmed long-grain (with the grain running parallel to the long edge) will have a greater stiffness than one trimmed short-grain (grain running parallel to the short edge).

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Gravure

An intaglio printing process whereby recesses etched into the printing plate hold the ink to be printed. Used widely in colour magazine printing.

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Greyscale

A continuous-tone image that uses tints of black only, to give a range of greys.

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Grid

An aid to page layout, which can indicate margins, columns, and line spacing, as necessary.

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Gutter

(1) The space between columns on a page. (2) The space between trim marks on an imposition. (3) The space between the text area and the binding, also known as the inner margin.

Page artwork features - shows aspects of finished artwork and markings added to artwork to aid correct printing, such as trim marks, type area, gutter, registration marks, trim area (page size) and bleed area

Page features

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Halftone

An array of dots (round, elliptical or square) of varying sizes allowing the illusion of a continuous-tone (or photographic) image to be created in commercial print processes such as litho and silk screen.

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Hardback, Hardcover

A book with a stiff board cover, usually covered with a textured paper, cloth, plastic or leather. The cover has a well-defined spine, with creased folds which allow the book to lie more flat when open. Sometimes wrapped with a dust jacket. See also Paperback.

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Hexachrome

A printing process that uses six colours, to achieve a more vivid result than can be achieved with CMYK alone.

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Hot Foil

See Thermography.

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Hot Metal

A letterpress method of printing, using metal type.

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HTML

Hypertext Markup Language. The standard language for the coding of web pages and e-books. See also Style Sheet.

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In electronic publications, and on the Web, a way to redirect the reader to another page, or another place in the document, when they press a specific portion of text or image. The text or image the reader presses is called an anchor. In an e-book, for example, hyperlinks are used for the entries in the Table of Contents, to allow the reader to go directly to the content they want. See also Link (image).

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Image

(1) A visual reproduction, such as a photograph. (2) The impression given of an individual, an organisation, or a product.

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Imposition

The positioning of multiple pages on sheets, so that when printed, collated, folded, bound and trimmed, the pages appear in the correct order. See also Printer’s Pairs.

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Imprint

In publishing, a name that a publisher publishes under.

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Indent

An extra margin of space added to the left and/or right of a line, or paragraph, of text in a document, to distiguish it from the main body of text.

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Index

In a publication, a list of topics and other references with the page numbers on which they are found. In reflowable e-books, page numbers are irrelevant, so an alternative convention is needed for an index, suited to the content and structure of the book. Indexes are usually located at the end of the publication. See also Table of Contents.

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Intaglio

A printing process whereby recesses in the printing plate, or block, hold the ink to be applied. Gravure is an intaglio process.

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ISBN

International Standard Book Number; a unique book identifier in numerical form, obtained through an affiliate of the International ISBN Agency. This number is often also expressed as a barcode, usually located on the cover of the book.

ISBN barcode

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ISO Paper Sizes

ISO is the International Organization for Standardization, responsible for the creation of the ‘A’ and ‘B’ standard paper sizes and the ‘C’ standard envelope sizes. ‘A’ sizes fit unfolded within the corresponding ‘C’ size envelopes (with one fold allowing them to fit into the next ‘C’ size down and a DL envelope fitting an A4 sheet folded twice, widthways, into a third of its length). ‘B’ sizes are used mainly on printing presses to enable trimming to suitable ‘A’ sizes—the ‘RA’ and ‘SRA’ series of sizes are also used for this purpose.

‘A’ Sizes (mm)
4A0 1682 x 2378
2A0 1189 x 1682
A0 841 x 1189
A1 594 x 841
A2 420 x 594
A3 297 x 420
A4 210 x 297
A5 148 x 210
A6 105 x 148
A7 74 x 105
A8 52 x 74
A9 37 x 52
A10 26 x 37

‘B’ Sizes (mm)
B0 1000 x 1414
B1 707 x 1000
B2 500 x 707
B3 353 x 500
B4 250 x 353
B5 176 x 250
B6 125 x 176
B7 88 x 125
B8 62 x 88
B9 44 x 62
B10 31 x 44

‘C’ Sizes (mm)
C0 917 x 1297
C1 648 x 917
C2 458 x 648
C3 324 x 458
C4 229 x 324
C5 162 x 229
C6 114 x 162
C7 81 x 114
C8 57 x 81
C9 40 x 57
C10 28 x 40

DL 110 x 220

‘RA’ Sizes (mm)
RA0 860 x 1220
RA1 610 x 860
RA2 430 x 610
RA3 305 x 430
RA4 215 x 305

‘SRA’ Sizes (mm)
SRA0 900 x 1280
SRA1 640 x 900
SRA2 450 x 640
SRA3 320 x 450
SRA4 225 x 320

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JPEG, JPG

Joint Photographic Experts Group; an image file format that allows compression of the data. This balances file size against quality—the more compression is applied, the smaller the file will be, and the lower the quality of the image.

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Justification

See Alignment.

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K (Black)

See Black.

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Kerning

The spacing of two type characters adjacent to each other, often adjusted to make the characters fit better together visually.

Type features - shows uppercase letter, lowercase letter, ligature, leading, un-kerned type and kerned type

Type features

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Laid (paper/stock)

Paper or board with a lined texture created during manufacture.

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Lamination

A clear plastic covering applied to a material (e.g. paper or board), which can have a gloss, matt, or satin finish. See also Encapsulation.

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Leading

In typography, the distance from one baseline to the next; commonly expressed in points, millimetres, or as a percentage of the point size of the type.

Type features - shows uppercase letter, lowercase letter, ligature, leading, un-kerned type and kerned type

Type features

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A standard US paper size, measuring 14 x 8.5 inches (356 x 216 mm).

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Letterpress

A relief printing method whereby ink is transferred onto the paper by raised areas composed of type, complete blocks and/or other elements. See also Rubber Stereo.

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Ligature

The joining of two type characters which overlap naturally, to make a single character, such as ‘fi’ and ‘ae’ (as featured throughout the book Away with the Færies, by Madeleine Cook).

Type features - shows uppercase letter, lowercase letter, ligature, leading, un-kerned type and kerned type

Type features

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Line Art

Artwork made up of solid areas only. Also known as vector artwork.

Vector image - shows how a vector image is totally scalable without loss of sharpness

Vector image

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A placeholder for a photograph or graphic, where the source image remains in its original location, i.e. it is not embedded in the document. Also refers to the image that is being employed in this way. The technique is used mainly in page layout applications, such as Adobe InDesign. See also Hyperlink.

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Litho, Lithography

The basis for most commercial print work, this is a printing process which uses the repulsion of water, by oil, on a single flat surface, or plate (commonly metal, but can be paper). Water-based ink remains on the areas of the plate where there is no oil-based substance, and is then transferred to the paper or board. This transfer often happens via an intermediate surface, a process known as offset lithography.

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Lossy

A descriptive term for a digital image format that loses data through compression, affecting file size and image quality. JPEG is a lossy format.

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Lowercase, Lower Case

The ‘small’, as opposed to capital, letters. The name comes from the days of letterpress printing, when this set of letters was kept in a compartment, or case, beneath the capital (or uppercase) letters.

Type features - shows uppercase letter, lowercase letter, ligature, leading, un-kerned type and kerned type

Type features

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Machine Varnish

A varnish applied to a print job on the press. See also Spot Varnish, UV Varnish.

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Magenta, M

One of the four process colours used in full colour litho, digital and screen printing. See also CMYK.

CMYK process colour model - shows how cyan, magenta and yellow blend with each other to make red, green, blue and black when overlapped

CMYK colour model

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Make Ready

The preparatory work before the start of a print run.

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Matt (paper/stock)

A coated paper or board with a matt finish.

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Mechanical

See Finished Artwork.

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Mono, Monochrome, Monotone

An image produced using only one base colour.

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Native Format

The default file format of a software application. E.g. PSD is the native format of Photoshop®, AI is the native format of Illustrator®, INDD is the native format of InDesign®.

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Oblique

In typography, another word for an italic version of a typeface.

Shows the difference between a font and a typeface

Font or typeface?

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Octavo (or 8vo)

A paper size derived from a sheet being folded three times, to make eight leaves (sixteen pages). In modern use, this refers to a book of around 200-250 mm in height.

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Orphan

In typography, a word, or group of words, on its own at the bottom of a column of text, separated from the rest of its paragraph, which is in another column. See also Widow.

Widows and orphans - shows how words in a paragraph can be 'widowed' or 'orphaned'

Widows and orphans

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Overprint

The overlay of one ink colour on another during the printing process, using translucency and combinations of dot tints to create further colours.

Overprint - shows the effect of laying tints of ink colours over one another in the print process

Overprint

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Pantone®, Pantone Matching System®, PMS

A widely-used ink colour formulation system in the printing industry. Each colour is made with proscribed constituents in specified proportions, and is given a reference number, or name, like Pantone® (or PMS) 286 C, or Pantone® Warm Red U. ‘C’ and ‘U’ denote reproduction of the colour on coated or uncoated stock. Includes special colours like metallic inks and fluorescent inks. See also Spot Colour.

Spot colour - examples of special printing colours (in this case Pantone® colours) that can be used instead of, or in addition to, the CMYK process.

Spot colour

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Paperback, Softback, Softcover

A book with a cover that is made from a single piece of light, flexible board. The cover is usually glued into position, and is often printed with a promotional or decorative design on its outside, and occasionally on its inside as well. See also Hardback.

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Paper Sizes

See ISO Paper Sizes.

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Paragraph Style

A named text style, specified within a software application by the user (or already existing within the application) to be applied to whole paragraphs. Parameters within the style will include things like font, font size, character and line spacing, text alignment, indents, and spacing above and below the paragraph. These styles can help the user achieve consistency of presentation throughout their document. In an electronic document, such as an e-book, the equivalent of the paragraph style is the ‘p class’. See also Character Style and Style Sheet.

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PDF

Portable Document Format. Created by Adobe®, and revolving around its Acrobat® application, it is a widely-adopted format for the viewing and reproduction of documents outside their native applications. It has various levels of encoding, such as:

  • Standard, which is useful for general viewing and desktop printing purposes, where a low file size is preferable

  • High Quality, which gives a better-quality result in desktop print, but has a larger file size

  • Press Quality, which, depending on content, might have a much larger file size, but is of a sufficient quality to be used in commercial print.

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Perfect Binding

A document binding method that uses a spine of hot glue to secure the leaves, which are trimmed prior to binding. Many paperback books and large magazines are bound this way.

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Pica

A measurement of type height no longer in common use, which is equal to 1/6th inch or 12 points. See also Point Size.

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Pixels

Picture cells; the square cells of colour that make up a digital image. See also Raster.

Raster image - shows how the pixels that make up the become larger and the image less sharp as it is enlarged

Raster image

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Planning Up

Arranging several pieces of artwork together on a sheet, for printing. See also Imposition.

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PNG

Portable Network Graphics; a digital image format with a wider colour range than GIF which is therefore better for photographic images. Like GIF, it also supports transparency (when in 24-bit). This format is widely supported on the Internet, and is useful there for cutout images, and in things like PowerPoint® presentations.

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Point Size

A measurement of type height, abbreviated as pt. There are 12 points to a pica (1/6th inch). The point size of a font includes the space above and below the letters, and gives it its standard line spacing or leading, a throwback to the days of metal type.

Typesetting features - shows baseline, cap height, x-height and point size

Typesetting features

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Printer’s Pairs

The pairs of pages in an imposition for a printed document, arranged so that when the job is printed, collated, folded, trimmed and bound, the pages will appear in the correct order. These are not the same as spreads.

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Process Colour

See CMYK.

CMYK process colour model - shows how cyan, magenta and yellow blend with each other to make red, green, blue and black when overlapped

CMYK colour model

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Proof

A sample of a document for checking before the production run. Can be digital (on screen) or hard copy. See also Wet Proof.

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Pull Quote

An extract copied from a text, and featured separately in way that highlights it, and draws attention to it. A pull quote might be edited if its sense is lost when it’s read in isolation.

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Quarto

Where a sheet of paper is folded twice to produce a document of four leaves (eight pages) when trimmed. See also American Quarto.

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Raster

A digital image made up of pixels, suitable for photographic reproduction. See also Vector.

Raster image - shows how the pixels that make up the become larger and the image less sharp as it is enlarged

Raster image

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Recto

The right-hand page of a spread. See also Verso.

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Registered Trade Mark

Abbreviated to ®, this is a trade mark which has been registered with the relevant authority, to assert the rights of the holder, and further guard against ‘passing off’.

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Registration

A printing term for the alignment of separate ink colours when inks are overlaid on each other. See also Registration Marks.

Registration - shows good registration of overlaid inks in printing and mis-registration

Registration

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Registration Marks

Marks placed on finished artwork to aid the correct registration (alignment) of separate ink colours.

Page artwork features - shows aspects of finished artwork and markings added to artwork to aid correct printing, such as trim marks, type area, gutter, registration marks, trim area (page size) and bleed area

Page artwork features

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Resolution, Res

The number of pixels that make up a digital image, normally measured in pixels per centimetre or pixels per inch. In theory, the higher the resolution of an image, the higher the image quality is, and the greater the amount of detail the image can hold.

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Reverse Out

To make type or other elements lighter than the background they’re on. See also White Out.

Reversed out - shows appearance of white item reversed out of a black background and of a coloured item reversed out of another colour

White out and reversed out

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RGB

A colour model with three constituent colours — Red (R), Green (G) and Blue (B). Used mainly for photographic, on-screen, and light-based applications. See also CMYK.

RGB colour model - shows how red, green and blue add to each other to make cyan, magenta, yellow and white when overlapped

RGB colour model

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River

A large, unsightly gap between words that runs through multiple lines in a block of text, often caused by justifying text in a narrow column. See also Alignment.

Rivers - shows the gaps, called rivers, created on a page when text is justified in narrow columns

Rivers

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Roll Fold

Where a material is folded over and over on itself in the same direction. See also Concertina Fold.

Fold types - shows two types of fold: concertina fold and roll fold

Fold types

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Rubber Stereo

No, not a shockproof hi-fi, but a type of letterpress printing plate, produced in one piece, and used commonly in newspaper printing, where high volumes of print need to be produced quickly.

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Saddle Stitching

A binding process that uses metal staples.

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Sans Serif, Sans

A generic term for a typeface design that is of plain, undecorative appearance, with no serifs. Also known as grotesque, grotesk, grot and gothic. Arial and Helvetica are sans serif typefaces.

Type styles - shows examples of the main type style categories: serif, sans-serif, slab serif (Egyptian), blackletter, copperplate script and handwritten script

Type styles

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Scamp

A quick, rough visual of a design concept.

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Screen

See Halftone.

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Screen Process

A printing process which uses a fine mesh screen (often known as a silk screen). A relatively opaque and viscose ink is passed through untreated areas of the screen onto the substrate. Good for printing objects like corporate gifts and t-shirts.

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Screen Resolution, Screen Res

The standard resolution of a graphic or image for use on a computer monitor or other screen. This is the standard for web-based imagery and is currently 72 ppi (pixels per inch).

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Script

A typeface style with a fluid or ‘handwritten’ design.

Type styles - shows examples of the main type style categories: serif, sans-serif, slab serif (Egyptian), blackletter, copperplate script and handwritten script

Type styles

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Serif

(1) Details added to the ends of the strokes on letterforms.

Letterform features - shows ascender, counter, serif and descender

Letterform features

(2) A generic term for a typeface design in which the characters feature serifs. Garamond and Times are serif typefaces. See also Slab Serif and Sans Serif.

Type styles - shows examples of the main type style categories: serif, sans-serif, slab serif (Egyptian), blackletter, copperplate script and handwritten script

Type styles

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Signature

A sheet folded at least once to form part of a book, brochure, or other publication, when trimmed down.

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Silk (paper/stock)

A coated paper or board with a smooth matt finish.

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Silk Screen Printing

See Screen Process.

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Slab Serif

(1) A type of serif that is square or block-like. (2) A generic term for a typeface style in which the characters feature slab serifs, also known as square serif or Egyptian. Rockwell and Stymie are slab serif typefaces.

Type styles - shows examples of the main type style categories: serif, sans-serif, slab serif (Egyptian), blackletter, copperplate script and handwritten script

Type styles

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Spine

In publishing, the portion of a book’s cover between the front cover and back cover, which usually faces outwards when the book is on a shelf. If the spine is wide enough, it can contain information such as author name, book title, and publisher.

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Spot Colour

A printing term for a specified colour. Jobs printed in spot colour often use the Pantone Matching System® to specify the colour(s) to be printed.

Spot colour - shows examples of special printing colours (in this case Pantone® colours) that can be used instead of, or in addition to, the CMYK process

Spot colour

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Spot Varnish

A printing varnish applied to a specific area, or areas, of the printed sheet. See also Machine Varnish, UV Varnish.

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Spread, Double-Page Spread, DPS

A left-hand page (or verso), and right-hand page (or recto), side-by-side, as they would be appear in an open book. See also Printer’s Pairs.

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Squared-Up Image

An image of rectangular area. See also Cutout.

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Stock

A printing term for paper and board.

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Strapline

A phrase attached to a name or logo, that attempts to sum up the organisation, or product, in a memorable way.

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Stroke

(1) Part of the shape of a letterform. (2) The thickness of a line, or path, in vector artwork, usually expressed in millimetres (mm) or points (pt).

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Style Sheet

Normally set out in the Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) language, a set of criteria for the styling of text within an electronic document, such as a web page or e-book. The standard style element for whole paragraphs is the ‘p class’, and that for individual characters, words and phrases is the ‘span class’—these are assigned to the text within the document’s HTML code by using tags. See also Character Style and Paragraph Style.

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Subscript

Small type that is placed just below the baseline, used in scientific and mathematical formulae. See also Superscript.

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Substrate

In printing, the material which is being printed on, e.g. paper or board.

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Superscript

Small type that is aligned to the top of the capital letters or numerals, used for reference and in mathematical expressions. See also Subscript.

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Table of Contents, TOC

Also known simply as the Contents, Contents Page, or TOC, it is a list of a publication’s chapter, section, or article titles, with their corresponding page numbers (if applicable). In reflowable e-books, page numbers are irrelevant, so each entry is instead a hyperlink that takes the reader to the correct place in the document. See also Index.

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Tag

The notation within HTML code used to apply a particular style to a portion of text in an electronic document, such as a web page or e-book. Style tags are presented within brackets like <these>, and the associated styles are specified in a style sheet.

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Thermography

A process where a metallic foil is applied to a substrate, in a specific area, or areas.

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TIFF, TIF

Tagged Image File Format; a raster image file format, that supports CMYK, RGB and greyscale.

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Tint

A percentage of a colour; if being used in a commercial print process, such as litho or silk screen, it will be rendered as a halftone. A 50% tint of black, for example, is a mid-grey, where ink coverage is 50%.

Colour tints - shows some percentage colour tints from 10% to 100%, in 10% increments

Colour tints

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Title Page

In a book, this is normally the first text page, containing the book title, author name, and any other relevant information such as publisher name and/or logo. See also Verso.

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Tittle

A small dot that forms a part of some type characters such as ‘i’, ‘j’, ‘!’ and ‘?’, which is generally circular or square, depending on the design of the typeface.

The tittle is the dot that forms part of the lowercase i and j, amongst other characters.

Tittle

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Trade Mark

Abbreviated to ™, this is commonly applied to business and product names and phrases, to establish the intellectual property rights of the owner, and guard against ‘passing off’ by others. See also Registered Trade Mark.

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Trapping

The overlapping of printing inks, to mitigate for, and avoid, gaps due to misregistration of ink colours during the print run. See also Registration.

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Trim Marks

Fine lines placed on finished artwork to indicate where the printed sheet should be trimmed.

Page artwork features - shows aspects of finished artwork and markings added to artwork to aid correct printing, such as trim marks, type area, gutter, registration marks, trim area (page size) and bleed area

Page features

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Typeface

A complete set of letterforms (characters) of a unified design; can refer to a font family, with each font in the family being a variant of the typeface style (e.g. regular, italic, bold).

Shows the difference between a font and a typeface

Font or typeface?

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Uncoated (paper/stock)

A paper or board left with its natural finish. Cartridge and bond are uncoated papers. See also Coated.

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Uppercase, Upper Case

The capital letters. The name comes from the days of letterpress printing, when this set of letters was kept in a compartment, or case, above the small (or lowercase) letters.

Type features - shows uppercase letter, lowercase letter, ligature, leading, un-kerned type and kerned type

Type features

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UV Varnish

A printing varnish which is ‘cured’ using UV light and gives a bolder effect than a machine varnish. Available as a gloss or matt finish. See also Spot Varnish.

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Vector

A digital graphic constructed with lines and fills. Vector graphics are totally scalable without loss of quality, and can be created in ‘drawing’ software applications like Adobe Illustrator and CorelDraw. See also EPS, Raster.

Vector image - shows how a vector image is totally scalable without loss of sharpness

Vector image

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Verso

In broad terms, the left-hand page of a spread. Specifically, in a book, the reverse of the Title Page, containing author and publishing information. See also Recto.

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Visual

A graphic design mock-up. See also Scamp.

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Weight (font)

The overall thickness of a font. A typeface may come in a range of font thicknesses (or weights) like light, book, regular, bold, extra bold, and black.

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Weight (paper/stock)

The mass, or thickness, of a paper or board, usually measured in grams per square metre (abbreviated to gm-2, gram or gm). Heavier and/or thicker stocks, such as boards, tend to be measured in microns (thickness).

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Wet Proof

A printer’s proof, printed litho process on a dedicated proofing machine, so as to give the closest match to the final print job.

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White Out

Type, or other elements, that are white on a darker background. ‘White out of black’, for example, describes elements that are white on a black background. Usually involves not printing the areas to remain white, if being printed on white paper. See also Reverse Out.

Reversed out - shows appearance of white item reversed out of a black background and of a coloured item reversed out of another colour

White out and reversed out

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Widow

In typography, an isolated word, on a line on its own at the end of a paragraph. See also Orphan.

Widows and orphans - shows how words in a paragraph can be 'widowed' or 'orphaned'

Widows and orphans

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Wove (paper/stock)

An uncoated paper with a flat, uniform texture.

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X-Height

In typography, the height of the lowercase x of a font, often considered in relation to the height of the capital letters (cap-height).

Typesetting features - shows baseline, cap height, x-height and point size

Typesetting features

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Yellow, Y

One of the four process colours used in full colour litho, digital and screen printing. See also CMYK.

CMYK process colour model - shows how cyan, magenta and yellow blend with each other to make red, green, blue and black when overlapped

CMYK colour model

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Here’s some feedback from one of Paul’s happy clients—read more from others on the Testimonials Page:

“I am absolutely delighted with the result—it is modern, funky and clean. Just the outcome I was looking for! I would definitely recommend Paul. He listens to his customers, is creative, personable and goes the extra mile to delight and deliver on time. Many thanks.”

Rowan Norrie

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