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Production Systems: Printing

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Graphic Design -> Production Systems: Printing

Printing

This is, of course, one of the most used production systems in the design industry. Many designers require an intimate knowledge of this area, as it is at the printing stage that their ideas pass onto the hands of another person.

In your development, printing can assist in broadening your concepts. You could use a mono-print as the background for your design. This could be scanned and manipulated, added to or used as the base of your package design.

Other printing processes include linocut and woodcut, both requiring you to cut out negative space, leaving the positive area raised for printing. Screen-printing requires you to cut stencils, which are then placed between the paper and the silk screen, through which ink is then drawn. Etching, mezzotint and dry point require you to incise your design into a plate/surface then ink and wipe that surface to reveal your design - a method collectively referred to as "intaglio" printing. Another method that can produce exciting results is collage construction and printing, another form of relief printing.

Lithography is an excellent printing medium where freehand drawing can be used as a starting point. This method is based on the fact that water and grease will not mix. A wax crayon is used to draw onto a metal plate that is then dampened with water. When ink is run over the plate, the damp areas reject it but the greasy area will take the printers' ink from the roller. These inked parts print onto paper applied under pressure (see the work of Henri de Toulouse Lautrec).