Going to Press

Offset printer
Offset printer

As part of my GD 1 course, our professor, Mark Mullin, organized a visit for us to see and understand what it means “to go to press.”  This morning, we visited QuadGraphics in Long Island City.  Bill Delaney, and his team, including Skip, Gavin, Frank, Willie, Aaron, and Paul, welcomed us and walked us through the end to end process.  They showed us the steps and requirements in receiving the client’s file to creating the plates to the final cutting and binding of the print materials. We were able to see digital, oversize and offset printing being done live.  Bill and his team showed us the ins and outs of how each printer worked and answered our questions of what we need to be aware of as aspiring designers.

An example plate
An example plate

I personally loved seeing the color plates, because they helped me better understand what “4 color printing, 5 color printing, etc” means.  Plus, I had imagined plates to be something like heavy metal blocks of color. The plates were actually larger, lighter and actually contained the images that were to receive the specific color.  Bill and his team explained and showed us how the color sits higher on the plates for printing, and how they do regular readings of the printed color to ensure its consistency in printing the same color for the entire job.

More photos from the trip are below:

Color being used in the offset printer
Color being used in the offset printer
Inside the digital printer
Inside the digital printer that is able to quickly produce high-quality double sided printing
Oversize printing
Oversize printing

Thank you to Bill, Skip, Gavin, Frank, Willie, Aaron, and Paul for showing us around and answering our questions!

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