GLOSSARY OF ALIGNMENT TERMS
Below please find an explanation of many alignment terms to enable you to better understand the printing process.|
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Alignment refers to type being set flush left, flush right, centered, or justified. Justified type lines up on both the left and right sides of the column's full measure.
Acronym for American Standard Code for Information Interchange. It is the general specification of bits in a
computer to input, store, process and output text characters. ASCII file formats are frequently requested for
text transfer because it allows different software programs and platforms to accept characters and punctuation.
AUTOMATIC TEXT FLOW
This publishing program feature allows text matter to flow from one column to the next on each page and from
one page to the next in a document automatically. It eases the pain of making significant copy changes to a long document.
AUTOMATIC PICTURE REPLACEMENT
The linking process where a low resolution image is automatically replaced by a high resolution image just before a document is sent to the imagesetter or platesetter. This feature allows page layout handlers to work with smaller files.
When a printed image runs off the edge of a page or sheet it is said to bleed.
Text matter that comprises the major content of an article or publication other than mastheads, headlines, sub-heads, call-outs, charts and graphs.
This technique highlights or isolates important words or graphs from secondary copy surrounding it. Boxes also create interest and give the reader's eye a break from long passages and monotonous amounts of text.
Bullets can be solid dots, squares, open dots or another tiny iconic symbol that is used to enhance a list. Bullets are normally set in a slightly larger point size than the text they accompany and should always be used in a list of no less than five items. Bullets are visually most effective when used with hanging indents.
A short phrase or line of type that helps identify important elements of a graphic or illustration. A connecting line or arrow is often used with a call-out.
Black and white artwork meant to be processed by shooting it on a process camera or scanning it on a flat-bed or drum scanner. If shot on a camera, the result is negatives used to make printing plates. If scanned, the result is a digital file that can be imported into a document.
A sentence or more used to summarize the importance of charts, graphs, illustrations, photographs or tables. Captions identify people in photographs and relate the photo or graphic item to the surrounding body copy. A photograph should always have a caption.
CLIP ART/CLICK ART
Black and white art that must be scanned, saved and placed into a document is clip art. Electronic art files that are already digital are called click art. Both are economical ways to purchase copyright-free graphic images for use in art preparation for publishing.
The process of keyboarding and combining typographic elements with graphics and photos that result in pleasing page layouts for print or web content.
When the set width of a font has been shortened, the font will be more narrow-allowing more characters to fit on any given line length. Fonts should be condensed by using a true "condensed" version of a typeface. Condensing type by using the "attributes" selection screen of a page layout program increases the risk that outputting equipment will not recognize the font or ignore it completely.
Any graphic element that has a grayscale or is not "line art" originated from a continuous tone image. Examples of continuous tone originals are black and white photographs or pencil sketches. Continuous tone originals should be scanned and saved as TIFF files for use in page layout programs.
The process of writing or editing articles to fit into a predetermined space allowance. Good copyfitting
results in evenly filled columns and pages with the proper amount of white space between lines of type,
words and individual characters.
The process of eliminating irrelevant or excessive background content of photographs. Cropping
enhances the focus of photographs and allows the designer to change the shape of the original photo.
A format that is recognizable by a computer system.
The acronym for Dots Per Inch and relates to resolution. The higher the DPI, the higher the resolution and amount of detail that will be visible.
A series of three dots used to indicate missing copy when placed between two sentences or phrases. They are commonly used when bits or quips of information are being taken from a longer quotation. They can also be used in pairs as a "continuation technique" when you want to lead a reader into other copy.
Em dashes are used to abruptly change a thought within a sentence or to connect two different thoughts within a sentence. The actual length of an em dash is approximately four times the length of a hyphen and is relative to the set width of the font that is in use. Em dashes are so named because they are equivalent to the width of the capital letter em (M).
En dashes are used to denote continuation; as in "pages 4-5" and "1966-1995." The actual length of an en dash is approximately two times the length of a hyphen and is relative to the set width of the font that is in use. En dashes are so named because they are equivalent to the width of the capital letter en (N). An en dash is one-half the width of an em dash.
An En space is a fixed amount of blank space equivalent to the width of a capital letter en (N). En spaces are used when a fixed amount of space is needed, but less space than the more commonly used em space. An en space is one-half the width of an em space
EPS (Encapsulated PostScript)
When an image is scanned, it must be saved in a manner that will allow it to be placed, sized and colore within a page layout program. EPS files are used for object oriented, line art graphic scans.
When the set width of a font has been lengthened, the font will be wider-allowing fewer characters to fit on any given line length. Fonts should be expanded by using a true "expanded" version of a typeface. Expanding type by using the "attributes" selection screen of a page layout program increases the risk that the outputting equipment will not recognize the font or ignore it completely.
A file that is destined for another computer.
A font is the specific name applied to a particular typeface style. Examples of font names are Helvetica, Times, Americana, and Zapf Chancery.
A family of type is the complete font with all its related attributes. One family might include: Roman, italic, bold, bold italic, black, black italic, light, light italic, thin, thin italic, plus all the condensed and expanded versions of the previously listed.
The information about a publication, such as its title, date, issue or page number is a footer when is consistently appears at the bottom of each page of the document.
A footnote is a numbered passage that amplifies specific information on the page and provides direction about how to find sources or related reading.
When an image is screened back or shaded down in intensity, it is called a ghosted image. Four-color process, PMS color and black and white images can be ghosted.
Graphic elements emphasize and organize words, illustrations and photographs. Boxes, drop shadows, indents, lines, rules, screens and icons are considered graphic elements.
When a black image has "shading" or "screening" it is referred to as a gray scale image.
The defining of headline positions, column lengths and widths, placement of headers and footers and any other predetermined placement of photographs or graphic elements on a page. A series of nonprinting horizontal and vertical rules assist in creating and maintaining a "grid" for page layouts.
Gutters are white spaces that appear between columns of type. Gutter widths should be wide enough to
clearly define columns and narrow enough to not lose the reader.
Copy that is indented from the rest of the paragraph. Bulleted items are visually most effective when they use
An enlarged phrase that gives the reader a preview of the content to follow. Headlines are very important
elements because they motivate the reader to continue reading the associated material.
Information about a publication-such as its title, date, issue or page number is a header when it consistently
appears at the top of each page of the document.
HEAVY INK COVERAGE
When more than 40% of a sheet has ink covering it, the order is considered to have heavy ink coverage.
When words are too long to fit on a single line, hyphenation splits the word and places the latter half on the next line of type. Hyphenation is automatic in page layout programs but should be overridden manually to repair bad word breaks and enhance copyfitting. Hyphenation can also be turned off if no hyphens are preferred.
The hyphenation zone is the space near the column's right edge that will allow hyphenation. Long hyphenation zones result in fewer word splits than short hyphenation zones.
A simplified graphic element created to suggest an idea or topic. Icons are often used to categorize or index
ideas and content.
The most common indent is at the beginning of a paragraph when the first line is set "in" from the left edge of the column. An indent can be placed on the left side only (as in paragraph beginnings) or on the left and right sides of copy (when a block of text needs to be set apart from the rest of the paragraph).
The abbreviation for International Typographic Corporation, that licenses many of the typefaces used in graphic design. ITC fonts are identical to the typefaces used on phototypesetting equipment and based on the original "hot type" font designs. They are considered higher quality typographic forms because they have retained their letterform integrity through the years and are more reliable when transferred from computer to outputting devices.
Italic is the slanting of a serif typeface.
When an article is continued from one page to another, a jumpline is placed at the end of the first page to
identify where the article is continued. A jumpline should also appear at the beginning of the continuation page
to let the reader know where the article started.
When the left and right sides of a column of type are aligned and fill a column's width it is justified. Wordspacing and letterspacing will vary more with justified type than with nonjustified type layouts.
Kerning refers to improving the appearance of type by adjusting the spacing between selected pairs of letters.
The most problematic pairs of letters are AV, AY, FA, AW, PA, and AT. Kerning becomes of greater importance
as type size increases such as in headlines and poster copy that often uses all caps.
The process of typing in raw text matter (headlines, subheads and body copy) for a publication in preparation
for turning it over to a graphic designer. A word processing program should be used for keyboarding. Files can also be saved in ASCII or as "text only" or "export files" for easier file transfer.
Artwork that has been designated with "key" identity "lines" indicating the position of trims, drill holes, folds, scores, and die-cuts. Keylines are also referred to as black and white camera-ready artwork.
A kicker is a short phrase of key word that introduces a headline. Kickers can relate a headline to a particular
portion of a publication.
A repeating symbol used to draw a reader from one area of an article to another area. Dots are the most common leader elements.
Leading is the vertical space relationship between one line of type and the next. Computer graphics normally default to +2 points of leading for any given point size selected. (i.e. 10 point type uses 12 points of leading and 14 point type uses 16 points of leading). In general, the larger a point size gets, the better it will look with reduced leading. Increased and decreased leading can also be used for copyfitting purposes.
Line art consists of non-shaded or non-screened black and white images. Line art is not continuous tone imagery such as photographs or pencil sketches. Some examples of line art are type matter, solid black and white logos, icons or pen-and-ink drawings.
A page's live area is the part between borders and margins where most text and graphics will appear.
LIVE ART FILES
The original digital file used to create and identify an EPS or TIFF image. This can be an original drawing that
has been created in FreeHand, Illustrator or a scanned image. Live art files are necessary inclusions in
processing electronic documents because they are the links needed to produce high resolution output.
A stylized name of a company or organization set in a unique way and often accompanied by an illustration
or icon. A successful logo should be reproducible in its original color design and a black and white version.
When no capitals letters are used, type has been set in lower case.
The white spaces that appear at the top, sides and bottom of a publication.
A mask is created when the background or a specific area of a photograph or illustration is dropped away.
Masking is also referred to as "outlining" or "silhouetting."
(also called a masthead) A nameplate is the distinctive portion of the front of any publication that usually
contains the title of the publication, a logo, date and volume information and remains consistent in style from
one issue to the next.
Oblique is the slanting of a san serif type.
When a single word or line of type is left at the bottom of a column that is continued on another page it is
An outline is created when the background or a specific area of a photograph or illustration is dropped away.
Outlining is also referred to as "masking" or "silhouetting."
Picas are an alternative measurement to inches for defining column widths in typesetting. Picas are based
on the point system of typography. 12 points equal one pica and one pica is approximately 1/6 of one inch.
When an image is screened back or shaded down in intensity, it is called a phantom. Four-color process, PMS color and black and white images can become phantoms.
Points are used to define vertical measurements of letterforms and spacing. Type sizes are defined in points.
There are approximately 72 points in an inch.
PostScript is the copyrighted term for Page Description Language owned by the Adobe Corporation. PostScript defines the outlines of letters and numbers, permitting limitless flexibility is type sizes, styles, shading and placement on a page.
Pull-quotes (also called out-quotes) are short phrases or sentences taken from body copy and emphasized by enlargement, boxing or color background to highlight surrounding content.
Type that is set with an uneven alignment of characters on the left or right side has been set ragged. A common
type alignment choice is "flush left/ragged right." Because of its poorer legibility, "flush right/ragged left" type alignment is rarely used.
The process of electronically changing an image's color, background or texture.
When white lettering appears against a solid or heavily shaded black or colored background area it is called a
reverse. Reverses are hard to read when the point size is less than 12 points and should be used sparingly.
A rule is a solid line of varied length or thickness.
SAN SERIF TYPE
San serif typefaces have straight stems and cross-bars with no tiny extensions or decorations at the end of any letter part. Examples of common san serif types are Helvetica, Franklin Gothic, Futura and Univers.
A scanner converts a photograph or piece of art into a digital file. Scans used in printing production are usually saved as EPS or TIFF files.
Screens are the "tinting" or "shading back" of a solid image area. Screens are defined in percentages from 99% to 1% of solid (solid = 100% and white = 0%).
Serifs are the tiny decorative extensions applied to the ends of a type font's character. Serifs enhance reading flow and reduce eye strain in long, text-heavy documents and books. Examples of common serif types are Palatino, Times, Garamond and Bodoni.
A short article that accompanies a longer feature article. Sidebars can amplify content or tie related information to the feature.
SLAB SERIF TYPE
When a type font's serifs are squared off, rather than tapered to a point, they are referred to a slab serif types.
Examples of common slab serif types are Courier, Lubalin and Egyptiennes.
Spell-checking is an automatic function that page layout programs offer to assist designers in reducing typos. A spell-check feature is only as reliable as the dictionary that its program employs and spell-check will not identify mistyped words that exist but are out of context. Spell-checks also cannot identify nonsensical sentences that can occur with "cut and pasting" or double space bars.
A spread is the relative viewing position of a pair of left- and right-hand pages in a book or publication. A "reader's" spread is the consecutive placement of pages by page numbers. A "printer's" spread is the imposed position of a pages based on how many pages are in the publication.
A subhead is smaller than a headline and larger than body copy. Subheads are useful for breaking up long articles, identifying specific content for the reader and giving the reader a break from long passages of copy.
A tab adds white space to set off or highlight blocks of copy.
Teasers are words or short phrases placed on the outside of a publication or mailing envelope to increase a
readerŐs interest in the publication's contents.
Templates are predetermined and saved formats for page layouts. They are designed to be used as a starting
point for each successive page or issue. The use of templates saves time and reduces errors in layout formats.
A thin space is rarely used today. It was originally developed when hot metal was the popular form of
typesetting and situations often arose where a minute amount of space was needed to center or justify a
line of type. The only common use for thin spaces is placing them before and after an em or an en dash. A
thin space is approximately one-third the width of an en space
TIFF (Tagged Image File Format)
When an image is scanned, it must be saved in a manner that allows it to be placed, resized and colored
within a page layout program. TIFFs are often used for photographic and continuous tone image scans.
Tiling is the process of positioning lasers or negatives together to create oversized sheets when an output
unit does not have the size capabilities available at 100%. Running out portions of a document at 100%,
aligning them with each other and taping them together is a common form of tiling.
Tints are the "screening" or "shading back" of a solid image area. Tints are defined in percentages from 99% to 1% of solid (solid = 100% and white = 0%).
Manually adjusting the overall amount of space between letters and words is tracking. Tracking increases and decreases word density and can be used for copyfitting purposes. Adjustment of tracking is often needed with "justified" type to even out the rivers of white space within body copy. Creative tracking can also remove widows, orphans, bad word-breaks and undesirable hyphenation.
Typeface refers to the specific shape and outline of an individual font's letters and numerals.
Type size refers to the height of the letters and numerals and is based on the point system. There are 72 points
in one inch.
Type style refers to the specific attribute within a typeface's family. Styles can include italic, bold, bold italic,
condensed, expanded, black or outline.
Words are in upper case when all capital letters are used.
A widow is a word or single line of type that appears at the top of a column or page that has been continued
from the previous column or page.
When type is shortened or follows the outline of an illustration, graphic or photograph, it is called a