Business Essentials – Advertorial

While print remains an essential part of the marketing mix, the process can be confusing at times. St Austell Printing Company’s production manager, Kevin Brokenshire, talks us through from start to finish.

Pre-Press & Pre-Flighting: In printing, the pre-press stage is where all the groundwork is laid for a successful print project.  Following the design process, where the design is typically prepared in Adobe InDesign, Illustrator or Photoshop, it is saved as a Hi Resolution PDF ready for print.

The Print Ready PDF is then passed to the Pre-Press Team, who will run through the Pre-Flight Process.  During pre-flight, the artwork files run through the following checks;

  • Images have the correct format and resolution.
  • Fonts are all included.
  • Any RGB images are converted to CMYK, using correct colour profiles.
  • Document layout includes the accurate margins, crop marks and bleed.

It’s worth being aware that pre-flighting is not really intended to find and correct mistakes in grammar or spelling, so it is recommended that all general editing and proof reading takes place prior to the pre-press stage.

Print Ready Proof: Before committing to a full print run, a print ready proof is created for your approval. A proof is created as a PDF electronic file, but a physical proof can also be supplied, particularly if there are complex finishing involved or particular colour matching is required.


At SAPC we produce print on lithographic (litho) presses, digital print machines and large format printers. Here is a run through of each process;

Litho Printing: This traditional method involves digitally imaging your design onto an aluminium plate, with a separate plate required for each colour.  The ink on the printing press only adheres to the imaged area of the plate which then gets transferred on to a rubber blanket and from the blanket on to the paper.  Litho printing is known for it’s high quality results, making it ideal for brochures, books and catalogues.

Digital Printing: Digital print is very versatile and suitable for smaller print quantities. Digital printing does not require plates and so little set up is required, making it a cost-effective option for short runs and quick turnarounds.

Large Format Printing: Large format inkjet printing is typically used for A2 size or larger, such as posters, display boards, roller banners, architects plans. Large format printing produces very high resolution, precise and accurate printing at a large scale.

Finishing: Finishing is where the printed pages become the final product. We produce a range of finishing processes in house at SAPC, including the following to name but a few;

Binding and Folding: Depending on the project, pages may be folded, bound, or stitched together to create books, brochures, or leaflets.

Foiling: As a specialist finishing technique, metal foil is applied to the surface of the paper  to give a metallic finish in selected areas.

Die Cutting: A process for cutting your print to custom shapes and for adding score lines to allow for smooth easy folding

Spot UV: A clear varnish is applied and cured using UV light to produce a raised, glossy effect to a specific area or ‘spot’ on the design. A great way to highlight images or text.

Embossing or Debossing: Using a die to stamp a raised (emboss) or recessed (deboss) design on to the surface of the paper stock.