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62Photopolymer Optimization of letterforms

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  • Gerald Lange
    Aug 28 4:29 PM
      Dear David [Wall]

      Thanks for sending the proofs. These look quite good. I've got some
      questions:
      Is the -.064 choke normative or maximum? How much further could you
      choke before you experience letterform breakup?
      I assume this is possible in PageMaker, Illustrator, InDesign as well,
      do you know?
      Does this effect leading or other page parameters; line length, text
      block measure, etc? From the proofs I'd quess not, correct?
      What are the difficulties encountered in explaining the trapping to
      the folks at the service bureau (film house)?

      Think this may be a useful technique. Thanks.

      Gerald

      David P. Wall wrote
      When first experimenting with polymer letterpress several years ago, I
      discovered that there are also ways to "negative trap" or "choke" the
      type in QuarkXPress to compensate for ink squeeze and some of the
      vagaries of using a single master type pattern for multiple sizes of a
      computer typeface. The process is not quite as simple as spreading the
      text for offset printing, and I've found that not all film houses are
      interested in working through the somewhat strange parameters. But if
      you can find a film house that is willing to work with you, the
      results are remarkably satisfying....
      .... you can negative-trap blocks of text-size type, or display or
      even rules, and probably some line art depending on how the art image
      files are formatted. Where multiple sizes of type appear one page, you
      have the flexibility to apply a different trap to size, so that you
      can even-out the overall color of the page. Basically (in QuarkXPress)
      you create a solid-colored background behind the text, trap the
      background to the text (by choking it in on the text), and then use a
      positive of the background (with the text knocked out of it) as a
      negative to make the polymer plate. Sounds simple, right? Maybe not,
      but once you get used to the way it works, it really is pretty simple
      (albeit somewhat more time-consuming than just sending an un-trapped
      file to the imagesetter). If you'd like to see some proofs of a test
      page trapped to varying degrees, let me know. I've still got a few
      sheets in my files....
      I've wondered for a long time if I was the only person bothered the
      fat appearance of most polymer type. It is refreshing to in this
      discussion group that there are other people out there similar
      concerns. Will this negative trapping technique work on large blocks
      of text...
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