As I have used special colours and finishes for the examples stated here, the cost is a lot higher than it would be if I was using one basic colour design. Although the more I produce of a graphic product, the price goes up, the price for each individual unit is cheaper with the more I produce. Cost and availability of materials When designing a graphic product, there are many different sizes, colours, weights of paper and inks for the graphic designer to choose from.
Paper is the most versatile of all printing materials as s it is available in a great range of thicknesses, colours, types, textures and sizes. Paper is sold in weights, gram per square (gsm). An expensive publication would use about 150 gsm for the front cover and 85 gsm for the inside pages. This would have a more glossy appearance to attract customers, where as newspapers are cheaper in value and the quality of the paper is much poorer, absorbent, off white colour. The most common sized paper is A4 this is usually found in most offices and schools.
Cost in paper rises with size, thickness, texture and size. Coloured papers are useful for backgrounds and are available in an extensive range of colours and textures. It is possible to find an exact match of colours similar to those of the printer, designers can produce visuals for the client with confidence that the finished colour will be identical.
Systems and control System A system is central to the management and operation of many industrial and commercial organisations, it is important to identify their structure and the changes that take place when one or more of the parts are altered. Designing a system is useful to ensure the process will operate successfully as the processes of the system change.
All systems have inputs and outputs; the main purpose of a system is to change or transform the inputs into outputs. For different products the outputs and inputs will usually differ too. Most processes (or transformations) are used to maintain the balance of the system, or to improve the quality and quantity of the outputs. Feedback and Control When working with systems in a graphic project you might discover that the quantity and quality of the outputs are unsatisfactory, for example, lack of profit or a printing fault. If this occurs it is possible to change the inputs of processes of the original system, this is known as feedback.
Control is the way which the inputs or processes are changed. To judge how well a system has performed you can see how well it transforms the inputs and outputs and how successful the final product is judging from the outputs. Examples of systems In the printing process of a system, these are the 4 colours used: Optical mixing is using little dots of colour to create different shades and varieties. For example, the more black dots you add the darker the colour gets and if you put yellow and red dots together the result will be a orange colour. Some of the students from my year at school went to a printing factory and brought back these samples of optical mixing.
Lithography was introduced in the 17th century but only dominated the trade in late 20th century. The diagram on this page shows off set litho, a term referring to the method of transferring ink from the plate to a rubber blanket and then onto paper. This process is designed so there is no contact between paper and plate and this prolongs the working life of the plate while preventing paper from getting damp from the water used in the offset litho process.
The process relies on the fact that the oil and grease do not mix with the water. This method is ideal for use of newspapers, magazines, books, posters, letterheads and packaging and is a widely used process, which provides good quality printing. It is also ideal for mass-producing up to a million copies of a graphic product. The process can be expensive for short runs, but ideal for long runs and either single or multiple colour products.
One way to check the quality of my finished graphic product is to inspect it/them and ensure they are all satisfactory. The alternative is a more sophisticated process to set up a system of quality control. This involves inspecting one of the products at different stages of the making process and gathering and analysing records of any failings or things that could be improved. In mass production of a graphic product, for example, one out of very hundred are subjected to tests that identify and record how close the item is to its tolerance limit. If the result proves the product meets the requirements and is satisfactory, the production will continue as before.
If this testing proves unsatisfactory and the item does not reach the tolerance limit, the machine must be adjusted until the problem is solved and production runs smoothly once again. If this is not done the machine will run off defective products and lead to expensive delays in the production process. The aim of quality control is to insure ‘zero defects’ to prevent the failure of any machine. I can use the above diagram of a system in connection with the input-process-output system for my birthday card for the pope.
The inputs would be me purchasing the ink, card/paper, designing the card and bearing in mind who the product is for, to meet the pope’s requirements. I would then print off a single copy of the card, checking if it came out flawless with no printing mistakes, and if there were any errors I would change these and improve the product. The output would be the final printed card, and hopefully the pope being thrilled with my effort and giving me an invite to his birthday bash.
With a mass produced product, like me supplying 100,000 Easter cards for Bastins, the inputs would be me organizing a meeting with a manager from the store to discuss the requirements they desire for the card. I would have to purchase a bulk order of card and ink and hire employees at a printing factory to reproduce the amount of copies specified by the manager. The process of offset litho will take place at the factory; I would check the quality of the print and make any changes if necessary. The output would be Bastins being satisfied with the cards and the employees and I being paid.