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Glossary
 
Print Glossary
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Dampening

An essential part of the offset printing process whereby rollers distribute a solution to the plate that covers the non-printing area of the plate, repelling ink in those areas. Some newer presses use a waterless ink technology that does not use dampening.

Deckle edge

The rough or feathered edge of paper when left untrimmed.

Densitometer

An optical device used by printers and photographers to measure and control the density of ink or color.

Density

The degree of tone, weight of darkness or color within a photo or reproduction measured by a densitometer.

Descender

A term that describes that portion of lower case letters that extends below the main body of the letter, as in "p".

Desktop Publishing

Creating materials to be printed using a personal computer, as opposed to taking non-electronic documents to a commercial printing company to be prepared for printing.

Die Cutting

The process of cutting paper in a shape or design by the use of a wooden die or block in which are positioned steel rules in the shape of the desired pattern.

Digital Proof

Color separation data is digitally stored and then exposed to color photographic paper creating a picture of the final product before it is actually printed with ink.

Dithering

The process of averaging between pixels of different colors. This results in a smoother, blended transition between the edge of two areas rather than a jagged or 'stair-step' appearance. Also a method used on ink jet printers where colors are produced by mixing colored dots in a randomized pattern.

Dot

The smallest individual element of a halftone.

Dot gain

A term used to describe when dots are printing larger than they should.

Drill

The drilling of holes into paper for ring or comb binding.

Drop shadow

A shadow image placed offset behind an image to create the affect of the image lifting off the page.

Dull finish

A semi-gloss finish on paper that is less glossy than gloss and more than matte paper

Dummy

The preliminary assemblage of copy and art elements to be reproduced in the desired finished product, also called a comp.

Duotone

A two-color halftone reproduction generated from a one color photo.

Dye sublimation

A photographic looking color print created by heating dyes on a substrate instead of using inks. Often used for proofing.