RSS

Category Archives: DTP

How do you name a file?

Hi,

Another article to explain how do I work – not a tutorial. 🙂

How do you name a file?
I work in an agency and I deliver for two separate teams. In fact, I receive files from three art-directors, requests from 4 client service personnel, sometime the secretary come and ask me to scan some files, I have my own projects… how can I put order in this files!?!?
I am the only DTP in this agency, I am the only “link” who send final files to the printing houses, newspaper offices, some other small producers who do big or small stuff.
Something need to be in order here.

I followed an Informatics High-School.
One of the lessons I have learned from my teachers was… I will try to quote: “The programming languages may change in time but here you don’t learn how to use a programming language. You learn how and where to look, how to think when you have to deal with some problem. Do structures, think more logical and mathematical.”
Quote number two: “I am your teacher but when I give you a problem I want to be solved for anybody to understand it. Think about you will programming stuff for carpenters, car drivers, barbers, medical doctors. They will not understand you if you don’t write (code) for them. YOU HAVE TO THINK ABOUT THAT, I will cut your grades if I will not see this in your final code.”
(If you think about it, the Internet, E-mail, Facebook was possible because they were created for anybody to understand it)

Now, I have to name a file for anybody to understand what is inside before open it (nobody have enough time these days)…
I saw/see many was to name a file.
Some of my old colleagues name the files like this:

Think about a file named flyer2.ai ends in other computer without that folder structure…

Think about you have to look quickly for a flyer made for Volvo (for example) and you type in Spotlight “flyer”… how can you be sure what flyer is the one you are looking for?
Think about you leave on holiday and somebody have to look on your computer for some files…
WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO NAME A FILE!???

My way may not be the best but I think I am ok, when none of my colleagues called me on holiday asking for where I store some stuff.

I name the files that way:

Volvo-V40-Ladycars-210×297+5mm.tif
BIC-flyer-110x145mm-8noiembrie2011.ai
Academica-mapa463x417-sept2011.zip
Dog-chow-banner-10x1m-4caini.pdf
Femina-copilul-325×270-IASI-alb_negru-21septembrie.tif
Ludica-macheta-24FUN-128x85mm-tipar.tif

I will explain three of them:

Volvo-V40-Ladycars-210×297+5mm.tif
The client is Volvo, no doubt.
We work all the materials for Volvo Romania (I am the DTP for all projects held by this company in Romania). So, V40 guide me about what project we’re talking.
Ladycars – is the glossy magazine where the file will be sent and will appear in it.
210×297+5mm – of course, the dimension for the file – single page, 5mm bleed.

BIC-flyer-110x145mm-8noiembrie2011.ai
BIC – the client
flyer – of course you get what is about in this file
110x145mm – the dimension (bleed may not be included in the name because all the flyers have bleed)
8noiembrie2011 – this is the date so you will be spared to check the date on every flyer file.

Femina-copilul-325×270-IASI-alb_negru-21septembrie.tif
1. The client
2. what is the project (copilul means “kid” in English – this project is only for Romania so I use Romanian)
3. 325×270 – you get it – the size of the ad (untypical dimension so it must be an ad, no?)
4. IASI – this is the town (was a national campaign)
5. alb_negru = black&white
6. 21septembrie – the date – so you will not confuse it with future ads of this client.

Well, this is how I work and I’ve succeeded to work in various BIG projects without any error.
A presidential campaign with advertisement in all country, 30 ads a day and no error of sending the right files to the right publications?
I guess I found a way to name the files “correctly”. 🙂

Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on 05/09/2012 in DTP

 

Vector bitmap logo… :)

Vector bitmap logo… no, it’s not exactly a mistake. 🙂

A client service sent me an e-mail with a .cdr file asking me to prepare/check that vectorial logo to be printed on baseball caps.
Opening .cdr files on Mac si not so easy. In fact, Corel didn’t continue Draw for mac since the 11th version. In 2012 Corel is already on X6 version, leaving Mac users in a dark place.
This agency don’t use Corel (in fact, very few agencies still using it) so they rely on one guy to convert all the .cdr files we receive from different clients: me. Am I the DTP guy or not!? 🙂

Back in time, to solve that kind of issues I had two options: to use a site who convert .cdr files (filespazz.com) or to ask a friend from a company I worked for to do this quick job for me (as they use PCs and have latest version of Corel Draw).
Two years ago I installed Parallels, Windows and Corel on my G5 and that solved my problem.

I opened that “vectorial” logo and the image was this:

a Corel file with a bitmap in it, saved with the name “vectorial logo”. (Does is happen often to you? Because is quite often to me to receive this kind of files.)
I asked the client service to call the client to solve the issue – as I was almost sure they have the right files and it was an error. Wrong.
“The client don’t have any other file and ask us to solve the problem with the best methods and results.”

The only solution was to re-vectorise the logo (with the result below).
I applied a work path in Photoshop, exported as “Paths to Illustrator”, open the file in Illustrator, simplify the path (the result of tracing a 67dpi image is not to accurate), working to be as accurate as possible, putting the text in circle (that was easy, as I recognised the Arial font).

I hope they will be pleased with the result and with the final product (the baseball caps).I know this is a simple task to vectorize this kind of simple images, I wrote this article to detail some part of my daily job, of my daily tasks.
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on 04/09/2012 in DTP

 

Creating a new font (Illustrator + FontLab)

As the summer is over, the jobs starts to come.
This new client is a milk producer and he wants new packaging.
One of the designers was thinking to try a new font, something 100% new, created by himself.

I had the job to transfer his letters to a font format, something possible to type at the keyboard.

I usually modify fonts to add special Romanian characters but until now I didn’t create a font from scratch.
Well, I said I will not post here tutorials but using the tutorial below I learned how to make the new font to work properly (so I want to share it with you). 🙂

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on 03/09/2012 in DTP

 

Mac vs. PC vs. DTP :-)

“- Hello, I’m a Mac.”
“- And I’m a PC.”
– And I’m a DTP! 🙂

I remembered this videos and also I remember a question that almost all interviewers ask me: “Do you know to work on a Mac?”
When I heard this question for the first time I was a little scared about working on Mac. “Something must be very different”, I thought, if people are concerned about it. Well, no.
In two minutes I learned that “instead of using CTRL you have you use apple key” and everything started to work.

As a DTP, there are no big differences between the two workstations.
In fact, if you think, how the operating system can influence a software in a way that you may be not understand anymore how to use it?
The menu are in the same place, the shortcuts are the same, the page look the same… maybe some design on bars but how can this influence your skills? 🙂

By the way, do you like Justin Long?
I saw him in Die Hard 4, he was playing a computer geek and… in this clips he is a Mac. LOL!
I’m wondering when exactly this ads were made… who influences who? This clips get him a role in Die Hard 4 or his acting in Die Hard 4 booked him for this ads? 🙂

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on 23/08/2012 in DTP

 

Hello world!

This is the first article on this blog.

I started this site as a site about me, about my work. This will me primarily used to present myself as DTP.
I use this site as my business card, for people who wants to see my CV (written in three languages).

If you know what DTP means, you know that “portfolio” is not quite applied on a technical person, as my job is only 20-30% design job.
I’m a professional DTP, a guy who know how to prepare a file to be impeccably produced. I know the languages of the printing houses, I understand what the printing machines are talking to us.

I’m the DTP guy.
Yes, it’s me. 🙂

—————————

The blog have two categories: “DTP” and “LIFE”.
I will use “LIFE” to show you how a DTP cook, smile, telling jokes, bragging about himself. 🙂
I will use “DTP” to write about my job as I do it: some hints, how do I see the workflow, how do I process multiple requests, etc. Anyway, there are many websites about this job (wrote by teams); my blog is born in 2012, I cannot compete with them so I will not write tutorials. 🙂

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on 20/08/2012 in DTP, LIFE