Phase 4: week 23


I have been collecting estimates for print. I started with calling my old contact person just to establish some basic premises for printing parts of this project and then I used that information to gather estimates from several printers.

I have been gathering estimates on the formats that are ‘extensions’ of the research:

5x Plano 520 x 520 mm
Paper ca 120-150 gram, 1+0 black and white

5x  Plano 520 x 520 mm
Paper ca 120-150 gram, 1+0 black and white

10x  Booklet, 160 x 260 mm, 36 sidor, häftning 
Paper ca 120-150 gram, cover ca 240 gram. 4+4 colors.

10x  Booklet 100 x 160 mm, 12 sidor, häftning
Paper ca 120-150 gram, cover ca 240 gram. 4+4 colors.

10x  Poster, 260 x 420 mm
Paper ca 120-150 gram, 1+0 black and white

The biggest issue is the paper. These are the components I wish to have the same paper, a yellowish/nature like uncoated paper. This is applicable on all formats except the 520×520 one, since that is printed in a larger machine that has the paper on a roll. They don’t order in special paper for such small editions.

Out of the three printers I contacted, only one can offer the same paper on all formats. They offered the paper Scandia Ivory, which is actually a bonus. The other printer’s only had Scandia nature, which is a bit whiter–Ivory is cream/nature coloured. It is made in Lessebo, close to where I live. They write: “Ivory – A warm cream shade, is suitable for all applications and the nuance is warmly pleasant for the eyes. It conveys an image of history and provenance.”.

I actually have a collection of samples from Scandia but I can’t seem to find them. But this will have to do. The printers are unsure wether they can print on both side on the Plano print, but will try for me. They have the paper in 130 grams and 240 grams.

Preparing for print

This week I have to print all the components that will go on the Ivory paper, all of them, except the booklet are printed in greyscale. I needed to see how the images may come out on a paper that is not fully white. The ivory is not at all much coloured, but it is uncoated and cream coloured and even if the printing technique is digital due to the small edition, some of the contrast may be ‘dissolved’. I wanted a very sublime faded tone of the images, but I was also afraid it would be unclear. I tested some different possible opacities on a yellow paper.

From the top down, opacity set to: 100% // 80 % // 60 %

I don’t want to take any chances, I don’t have the time to correct anything so I will just go for 100%. If I was to print this in a more generous time frame, I would most likely print it using a different technique, maybe offset, or riso.

I have spent a lot of time pre-pressing this week. It was years since I did that the last time. I am super worried. However, the people at the printers have been so kind and helpful. One ‘problem’ that occurred was that the first files I had sent were not in greyscale, but I had exported them in the printer’s icc profile out of old habit I guess. Anyway, they called and told me what components I needed to put in greyscale. And I did and the contrast was really strong in those revised components:

This was the original printing file:

This was the revised file that was put in greyscale:

This increased greyscale made me a bit worried. I talked to the printing guy and he thought, like me, that the paper may consume some of the blackness. I did not really have time either to revise every letter and every image. I went for this.

On Friday I got an email from their project manager that said ‘Happy friday!! Your printed material is ready if you want to pick it up!”.

Really bad photo, but the excitement was great at this moment. Everything packed in the car. I had a look at the printers and everything looked fine.


I needed my bundle to packed into something. Initially I had discussed with a friend and former colleague who is a graphic designer, that a girdle could be a nice way to collect the material. However, I thought the material needed a more ‘packaged’ packaging. In my initial research I had been looking at bags. But that seemed to perishable (?). I wanted something that correlated with the look and feel of the bundle. I had ordered big purple papers at some point during this process, in case I wanted to work out my own packaging.

I decided the solution that I felt was most appropriate for the project, the folder with the circled hole. This was a ‘simple’ packaging that could hold all the material together and not steal to much attention. Just serve as an envelope basically.

I measured and began folding the edges so that I could glue the folder together. All folds in this project have been done using these tools below, without them, nothing would look good.

This above is an embossing tool, I use it to prepare the paper for the fold, this way the paper won’t break. I don’t know if uncoated papers are more prone to breaking when folding. But this paper was quite thick, around 200 grams so it was necessary to prepare it this way.

Then I press the edges using this paper creaser, this way the edges get nice, flat and smooth. This is the outcome:

There are no pictures from the event when I folded the 260×260 folders. I had decided I would do fold them myself, because I didn’t want the printers to do it. I wanted to have control. Anyway, the primary fold for that component is diagonally across the format when its all folded out, meaning: 520x520mm. But I made it, and it looked nice.


Im getting ready. Next week I have to photograph everything. That will most likely take a while + some editing. I have started working on the studio pdf and just basically need to get everything together.