Print Tips: Paper Potential

Understanding the Potential of Paper

Paper is often taken for granted. Even by designers.

Older than Jesus
The first sheets of paper were made in China in about 200 BC. Since then, it has become indispensable. Paper was originally intended to be purely a carrier of images and scripts, but because of its natural properties -- strength, flexibility, and durability -- and its low costs, it has subsequently been developed and exploited to produce a vast variety of items from disposable clothing to loudspeaker cones. However, the main use of paper continues to be as a surface on which to print information.

It Doesn't Have to Be White
In recent years, there has been an encouraging increase in experimentation with different sorts of papers and in the diversity of techniques, both traditional and new, which designers apply to them. Whereas in the past there may have been some resistance to this, both printers and manufacturers are now becoming increasingly accommodating.

The Choice
For designers, choosing the right paper for a job should be just as important as choosing the right typeface -- both decisions are part of the designer's creative input. However tight the brief, however demanding or restricting the client, the choice of paper is generally made by the designer.

At our print shop, we specialize in searching out beautiful, alternative papers. Would you believe we have over 463 different papers available, over 86 different kinds of white paper, 200 different colors, and 31 different textures?

We care, because paper matters.

Paperwork: The Potential of Paper in Graphic Design

by Nancy Williams

The potentials of paper in graphic design are explored in an excellent source book that is the first to blend paper art with concerns of the design and print world. This paperback edition will reach new audiences with a more affordable price tag and an excellent display of design works from around the world.

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