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Can someone help explain this printing process?

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Hello I am learning about how Graphic Designs were done before modern computers I watched this video on how everything was cut out and postitioned before being sent off to a ''printer'' ...

 

How did this printer colour things in I don't understand the next part to what would happen? @ 10:10 seconds

 

 

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You accurately cut around the central image. That leaves you with two images. The head and camera and the dark background with a head shaped hole. Then the two images are printed onto the same piece of paper, one being a simple red background with a head shaped hole in the middle. The second is the colour image of the face and camera overlaid so that the two images sit together as one. When doing this is is crucial to register the two images accurately so there is no overlap. This is done by mounting the three plates correctly and if the two images are out, tiny adjustments to up/down or left/right position can be made to the paper feed.

 

An old school skill of both the designer and the printer.

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Thank you for that reply I can sort of understand it now what do you mean by mounting three plates?

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The colour image in the example above is made up of three primary colours cyan (blue), magenta (red) and yellow (yellow). 

 

The image is split into these three colours and each is printed seperately on three plates. In this example, the first pass of the paper to make the background will only use the magenta ink. The second pass of the paper will use all three colours to make the full colour image. Black is made from mixing all three inks together however this makes what is called an 'imperfect black'. To print real black, you use a fourth plate with only the black part of the image on it.

 

If you use an injet printer to print a black and white photograph and the printer only has cyan, magenta and yellow cartridges the image will appear black and white but after time it will fade to brown. If you want a permanent black and white image it is better to use a printer which has a dedicated black ink cartridge.

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