Printing can be a very environmentally damaging activity. Luckily, some printing firms
have greatly improved their supplies of stock and their printing processes and I can recommend the following:
54a Rectory Road, Oxford, OX4 1BW Open: Monday - Friday 11am - 5pm
Tel: 0845 345 1398 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.oxfordgreenprint.co.uk
Friendly, good value, use 100% post-consumer recycled paper. Note that they have moved premises.
Good for low-cost one-colour printing on a wide range of coloured paper and card. Can do some
spot-colour work but restricted by digital printing machine. Can also do short runs of full-colour laser
prints upto A3. GreenPrint use soya-based inks and are powered from renewable sources.
Seacourt Limited, Pony Road, Horspath Road, Industrial Estate, Cowley, Oxford, OX4 2SE
Tel: 01865 770140 Email: email@example.com www.seacourt.net
Friendly, high quality, but a bit more expensive than ‘normal’ printers. Seacourt are ‘carbon neutral’,
with EC-EMAS and ISO 14001 acreditation. They tend to use a stock of at least 75% post-consumer waste,
with less than 25% mill broke. They use a waterless offset printing press, making their waste minimal.
Footprint Workers Co-op, 16 Back Sholebroke Avenue, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS7 3HB
Tel: 0113 262 4408 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.footprinters.co.uk
Footprinters is a friendly workers cooperative, with similar machines and stock to Oxford GreenPrint.
Reliable, responsive and fast. Their website is great, with many useful links, paper colours and
Some key design and printing terms
Artwork - the finalised design files, either emailed or giver on a CDrom. Printers will expect this
to be ‘print-ready’ minimising the time they take getting it ready to print. It’s a good idea to also
give the printer a quality print-out (or emailed PDF / JPG) of how it’s supposed to look. If you are
using a layout package (EG Scribus or Quark) you should also give the printer copies of the fonts
and images that the file uses.
Bleeds - if your design has ink that goes right up to the edge of the paper, the artwork needs to be
a bit bigger than the final size, usually by about 3mm. The design is printed on paper a bit bigger
than the final size, and then after printing, the edges are trimmed off. Most large printers assume
that you’ll want this, always. GreenPrint and Footprinters have machines that cannot do this, and
artwork for these machines cannot have content near any edge, by about 8mm.
Finishing - things done to the printed materials after printing. EG: trimming (off bleeds) & folding.
If your job involves folding, be clear in your instructions as to which way the fold goes!
Glossy paper - I always thought this was a plastic coating, but actually it’s made of a fine clay that
is dug from a huge open-cast mine in the South West of the UK, to the detriment of the local
wildlife, loal people and the water table. Maybe we don’t need our publicity to be a part of this.
P.C.W. - Post Consumer Waste - a pecentage (often 100% or 75%) referring to a paper’s source.
This represents trully recycled stock, rather than paper made from rags, or offcuts from a paper
mill (which is called mill broke). GreenPrint and Footprinters use 100% post-consumer paper.
Proofs - most printers will want to give you a 'proof' - a printout of what they are about to print.
There are usually three types: A> a ‘wet-proof’ is very expensive and is an actual print out
from the printing-machines they will use for the main job; B> a 'Laser-proof' is a high-quality
print our from a full-colour laser printer; or C> a emailable 'PDF-proof' - just a PDF of the designs
that they are about to print. This is a last chance for you to notice that, eg: it’s upside-down etc.
Resolution - the amount of detail within an image, measured as ‘dots per inch’ (D.P.I.). High quality
printing is usually done at 600dpi, sometimes more. Many people consider 300dpi to be enough,
and this is often a sensible ‘minimum’ to stick to, especially if you’re emailing the artwork.
Most images from the internet are ‘low-resolution’ - just 72 or 96dpi, which looks fine on screen
but if used in printed materials, they look blocky or blurry. If an image is less than 200Kb in size
it is clearly ‘low-rez’. Quality photos are usually over 1Mb in size.
Size - the width and length of the paper or card, in millimeters. Most printers can cut the final work
into any size. Sticking to the ‘A’ convention will mean less wastage (in offcuts) and might be
slightly cheaper as the job can be processed quickly along with ‘other’ normal jobs.
A4 is 29.7mm by 210mm. A5 is half of that (210 by 14.85). A6 is half of that (14.85 by 105).
A3 is double the size of A4. A2 is double that. A1 is is double that. A0 is... very big.
Stock - the paper or card that you are printing on.
T.C.F. - Totally Chlorine Free - the paper was not bleached using any form of chlorine.
ECF is not quite as good, meaning Elemental Chlorine Free.