Time to sit down, relax and look at your proof…
So when we produce artwork for you we will present it in a presentation document, like below.
This document is used as a proofing document before we send over the final artwork.
Checking proofs is an important step that often doesn’t receive the attention it deserves. We always check your proofs with a fine-tooth comb, but it is always a good idea to spend the time reviewing the proof we send you closely. There are important details that should be reviewed each time you receive one.
Assure All Content Is Included
“Wow, love that, I’ll send that to print!”. Wait, hold on… Have you checked that the content is correct, that everything is accounted for; including text and graphics?
Spelling and Punctuation
Read the copy backwards to catch spelling mistakes. When we see words strung together in sentence our speed-reading instincts often take over and we breeze through the copy and miss crucial spelling and punctuation mistakes along the way. There have been times when a misspelled word gets overlooked by several people and it ends up being on the cover of a brochure. Carefully review the spelling and punctuation on your proofs to avoid embarrassing and expensive reprinting costs; and the consequences that may follow. If you’re using Adobe Acrobat to review PDFs, you can perform spell checks electronically as a backup to your manual review; but that won’t catch mistakes of improper usage such as using “for” where “four” was supposed to be. So be careful…
If your brand has an approved colour palette and brand guidelines, you must make sure that the colours in the proof consistently reflect the specified brand colours. For example, if a particular red is defined by the brand, check the proof throughout to confirm that the correct red is the one being used wherever red is appearing. If you’re unsure, ask your graphic designer or printer to supply a colour swatch. There is also a way to check for colour consistency and accuracy in PDFs by using Adobe Acrobat but you will need the Pro version of the software to do it.
Ask you designer for the full-size artwork and take out a ruler and measure it. It sounds elementary but if you need that insert to fit into a A4 envelope, make sure it will fit before 50,000 of them are printed at the wrong size. If you are reviewing a PDF in Adobe Acrobat, you can hover your cursor over the lower left part of the document window to reveal the trim size.
By the time you reach the proof stage of a project, you may have been looking at the design for weeks or months. This is why we suggest having a fresh set of eyes review the proof before you give your approval. It’s added insurance that nothing gets overlooked.
The bottom line when receiving proofs is to check your proofs carefully. The last thing you want to experience is that pit in your stomach feeling when you find a GIANT mistake after its been printed.
Hopefully this article will be of some assistance when it comes to reviewing proofs. Anything you can do to eliminate the need for reprinting a project or having to explain how errors were overlooked is a good thing. After all, no one wants to become the person responsible for embarrassing and costly errors.