Glossary of Terms

Like any industry, ours uses a variety of terms. If you want to find out what they mean, you are in the right place! Simply click on a letter to see its list of terms. If the term you are looking for isn't listed in our glossary feel free to contact us so that we may help you as well as add it to our list.

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Edge Acuity

The degree to which the edge of an image appears sharp and precise, not fuzzy. Uniform ink coverage will positively affect an image's edge acuity.

Edge Gilding

The utilization of gold leaf to coat page borders.

Edge Staining

Using various pigment(s) on a document, pamphlet or book's finished edge


To alter information in form or substance.


The quantity produced during a print run. Often applied to signed fine-art prints of a limited run.

Edition Binding

See case binding.

Eggshell Finish

The finish of paper surface that resembles an eggshell achieved by omitting the calendar process. A rough textured paper Reference, calendar rolls.

Electron Beam Coating

A clear coating that dries when exposed to an electron radiation. Electron beam coatings are generally glossy when cured and very durable.

Electronic Color Correction

Using a computer system to adjust, change or otherwise alter or manipulate a color image. Examples include changing a CMYK image to RGB or vice versa, retouching, adjusting color balance, color saturation, contrast, etc.

Electronic Color Scanner

An electronic device similar to a photocopier that converts a physical color image into four separate, single color images, one for each of the three process colors plus black. The four digital images are used to create four printing plates. When the four ink colors are combined on the printing substrate a full color reproduction of the original is produced.

Electronic Composition

1. Using a computer system to copyfit and paginate a printing project. The finished project is output on paper or film on an imagesetter. 2. The assembly of characters into words, lines and paragraphs of text or body matter with graphic elements in page layout form in digital format for reproduction by printing.

Electronic Proof

A process of generating a prepress proof in which paper is electronically exposed to the color separation negatives; the paper is passed through the electrically charged pigmented toners, which adhere electrostatically, resulting in the finished proof.

Elliptical Dot

Halftone screens in which the dots are actually elongated to produce improved middle tones.


  1. A unit of measurement equaling 12 points or 4.5 mm.
  2. A measure of space that is equal to the square of the type body — the larger the type size the larger em space. An em space is sometimes specified as the amount of the indent of the first line of type in a paragraph.
  3. Em is so called because, in early fonts, the letter M was usually cast on a square body, such as 10 points high and 10 points wide.

See Also: em dash, en dash

em dash

  1. A line the width of a font's uppercase M.
  2. A dash, one em long, that is used to separate parenthetical phrases within a sentence or to indicate missing words.

See Also: em space, en dash

em space

A fixed space equal to the width of the type size being used.


A method of paper finishing whereby a pattern is pressed into the paper when it is dry.


1. Producing a raised surface on a substrate. When deliberately created, a metal die is used to press a pattern or image into the material. Sometimes embossing is an unintended and unwanted effect created when the wet ink is pulled up from the surface of the substrate as the printing plate is lifted away. See waffling. 2. To raise in relief a design or letters already printed on card stock or heavy paper by an uninked block or die. In rubber and plastic platemaking. The process is usually done by heat.


A light sensitive substance used as a coating for film; made from a silver halide compound. This side should face the lens when the film is exposed.

en dash

  1. A line the width of a font's uppercase N.
  2. A dash that is half the width of an em dash.

See Also: em, em space


A term that describes a glossy coating on paper.

End Matter

The appendix, agenda, glossary, index, and bibliography and other material's printed at the rear of a book. Other Term: back matter.


Attaching the final sheet of a signature of a book to the binding.

English Finish

A grade of uncoated book paper with a smooth uniform surface.


A printing process whereby images such as copy or art are etched onto a plate. When ink is applied, these etched areas act as small wells to hold the ink; paper is forced against this die and the ink is lifted out of the etched areas creating raised images on the paper. See also: letterpress; relief plate; relief printing.


The form used by the printer to calculate the project for the print buyer. This form contains the basic parameters of the project including size, quantity, colors, bleeds, photos etc.


One who computes or approximates the cost of work to be done on which quotation may be based.


The process of producing an image on a plate by the use of acid.

Even Smalls

The use of smaller sized capitals at the beginning of a sentence without the use of larger sized caps.


Exa is an SI prefix in the SI system of units denoting 1018 or 1 000 000 000 000 000 000.
Adopted in 1991, it comes from the Greek ἕξ, meaning six (like hexa-), because it is equal to 10006.
Abbreviation: E

Exempli Gratia

  1. For example.
  2. For the sake of example.

Abbreviation: e.g.

Expanded Type

Type with width greater than normal producing a rectangular effect.


That stage of the photographic process where the image is produced on the light sensitive coating.

Extended Color

Used when an image is meant to extend completely to the edge of the finished sheet. Printing a color beyond the trim edge of a sheet to ensure that there is no white space at the edge after the substrate on which the image is printed is trimmed to the finished size.


A white pigment added to a colored pigment to reduce its intensity and improve its working qualities.

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