Calendar – To make the surface of paper smooth by pressing it between rollers during manufacturing.
Caliper – Device used to measure thickness, expressed in thousandths of an inch (mils or points), pages per inch (ppi), thousandths of a millimeter (microns) or pages per centimeter (ppc).
Carbonless Paper – Paper coated with chemicals that enable transfer of images from one sheet to another with pressure from writing or typing.
Case Bind – This is the most common binding method for hardcovers, referring to a process of binding using glue. The glue holds signatures to a case made of binder board covered with fabric, plastic or leather. Also called cloth bind, edition bind, hard bind and hardcover.
Cast Coated – A High gloss, coated paper. This procedure involves pressing the paper against a polished, hot, metal drum, achieved while the coating is still wet.
Choke – Technique of slightly reducing the size of an image to create a hairline trap or to outline. Also called shrink and skinny.
CMYK – Abbreviation for cyan, magenta, yellow and key (black), the four process colours. More detailed info is available on CMYK here.
Coarse Screen – Halftone screen with ruling of 65, 85 or 100 lines per inch (26, 34 or 40 lines centimeter).
Coated and Uncoated – Paper with a coating of clay and other substances that improves reflectivity and ink holdout. Mills produce coated paper in the four major categories: cast, gloss, dull and matte.
Collate – To organize printed matter in a specific order as requested.
Colour Balance – Refers to amounts of process colours that simulate the colours of the original scene or photograph.
Colour Cast – Unwanted colour affecting an entire image or portion of an image.
Colour Control Bar – This is a means of ensuring uniform colour balance by adding a strip of colour (small blocks etc.) on a proof or press sheet. You can then evaluate the colour features, such as density and dot gain. Also called colour bar, colour guide and standard offset colour bar.
Colour Correct – To adjust the relationship among the process colours to achieve desirable colours.
Colour Curves – Referring to computer software, enabling users to correct or even change colours. Also called HLS and HVS tables.
Colour Gamut – The entire range of colours that can be reduced using a specific device, such as a computer screen, or system, such as four-colour process printing.
Colour Mark-Up – Piece of artwork’s specifications, showing the colours that are necessary to print.
Colour Separation – Historically, a technique of using a camera, scanner or computer to divide continuous-tone colour images into four colour halftones.
Colour Sequence – Order in which inks are printed. Also called laydown sequence and rotation.
Comb Bind – Inserting the teeth of a flexible plastic comb through holes punched along the edge of a large stack of paper. The printing process is also known as plastic bind or GBC bind (a brand term).
Composition – (1) In typography, the assembly of typographic elements, such as words and paragraphs, into pages ready for printing. (2) In graphic design, the arrangement of type, graphics and other elements on the page.
Contrast – The degree of tones in an image ranging from highlight to shadow.
Conversion (envelope) – Pre-printed sheets that are then converted into envelopes, rather than over-printing a design onto a pre-manufactured envelope.
Cover – A cover advertises the title and protects the contents of the publication. Cover 1 = outside front; Cover 2 = inside front; Cover 3 = inside back, Cover 4 = outside back.
Coverage – Extent to which ink covers the surface of a substrate. Ink coverage is usually expressed as light, medium or heavy.
Cover Paper – Category of thick paper used for products such as posters, menus, folders and covers of paperback books.
Crash – Coarse cloth embedded in the glue along the spine of a book to increase the strength of binding. Also called gauze, mull and scrim.
Creep – Phenomenon of middle pages of a folded signature extending slightly beyond outside pages. Also called feathering, outpush, push out and thrust.
Crop Marks – Lines near the edges of an image indicating portions to be reproduced. Also called cut marks and tick marks.
CTP – Refers to Computer-to-Plate: a process of imaging printing plates directly from a digital file, as opposed to the traditional mechanical method of using film exposure and chemicals.
Cure – To dry inks, varnishes or other coatings after printing to ensure good adhesion and prevent setoff.
Cutoff – The length of the printed sheet that the press cuts from the roll of paper.
Cut Sizes – Paper sizes used with office machines and small presses.
Cutting Die – Usually a custom ordered item to trim specific and unusual sized printing projects.
C Sizes – Paper sizes specifically used for envelopes, designed to hold A size paper.
Cyan – One of the four process colours. Also known as process blue.