Fulltone (offset) book printing technique

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    Topic: Fulltone (offset) book printing technique Read 383 Times
  • Jan Bell
    Jan Bell
    Silver Member
    Posts: 3
    Papers & Media
    on: February 27, 2021 at 3:35 pm

    I have been working on a portfolio book for the last couple of years. In talking with John Sexton about his books, and those of Don Worth (which I own), I learned that they were all printed at Dual Graphics. I got a quote from them two years ago, but unfortunately they are no longer in business. This seems to the the trend with US book printers. They refined a process called Fultone printing. It adds depth not seen in ordinary offset printing. The prints look as though they came from a darkroom. Do any of you know of another printer in the US that can print at this level of quality?

     

    PLEASE email me directly, as I don’t log on here very often.

     

    WEB: http://www.bellimages.com

    EMAIL: [email protected]

    Mark D Segal
    Mark D Segal
    Silver Member
    Posts: 493
    Re: Fulltone (offset) book printing technique
    Reply #1 on: February 27, 2021 at 3:55 pm

    Have a look at Meridian (meridianprinting.com) and Puritan Press (puritanpress.com). Lenswork, by the way, is printed in Canada at Hemlock in Vancouver (hemlock.com) and if you know Lenswork you know the quality is superb. The names of the processes they use is less important than what they can actually produce, so you should see whether they will provide samples of the kind of work you would be printing and their press profiles allowing you to softproof your images for the technology they would recommend to you, a key determinant of which is the size of the print run.

    Mark D Segal Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8, SilverFast HDR, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop". Please check the PhotoPXL Store for availability.

    Jan Bell
    Jan Bell
    Silver Member
    Posts: 3
    Re: Fulltone (offset) book printing technique
    Reply #2 on: March 1, 2021 at 4:55 pm

    Mark,

    Thanks for your help. I see that Meridian Printed Nick Brandt’s “On This Earth a Shadow Falls.” I own that book and will look at the reproduction more carefully. Nothing against Brooks Jensen, but I’ve never been overly impressed with the quality of the printing in LensWork. That said, Brooks has done great things to advance contemporary photographers!!

    Mark D Segal
    Mark D Segal
    Silver Member
    Posts: 493
    Re: Fulltone (offset) book printing technique
    Reply #3 on: March 1, 2021 at 5:48 pm

    Meridian also printed the magnificent “Ansel Adams at 100” book curated by Szarkowski, and it gets no better than that. Stinehour, which became Puritan printed Clyde Butcher’s work – also as good as it gets. If you are looking for the best of the best those two would be first qualifiers. What they charge could be another matter. I’ve never heard of “Fulltone”, but these books I’m talking about are printed using duotone or tritone processes, which are well-known in the offset printing industry.

    Mark D Segal Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8, SilverFast HDR, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop". Please check the PhotoPXL Store for availability.

    Kevin Raber
    Kevin Raber
    Silver Member
    Posts: 828
    Re: Fulltone (offset) book printing technique
    Reply #4 on: March 3, 2021 at 9:38 pm

    Right here in good ole Indianapolis, we have a great coffee table book printer.  Give them a looksie.  https://www.vederepress.com

     

     

    Kevin Raber
    CEO & Publisher of PhotoPXL.com and Rockhopperworkshops.com

    Mark D Segal
    Mark D Segal
    Silver Member
    Posts: 493
    Re: Fulltone (offset) book printing technique
    Reply #5 on: March 3, 2021 at 9:55 pm

    That looks like an interesting service. I am, however, somewhat perplexed by their claim to produce very rich colour on an 8 colour press (should be fine!), but their colour profile is GRACoL_2006, which has quite a bit narrower gamut than the more recent XCMYK profile (reflecting the use of 4 – CMYK – higher-pigmented inks to expand gamut), or CMYK+OGV which has 14% or so more gamut volume than XCMYK. It would be good to have that explained.

    Mark D Segal Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8, SilverFast HDR, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop". Please check the PhotoPXL Store for availability.

    Mike Nelson Pedde
    Mike Nelson Pedde
    Participant
    Posts: 641
    Re: Fulltone (offset) book printing technique
    Reply #6 on: March 4, 2021 at 4:50 pm

    I’ll admit to not knowing what fulltone printing is, but if we’re tossing out printers I’ll add one more to the list. Friesens Corporation is a 114-yr-old, employee-owned company based on Amish values and sustainability principles, located in southern Manitoba. We worked with them to produce Marcia’s first children’s book (The Adventures of Rainbow Mouse) and our friend Dion used them to print his coffee table book Prairie Sunset, which is a book of photographs and history of old homesteads across the Canadian prairies. NB: In the past number of years they’ve gotten huge; I don’t know how that affects prices, but at certain times of the year they can get backlogged. https://www.friesens.com/

    Mike.

    P.S. They also have a division – FriesenPress – that supports independent authors with book editing, page layout, cover design, etc. https://www.friesenpress.com/

    _____
    Mike Nelson Pedde
    Victoria, BC
    https://www.wolfnowl.com/

    Mark D Segal
    Mark D Segal
    Silver Member
    Posts: 493
    Re: Fulltone (offset) book printing technique
    Reply #7 on: March 4, 2021 at 5:00 pm

    Re Friesens: I’ve had recent discussions with them. They operate along essentially two streams. (1) Large scale offset printing for customers needing big print runs (talking a thousand or more copies); if you aren’t one of those, this stream is not for you. (2) Printing/marketing streams. In this stream you buy a package service from them that includes varying amounts of prepress and marketing arrangements. If you don’t want one of these packages, either because you don’t need them or don’t want to pay for them, then this stream is not for you. As neither were for me, I decided to pass on them.

    Mark D Segal Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8, SilverFast HDR, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop". Please check the PhotoPXL Store for availability.

    Mark D Segal
    Mark D Segal
    Silver Member
    Posts: 493
    Re: Fulltone (offset) book printing technique
    Reply #8 on: March 4, 2021 at 5:03 pm

    PS: Mike, I received an email of another post on e-book making that you put into the Color Management Forum, but when I tried to access it I got a 404 Error message. If you are waiting for replies to that post, they may not be forthcoming!

    Mark D Segal Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8, SilverFast HDR, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop". Please check the PhotoPXL Store for availability.

    Jan Bell
    Jan Bell
    Silver Member
    Posts: 3
    Re: Fulltone (offset) book printing technique
    Reply #9 on: March 12, 2021 at 3:13 pm

    Re Friesens: I’ve had recent discussions with them. They operate along essentially two streams. (1) Large scale offset printing for customers needing big print runs (talking a thousand or more copies); if you aren’t one of those, this stream is not for you. (2) Printing/marketing streams. In this stream you buy a package service from them that includes varying amounts of prepress and marketing arrangements. If you don’t want one of these packages, either because you don’t need them or don’t want to pay for them, then this stream is not for you. As neither were for me, I decided to pass on them.

    Yes, I had talked with Friesen’s multiple times over the past year. I even received a quote from them. In my opinion, the do no print the “fine art” quality that I am looking for. When I compare their work to the work to Dual Graphics, it’s like comparing a Porsche to a Ford. Weston, Don Wirth, Ansel, and John Sexton all had books printed at Dual Graphics. Friesen’s quote was 1/3 the price of what I received from Dual Graphics (who has since closed their doors). But, I feel that you get what you pay for. I have a quote from them, and it’s in line with the quote that I received from Dual Graphics ($32,00 for 300 books).

    I am attaching three of the four pdfs that comprise my book project packet (the actual “sample book” was too large, but it can be seen in my interview on Photo PX>. Look them over. Should care to be a part of the project, get in touch. I’m still a few thousand short from meeting my goal … but it’s within site.

    Mark D Segal
    Mark D Segal
    Silver Member
    Posts: 493
    Re: Fulltone (offset) book printing technique
    Reply #10 on: March 12, 2021 at 4:57 pm

    Did you mean 3200 or 32000?

    The paper used and most importantly the size of the press run are critical factors in these estimates. And hard cover linen binding adds a huge chunk to the bill. I’ve been into lots of estimates lately and am getting a fairly clear picture of this business. Given the very high quality of the work you do and the intent of the project I agree you should go for the best there is out there. Based on output that I’ve seen, especially in Black and White rendition, you should be in good hands with firms such as Meridian, Hemlock and Genoud S.A. in Lausanne Switzerland. None of them are cheap, but as you said………..;  (Genoud by the way printed a good number of Salgado’s books. Go for at least three or four estimates and discuss with them the details of what they would do for you in terms of the thickness and density of the paper, the surface texture, the printing technology and press profiling, etc. You definitely need high quality duotone or tritone printing for those photos. 300 copies is really small potatoes for an offset print job, so it pushes unit cost very high; then depending on whether you will do your own prepress or let the printer do it, could be more money still. Hemlock and Genoud both provide excellent resources for do-it-yourself prepress. I’m facing the same issue with a project I’m trying to get off the ground. Does one go for small and expensive or larger and less expensive? The key thing is how many copies one thinks one will sell and this is exactly what I’m grappling with. If one knows that, the printing strategy becomes self-explanatory. I’ve constructed a spreadsheet which lays out a framework for calculating break-even volume, required pricing and maximum risk exposure based on parameters one inputs in several cells. Do reach out to me by PM if you would like to have that.

    Mark D Segal Author: "Scanning Workflows with SilverFast 8, SilverFast HDR, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop". Please check the PhotoPXL Store for availability.

    • This reply was modified 7 months, 1 week ago by Mark D Segal.
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