T – Glossary of Print and Design Terms

Welcome to our comprehensive glossary of print and design terms. We are continually seeking to grow and improve this glossary, so if you spot any definition you do not agree with, a term that is missing, or have any comments in general, please email our reference team.

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Tabloid Using a broadsheet as a measure, one half of a broadsheet
Tack In printing inks, the property of cohesion between particles- the separation force of ink needed for proper transfer and trapping on multiColour presses. A tacky ink has high separation forces and can cause surface picking or splitting of weak papers
Tag 1. Strong grade of paper board with good bending/folding qualities, high bursting and tensile strength, tearing resistance, and selected for printed pieces where constant use is expected.2. Any generic series of alpha/numeric characters attached to plain ascii text which dictates that text is to appear/behave in a specific way when rules are applied to the file
Target Ink Densities Densities of the four process inks as recommended for various printing processes and grades of paper
Tear Strength Resistance of paper to rupture. Measured in grams of force required to continue a cut or tear which has already been started
Template 1. Concerning a printing project’s basic details in regard to its dimensions. A standard layout.2. A style sheet in a page make up software which applies specific rules to the textual content
Tensile Strength A paper’s ability to withstand pressure
Text Paper Designation for printing papers with textured surfaces such as laid or linen. Some mills also use ‘text’ to refer to any paper they consider top-of-the-line, whether or not its surface has a texture
Thermal Printer A nonimpact printer that uses special heat sensitive paper. The paper passes over a matrix of heating elements to change the colour of paper to produce characters
Thermography A printing process whereby slow drying ink is applied to paper and, while the ink is still wet, is lightly dusted with a resinous powder. The paper then passes through a heat chamber where the powder melts and fuses with the ink to produce a raised surface
Thesaurus A controlled vocabulary, structured into a hierarchy and presenting semantic relationships
Thin A unit of space in typesetting which is approximately half an en in width
Through Drier A slower drier that dries the ink throughout without forming a hard crust
Throw Out Gatefold sheet bound into a publication, often used for a map or chart. Also called gatefold and pullout
Thumbnail 1. Initial ideas jotted on virtually anything in regard to initial concept of a future project.2. Generic term used to refer to the small, imposed page images which are used to proof an imposition
Ticket Envelope Envelopes used mostly for theater tickets, with no other particular usage
TIFF (Tagged Image File Format) This is the most commonly used image format for saving and transporting bitmapped imaged
Tint Screening or adding white to a solid colour for results of lightening that specific colour.
Tip In Usually in the bookwork field, adding an additional page(s) beyond the normal process (separate insertion)
Tissue Protective lightweight paper [less than 65 gsm] placed over artwork and also used to indicate corrections or standards/colour/type etc
Titanium Oxide A bright white pigment (opaque) used for printing on metal and flexible packaging
Tolerances The specification of acceptable variations in register, density, dot size, plate or paper thickness, concentration of chemicals, and other printing parameters
Toluidine Red A red pigment with poor bleed resistance
Tone Compression Reduction in the tonal range from original scene to printed reproduction
Tooth The rough surfaced finish of papers such as vellum or antique
Total Area Coverage Total of the dot percentages of the process colours in the final film. Abbreviated for TAC. Also called density of tone, maximum density, shadow saturation, total dot density and total ink coverage
Touch Plate Plate that accents or prints a colour that four-colour process printing cannot reproduce well enough or at all. Also called kiss plate
Trade Shorthand name for ‘the book trade’, meaning booksellers, and wholesalers, etc
Translucent Ability of material to permit the passage of light through it even though the material is in itself not transparent
Transparent Inks that do not block out the coloured inks that they print over, but instead blend with them to create intermediate colours
Transparent Media Adaptor The part of a flatbed scanner used to scan transparent media. Usually an optional extra
Trap In printing, the ability to print a wet ink film over previously printed ink. Dry trapping is printing wet ink over dry ink. Wet trapping is printing wet ink over previously wet ink. In prepress, refers to how much overprinting Colours overlap to eliminate white lines between Colours and printing
Trim Marks Marks placed on the sheet to indicate where to cut the page
Trim Size The size of the printed material in its finished stage (e.g., the finished trim size is 297mm x 210mm)
True Colour Image A 24 bit image
Twin Wire Even sided paper which has been produced from two webs, and which have then been joined together while still wet, with their undersides at the centre
Twin Wire Machine Fourdrinier papermaking machines with two wires, instead of a wire and felt side. This assures higher quality when two sides are used for printing
Two Coating Chemical Transfer Paper Widely used carbonless paper. CB and CF coatings are colourless chemicals which react under pressure for give blue or black image. Requires appropriate coating to be brought together to form image
Two Sidedness The difference in feel and appearance of either side of a sheet of paper due to the papermaking process having a felt and wire side
Typeface A printing type of a specific design
Typesetting The process of converting the copyedited text files supplied by the author into the final style, layout and design of the printed book. The typesetter will often follow a house or series style for the book. Today, typesetting can often involve inserting tags into the text to allow the text to be used electronically in other applications. This tagging can be in a number of formats, but predominantly SGML or XML