Westland Printers–Improved Savings With Digital Proofing

Advertising agencies in the metropolitan Washington and Baltimore corridor make up nearly three-quarters of the printer’s customer base (the remaining one-quarter consists of corporations and associations).

Good Communications
Today, these customers are just as interested in cost savings as they are quick turnarounds, Westland adds. By turning to a digital proofing system, the printer saves time and money, and the proofing process is an excellent launch point for good communications.

Before the digital proofing system was in place, the prepress department would do a scan, make a set of films of all the images, and proof them on conventional analog proofing material.

“The process meant running films, then stripping them into position to make a proof,” Snyder recalls, noting that the process moved from the electronic prepress department to stripping and proofing departments. “The films left our department for proofing. When we got them back, we’d sort them out, cut them up and send them back to the customer.” That process could run between one and two days, he points out.

“Now, digital scans are sent directly over a local area network to the Kodak Approval digital color proofing system [from Kodak Polychrome Graphics], and within an hour we have a proof we can show to the customer. If there are changes, we rescan the image and an hour later have another proof.”

In addition, Snyder can match the digital proof to the press. “Most desktop proofs aren’t sufficiently accurate for our pressroom,” he notes. “What we get on the Kodak system is very close to what we match in the pressroom. The clients look at those proofs, and know this is what their finished job is going to look like. They can mark up the proof and send it back for corrections; they’re making the color call and the image call based on the digital proof. ”

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