Ads – A new Skillshare class!

How to Create an Ad

I created a new Skillshare class on how to create an ad in InDesign. It contains layout, typography, Photoshop color modes, production to print or digital and output to pdf as well as packaging your files for the vendor. Here’s the link if you’re interested. It covers the basics of a few InDesign tools, geared mostly for beginning Designs, but an entrepreneur could also use it to produce a simple ad for print or digital use. Materials are provided for practice, but you could also use your own images, copy and logo to produce the ad. If create ads, you might find these charts helpful. One chart converts fractions to decimals and the other converts inches to picas to points.

Create an Ad

A Typography Study

Glen FryRIP Glenn Frey. While researching the Eagles albums tonight, I found the typography very interesting. I love the custom logo drawing used in the 70’s, I’m not sure why they reverted to a more traditional typeface. Maybe they changed production companies the Eagles didn’t actually own the logo. I don’t know, but I think it was the best type treatment of all of them.

Typography Study

Producing Advertising Typography

TypographyHi, Here is the second version of a double truck ad. This one leaves no gutter allowance for the typography. I know the design is using the typography to create a texture in the background of the ad, but I think I still would have allowed for the gutter, because you can still read the words even though they are screened back. If the production artist had left 1/8 inch allowance on each side of the gutter (or even 1/32 inch) it would have made all of the words legible. What do you think? Does it matter since the type is being used as a texture? Do you think the designer wants us to read the type? or not?

Producing a Double Truck Ad

A double truck ad is an ad that spreads across the gutter to both pages -usually with a bleed, but not always. When producing a double truck ad, you should make allowances for the type to cross the gutter. A beautifully produced ad will leave the reader unaware that there is a gutter. In the first image below, you can see that the designer left a huge gutter. Much to large for this magazine. This is a rather high end home decor magazine with a high end advertiser placed within the first 10 pages of the publication ( a pricey placement location). The creative in this ad is really sophisticated and beautiful, but the production was poorly executed.

Double Truck Ad info

I know that most times, the designer doesn’t know where in the publication the ad will be placed, but as a rule of thumb, you can use a 1/8″ gutter on each side of the gutter, and be ok most of the time. Usually the publication will have a gutter size in the specifications of the ad. In this case the gutter is much too large, it’s about 3/8″ on each side of the gutter. It’s possible this ad was created for a different publication and then sent to this magazine — maybe the wrong file was picked up and sent to this publication. Either way, you should always print out the ad at 100% and mock it up with the actual gutter size to proof yourself, before sending the ad out for printing. I know it takes more time, but it’s worth it, to make sure your production is as high quality as the product the ad is selling.

The one thing you don’t want to do, is allow the magazine to revise the ad for you, they just don’t have the time. They will more than likely print whatever you send them.

Tomorrow, I will post an ad with the opposite problem. Let me know if you have any questions, I’ll do my best to answer it.


The devil is in the details!

Business Card

This was a small project to revise the name and address on the client’s business card. The files provided to me were Illustrator files and the font was not outlined except for the logo section. The client didn’t like what was happening with the font, it was being squashed together too tightly because the Illustrator file was looking for a font which was not available, so the system was substituting it.

I had the font used in the file, but it was from a different foundry than the original, so it needed some finessing of individual characters to make it look like the client’s other cards. For example the numbers in my version didn’t sit on one baseline, some of them fell below the baseline in a classic font style. I had to raise it 1-1.5 points above the baseline as well as adjust the tracking of the address lines to match up to the style of the original card.

The client also wanted to place a colored background to try to match a cream colored paper of the original cards. This was done to save money on the printing process, so the client didn’t have to special order the paper.The client had a sample of this being done previously-the designer had used 10% yellow, but the paper must have had a blue cast to it, because the final print came out on the green side. I added 1% cyan & 1% magenta to the 10% yellow in an effort to neutralize the green, since the card was being done at the same printer.

All the process PMS colors were also converted to 4/color process. I’m anxious to see how the colors come out, the cards are due back from the printer today.

Even the simplest jobs can take more time and expertise than expected. Sure the client could have done this project much cheaper, but they would not have received this much attention to all the details required to match the card perfectly to what they already had. For some clients that’s exceptable, but I like to go above and beyond to create an excellent product for the client.