Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

What to include in a prepress portfolio?

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • What to include in a prepress portfolio?

    I am starting out in the prepress industry for now so I can at least move out and get started up, and would like to do photo retouching on the side soon after.

    Anyway what should I be putting in the portfolio? Nothing over the top and excessive I would think, mainly color correction? I would assume a good cover letter and a sit down test would show knowledge of trapping, preflight, imposition, getting ready to rip...etc, etc.

    Also would it be ok to put some of my design stuff in the back to show I have a background in design? That's what I went to school for but there's not a lot of demand around here.

    Would the before and after attached below be over the top as they wouldn't care because thats not what they do? I don't think it'll hurt but was wondering what your opinions where.

    For anyone who's curious, heres my design portfolio so far (don't have the website up yet)
    Design FlickR Portfolio

    Thanks in advance guys!
    Attached Files

  • #2
    Re: What to include in a prepress portfolio?

    in general have a variety of samples, but i have found your portfolio will only get you in the door..how you do on the test they give will determine whether or not you get the job, i know this doesn't sound fair as you could have 10 years of experience with a degree as well and you're being judged on 90 minutes of work...

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: What to include in a prepress portfolio?

      If it's primarily a prepress outfit, your skills in certain assembly and rip software will be most valuable to your employer, retouching second, although they will be happy to have someone on staff they can fall back on if the retouching load gets heavy. If you want to show your design work, fine, but put a lot of emphasis on your ability to jump through hoops using, say, InDesign or Illustrator. Don't expect anyone to be impressed with asthetics.
      Most prepress/retouching firms keep color people and assembly people seperate these days. I used to do a lot of assembly work, but I avoid it like a bad cold, because it's a pain in the neck, and somewhat thankless, because the smallest mistake can land you in a heap of trouble, while retouching results are primarily subjective, unless you really screw up. Retouching usually pays better, too.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: What to include in a prepress portfolio?

        Thanks for the replies guys that's kind of what I was expecting. I hope I can get more into the color correcting but I will take whatever, beats working in an industrial shop I bet they give you hell if your mistakes make it to film or worse to press!

        My first stop will be probably be at MPI Label's, My dad has a friend who is a some kind of manager there and that might help. They have a hefty client list too, such as Wal-Mart, HP, Tide, Hoover, etc.. and they do everything in house.

        I've read a couple of pre-press books and will be scouring all over lynda.com with the $30 a month deal to learn hours and hours of indesign, quark, and others ( They also have a Prepress essentials by Taz Tally for photoshop and indesign to make rip ready files)

        Is there any software here that I don't have listed that I need to be proficient at?
        Photoshop
        Illustrator
        Acrobat
        Distiller
        Indesign
        Quark
        Suitcase
        Pitstop (to modify PDF's )
        Flightcheck (Do a lot of companies use this??)

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: What to include in a prepress portfolio?

          I would say all of those, with Photoshop at the bottom for now. You will also be using a Rip software like Nexus or some other brand the shop you're going to is using. I can't see how they would expect you to know that without training from them.
          Suitcase is also very important, because the mysterious and buggy world of fonts awaits you. And some people, even very high end agencies, still desgn entire ads in Illustrator.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: What to include in a prepress portfolio?

            Thanks Benny !

            The rip software was something I was wondering about....I've used Colorburst but I would assume thats pretty stripped down compared to theirs

            I use Suitcase fusion on my Mac-Pro so I have an understanding of how it works, I think MPI used Suitcase Font reserve on a font server, but that was a few years ago when I got a tour.

            I was told font usage was the number one thing that goes wrong when sending a job to the printer, so I am studying up on font management. I had a whole class on just typography so hopefully that will help. Is Opentype still the preferred font type followed by Postscript ?

            Yea photoshop is defiantly on the bottom of my list! I have 40-45 hrs of indesign and around 20hrs of quark material to soak up, I wish I knew my way around those like I do in Photoshop
            Last edited by AdamZx3; 12-22-2007, 10:31 PM.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: What to include in a prepress portfolio?

              As I said, if the outfit is savvy, they'll commit to a modern, fast PDF making machine like Evo or Nexus. But the stuff is expensive, and needs special training to use. I've been long enough away from using the stuff, but close enough to watch to know that it's not easy, if it's used for different workflows. If it's adapted to one little workflow, or product, it's as easy as pushing a button.
              Fonts are mysterious, for sure, but the most important marriage between prepress and printer these days is color management. If they get that right, people are happy, very happy. If i was to forge a career in prepress today, i'd aspire to be an expert in that discipline.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: What to include in a prepress portfolio?

                Cool, i'll pickup a color management book too, the Real World Color Management book seems to be a pretty good one from the reviews. I've learned about basic color management for outputting to an inkjet, but a CMYK workflow will be a new thing for me.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: What to include in a prepress portfolio?

                  Originally posted by AdamZx3 View Post
                  Real World Color Management book

                  Excellent choice. Good luck, and happy holidaze.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: What to include in a prepress portfolio?

                    has Real World Color Management been updated recently, i was thinking of getting the color management book by Eddie Tapp...

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: What to include in a prepress portfolio?

                      has Real World Color Management been updated recently, i was thinking of getting the color management book by Eddie Tapp...
                      The 2nd edition says 2004 on Amazon, so yes fairly recently.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: What to include in a prepress portfolio?

                        Hey AdamZx3
                        With your question regarding what to include in your portfolio, when I got into the premedia/high-end pre-press industry, I concentrated putting 10 of my best work in my portfolio from previous employers and personal work. Only you can determine these things. If you're going to concentrate on lots of fashion/glamour and skin retouch, then emphasize that on your portfolio. If it's products, then concentrate on that. If the company has various clients, then mix it up with your best work. I have several different portfolios for my Graphic Production Art work to Retouch to Photography. Target the specifics for the job you are applying for.

                        Study the companies and check out what kind of work they do. Stand out from the rest of the crowd. I did it by wearing my best outfit, by sending them thank you emails and cards for their time and outlining to them what I can contribute to the company, by having a solid portfolio including my laptop and showed them my workflow. I sold myself by the fact that not only can I do retouch, but I can also do other graphic production work. Know your CMYK numbers. I had the foundation, but I wasn't proficient with the cmyk workflow since I have a photo background which concentrated more on RGB workflow. In the end, I was able to beat other candidates who I thought were better than me because most of them had over 10+ years of commercial retouch experience compared to the fact I only had 3+ years of graphic experience. Bottom line, you will have to outsell everyone else by doing whatever is necessary to land the job (but don't lowball yourself either because it will only hurt the industry).
                        From what I see, you have all the necessary skills to get into a high-end shop

                        I am very fortunate that I go to work everyday and love what I do and like the people I work with.

                        ...just FYI (and I guess for everyone else who is interested)...if you're still aspiring to be a high-end retoucher and you are currently looking for work and you don't mind relocating, as of December 26, 2007, my company is hiring in the Seattle area for a High End Retouch/Assembly operator. Check out craigslist in Seattle. Don't know if you want to relocate from NE Ohio to the Pacific Northwest or not, but hey, it's an opportunity. I like to help people out especially the ones who I think are talented with aspirations. I don't know what the industry is like in Ohio, but it seems like there's more opportunity in the West Coast and East Coast and maybe Chicago area. Have you considered moving out Ohio if there isn't much work?

                        Good luck to you and Best regards

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: What to include in a prepress portfolio?

                          the chicago area is overstaffed ever since Schawk bought out Seven, i still run into a few people that are trying to get back on their feet after they consolidated...

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: What to include in a prepress portfolio?

                            That's too bad. I can only hope for the best to those few people trying to get back on their feet. I suffered their same fate in the past. I remember during the "dot.bomb" when my Ad Agency (which was world-wide) suffered a massive "workforce" reduction. Every graphic production artist (including me) from the East Coast to the West Coast got laid off, and centralized a hub in Indiana because the company saved a ton of money by doing so. Almost like "offshoring" work, except it's here in our country. That's why I believe that having all those skills like those of AdamZx3's got will make him more valuable to a potential employer. I say never ever stop learning and growing

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: What to include in a prepress portfolio?

                              ...just FYI (and I guess for everyone else who is interested)...if you're still aspiring to be a high-end retoucher and you are currently looking for work and you don't mind relocating, as of December 26, 2007, my company is hiring in the Seattle area for a High End Retouch/Assembly operator. Check out craigslist in Seattle. Don't know if you want to relocate from NE Ohio to the Pacific Northwest or not, but hey, it's an opportunity. I like to help people out especially the ones who I think are talented with aspirations. I don't know what the industry is like in Ohio, but it seems like there's more opportunity in the West Coast and East Coast and maybe Chicago area. Have you considered moving out Ohio if there isn't much work?
                              I would relocate in a heartbeat! Ohio has very little to no retouch work. I just assumed get 2 years in hear and look for a good paying job. I considered relocating to North Carolina because of the weather, but finding a job is the tough part! Since I have 0 years experience I would think that is my biggest drawback, but depending on how you look at it, I don't have any bad habits to break I'm hoping having a background in photography, design, retouching, and studying a lot on prepress will move me into somewhere.

                              My sister and her husband live in Tacoma, but he left off to Iraq so she's back home, but anyway they loved it out there. If you have a ballpark idea on salary could you PM me? I really would just be happy with enough to live comfortably on without living in a bad part of town. I have a wedding to go to this weekend in Columbus but will have to get back to you sat afternoon. An opportunity like that would be great.

                              Comment

                              widgetinstance 175 (Related Topics) skipped due to lack of content & hide_module_if_empty option.
                              Working...
                              X