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Acrylics, Embedments & Awards Glossary

This glossary defines frequently used terms and abbreviations that may appear on the Acrylics, Embedments & Awards web site. Also see the Acrylics, Embedments & Awards FAQ

Acetate: A clear film used for silk-screening. Once embedded, the film turns clear seems to be floating 3 dimensionally within acrylic piece.

Artwork: Any non-typeset drawing, photo, illustration, or lettering to be printed and used in or on product.

Autoclave: A sealed oven with thick walls used for making chemical reactions under high pressure. Regular curing time for acrylic is 12 hours.

Bleed: Illustration or printed matter that extends over crop marks.

Camera-Ready Art: Any drawing, photo, illustration or lettering that is suitable to withstand photographic reproduction.

Casting: A mold, which may be either cardboard or metal, is built according to desired shape. Acrylic resin powder and crystal-clear liquid are mixed to produce a thick, opaque liquid, called "slurry". First layer of slurry is poured into mold and embedment is glued onto partially-set layer. Final layer of slurry is poured over embedment to fill mold.

Color Filling: The process through which ink is used to add color to laser-engraved text. However, the choice of standard colors is limited to red, white, metallic silver, gold, gray, copper, and a deep blue.

Color Separation: The separation of multicolored art by camera or laser-scan technique. Each film corresponds to one printing color.

Crop Mark: A marking placed on artwork to show where an illustration is to be cut.

Cropping: The process of removing an unnecessary portion of a picture, illustration, or photograph.

Curing: The process in which mold is placed in autoclave to be cured at approximately 150F under pressure.

Cutting Die: A tool with very sharp edges used to cut a specific shape from printed paper. This tool is used for the production of dimensional decals.

Deal Toy: An acrylic piece with artwork embedded inside used for commemorating a financial transaction, for example, a merger, acquisition, or issue of shares.

Die-Cutting: To cut a specific shape from printed paper using a Cutting Die.

Double Cast: This type of casting is performed for various applications, such as those requiring copy to show on three or more sides of piece.

D.P.I.: Dots per Inch. Unit of measure used for the resolution of a picture.

Drop Shipping: Blind Shipping of merchandise from the manufacturer to the end-user to save time, rather than to the distributor, who would have to forward it to the end-user.

Electronic Artwork: Artwork created using computer software.

File Format: Manner by which data is arranged or coded in different programs or computers, for instance, AI, EPS, CDR, JPG, or PDF.

Financial Tombstone: An acrylic piece with artwork embedded inside used for commemorating a financial transaction, for example, a merger, acquisition, or issue of shares.

Font: Letters, numbers, punctuation, and special characters of a particular typeface available in typesetting.

Four-Color Process Printing: Color process technique by which four solid colors -- cyan, magenta, yellow, and black - are blended together in a microdot pattern to produce a full color picture that can be similar to a photograph.

Halftone: Screened reproduction of an original made up of dots varying in size to create the illusion of a variation in tone. Can be done in various colors.

JPEG: Standard format used for files containing high-resolution color images.

Laser Engraving: An imprinting method by which electronic artwork is etched into acrylic surface by a laser beam.

Laser Cutout: Various patterns can be cut out of Acrylic by, a laser and used as embedments. Many colors are available.

Logo: A drawing, illustration, symbol, abbreviation, lettering style, or word that is legally registered by a company and used for identification purposes. Also known as "trademark".

Lucite: Polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) or poly(methyl 2-methylpropenoate) is the synthetic polymer of methyl methacrylate. This thermoplastic and transparent plastic is sold by the tradenames Plexiglas, Perspex, Acrylite, Acrylplast, and Lucite and is commonly called acrylic glass or simply acrylic. The material was developed in 1928 in various laboratories and was brought to market in 1933 by the German Company Rohm and Haas (GmbH & Co. KG).

L.P.I.: Lines Per Inch. Number of lines of dots in one linear inch.

Metal Casting: Miniature metal figurine with a gold or silver color finish used as an embedment for an acrylic piece.

Negative: In photography, film with an image having density values opposite those of the original.

Offset Printing: A mechanical printing process where a positive image is transferred from machine to the paper.

Overrun: Quantity produced in excess of original order. The coated paper standard practice in the industry allows a +5% margin for overruns.

Paper Insert: A white piece of cardboard used as an embedment with printing on one or both sides.

Paper Proof: A printed version of a document for approval for size, text and color prior to printing.

Personalize: Recipient's name on product.

PMS: Pantone Matching System. Trademark of a color scale commonly used for matching colors for printing. Each color has a coded number, which gives measurements for mixing inks to achieve color match.

Positive: Image reproduction with the same density values as the original.

Pre-Production Sample: A sample of the finished product for approval to begin production of order.

Random Sample: A piece that was previously produced in excess of the quantity ordered by a customer

Scanning: Digitizing a document and converting it into an image using dots in order to enable its electronic use.

Screen-printing: Printing method by which image is transferred to surface by squeegeeing ink through a screen. The, screens are treated with a light-sensitive emulsion. Then, film positives are put in contact with screens and exposed to light, which hardens emulsion not covered by film, leaving a soft area on screen for squeegeed ink to be forced through. Also referred to as, "silk-screening".

Trapping: Overlapping of colors to remove gaps during printing.

Trim Line: Line on artwork used where to the waste on a printed paper.

Under run: Number of products manufactured is less than the number ordered. A standard practice in the industry is to allow a -5% margin for under runs.

Also see the Acrylics, Embedments & Awards FAQ

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