Okay, I am completely new to the world of print and production and I am really lost. We have a local printer, but their website is very lacking on information as far as templates, directions and orientations for setting up a document for production. I won't even start on their phone customer service because it takes forever to hold for them since they are our ONLY local printer and everyone calls them. Reason why I am looking for a very good online guide.
The company I intern for is requiring me to print a variety of media for an event including mailers, half-fold greeting cards and tickets – they will be printed on both sides of the paper. The half fold for example will be a standard 5h"x7w" greeting card.
My confusion is how to set it up for print in Indesign exactly.
• Am I supposed to set up a horizontal 7h"x10w" doc or a vertical 10h"x7w" doc. Or is it horizontal 5h"x7w" page?!
• Am I supposed to indicate the fold line in the middle? I am aware of the gutters, safe zones and bleed margins, but what about artwork orientation?
• Must I flip each side of the card to its corresponding orientation?
I can set up a document correctly if I were to print it myself, but sending it outside is a different beast.
I've googled a few bad links. Anyone have an online guide to setting up different types of media including how artwork should be oriented? Altho every printer is different, some folds and print techniques are printed pretty much the same, but they can get super advanced. There are some upcoming jobs I have to do (including a booklet) and I'd like to have a type of standard "cheat sheet" for typical prints to use as a guide.
If I were setting up this greeting card I would set it up as the size of the UNfolded sheet after trimming. Add a bleed allowance if you need bleed, and I would probably add a Slug area as well to hold the fold marks (I use dashed or dotted lines for folds, and LABEL THEM). Make the file two pages, one for the outside and one for the inside. Orientation should be whichever is easier for you to do your work based on the actual oreintation of the design. It won't affect how things are printed.
I can't direct you to any sort of cheat sheet or templates. I've never found any that were exactly what I needed for any particular job. When doing something like a tri-fold brochure where the last panel folds inside you need to make that one a little narrower, but I don't think you'll find consensus on how much narrower (as you say, different printers like different things). I've worked with printers who asked for the layout to be equal width panels and they shaved off a mm in the trim, and other printers who asked for very precise width differences.