If you want to see a masterpiece, you go to the Tate. If you want to see a great goal, you go to Wembley. If you want to print a high quality Final Major Project, you go to Ex Why Zed.
Here we are then, your Final Major Project…it’s the big one! By now you’ll know which end of the camera takes the photos, that Adobe Illustrator is a wonderful world of vectors and that Comic Sans really doesn’t cut the mustard as typographic excellence! (You don’t cut mustard do you? You spread it!).
With your final mark on the line, let’s make sure of two things: the book looks the best it possibly can AND that it arrives before your deadline. At Ex Why Zed we are FMP and Dissertation printing specialists. Rest assured your work will be printed using the highest quality digital presses to ensure the print quality does maximum justice to your excellent work. We just need you, to give us enough time to produce it!
Don't forget, we also print Degree Show Catalogues too. Here is a selection of our favourites from the past 15 years.
We understand you are on a tight budget and regularly get told our prices are “better than Blurb”.
Here are our top tips for keeping the price down whilst still achieving an eye-catching publication:
• Choose one of our ‘house’ stocks: silk, gloss or uncoated. They all come in a selection of weights from 100gsm through to 350gsm. We can also print onto the papers from GF Smith that you might have been shown by a visiting rep. They are awesome and there is a massive selection to choose from, but they will significantly increase the price up of your printing.
• Staple binding or wire stitching (upto 40 pages) is cheaper than perfect binding (best for over 40 pages).
• The more copies you print, the lower the price per book will be. Maybe you could sell some at your final show or on your website?
Our average turnaround is 5 working days. However, as this might be the first time you have prepared artwork for print, it will be rare that files are supplied completely ready for print at the first attempt. We appreciate this and they usually need the odd tweak or two so allow an extra day for us to come back and for you to make the changes. We are more than happy to help and advise on preparing artwork but, like we say, this can take an extra day or two and this should be allowed for in addition to the printing time.
We have been printing final major projects for 15 years now so this isn't our first rodeo. If you send us the files with just 5 days left until your most important deadline then it takes 3 days to get the artwork right, your deadline will be missed. Neither of us want this to happen.
Can I pay extra for faster service?
This isn’t something we really do. We know there are flash points during the year where deadlines become non-moveable - University hand ins are one of them. So, at this time we print the orders in the sequence they come in. This is the only fair way to do it. We recommend if there is an important deadline looking that you allow more time to avoid the printing being rushed.
Not sure about which paper will work best for your project?
Check out video guide here and we’ll talk you through the options with examples printed on each of the finishes. Still uncertain? Jump on our sample pack form and we’ll get some paper choices in the post asap.
We know you have spent an awful lot of time on concepts, design and layout of your FMP. You’re almost there now, but our experience has told us that nearly everyone could do with some last minute advice when putting their artwork into a print ready format.
The Ex Why Zed File Set Up Guide (capitals because it’s special!) is a meticulously prepared, original and informative guide which answers the most common question we are asked: “How do I set up a file for print?”
Structured into a general file preparation overview with additional extensive sections to help you set up a file for both wire stitching and perfect binding projects the guide will serve as a valuable and time saving resource.
What came first: the chicken or the egg?
We will teach you the things your tutor forgot to! 🙂
In the last few years we are proud to have regularly printed Photography, Fine Art, Graphic Design, Fashion, Architecture, Illustration, Graphic Arts, Visual Communication, Documentary Photography and Product Design Final Major Projects to showcase the talent of students from AUB, BCU, Camberwell College of Arts, Central St Martins, Chelsea College, Coventry University, Falmouth University, Glasgow School of Architecture, Glyndwr University, Goldsmiths, Kingston University, Lancaster University, London Metropolitan University, Leeds College of Art and Manchester of School of Art.
We don't charge for delivery in UK and all our work is sent by courier so you will receive the printing the day after your FMP leaves us.
We also ship globally too and just charge this at our cost price from the cheapest courier on the day. Usually around £20-30 to Europe or the States.
Enjoy looking through our showcase of recent Final Major Project printing
The skills learnt in this guide will benefit you in future and become a valuable addition to any c.v. When you land that dream job or internship with a top agency, having the confidence and ability to prepare files for print will give you an advantage over your peers and allow you to hit the ground running in the new role.
If you were "just wondering" about one last thing, well “just wonder” no more... here are the answers!
Our standard FMP print specs are heavily discounted to help with student's finances (or lack of 🙂
Offers we do provide are...
We don't charge extra for bespoke sizes on upto 20 copies. Choose any custom size upto A4 for no extra charge.
FREE page quantity upgrades. On stapled booklets, on 1-3 copies, you can choose 8 to 40 pages for the same price. So if you have 12 pages and need an extra 8 pages for more content, then it won't cost you more. On perfect bound books (1-3 copies) you can choose any pagination from 40 pages to 96 for the same price. 52 pages is the same price as 92.
Wire stitching is a little bit of print jargon for ‘stapling’. If you have an A5 booklet then we print it onto A4 sheets, fold them in and put staples along the left-hand edge to bind the sheet together. In some quarters, this is also known as ‘saddle stitching’. Let’s stick with stapling though if that’s easier 🙂
Needs to be a multiple of four pages to work as a stapled booklet. Why? Because when you fold a printed sheet in half, you get four pages of content - try it there and you’ll see what we mean 🙂
The perfect bound method of binding will give your publication a square spine and professional looking finish.
For further advice follow our perfect binding set up guides.
Ready to order? Please send us the finished artwork using www.wetransfer.com and use the comments area to let us know the number of copies you would like to print and where we should deliver your finished FMP to. We’ll give your artwork a preflight check to make sure it’s set up correctly. If we spot anything then you’ll be the first to know and can make the necessary changes – best to allow an extra day or two for this in addition to the 4/5 days we need for printing.
Once we have checked your artwork we will send over an invoice for you to pay by online bank transfer or credit card through Stripe.
This isn’t something we really do. We know there are flash points during the year where deadlines become super important - University hand ins are one of them. So, at this time we print the orders in the sequence they come in. This is the only fair way to do it. We recommend if there is an important deadline looking that you allow more time to avoid the printing being rushed.
This is the definitive video guide:
We will need 3mm bleed on all the edges, you'll notice at the moment that the artwork stops at the crop marks - it needs to extend 3mm beyond this to avoid any chance of a white border.
The following page includes illustrated and video guides on how to set up bleed correctly:
You might have set this up correctly in InDesign but when you export to PDF just make sure that in the 'Marks and Bleeds' menu you not only tick 'Crop Marks' but you also add '3mm' in to the four bleed boxes - top, bottom, inside and outside. This will add the bleed to the exported PDF.
Here is the easy bleed fix!
It's one of two things:
Have you dragged the background image out 3mm beyond the black line on your Indesign file into the bleed area? Try that then export again.
OR you have done the above but then when you're exporting you need to click the Marks and Bleeds menu, then type '3mm' into the four bleed boxes. This will add the bleed to the pdf.
We don't advertise our prices online because we prefer to open up a conversation with you and find out a little bit about the project. Your artwork is unique and bespoke, so in turn, we will provide you a unique and bespoke print quote for your job. I am sure you will take no fun in looking at a boring spreadsheet with rows of bemusing numbers so we don't put you though that.
Matt Lamination works best with silk and uncoated covers. We would suggest using gloss lamination if you are aiming for a super shiny, high impact cover. Soft-touch has a velvet, illustrious feel but does attract finger marks REALLY quickly so best not eat your lunch before reading!
The short answer: when paper is printed, the ink sits on the surface. When it is then folded to make your cover the ink can crack. While you should never judge a book by it’s cover, this cracking will look unprofessional. Lamination is a thin layer of protection which prevents the ink cracking. Win win. It comes in matt, gloss, soft-touch or anti-scuff.
We can, go ahead and choose a colour from the GF Smith Colorplan range.
For cost-effective sizes keep your catalogue within A4 portrait, A5 landscape or 210x210mm square - these are the cheapest sizes to print but do choose the size that best fits your publication. The largest portrait size we can print is an impressive A3 (420mm high x 297mm wide). Our maximum square size is 297x297mm. The maximum landscape size is 210mm high x 297mm wide.