AAN East Roundup: Design and Production Programming

What should you do if you’re handed a crummy cover photo?

AAN East’s first Design and Production seminar — a “Show ‘n’ Tell” led by Washington City Paper Production Manager Mike Kalyan and Baltimore City Paper art director Joe MacLeod — was underway.

The answer? Relax, trash the photo and use your creativity and stock images. Kalyan and MacLeod also discussed production tools, how to improve sales, and graphic department relations.

Charleston City Paper Production Manager Carlton Swift then talked about a major software change at his paper: “We decided to kill Quark and run InDesign,” he said, noting that the program’s InCopy component allows editorial staff to do their own copy corrections.

“InCopy saved us a lot of time [by eliminating the need to] manually export the stories. Transition [from Quark] only took a week.”

Other participants talked about streamlining PDF handling with products such as Flightcheck and Pitstop. Jane Martinache of the Washington City Paper talked about how Flightcheck has reduced production time by catching errors in client ads and how Pitstop can correct the errors without making a new PDF.

The next session, “Copyright and Fair Use Issues, and Solutions for Design and Production,” was led by Alice Lucan of Newslaw (Newslaw.com). She spoke about the complexities of copyright in a media-pervaded time. “Forget the idea of public domain,” she said. “Everything that you can perceive that is original is copyright protected.” Lucan suggested that anyone with questions call AAN’s copyright hotline at (202) 298-7210.

Jodi Ford, a designer for Mountain Xpress, said, “It is important to realize how serious this is, how much we need to know about things that could really come back and bite us.”

Russell Viers of DIGIVersity.TV led Saturday’s workshop. His talk echoed the buzz around Friday’s roundtable: InDesign, Photoshop and Acrobat work together to shave hours off production time. The morning session shed light on the intricacies of PDFs, including ways to use Pitstop to automate and stabilize preflight processes.

During the afternoon, Viers talked about font handling and color-management, teaching participants how to reduce image-manipulation time and file size in Photoshop.