What is Desktop Publishing?

Prime Production - Desktop Publishing

When we think of language service providers, we may not necessarily associate them with Desktop Publishing, but selecting a vendor who can provide you with both services could catapult your next project within the visual communication sphere.

Prime Production’s Translation and Desktop Publishing services are available 24/7, 365 days a year, making it your one-stop service provider.

What is Desktop Publishing?
Desktop Publishing (often known as DTP) is the practice of laying out pages on a computer. Let’s take a brochure or a magazine for instance, then think of the images, multiple fonts, various shapes and icons, and how they have been carefully placed and positioned to create a professional look within that piece of visual communication. Using computer software such as Adobe InDesign, the goal is to deliver a print-ready document.

What Role does Desktop Publishing play within the Translation Industry?
Many translation projects specifically require text to be translated, however it is not uncommon for projects to require desktop publishing so that the translation can be inputted into the correct format, whether that be on a webpage, an image or within a report. Therefore, language service providers often receive text for translation in many different formats with requirements to translate into a Word Format, or other design formats.

When we receive files that are in InDesign format, this calls for the skills of a Desktop Publisher. Why? Although our translators are able to translate text in Word format, they often cannot work with InDesign or other DTP files because they do not have the software to support these files. Here at Prime Production, we collaborate with our Desktop-Publishing teams (Europe, Asia, Middle East and the Americas) who can work in multiple formats and help produce an attractive, readable item for your audience.

How can Translation affect Desktop Publishing?
Translations pose a number of design challenges. For example, many languages expand upon translation, so whilst we may begin with 500 source words, the translation can total to over 600 words. This means to say that, if we try to fill the fixed space with 600 words instead of 500 words, it can cause problems with the layout. Equally, with languages like Arabic or Farsi, which read from right to left, or Chinese and Japanese which are read in columns from top to bottom, Desktop Publishers must consider these different reading formats when laying out the pages.

What is the difference between a Graphic Designer, Web Designer and Desktop Publisher?
Graphic Designers manipulates text and graphics, and Web Designers exclusively focus on visual communication displays on websites and mobile devices, whereas a Desktop Publisher will use specific software to arrange page layouts, with the aim to produce a document identical to the original, but with the source language. This could include adjusting the layout to accommodate text expansion or reduction within columns, tables or graphs, and making text read from left to right, when necessary.

What do you need to send to your Service Provider?
Should you have a translation project that requires DTP services, and you already have a design template in one language, you will need to send over the original InDesign file(s), along with all the fonts and links to images, to ensure the document containing the target language will look as similar as possible to the original file containing the source language.
However if you would like our design teams to create a file from scratch, we also have a team of experts who we work together with to bring your designed vision to life, and we can work with you to create the final desired product efficiently and to the high standard Prime Production prides itself on.

Finally prior to all DTP work we ensure that our experienced team of linguists carry out a full Post-DTP check to ensure all text is accurate and in the right place and the document is of the highest standard.

At Prime Production, our Desktop Publishing team can help you to produce your perfect document. Thanks to our proven experience in the field, working on many of the United Nation’s flagship annual publications, as well as NGO and corporate annual reports, you can be confident we will provide a solution on time and budget.

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