Getting white or light-colored text to really take center stage on a dark background can be one tricky task. In fact, reversed type or knockout text, as printers like to call it, not coming out right is one of the ten most common printing errors. Fortunately, printing reversed type is not just a matter of keeping your fingers crossed. There is plenty you can do in the prepress stage to get those white elements looking just as great in print as they do on screen.
1. Slightly bigger is better
Although some processes have no trouble printing reversed type as small as 8 point, 10 point is the recommended minimum.
2. Keep it sharp
When it comes to choosing between serif and sans serif for knockout text, sans serif is your best friend. Serif fonts have the tendency to lose some of their sharp edges when printed as reverse type.
3. Dare to be bold
Opt for a bold font if possible. The thinnest lines of reversed type should be at least 0.5 point or 0.15 mm wide.
4. Steer clear of script fonts
Keep away from script fonts, as they are often too delicate for reversed type and turn out illegible.
5. Mind the gap
Don’t hesitate to increase the space between letters and between lines to improve legibility.
6. Jack up the contrast
Increase the contrast between text and background as much as possible. Is your mind set on printing reversed type on images? If so, be sure to add a slight drop shadow to the text.
7. Don’t let them overprint
Before sending your design off to the printer, do a final check to verify if white elements are set ‘knock out’ instead of overprint. If white elements are set to overprint, they will basically end up disappearing. Keep in mind that the color white in design applications means no ink and is different than white ink.
Knock out reversed type automatically
Avoid mistakes in the future. Simply have PitStop Pro take care of reversed type for you with the click of a button!