Colour Printing

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A Colour Printer is excellent at its intended purpose of producing hard copy of illustrations but can also be regarded as a manufacturing tool, not only to make photos, but to create a wide range of products.

Features and Applications

Modern printers will output true to size and a variety of media can be fed into most which enables print-outs to be combined with other materials to create products e.g. :

  • To add surface decoration detail to Pop-Up Cards, costume patterns and sets to Model Theatres or Mechanical Toys, labels for food packaging.
  • Paper print-outs can be sized to wrap around a card tube then wooden discs added to form a top and bottom, making a small cylindrical box - to hold a ball of string perhaps.
  • Images printed on photographic paper may be laminated on to thick card, MDF or Ply to produce a material which can be cut to make a jigsaw, a puzzle or the basis of an electronic guessing game.
  • Gift wrap paper or brown paper can be cut to size and nets printed on their reverse to be cut out and folded into gift bags or other packages.
  • Designs may be printed on to thin card which is then laminated, cut out and punched to produce various book marks, ID Cards, Tags and labels - e.g. held in place by a 13A plug top to indicate what it is connected to.
  • Outlines of stained glass windows, for example, can be printed on to baking parchment, which is traced around with thinly rolled pastry and spaces filled with crushed boiled sweets then baked, to make a traditional German Christmas tree decoration.
  • Part drawings printed on to cut sheets of self adhesive vinyl can be laminated on to acrylic to transfer complex marking out - and to protect the acrylic during subsequent manufacturing - similarly, parts printed on to office copier paper can be stuck on to MDF or Ply.
  • Designs can be ironed on to textiles and other materials by first printing them on to Heat Transfer Paper (and the ‘waxy’ inner surface of some copier paper outer wrapping can work!).

Any of the Folded Card projects in the Packaging section would be improved if a good quality colour print was laminated on to the card net to provide surface decoration. The Zoetrope, for example, could be used to animate actual photographic sequences which have either been taken using a digital camera or scanned from a photographic original.


DT Online Buyers' Guide
A4 Mono Laser Printer A4 Colour Laser Printer A3 Colour Printer Printer/Scanner Large Format Colour Printer Cutter/Plotter 3D Printer
A4 Mono Laser Printer A4 Colour Laser Printer A3 Colour Printer Printer/Scanner Large Format Colour Printer Cutter/Plotter 3D Printer