ARTWORK : The process

The artwork process commonly includes a handover/briefing session, finished artwork (the formatting of the report) and approximately three rounds of changes.

Handover / briefing

A handover meeting is always advantageous so everything is clear right from the beginning. It should include the project manager, the designer (who may continue with the project, or hand it over to a finished artist) and perhaps the writer (if there are details that need to be communicated clearly).

It’s valuable to talk through the manuscript, discuss any changes that may have occurred in the writing and gathering of graphics and identify any pages that may need additional care. These may include flowcharts, maps, tables and graphs.

Building the files / formatting the report

Graphs and charts are built in one software program, photographs are treated in another, and then both are combined with the text in a third ‘assembly’ program.

There are many programs that can do this – industry benchmarks are Quark, or Indesign (part of the Adobe CS suite with Photoshop and Ilustrator). These programs control the page layout, the typefaces and the graphics.

The result is artwork suitable for a reproduction, and page proofs that can be circulated for approval.

Who does what?

In the preparation of artwork for an Annual Report there may be up to 3 people involved:

Account manager:
Manages the complete project from beginning to end. 
Maintains the link between designer and client. 
Is responsible for devising and maintaining budgets and schedules. 
[Some designers may take on this role, especially for smaller projects].

Devises concept for report. Extends concept to print and new media solutions. 
Designs each page of report and solves layout problems.

Mac operator/Graphic artist:

Produces artwork from design, formats text, builds graphs, prepares for print. [Some designers may continue with project and fulfil this role]