Canadian Mac Forums at ehMac banner

1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,014 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Moderators can edit this if they are uncomfortable with any part.

An ad appeared in Yesterday's Toronto Sun for a Prepress/Mac Operator with 5 years Exp. for a mid size west TO printer.

I gave my notice on Monday, after 2.5 years. I won't name names or give details as they are either the disgruntled ramblings of a former employee or a self rightious rant of some who is overworked and under paid.

Heck, you might even find value in the position that I did not. It is not a mid size firm [small} and the position is not "Just a Mac Operator" My title was "Digital Prepress Manager" although my staff no longer exists....

The job is part design, part IT, Prepress through to running Film. There is no other tech support on hand, so you better know your stuff. 90% Quark 4.11 {QX5 and 6 are there but no files come in. Lots of bad PDFs generated from PC Word. Publisher, Corel, some Excell and a handful of Indesign.

Beige G3, Blue & White G3 run 9.1 and 1 G5 just installed. Adobe CS and QX 6, Pitstop, Blah, blah...

Pressman and Press Manager know their stuff... Front Office/Sales... Well.... I'm going to work for a big Ad Agency downtown....

Good luck if you apply for the job, but you've been warned...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Prepress' common and only problem -- Management

I was one of the employees in Burning Bird Lithographer, oh...sorry, now should be called Consolidated Burning Bird Lithographer. Of course, there is one prepress department in there, and I was a junior of junior, which means "so low".

This prepress department is a place of miracle, high-speed evolving (turning from monkey to man just needs one failed transparency job and less than 24 hours -- pretty much close to the microwave X-Men-type mutation) and team-effort involving (grouped together to lie, and to push the others to lie, to save their jobs).

With almost 5 years of experiment, or being experimented, I found out why prepress operators do not recognise their own real dignity -- because no one even trys to set up a standard among operators, so juniors will never know how far they are to reach acceptable standard, as well, seniors, leadhands and even prepress managers will never get to the truth that whatever they know may be less than a junior operator, or even worse, they just pretend they know something.

Who should be blamed? Definitely, Management, especially those keep on giving himself different titles according his daily mood, such as prepress manager, IT manager, prepress foreman, or plant manager (yeahhhh......righttttt), blah, blah.

Why management refuses to research and create a worldwide standard? Partially it is due to they are incapable of doing that. My ex-prepress manager (with nickname "King of Impossible" or "King of Miracle") spent almost 14 to 16 hours everyday in office telling people what they should do to establish quality control, but including himself, as well as all the seniors providing ideas don't even know how to use software correctly, how can we all reach fair quality control? In addition, my ex-prepress manager (same guy as above), being THE IT MANAGER, cannot even distinguish between IP address and Apple Address, how can you expect him to make the standard. I mean no harm, but I really dont care about his personal standard.

Of course, major factor -- being unrealistic.

Imagine if prepress standard about technique and software knowledge is established, my both ex-lead hands and some of my ex-colleagues (for example, BIG GUY in plating department) may have to be relocated to work in gabage-recycling department (I am by no mean saying that they are gabage, although they do act like it).

There is only one statement about professionism: you don't see any problem doesn't necessarily mean there is no problem.

With all the factors mentioned, what would be the future of prepress? No much, because if you have to finish the job right, it takes time (especially jobs with transparency ..........and Quark 7.... ha ha!). But your manager always gives you a time limit so he can get the appreciation from sales managers and owners. After all, they were film strippers, not computer technicians, they don't even know how to reformat a machine.

Before everyone thinks I am a bit too far from being objective, just answer this question: I have a shadow (made in illustrator) on top of an photoshop dcs 2 image with 2 pms colour channels and at the same time, both shadow and image are on top of the vector gradient made by two pms colours, which are different from the pms colours in photoshop file, how would you trap this file? Let me guess, none of the seniors in Burning Bird Lithographer will be able give a honest answer, it may end up a junior answering this question correctly.

Conclusion: Prepress operators do not have to know network, same as IT guys do not necessarily know how to trap or color-correct a file. We learn our best. But if one day you realize no matter how hard to you try to learn, the paid you get is still the same as those who never learn, there would be only two way out -- one of them are to wait to be promoted to lead hand or prepress manager.

I already chose the other.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
470 Posts
The job is part design, part IT
That's just a recipe for major digestion problems. :lmao:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,014 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
wow, I had to read the whole thing to just remember writing it...
Did not think post that old were kept live.

my former employer has posted the same help wanted ad in various print industry publications every 6 months for over 3 1/2 years. Must be one hell of a pat on the back to whom ever is doing the job now. Bet they are the first ones to see those ads. Unfortunatly all my contacts within the company have retireed/moved on...

Never be afraid to walk away from bad employment...
 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
Top