Lightroom: Text clipping issue printing LR4 book to Blurb

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  • Updated 6 years ago
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Got a page-text clipping problem upon ordering my first book with Blurb. In 50% of the pages, this bottom-of-the page text was left at the LR-4 default position which was shown as well within the page-clipping border (rather desirable for a default position !). Unfortunately, this border seems to be overly optimistic. On the received paper copy, the text was severely clipped out in all such pages (50% of the book pages). Blurb answer was very fair and customer oriented: they just offered me to order another book free-of-charge. But a SW error still remain that LR4 does not correctly report the page safe printing area. The problem is relevant to BLURB as well since the BLURB Web-preview does not report either any clipping. In both cases: what you see is not what you get. I will learn from that and consider some margins for later books, but more Lightroom users may fall in the same trap.
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Dominique HARTER

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Posted 6 years ago

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Dorin Nicolaescu-Musteață, Champion

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The trimming on my first three books was almost perfect (+/- 1 mm) on the vast majority of pages. Three full-bleed pages out of 380 had narrow white margins though.

What settings did you use for the text boxes? Namely, Offset, tracking and baseline.

Can you post screen shots of how the pages looked in Lightroom, along with all guides turned on?

A photo of your book page would be nice to see too.
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Dominique HARTER

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The trimming was wrong to a varying extent on all pages where I left the page text at the default lightroom position. "varying extent" means that the text is some times slightly trimmed, and sometimes almost fully cut-out.

I attach a Lightroom screen shot with the settings visible on the right side + the corresponding photo of the page lower edge.

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Dorin Nicolaescu-Musteață, Champion

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Cannot see the picture.
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Dominique HARTER

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Retrying...

renaming the file made it.

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Dorin Nicolaescu-Musteață, Champion

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Well, from this pic I can say that Blurb did pretty much what they were supposed to. Your text pretty far out of the text-safe area (the thin gray border) and touches the page bleed area (plain gray thick border), which is the area that is supposed to get trimmed off after the book is bound. Ok, blurb cut off an extra 2-3 mm, which that seems as a reasonable tolerance.

What I don't understand, is how the heII did your text box get that far outside of the text-safe area (the thin gray border)? Lightroom is supposed to not let the user do that even at the extreme settings. In your case, it shouldn't even have touched the text safe-area (the Page Caption offset is set to 9 pt).

What kind of text box is that? Page Caption? Photo Caption? Generic text box?

What page size and page template did you use?

Can you thikn of any text settings that might have pushed the text outside of the legitimate text safe area (think gray border)?
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Dominique HARTER

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Thank you for this useful reply. I possibly made a mistake, but the overall logic is still confusing to me.

1st- LR4 is displaying "Text safe area" guides + "page bleed" guides. The LR4 French translation for "page bleed" rather indicates any area that might be cut out by the book printing process. This might be the cause of my error. At this point in time, I still fail to understand what these 2 guides respectively correspond to: page trimming should not make a difference whether text or photo is trimmed. Further: the "page bleed" guides disappear as soon as "PDF" is selected instead of "BLURB", which in my mind makes it really dependent on the BLURB book-printing process.

2nd- I did not change the LR4, default layout. In this case: the 1st available 1-page layout of the list. The problem text is a "page caption". The position of the "page caption" in addition does not look like depending on the page layout. Then it is strange that one of the default LR4 layout is straightforward locating page captions out of the text safe area. This was my 1st book, and I was too much concentrated on understanding the basic capabilities of the book tool for thinking about moving around the page caption (which I obviously did for the 2nd BLURB-offered printing...)

3rd- As soon as the book is moved on the BLURB server, I would expect the book preview to comply to the outcome of the book printing, which it does not: no text was trimmed out on the WEB-preview. Being the author of the book, I can at least come back to LR4 and search for my own errors. But somebody else can buy it and reasonable expect a "what you see is what you get" outcome. At this stage, it becomes a BLURB problem, and no more a LR4 problem.
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Dorin Nicolaescu-Musteață, Champion

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I possibly made a mistake, but the overall logic is still confusing to me.

Same for me. I made the same mistake with my first book, but fortunately the text did not go as far to the edge as yours.

At this point in time, I still fail to understand what these 2 guides respectively correspond to: page trimming should not make a difference whether text or photo is trimmed.


As I understand it... now... the bleed area is what gets trimmed off; it's a hard limit. The text safe area is a sort of a recommendation of how close to the edge you may put your text.

Then it is strange that one of the default LR4 layout is straightforward locating page captions out of the text safe area.

This looks like a flat out bug, but I just cannot reproduce it. And have never hit it during the 3 months I was doing my own book.

As soon as the book is moved on the BLURB server, I would expect the book preview to comply to the outcome of the book printing, which it does not: no text was trimmed out on the WEB-preview. ... At this stage, it becomes a BLURB problem, and no more a LR4 problem.

Agree.

More than that... even Lightroom's own representation of the bleeding area, implies it is the size of the book after trimming, when in fact it is the size of the printout before trimming.
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Dominique HARTER

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Building up on your useful clarifications, I could make further little progress.

1- Having received the second printing of my book, I could compare the page clipping dispersion for the same pages in the 2 books: rather small (around 1mm), and in any case smaller than the average amount my text was clipped out. In that respect, I cannot explain the problem by some bad luck on the first book sample: my text just had no chance to survive the clipping

2- I could find a tick box within a book preference menu. When ticked, it becomes impossible to move the text outside of the text safe area... Unfortunately, this option does not look enabled by default. When disabled, the text default position jumps down to the page bleed border... This might explain why you could not reproduce the problem.

3- The text safe area is quite far from the page clipping, at least 5mm on upper and lower borders and 1cm on the sides. Searching further in the WEB, it seems primarily proposed as a book design recommendation participating to a good-looking layout. Then of course the text is 100% safe against clipping.

4- The page bleed area is obviously unsafe, which I would consider as a LR4 bug, making the usefullness of this guide questionable, except for giving a vague idea how far the safe area is from the page border. For that purpose, disabling or enabling the page bleed guide does not drastically change the perception. In that respect this guide is driving the user into making errors more than it helps !

Many thanks for your experience feedback which will help me dig out a better result of the qualities and flaws of this tool.
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Dorin Nicolaescu-Musteață, Champion

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2. Didn't notice that check box!

4. Agree.