No announcement yet.

Using Tile in Canvas

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Using Tile in Canvas

    Let's look at the big picture.

    And I mean the big picture, the kind of picture you need to print out across twenty pages taped together because the picture you're working with is something obscenely large like 56"x32".

    Canvas can do it, make no mistake, but the process of getting there has some perils and moments of head-scratching and much confusion. So much peril and head-scratching and confusion in fact that I could see this being a clarification in the documentation at least, and probably a feature request.

    The very first step is to set up a large document, like...
    Click image for larger version

Name:	Screen Shot 2017-06-24 at 11.34.52 AM.png
Views:	1
Size:	35.7 KB
ID:	42461
    ...well, okay, yeah. That's not the tricky bit. That may be the easiest bit of this whole process.

    It's painless right up until you try to print it. Then it gets problematic, unless you have a printer with a 31" platen (and even that assumes you're working marginless).

    If you're going to use a normal letter-sized-paper printer, then you may want a little overlap between pages, so the tops and bottoms of adjoining pages contain the same material. Likewise the lefts and rights. The idea is to provide yourself a little bit of reference where the pages join, and make sure that no details get lost between pages.

    And Canvas provides that facility... sort of. It also contains one of the biggest head-scratchers.

    Setting up for tiled printing is counter-intuitive, as you have to go to the Print... dialog to set it up. No, really. But that's not the weirdest bit of it.

    The documentation has this to say about the Tile part of the print dialog:
    Tile: Prints a large document by dividing it among “tiles” of printer pages. Type an Overlap value in the text box so part of the document repeats at the edge of adjoining tiles; the overlap makes it easier to assemble the complete document after printing.
    And here's the print dialog. At least, here's what the print dialog looks like on my compuer:
    Click image for larger version

Name:	Screen Shot 2017-06-24 at 11.48.47 AM.png
Views:	1
Size:	51.4 KB
ID:	42462

    Checking the Tile box to get overlapped printing is a no-brainer, but do you know what value to put into the Overlap field to get, say, one-half inch of overlap between pages in your tiled document?

    Hint: The Overlap box doesn't take decimal numbers; you must put an integer there.

    Hint: Note the DPI setting under Optimization, and see that it's set on 300.

    The correct answer... is 36.

    No, really. The Overlap field assumes that you're working with a 72-pixel inch and DGAF what the DPI setting is. I suppose including that second hint made this kind of a cruel trick question.

    It would make sense for the Overlap value to be based on the DPI value, if it's not going to take measures like 0.5". But it doesn't do that. It just wants a number of pixels on a very specific scale that you might not even be concerned with, especially if you're working with vectors.

    It would also make sense to explain this in the Canvas manual, but alas.

    There's a second, smaller pain point in the "Print Settings..." dialog, which resets each time you click that button. If you forgot something in a previous visit, or need to change one single detail of your page setup, you need to reset everything. That's a smaller pain point, I admit, but if it can cost you twenty pieces of paper, then it's not really small.

    And there's always the potential that you hit Print when you merely meant to Save & Close the dialog, especially when getting in there to set up the tiling in the document in the first place.

    So, who's played with this and gotten it to work to great effect?

  • #2
    I hate that interim print window, an interim window was the main reason I dropped QuarkXpress years ago for Canvas, now I have to contend with it again. I want the standard print window then use the popup to go to specific settings. So counter-intuitive.


    • #3
      You know, I've been thinking about that number 72. It's a traditional number of dots-per-inch for certain screen resolutions which no longer count for anything because since they were used screens got so much better.

      But then it occurred to me: What if it was measuring something else?

      It finally occurred to me where else I'd seen that number, and it's very well-connected to other concerns of typography and graphic arts. In fact, it might be the reason the 72-dots-per-inch display ever became a thing in the first place.

      Points, or picas, are a measure typically used in font sizing. And they come 72 to an inch.

      That question has a satisfactory answer now. It would make sense that you'd specify certain measures in printing in picas/points.

      What it doesn't explain is why the documentation doesn't make note of this, or why the print dialog won't accept other units, like inches.


      • #4
        We are aware of this issue with Tiling and are currently making the necessary changes to correct it.