Industry Vocabulary A,B,C

Here is a quick glimpse at some of the industry vocabulary starting with A, B and C you may come across. They are separated by printing, photography, fine art and fashion.

We know there is many more that can be listed but we hope you find some of these helpful.


absorption (printing) The property of paper that results in the taking up of liquid or vapors.
accessory shoe (photography) A fitting generally located on top of a camera to which accessories (such as a flash) are attached.
accordion fold (printing) A binding that features two or more parallel folds which, when opened, resemble an accordion.
acutance (photography) This refers to the measure of a film’s sharpness, or rather how well it can produce the edge of an object.
against the grain (printing) Against or across the direction of a papers’ fibers.
airbrush (fine art) An atomizer gun that uses compressed air to paint with watercolor pigment.
a-line (fashion) Dress style that fits at the shoulder or at the waist and flares out to a wider hemline, reminiscent of a letter “A.”
angle of view (photography) Also known as the “field of view,” “FOV” and the “angle of the field of view,” it is the extent of the view taken in by a lens.
aperture (photography) A circle-shaped opening in a lens (a hole, really) through which light passes to strike the film.
apochromatic (photography) A specialty, color-corrected lens that focuses all light colors on the same plane.
appliqué (fashion) Ornamental fabric shapes that are cut from textile fabrics and sewn or applied to a base fabric as decoration.
aqueous coating (printing) Coating in a water base and applied like ink by a printing press to protect and enhance the printing underneath.
argon laser (printing) A blue laser with ionized argon.
armscye (fashion) Design and sewing  term that refers to the armhole of a garment.
asymmetric styling (fashion) A characteristic of design defined by one side of a garment that is structurally different from the other side.
automatic processor (photography) A photographic processing machine that automatically develops, fixes, washes and dries exposed film.
A4 paper (printing) European paper size 210 x 297mm used for Letterhead.


backbone (printing) Also referred to as the spine, this is the back or bound edge of a book that connects the two covers.
basque (fashion) The term “basque” refers to the piece of a fitted jacket or bodice that extends below the waistline. Basques can be different lengths, can be found in the back and the front, and can also be full or fitted.
bias (fashion) The term “bias,” or “bias cut,” is the diagonal direction of a woven fabric. Fabric stretches more easily in the bias direction than in the length or width.
bishop sleeve (fashion) This style is fitted or slightly loose at the armhole, widens to a large, full sleeve and finally tightens to a fitted cuff.
bit (digital) The basic unit of digital information.
bleed (printing) Printing that extends to the edge of a sheet or page after trimming.
blowup (printing) The enlargement of an image.
boiled wool (fashion) By exposing wool to heat, pressure, and moisture, the woven fabric is made more dense and compact.
book paper (printing) Basic paper that is either coated or uncoated.
bpi (digital) Bits per inch.
brand (fashion) The term “brand” refers to the label, mark or name given by a manufacturer to a product.
brightness (printing) The brightness of a paper is its’ brilliance or reflectance.
bulk (printing) Refers to either the number of pages per inch for a given basis weight, or a paper’s degree of thickness.
burning (photography) In a darkroom, providing extra exposure to an area of the print to make it darker, while blocking light from the rest of the print. Also referred to as burning in or printing in.
bustle (fashion) This could refer either to an undergarment structure popular in the late 19th century that held out the back of a skirt, or to a skirt’s general fullness in the back.
.BMP (digital) The extension for an uncompressed image file format created by Microsoft that is mainly used in Windows-based applications.
byte (digital) In computers, a unit of digital information, equivalent to one character or 8 to 32 bits


C1S & C2S (photography) Abbreviations for a coated one side and coated two side.
CAD/CAM/CIM (fashion) The acronyms CAD, CAM and CIM refer to three digital software programs used in the fashion industry for designing and manufacturing apparel. CAD is computer-aided-design, CAM is computer-aided manufacturing, and CIM is computer integrated manufacturing.
camera ready copy (photography) Mechanicals, photography and art fully prepared for reproduction, also known as the finished art and reproductive copy.
cap sleeve (fashion) This style sleeve is short and basically resembles a cap that sits on the shoulder.
cargo (fashion) The “cargo” style refers to a large pocket with a flap and a pleat.
chain dot (photography) Midtone dots that touch at two points, looking like links in a chain; also known as an elliptical dot.
chrome (photography) Strength of a color as compared to how close it seems to a neutral gray. Also called depth, intensity, purity, and saturation.
coated paper (fine art) Paper with a coating clay and other substances that improves reflectivity and ink holdout. Mills produce coated paper in the four major categories: cast, gloss, dull, and matte
cold color (printing) In Printing, a color with a bluish cast.
color balance (photography) The correct combination of cyan, magenta and yellow to (1) reproduce a photography without a color cast, (2) produce a neutral gray, or (3) reproduce the colors in the original scene or object
colorimeter (printing) An instrument for measuring color the way the eye sees it.
color separation (photography) The process of separating color originals into the primary printing color components in negative or positive form using RGB filters.
crop (photography) To eliminate portions of the copy, usually on a photography or plate, indicated on the original by cropmarks.
C- 41 (photography) Kodak’s standard photochemical process for developing color negative film.
catchlight (photography) The reflection of a light in the subject’s eyes in a portrait.
color break (photography) The edge where two areas of color in an image meet.
collograph (fine art) The name is derived from “collage” it is an image built up with glue and other materials
crew neck (fashion) A neck style that is round and close to the neck with ribbed banding.
cyan (printing) One of the 3 primary ink colors used in 4- color process printing.