Our Printing Techniques

The ideal techniques for unique finishing touches.

Every single technique developed at El Calotipo is handmade, without losing a single ounce of quality in our printed results. Nevertheless, we can also use modern techniques such as offset or digital printing depending on what we have to do or what the client wants. 

We take a detailed care of each work and of course, we´ll guide you and give you advice in order to reproduce every idea and design the best way and get that result you are looking for. 

Our training as printers is fully artistic, that´s why you shouldn´t consider us a common print house or just “another print house”. We take loving care of every project as if it was a piece of art, paying full attention and focusing on every single detail while working on them.

We design and carry out the pre-printing process on a computer, but we reproduce those designs using ancient techniques. Why?

Because that´s how we can get a special product and an enormous range of formats and an infinite catalogue of things to work with. We don´t have a limit when it comes to paper thickness. We can print everything!

And furthermore, we love to investigate new materials to include them in our catalogue and make a difference. We like challenges, so, if you are willing to do something special, something difficult, something impossible, you just reached the perfect workshop.


For an overwhelming low relief

The best known printing technique of our days, letterpress, allows us to get a low relief effect on any material (carton, paper, wood etc). While this effect was considered a mistake in the past, it is actually what everyone demands nowadays and what everyone expects from letterpress. 

We are able to print either using any matte color from pantone or metallic colors. Keep in mind that ink doesn´t have the same covering power as in screenprinting.

But we can use metal color if you want to apply this technique on dark colors. 

Regarding paper, and thanks to our special machinery and experience, we can work with over 2mm thick paper. 

As far as quality is concerned, we can reach an enormous level of detail and stroke, as well as a great printing or low relief quality, something really hard to find. 

Embossed printing

Looking for relief

Embossed printing means getting a relief impression without ink. We will have to use both male and female cliché, that will allow us to get that relief we are looking for. 

In order to get a prominent relief, we should use papers under 350 gr. What we have to keep in mind is: the thiner, the better. 

The back side of the impression will show the opposite result, that means, we´ll get the positive motif in one side but the printing trace will be noticed in the other side. 

Regarding to stroke, we can carry out a thin and small pointed (letter size) embossed printing, as well as a thick text, little details, big ones etc, whatever you want. We can also use a multi-level embossed printing in order to get a 3D effect. 

Screen Printing

Whole ink covering on paper

Who said one can´t get little details with screen printing? Throughout our career, we´ve managed to forget what we learned at school: “screen printing is just for big areas and thick strokes”

Screen printing is a flat printing technique, meaning it does not produce any relief or low relief on materials. We mostly use this technique to print light color on dark surfaces (eg: white on black), since inks are completely opaque. We can also reduce opacity if required, that is, control ink transparency and the visibility of those materials we are printing on. 

Besides, we can also print weaves or get overprintings using this technique, but keep in mind that everything will be printed one color at a time, so, expenses will rise depending on how many colors we use. 

We work with water ink ,something that we wont change because we take care of the environment and that´s above everything. 

Any material or thickness is suitable for this technique. There are no limits in El Calotipo! Paper, carton, wood, cork, fabrics, ceramics, as long as materials are flat. Just ask us. 


Perfect for a stunning metallized effect

Do you want to dazzle with your printings? Do you want light to reflect your designs or get a mirror effect? Then, maybe you should opt for stamping

We can get a metallized effect to any motif with this technique. It is mostly used to print using gold, silver or copper in different hues and shades. There is also a wide range of metallized colors and we offer holographic effects too. 

This technique allows us to get a low relief, since pressure is needed to apply it, although it will never be such a deep low relief as with letterpress

Regarding materials, we can print paper or carton with different compositions, textures or weight or even wood, plastic, pvc, leather, fabrics, synthetics etc. If you need to print any material and we haven´t mentioned it, just ask us and we´ll do everything possible before we say “no”.


Varnish effect on a relief

Maybe thermorelief lived its highlights in the past and became quite unnoticed nowadays. 

However, we think it may provide a special finishing touch depending on how we use it. Perhaps it isn´t the best choice when it comes to little texts, but we can apply this technique on bigger decorative motifs , logos etc. 

We can manage a varnish effect over any material and using any color if we use thermorelief

The relief wont be as perfect as with embossed printing, since the edges become a bit more irregular. Furthermore, printing wont be noticed on the back side of the paper. 

Offset, digital, laser…

Fast quality printing

We prefer special works and artisan printing methods, but there´s nothing we reject. If you need to reproduce something using that techniques, we can offer a fast and quality printing. Just check our prices and options (recycled carton included). 

You could also combine digital techniques and letterpress, stamping, embossed printing, screen printing or thermorelief

Unlike other digital printing houses, we have an enormous range of papers you can select for this and any kind of job. No more charmless paper printing! 

350 g is the thickest we can introduce on our digital or offset machines, although it will depend on the kind of paper. In case you want a digital printing and thicker materials, we can create cardboards and provide thicker cards or whatever you would want. 

We also laser print, mostly used on wood (menus, packagings etc). Complex motifs can be stamped using laser and the results are amazing. Besides, we can color everything and use your corporate color to make it suit your image to perfection. 

Do you want to see more examples of our printing techniques?

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