Digital technology has transformed the making of color separations and printing plates from film based to digitally based by offering the benefits of costs savings in both materials and time within the production queue. A similar revolution has been occurring within the magazine publication realm to take advantage of the quality that is possible with digital cameras. Photographers are using digital cameras to supply digital images and replacing film based images in ever increasing numbers. Many popular magazines presently report more than half of all images submitted are digital, and those digital submissions are growing so rapidly that for some publications, 100% digital submissions are expected within a few years.
This growth is not without its problems:there has not been any broad based industry supported specifications for minimum level quality submissions;
in this vacuum without minimum specifications, photographers do not know what minimum recommendations are needed for suitable publication submissions. Images submitted are often either rejected or over color corrected and unsuitable for color reproduction.
DISC was formed through IDEAlliance under the Chairmanship of Kin W. Lam of Time Inc., and Michael MacNamara, Popular Photography & Imaging. DISC conducted a survey of publishers and from the results, developed a list of high priority issues that needed to be addressed and resolved.
The DISC (Digital Image Submission Criteria) Working Group will develop a set of specifications for use by Creative Professionals to include photographers and illustrators as a standard format prior to submission for publication. These specifications will allow for maximum reproduction print quality while expediting the production workflow. The digital specifications for image submission will address relevant key issues including size, resolutions, compression, color space and metadata.