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Thread poster: TREX2
TREX2  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:42
Member (2002)
Italian to English
+ ...
Apr 16, 2009

After ten years of working exclusively with agencies I have finally decided to get a few direct clients. I understand that I will need to outsource any DTP work to the professionals. Does anyone know where to find an affordable one?

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Mauricio Coitiño  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 07:42
English to Spanish
+ ...
Have you tried Proz? ;-) Apr 17, 2009

Some of us Prozians are professionals in the area of DTP. As Proz.com's Professional Trainer in DTP, I suggest that you take a look at my profile and those of my trainees.
Do not hesitate in contacting us for further details.
Regards,

Mauricio


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LP Schumacher  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 11:42
Member
German to English
"How" to find Apr 21, 2009

I agree that ProZ.com is a good place to look for DTP professionals that work in your languages, though I know that the directory search does not make it easy to find them--at first glance. Though our profiles allow us to list DTP as a service, DTP does not appear under the pull-down list "Service Type" in the translator directory search.

However, if you know what type of file your client will be expecting you to deliver (e.g. Quark, InDesign), then you can search under "Translator Productivity Software" to find out who works with that particular DTP software. That should narrow things down immensely. Of course, if you just have to deliver heavily formatted Word documents, then this search feature will not be specific enough.

As for being affordable, this detail might not be immediately evident on the person's profile, but you could always send inquiries to the best prospects (some site users even mention affordability in their tagline).


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José Henrique Lamensdorf  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 08:42
English to Portuguese
+ ...
To find, then to select, later to cross-train Apr 21, 2009

Finding DTP professionals shouldn't be too difficult. Most of them are expected to sell their wares on the web, so if you don't find any on Proz, search engines might help.

The problem is the selection criteria. The first one is software requirements.

If your client uses, say, FrameMaker, and wants the files delivered in FM files, it's useless to lure, cajole, or otherwise force a Quark or InDesign specialist into using it.

On the other hand, if you'll get PDF, hardcopy, or heavily formatted Word originals, any competent DTP operator with their favorite software will handle it. I assume that a competent DTP pro will not be playing around with MS Publisher, PagePlus, Scribus, or other low-end DTP software.

The next step is to try to find someone who will save you (both) time, effort, and cost. If you find a bilingual, or even sesquilingual DTP operator, savings can be significant. Though they might know squat about the whatchamacallit you translated, they can readily identify which chunk of translated text corresponds to what in the original, hence where and how it should be placed. S/he also will spot the words that should be bold, italic, underline, all caps, whatever. And they'll also be able to see if the software is hyphenating properly.

After you found someone, it's good to develop teamwrk, by setting up a partnership, and then cross-training. In this phase, one teaches the other some things about their m.o.

From my experience, MS Word heavily formatted text often wreaks havoc in PageMaker when it's imported. So, when this happens, I unformat everything, and start over. On most cases, I open the doc/rtf in Word, and save it as a plani txt file. As PageMaker is a DTP program (and word is not, though some people think so), text formatting there is a piece of cake. The issue being illustrated here is: why you - the translator - should waste time formatting in Word, if the best thing for the DTP operator is to start by removing all that?

The next step in this integration is to agree on some guidelines regarding things like tables. Get guidance from your DTP-er on what's the best way to deliver him/her data for tables. I've had to remove hundreds of carefully counted spaces with [tab]s.

Like these, there will be several integration issues between you and your DTP'er which should be dealt with, so you can work quickly and effectively as a team.


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xxxNMR
France
Local time: 11:42
French to Dutch
+ ...
There is DTP and DTP Apr 22, 2009

My first question is: why should you be obliged to do DTP for direct clients? Lots of translators and translation agencies don't - the DTP part which cannot be handled by the translator will be given to a specialized DTP agency.

I was a DTP specialist before, ran into lots of compatibility problems and decided to stop this, despite the fact that I own a Quark licence and Pagemaker. Now 99% of my translations are only translations. And my direct clients never ask for DTP, besides the Powerpoint slides for which the layout should be kept. (kept, not recreated).

José Henrique Lamensdorf wrote:

The issue being illustrated here is: why you - the translator - should waste time formatting in Word, if the best thing for the DTP operator is to start by removing all that?


May I insist on this?

Three other points:
1) DTP specialists are expensive, a lot more than translators. A beautiful advertising brochure may cost several hours of DTP per page - even if there are only ten words in it. (this is an extreme case but ALWAYS ask for an estimation before you begin doing lay-out)
2) For DTP persons, all corrections in a lay-out file which are not mistakes of the DTP agency will have to be paid. If you have 1 correction in 1 page, they will count you a minimum fee of 1 hour = 60 euros/dollars.
3) In some countries, DTP is a commercial activity and cannot be handled by an intellectual profession such as a translator; in each case VAT should be paid, ask your taxman.


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alessps
Local time: 10:42
English to Portuguese
What is DTP? Apr 23, 2009

I am new into the Translation world. So, I apologise for my ignorance but what is it? Do I need to know about?

[Edited at 2009-04-23 16:22 GMT]


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TREX2  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:42
Member (2002)
Italian to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I'm beginning to wonder myself! Apr 23, 2009

If you've ever admired a beautifully-designed magazine, what caught your eye was DTP. It's the difference between the Word document a translator sends to a translation agency and the final document the agency sends on to the final client. Does a translator dealing directly with a final client need to know about DTP? I had always thought so, which is why I introduced the topic. But if you read what NMR has to say you may question this. If you work exclusively for agencies you won't have to worry about it. The question will only arise if you do work for direct clients - assuming it does arise even then if one is to believe NMR!

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José Henrique Lamensdorf  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 08:42
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Vive la différence Apr 23, 2009

TREX2 wrote:
If you've ever admired a beautifully-designed magazine, what caught your eye was DTP.


When a translator sees a beautifully designed magazine or pamphlet, the creative design part has already been done. The issue is to preserve it while moving to a different language.

The difference between word processing and DTP is this:



I had seen it somewhere, wanted to include it in one of my web pages, but couldn't find it again. So I re-created it. It's in Portuguese. The left column is obvious. Plenty of what we call rat-racetracks. The center one is an as-is text placement on PageMaker, and the right one has a light human touch.

The article where I originally saw this comparison said that a DTP program treats text differently, that's why it looks neater.





[Edited at 2009-04-23 20:59 GMT]


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