I am trying to find a good resource for making print design and accessibility. I thought that accessibility was more for web and devices. I’d imagine there are different guidelines for print than for the web. My Google search seems to bring me to articles that are about 20 years old.
Thanks for the help.
I’m a textbook designer working on a Mac, and my area of print design has gone heavily into ADA (or “accessibility”) issues over the last five years of so. I end up using two adjunct programs to InDesign while I work to help test for potential problems for visually impaired people. Each of these tackles a different area of concern.
The first program addresses colorblindness and is called Sim Daltonism. It creates a resizable window overlay that you can put over parts of your design as you work to check for problems, using quick shortcut keystrokes to toggle between different colorblind views. It is available in the Apple App Store. There is another open source program called Color Oracle that is available for other platforms (colororacle.org), but I haven’t used that one. Both programs are freebies.
The other program I use is called Colour Contrast Analyser (CCA) from the Paciello Group (a W3C member). This addresses contrast: type/foreground color versus background color and whether or not the foreground is dark enough to pass common accessibility standards for people with poor vision. Your client will be able to tell you whether they require AA or AAA standards in their projects. This is also a free program for Mac/Windows at this website: developer.paciellogroup.com/resources/
These two programs are really sobering in use. In many cases, the only changes between recent book editions for my main client involve making accessibility updates. Sometimes the designs have to change a lot to get them from attractive to attractive AND accessible. Just about the only color that STAYS a distinct color and doesn’t black out or get some muddy shade is that old, boring hyperlink royal blue–probably why that’s the default color. At worst, royal blue turns teal instead of blue for a couple of the colorblind views, but still remains a bright, distinct color. Many other colors black out or are indistinguishable from other colors that don’t look at all alike to normally-visioned people.