Lenticular Printing Glossary

Common words and terms in the lenticular printing industry
3D effect

  It is also a type of Binocular Disparity. The difference in the position of the object image seen by the left and right eyes makes people see the 3D effect.[1]


  Use sequential images to create the illusion of motion.


  A method of displaying stereoscopic images to the viewer without using special glasses.[2]

Checkerboard Banding

  A pattern of defects that occurs both horizontally and vertically on a lenticular print.


  CMYK stands for cyanmagentayellow and key(black), and it is a subtractive model, opposite of the RGB model. That means that the colors are subtracted from natural white light into pigments which are then printed onto paper in tiny dots.[4]CMYY Lenticular Printing

  Subtractive color, a reflected light color system, starts with white light/paper. Therefore, the more colors you add together, the darker they will be. The reasoning behind this is that light is absorbed or removed to produce various colors. The key color in CMYK mode is black (K). Adding this color helps to neutralize the image and increase the density of the shadows.

CMYK - Lenticular Printing


  The tonal change in color from light to dark. High contrast images can create ghosting in an animated lenticular.

Die Cutting

  Die cutting [3] is the general process of using a die to shear webs of low-strength materials, such as rubber, fibre, cloth, paper, fibreboard, chipboard, paperboard, plastics, pressure-sensitive adhesive tapes,  and sheet metal.

  Die cutting began as a leather-cutting process in the shoe industry in the mid-19th century. It is now sophisticated enough to cut through just one layer of laminate and is now used for labels, stamps and other stickers; this type of die cutting is known as a kiss cut.

Direct Printing

  An image is printed directly onto the flat side of a lenticular sheet


  Dots per inch, is a measure of the resolution of a printed document or digital scan. The higher the dot density, the higher the resolution of the print or scan. Typically, DPI is the measure of the number of dots that can be placed in a line across one inch, or 2.54 centimeters.


A lens effect that animates between two images.


  In an animated lenticular, one frame invades another frame’s viewing space causing smudges in the animation. An undesirable result of lenticular printing where multiple images are seen simultaneously when viewed from a single viewing angle. Possible causes are: poor registration, mismatched pitch , or too many frames.


  A form of photograph that records an image in three dimensions. A type of 3D image that is created using lasers. Although they are often confused with lenticular (because both can display depth), they are really two very different products.[2]


   The process of adhering an pre-printed media to the flat side of lenticular sheet by glue or double-sided adhesive.   Not suitable for direct lens process. However, printed lenticulars are often laminated to another substrate to increase opacity and allow backside printing.

  Any lenticular sheet larger than 150 CM X 300 CM. These images are too large to be printed on conventional printing presses and are usually digitally printed and hand laminated. 


  A series of convex lenses on a lenticular sheet. Or a specialized printing process that shows depth, motion, or parts of each in a flat piece of plastic. This effect is created using lenticules in a plastic sheet that acts as a decoder for the image printed behind it.

Lenticular Effects

  Visual effects are achieved by printing images on lenticular sheets.
    – Flip. The images flip from one image to the other when the viewing angle changes.
     – Zoom. When the viewing angle changes, the focus of the image moves toward the viewer.
    – Animation. The image appears to move as the viewing angle changes.
    – Morph. The image gradually changes from one to the other as the viewing angle changes.

    3D Effect:  – 3D with the illusion of depth, objects seen in different layers
    3D + Flip Combination Effect:
– 3 D with some pictures show side to side flip.

Lenticular Printing

  Lenticular printing [1] is a technology in which lenticules (a technology also used for 3D displays) are used to produce printed images with an illusion of depth, or the ability to change or move as they are viewed from different angles. This effect is created using lenticules in a plastic sheet that acts as a decoder for the image printed behind it.

Lenticular Sheet

  A sheet of transparent plastic material that has been extruded, cast or embossed with an array of identical parallel lenticues.


A single small convex lens in a lenticular sheet.


  The number of lenticules (or lines) per inch. The smaller the lenticule, the more it will fit within an inch. Smaller lenticules allow for less detail breakup. However, larger lenticules (lower LPI) can better delineate the outlines between frames.


  A lens effect that shows motion as the image rotates. This is achieved by using a series of frames that appear to show motion when run sequentially. Exactly the same principle as GIF files for the internet, movies or flipbooks.

Parallax is the apparent displacement or difference in the apparent position of an object viewed along two different lines of sight, and is measured by the angle or semi-angle of inclination between the two lines. In a 3D image, the phenomenon in which objects in a scene appear to move relative to each other as the viewing angle changes.


  The exact number of lenticules per inch (LPI.) on a lenticular sheet.


  The exact number of lenticules per inch (LPI.) on a lenticular sheet.


  The alignment of the printed image to the lenticules on lenticular sheet.


RGB [4]stands for red, green and blue, which are primary colors. The RGB model is better known as an additive model because the colors are added together to create the images we see on the computer screen.RGB- Lenticular Printing

  Additive colors, a projected light color system, are created by a method that combines a number of different light colors together. All the colors begin with black,  or the absence of light, then different colors (or lights) are added to produce visible colors.  Red, green and blue are the main primary light colors that are used in the additive model. The combination of two of these colors will create a secondary additive color: cyanmagentayellow.

RGB-Pattern-Lenticular Printing

  RGB can only be used by devices that generate light. An image designed in the RGB color mode is only good for print if you’re printing your product on a digital printer. If you want your design to be printed professionally, then you’ll want to change color modes to CMYK.

Viewing Angle

  Viewing angle is a v-shaped region within which lenticular images can be seen clearly. In general, the viewing angle is a guideline to determine the type of lenticular effect. A narrow viewing angle is good for 3D effect. It can also be used for animatic effect, for example Flip or Morph.[5]Viewing Angle - Lenticular Printing

Viewing Distance

The distance between you and the lenticular image is called viewing distance. This is an important factor to consider when choosing a correct lenticular sheet for your application. The number of LPI and the optimal viewing distance is inverse, meaning, the higher the LPI, the shorter the optimal viewing distance.


  A lenticular animation effect that makes the objects appear to be getting closer as it animates. Achieved by simply scaling up the image in each frame.


  1. Wikipedia – Lenticular Printing
  2. Wikipeida – Stereoscopy
  3. Wikipeida – Die Cutting
  4. gotPrint – blog.gotPrint.com
  5. 3D imaging with lenticular lenses
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