Camera, Platemaking and Other Prepress Workers

(NOC 9472)

in All Manufacturing and Utilities

Camera and platemaking workers use graphic arts cameras and scanners, assemble film and negatives and prepare, engrave and etch printing plates or cylinders for different types of printing presses. They work for firms that specialize in colour graphics or platemaking and cylinder preparation, commercial publishing and printing companies, newspapers, magazines, and in various organizations in the public and private sectors that have in-house printing departments.

Job Outlook

Undetermined

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  • Estimate change in employment not available for this occupation.
  • Estimate openings due to growth and retirements not available for this occupation.
  • Estimate rate of unemployment not available for this occupation.

Compared to: All Manufacturing and Utilities

  • Estimate 75 employment change, 2019-2021
  • Estimate 1460 openings due to growth and retirements, 2018-2020
  • Estimate rate of unemployment not available for these occupation.

This is not a large occupation in Nova Scotia so job opportunities may not be that frequent. With a small percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are not expected to be a major contributor to employment opportunities over the coming years. Camera, Platemaking, and Other Prepress Workers most commonly work full-time hours.

The median employment income for 70% of Camera, Platemaking, and Other Prepress Workers who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $43,530. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, 59% of those who worked full-time year round had a median employment income of $43,600.
(Source: 2016 Census)

Hourly Pay

N/A

Minimum

N/A

Median

N/A

Maximum

Annual Pay

N/A

Minimum

$35,032

Median

N/A

Maximum

Compared to: All Manufacturing and Utilities

Hourly Pay

$13.00

Minimum

$23.91

Median

$35.04

Maximum

Annual Pay

$6,056

Minimum

$30,111

Median

$70,518

Maximum

About the job

Nature of work

Camera and platemaking workers use graphic arts cameras and scanners, assemble film and negatives and prepare, engrave and etch printing plates or cylinders for different types of printing presses. They work for firms that specialize in colour graphics or platemaking and cylinder preparation, commercial publishing and printing companies, newspapers, magazines, and in various organizations in the public and private sectors that have in-house printing departments.

Job duties

Graphic arts camera operators:

  • Set up and adjust black and white or colour separation process cameras to convert graphic art and photographs into film for assembly and exposure onto printing plates or cylinders.

Cylinder preparers:

  • Grind and polish press cylinders; expose and lay down carbon tissue; and etch or engrave cylinders using hand tools, etching machines, photogravure or laser processes to produce cylinders for gravure presses.

Film strippers and assemblers:

  • Assemble and position, either using automated equipment or by hand, pieces of film containing all parts of a printing job to produce flats or composite negatives for preparing printing plates or cylinders.

Platemakers:

  • Use vacuum frames, plate processors and step and repeat machines to produce printing plates for different types of presses.

Prepress technicians:

  • Use a variety of computer-controlled studio systems to perform colour separation, retouching and editing that allow changes to be made to a colour negative for printing purposes, plan page layouts and electronically alter shape, size and positions of illustrations and text.

Scanner operators:

  • Use computerized scanning machines or digital cameras to make colour separations and corrections from colour copy or transparencies for use in preparing film, digital files, printing plates or cylinders.

Proofmakers:

  • Use computerized equipment to prepare film, laser or dylux proofs for quality control purposes or for customers' review.

Sample job titles

  • camera operator
  • cylinder preparer
  • dot etcher
  • file preparation operator
  • film stripper-assembler
  • platemaker
  • pre-flight operator
  • prepress technician
  • printing plate engraver
  • proofmaker
  • screenmaker
  • studio-image processing system operator

Skills

You should be responsible and alert. Coordination and a mechanical skill are important. You must also be able to take direction and carry out instructions given by a supervisor.

Job requirements

  • High school is usually required.
  • A college program in graphic arts technology or a combination of on-the-job training and specialized college, industry or other courses is required.

Other considerations

There is some movement among the various types of jobs within this group. Movement to supervisor positions is possible with experience.

By the numbers

Quick look

100

employed in 2016

85.0%

employed full-time

10.0%

self employed

40.0%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
60%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
43.1

median age

Compared to: All Manufacturing and Utilities

15,275

employed in 2016

83.2%

employed full-time

3.2%

self employed

27.6%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
72.4%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
44.7

median age

Where will I likely work?

57.9%

Halifax

21.1%

Cape Breton

10.5%

Southern

10.5%

North Shore

Compared to: All NS Occupations

47.0%

Halifax

15.6%

North Shore

12.9%

Annapolis Valley

12.7%

Cape Breton

11.8%

Southern

Top Industries of Employment

66.7%

Manufacturing

11.1%

Public administration

11.1%

Information and cultural industries

11.1%

Educational services

What is the age of Employment?

29.0%

45-54

24.0%

15-24

19.0%

35-44

14.0%

55-64

14.0%

25-34

Compared to: All Manufacturing and Utilities

24.5%

45-54

20.8%

55-64

19.3%

35-44

16.5%

25-34

15.0%

15-24

Top levels of education

45.0%

College Diploma

$36,735 median annual income
30.0%

High school

N/A
10.0%

Trade Certification

N/A
10.0%

Diploma Above Bachelor

N/A
10.0%

Bachelor

N/A

Compared to: All Manufacturing and Utilities

38.1%

High school

$28,505 median annual income
23.3%

Less than high school

$19,224 median annual income
19.9%

College Diploma

$38,781 median annual income
12.2%

Trade Certification

$43,975 median annual income
4.5%

Bachelor

$39,715 median annual income

Education & training

Adult High School Diploma or Equivalent

High School Program

The Nova Scotia School for Adult Learning (NSSAL) administers, coordinates, and supports the development and delivery of adult education programs through learning partners in Nova Scotia. Our learning partners include the Nova Scotia Community College, Adult High Schools, Université Sainte-Anne, and community-based learning organizations that offer tuition-free programming across the province. NSSAL offers clear, accessible pathways from adult basic education to a high school credential or GED, empowering Nova Scotians to achieve their learning and employment goals.

Institutions providing this program

Universite Sainte-Anne

Pointe-de-l'Église, NS

Nova Scotia Community College - Adult Learning

Various, NS

Adult High Schools

Various, NS

Community Learning Organizations

Various, NS

Graphic Communications

College, Trades, or University Program

These programs apply technical knowledge and skills in the manufacture and distribution or transmission of graphic communications products. They include courses in the prepress, press, and postpress phases of production operations and processes like offset lithography, flexography, gravure, letterpress, screen printing, foil stamping, digital imaging, and other reproduction methods.

Institutions providing this program

NSCAD University

Halifax, NS

Employment requirements & contacts

No regulating bodies were found under this occupation profile

Contacts

Canadian Printing Industries Association
Laval, QC

Additional resources

There are no additional resources for this occupation.