There are almost as many different types of varnish as there are types of printed material. The most rational use for varnish is of course to provide protection. A varnished surface stops the ink from smearing but it also protects the printed material itself from rubbing and other external influences, not least during transport. Some varnishes are used mainly to heighten the visual and sometimes also the tactile effect – such as marking the distinction between matte and shiny surfaces. For issue 55 of Inspire (and many others as well) we have used a technique called drip off. Mats Strand of Strand Grafiska explains how it works.