File Prep Guide

If you are creating your own document, please be sure it meets these guidelines. Files that have missing elements or other problems will delay your order and change your original delivery date. Other requirements may apply, please check with our art department to be sure your document is print ready.

ACCEPTED FILES:
PDF, EPS, TIF and JPG.

We will also accept native file formats but these files will have to be processed by our Prepress Department. Native File formats accepted: Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator and Adobe InDesign files.
 
We prefer that you send .PDF and .EPS files with outlined fonts. These files are easier to handle and will likely speed up your turn-around. Remember to add crop marks and flatten your files before sending.


THE BASICS

Resolution:
All images must be a minimum of 300 dpi for photo images.
If you want us to use artwork/photo with a lower resolution we will do so, but we will NOT be responsible for poor quality of image(s) when printed.

Color:
All colors should be converted to CMYK. Please be aware that colors will change somewhat when converted from Spot or RGB to CMYK. Also, colors will not look exactly the same when printed as they do on your computer screen.

Margins:
Because the trimming machines are not always accurate it is recommended that you keep your important images and text from extending beyond a certain area. This will help you to avoid any important copy or images from being lost or cut off when the printed piece is trimmed down to its final size.

We require at least a 1/8 margin on all sides of artwork for most jobs. There are some exceptions such as letterheads, envelopes and signs. Please check with our art department if you are unsure what margins should be used.
 
Bleeds:
To compensate for slight paper movement during printing any image or color fill that goes to the edge of a document must be extended beyond the actual document size. Make sure your images or color fills extend 1/8” past the page edge.

Crop marks:
Include crop marks when applicable to insure your layout is cut accurately.

Fonts/Type:
Convert fonts to outline (Preferred) or you can Include all printer and screen fonts. Be sure to include all styles used (regular, bold, italic, bold italic)


PDF FILES

PDF files can be created from most programs; the key is to select the proper setting when creating your PDF files. Many programs allow for the user to select from Presets. (Common pre-defined settings for creating PDF.) We recommend using the setting titled Press Quality. You can also choose High Quality. The two are identical except when using Press Quality, all spot color definition are converted to CMYK values.

  • Convert fonts to outline if possible
  • Convert color files to CMYK mode
  • Add crop marks
  • If images and shapes extent past edge of document, Include 1/8(.125) inch bleeds


EPS FILES

  • Convert fonts to outline
  • Convert color files to CMYK mode
  • Add crop marks
  • If images and shapes extent past edge of document, Include 1/8(.125) inch bleeds


TIF FILES

  • Flatten Artwork
  • Save as a high resolution 300 dpi file
  • Convert color to CMYK
  • Add crop marks if possible
  • If images and shapes extent past edge of document, Include 1/8(.125) inch bleeds


JPG FILES

While this is listed, the JPEG format is our least desired file format. The JPEG format is a "lossy" format, meaning some of the quality degrades when you save your file. JPG should only be used if you have no way of saving as one of the above formats.

  • Flatten Artwork
  • Save as a high resolution 300 dpi file
  • Convert color to CMYK
  • Add crop marks if possible
  • If images and shapes extent past edge of document, Include 1/8(.125) inch bleeds

 
NATIVE FILE FORMATS
Adobe InDesign and Adobe Illustrator

  • Convert fonts to outline (Preferred) or you can Include all printer and screen fonts. Be sure to include all styles used (regular, bold, italic, bold italic)
  • Convert color files to CMYK mode.
  • Add crop marks - to make sure your layout is cut accurately.
  • If images and shapes extent past edge of document, Include 1/8(.125) inch bleed


Adobe Photoshop

  • Flatten Artwork
  • Save as a high resolution 300 dpi file
  • Convert color to CMYK
  • Add crop marks if possible - to make sure your layout is cut accurately.
  • If images and shapes extent past edge of document, Include 1/8(.125) inch bleed


BUSINESS CARDS

  • Business Card size is 2 x 3.5 inches
  • Resolution needs to be at least 300 dpi
  • Set Color to CMYK
  • Important text and shapes must be within 1/8 (.125) inch margin on all sides of card.
  • Add crop marks if possible - to make sure your layout is cut accurately.
  • Bleeds need to extend at least 1/8 (.125) inch beyond the edge.








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