What is Print Ready Artwork?
Working with an in-house graphic design team has allowed us to keep prices low while maintaining excellent print standards.
All files must meet certain requirements so that your order can be correctly processed.
We run a series of checks before printing your files and often corrections are required to ensure the file is print ready. There are limitations to the amount of changes that we can make; extensive changes may incur charges to the client.
Step 1: Create your file at the required print size
We regularly receive files that are incorrectly sized. The resizing process can be slow and can leave you with a less than desirable outcome.
When creating your masterpiece, ensure you build it to the exact size that you need it printed.
For example, if your final trim size is 210mm x 297mm, ensure your document is set up at 210mm x 297mm.
Step 2: Add Bleed to your document
Avoid having a while boarder printed around the edge of your document by adding bleed.
The term ‘bleed’ is used for all objects overlapping the edge of your document. Any photos, graphic or background colour that goes right up to the edge of your document must be built to extend the edge of your page by at least 3mm (30mm for large format documents). Crop marks are guide lines included on artwork to ensure printed sheets are cropped/trimmed to the correct finished size.
Most design programs will have a feature that allows you to switch these on so that you are aware of how-to set-up your document correctly.
Step 3: Set your margin
There are several variables that can impact your final printed document, such as paper shrinkage, paper quality and alignment, therefore we have a trimming variance of +/- 1mm. Whilst we try our very best, certain variables are out of our control and steps must be taken to allow for a margin of error during the printing process. For this reason, we specify you add bleed to your document (above) and keep your text and any other critical design aspects within a “safe-zone” called a margin. It is advisable to have at least 3mm margin (10mm for large format documents) from the edge of the document page to your work area. Margins can be specified when you set up your document and are a guide for you.
Top Tip: If you’re creating a poster and want it reduced to a flyer, add another 1mm of bleed and margin per size change. E.g. if your file is A2, add 4mm of both bleed and margin so it can be printed in A6 as well.
Step 4: Colour
The colour presented on your computer screen can look completely different to colours within the final printed product. Computer monitors emit colour as RGB (red, green and blue) light. Colour on a printer is produced based on properties of ink in a process that combines CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow and black). We require all files to be supplied in CMYK format. If files are supplied in RGB we cannot guarantee colours will print the same.
Avoid using 1 colour black (C0, M0, Y0, K100) as this will produce a pale black, or 4-colour black (C100, M100, Y100, K100) as this is a needless waste of resources. For a rich black we recommend using C30, M30, Y0, K100. Avoid using tints lighter than 7%.
If you are concerned about the colour of you document, it is recommended that you request a hard copy proof prior to signing off on your full print run (a charge may apply).
Step 5: Resolution
Ensure any images used in your design are at least 300dpi (dots per inch). You may think your images look ok on your computer screen, but when printed the difference in resolution will be very visible. If the resolution is lower (72dpi, for example) your images will appear blurry or pixelated when printed. Also, ensure that your images are at the correct physical size for the page, but still at 300dpi. Bear in mind, if you enlarge an image it will lower its resolution.
Print Artwork Templates
A collection of Adobe design software templates for our range standard folding and cutting print jobs.
For a fast turn-around for your print job, we have created a series of standard flyer and poster sizes preformatted with margins and bleed, ready for you to build your design on.
Please download the file size that you require. We currently have templates available for InDesign, Illustrator and Photoshop.