you lose sleep at night trying to figure out how to submit your artwork
to us then your sleepless nights are over! We have put together a complete
list of every question we've ever answered on how to submit art and what
specifications we require.
We try to explain everything in Plain English so it's
easy for everyone to follow. If you're still having problems understanding
how to submit art then give us a call. We'll be happy to help you out!
Q: What file types do you guys require?
A: The files we accept are .JPG, .PDF, Flattened
.PSD, and .TIF. All files must be flattened so it is just pixel data
with no fonts attached. We cannot accept; Illustrator Files, Quark
Files, Publisher Files, Firework Files, Flash Files, or MSPaint Files
(believe me, we've seen our share of MSPaint files).
Q: Why can't you accept the above mentioned file
A: We choose not to accept them because there is too
much room for error. We do not have all the fonts installed onto our machines
and sometimes they get lost in the transfer. Generally all design software
will let you save-as or export as one of the required file types. Once
the images are in the required file types they are "finalized"
and everything is embedded so it alleviates any possibility for errors.
Also, some of the file types are not high enough resolution in those formats.
Q: Why are the colors different on my screen than
on the printed flyers?
A: Because your monitor is broken. No, seriously it's
because you're probably designing the job in RGB (Red Green
and Blue) color mode which is the industry default for most graphic
applications. We are a four color printer so when you submit a
file as an RGB we have to convert it to CMYK (Cyan Magenta
Yellow and Black) color mode. The Reds, Greens, and Blues will lose
value after the conversion and it won't look the same. We require all
of our files to be submitted as CMYK. If not, we will convert them
for you and there will be some color deviation. To get the closest match
of how your job is going to look when printed design it in CMYK
Q: What resolution do you guys require?
A: We are a high resolution printer so we require
all submitted files to be 300dpi (Dots Per Inch). If you design
a job at 72dpi or lower we cannot use the file. Our prepress will resize
it to 300dpi therefore "stretching" the image out. See the example
below where one image was created at 300dpi, the other was created
at 72dpi and then stretched out to 300dpi.
Q: What's a bleed?
A: A bleed is a graphic that extends
to the edge of a sheet or page after trimming. You can have images that
"bleed" off the edge of the design. Any graphic that extends
past the original canvas size is considered a bleed. It will be trimmed
to the size of the job so the graphics that extend will be trimmed. You
do not want to have text bleeding off the edges because they will get
cut and you will lose important information in the process.
Q: What's all this talk about a Safe
Area for my Text?
A: After we print your job we have to
cut it out from the print sheet. Our cutters are very precise but generally
we need to cut 1/16" to 1/8" into your job so there is no white
border. If you have text that goes all the way to the edge then you will
lose portions of that text that hug the edge. It is important to keep
all your text at least 1/8" in from the edge of the design. If you
want a precise border size then adjust the border so it is 1/8" bigger
to help compensate for the cut.
Q: What's the best file type to submit?
A: The best file type to submit would
be a flattened .TIF file since it's not compressed. However, this
usually leads to a very large file size. A compressed .JPG will
work just as well as an uncompressed .TIF and will drop the file
size down tremendously. The file size issue comes into play when you're
uploading your art to our server. If you save it as a .TIF and
using a dial up modem, grab yourself a copy of "Gone with the Wind"
or take a short vacation because it's going to take a while to upload.
Q: What size do you want my design?
Do you need me to add any bleed?
A: What ever size job you order is the
exact size we need the art submitted. If you order a 4" x 6"
postcard then the art you submit will be exactly 4" x 6". Keep
in mind the "safe area" for the text. If you submit art that
is larger than the 4" x 6" dimensions then we usually will shrink/enlarge
to fit into the allocated space. There is one exception to this rule and
it applies to business cards because of the size of them.
Q: What size does the art for a business
card have to be?
A: Due to the small size of a final business
card we require that the design be submitted at 3.625" x 2.125".
In order for us to cut the card precisely to 3.5" x 2"
we need that 1/8" so we don't cut into your cards. Use the "safe
area" information when designing your business cards because the
1/16" will be cut off.
Q: I need to submit art for a Magazine
or Booklet. Is it the same as submitting art for flyers?
A: The specs are pretty much the same
as flyer and postcard art submissions. We require all the text be within
1/8th inch from the page edge. We do require you send the art for each
page separately. Each page should be within it's own document...i.e...cover,
page1, page2, page3 and etc. Do not submit art canvased into one monstrous
.PDF file and have us try to decipher which page is which. We're usually
pretty good at figuring it out unless there are no page numbers. If you
submit art for a magazine or booklet in this manner we will turn it over
to our children and let them arrange the pages for you. No, seriously
we do need the art in separate files and each individually labelled according
to page number.