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Creating Print Ready Files

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Creating Print Ready Files banner

While some experienced graphic designers might be very familiar with print-ready work, this concept still represents a terrifying and intimidating aspect of graphic design for many newcomers. For those of you that don’t know what it is, the term ‘print-ready’ is often used in the printing business to describe a file that already meets all the necessary specifications to result in a high-resolution printed outcome without the need for any additional intervention or alteration.

Sadly, when a printed job comes knocking at your door, there is no ‘Undo’ option. The best way to prevent this is to know what exactly print-ready entails. Print ready files must have these two characteristics: high resolution and be a specific file type.

High resolution sounds like a no-brainer concept, however it is a common mistake. Commercial printers can produce great results but ONLY if the file is also great. Always save an original file type of every design and logo you have and keep these separate.

File type is another crucial factor. Adobe PDF files tend to have a higher resolution than most programs and are the preferred choice from most vendors (including us!). Other layouts created with Adobe products such as Illustrator and Photoshop are also accepted! File types such as Publisher, PowerPoint and Word produce files that require intervention and are not normally high-resolution.

A huge error with file types is individuals taking a JPG image of a logo and design and re-saving it as a PDF. Essentially, you are taking that JPG and re-naming it – it still has the same resolution as it had as a standard JPG and it cannot be altered or edited by a graphic designer.

When an Adobe, Illustrator or Photoshop image is given, it allows for the designer and sign company in general to stay true to your brand standards as far as font and color options. Files that are accepted will have correctly coded PMS colors and make your life easier – and turn times quicker!

Have your files & your ready to print? Submit your artwork online!

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