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Preparing Artwork for Print: Advice for Graphic Designers

Whatever you want to print, whether it's books, brochures, complicated packaging, mailers, ads, posters, flyers, business stationery, signage, free standing display units, point-of-sale, billboards, or even clothing -- whether rotogravure, flexographic, offset lithographic, inkjet, lazer or digital printing -- from Macs or PCs -- it is incredible how just a few basic principles hold true across the broad range of output.

Between the designer's idea and the finished product there are a host of problems, issues and glitches waiting to be experienced and in ten years I have probably come across most.

There are two basic digital ways for printers to receive artwork. As a PDF (Avlon Printing's preference) or everything collected together (usually a QuarkXpress, Adobe InDesign or Illustrator document with images and fonts).

But before this can happen there are many things to check in the document, which could be in Quark, InDesign, PhotoShop or Illustrator.

If you the advice below closely then you should have a successfully printed job with no problems.


1. General
2. Size
3. Type/Copy
4. Logos
5. Fonts
6. Images
7. Colours
8. Bleed
9. Cutter guides

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