ARTWORK GUIDELINES

We pride ourselves on our ability to provide immaculate quality print, but we can only do that if your artwork is created and supplied correctly. Therefore, we kindly ask that you run your artwork through the Artwork Guideline & Checklist below. Failure to do so could cause your file to be rejected and your turnaround time reset.

Alternatively, if you would like to discuss a project prior to the design stage, we suggest a quick call to a member of our studio team.

Artwork Size

We accept files at actual size or at scale. Most of the templates we provide will be at 25%, 50% or 100% scale. If you are ordering a custom size product, we recommend setting up your artwork at 100% or 50% of the actual size. The most important element is to ensure that the file size is below 100MB so that we can process it efficiently.

Please note: If supplying at scale, the scale of your artwork must match the ratio of the actual size ordered.

File Format

We require all print ready artwork to be supplied in PDF format. We recommend you use the following programs to create your artwork

Recommended

  • Adobe Illustrator .Ai
  • Adobe InDesign .idd

Sometimes acceptable:

  • Photoshop .PSD or .TIFF – You must include all layers, paths, channels, links and fonts. All PSD and TIFF files must be flattened.
  • JPEG’s. JPEG’s are often useful if you need to send us a flattened Photoshop file at full print size. However, please note, as JPEG’s use only bitmap information they are not always suitable for enlargement.

NOT Accepted:

Unfortunately, we cannot accept design files from non-Adobe programs like Quark and Coral. We also cannot accept files from Microsoft Office programs, such as PowerPoint, Word and Publisher as these often have printing errors and produce inferior results.

 

Exporting For Print

When you have created your Artwork you will need to save or export this as a pdf file. If you have created your artwork using our recommended Adobe applications, InDesign or Illustrator, you can export directly from these programs in PDF format. Before doing so, please ensure to:

  • Save a copy of your file in the native application
  • Convert all text to outlines
  • Either embed your images (although this will increase file size) or with separately supplied linked images.

Once you’ve completed the above steps, please ensure your export settings are as follows:

ADOBE ILLUSTRATOR

Use the following export settings, be sure to use “Illustrator Default” rather than “High Quality Print”

Please note, editable PDF files are generally best as long as they are supplied with either embedded images (will increase file size – see below) or separately supplied linked images.

Exporting for Print (reducing file size)

TOP TIP

If you choose to embed images, the file size may become unmanageable (greater than 100MB). In this scenario, when exporting as a PDF, be sure to untick ‘Preserve Illustrator Editing Capabilities’ (in the general tab) which will make the file size more manageable. Make sure to save your file as an .ai before exporting as a .pdf or you’ll lose the editing capabilities.

ADOBE Indesign

Please save as the PDF Pre-set (High Quality Print), with the settings shown here.

InDesign Export Settings

CHECKLIST BEFORE EXPORTING FOR PRINT

Colour and images must extend beyond the edge of your artwork to prevent unwanted white borders after trimming. This is known as bleed. Before exporting your file, please ensure you have supplied the necessary bleed. Please note, if you are ordering a custom product, our sales team will let you know the bleed size required.

Before exporting your file, please ensure the resolution of your artwork is in line with our resolution guide below.

Small Format

For our Small Format products (Flyers), the best results are achieved when the resolution of all images are at least 300dpi at final print size (full size).

At the recommended Artwork Size – 100%, artwork should be supplied at a resolution of 300dpi for the best print finish.

Within your PDF document, you can zoom in to the artwork. This will show the true resolution, even taking into account that your computer screen will have a lower resolution than a commercial printer.

The general rule of thumb is to zoom in on your image by 300-400% to gain a good idea of how the image will look when printed. An image lower than 300dpi resolution image that looks fine on your computer screen will appear pixelated in print. (Pixelation is where the tiny squares or dots that make up an image, are visible when it’s printed). And please remember; simply increasing the DPI of an image in Photoshop will not improve its quality.

Large & Superwide Print:

For Large Format Printing, the best results are achieved when the resolution of the images are 125 DPI at final print size (full size). In-fact images submitted at higher than 125 DPI will create large, unworkable file sizes without any visible gain in print quality and may delay the processing of your print.

We would not recommend printing artwork that does not meet the minimum criteria, thus failure to supply artwork that does not at least meet the minimum criteria, will cause your file to be rejected and may result in your turnaround time reset.

We have therefore created the following guide. The general rule of thumb is to use as high a resolution as you can without the project becoming unworkable, i.e. the maximum.

Quarter Size / 1:4 / 25% Scale: Minimum 300dpi – Maximum 450dpi – RECOMMENDED

Half Size / 1:2 / 50% Scale: Minimum 150dpi – Maximum 250dpi

Actual Size / 1:1 / 100% Scale: Minimum 75dpi – Maximum 125dpi

Displays, Events & Exhibitions:

All of our Displays, Events & Exhibition products have downloadable templates. The majority of our downloadable templates for Displays, Events & Exhibitions are supplied at 25% of the finished size.

At 25% scale, all images should be supplied at a resolution of at least 300dpi for the best print finish.

Alternatively, please use the guide below:

Quarter Size / 1:4 / 25% Scale: Minimum 300dpi – Maximum 450dpi – RECOMMENDED

Half Size / 1:2 / 50% Scale: Minimum 150dpi – Maximum 250dpi

Actual Size / 1:1 / 100% Scale: Minimum 75dpi – Maximum 125dpi

Use the following methods to ensure that your fonts will not be substituted when sent over to our Artwork Team.

  1. If you are using Adobe InDesign or Illustrator, you will have the ability to ‘outline’ your text (recommended). This will turn your text into a vector shape and ensures that it will not be converted in to another font when you send the file from one computer to another.
  2. If you have the font license for the font you have used in the design file, when converting into a PDF you will be asked if you would like to embed the fonts in the document. Selecting ‘yes’ packages the fonts with the document information files, so that when opened on another computer it will look exactly the same.

Before exporting your file as a Print Ready PDF, please create and supply artwork in CMYK only.

Like most Print companies, our Printers are set-up to print in CMYK (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Black). We therefore recommend all artwork be created and supplied in CMYK only.

Files supplied to us in an RGB format will be automatically converted to CMYK. This can cause some variations in colour, so we recommend that you set up your design software in CMYK where possible. The RGB spectrum is much larger than CMYK. This makes it difficult to create a consistent quality of print within an RGB spectrum, as the variations can also differ between different printing presses (even if they are identical models). CMYK ensures a high standard of print quality and no variation of colour during the print process.

Please also make sure there are no spot colours or pantones in your artwork as this will likely output unexpected results.

Whilst every effort is made to ensure colours match the files provided, different materials may produce slightly different colours once printed due to finishes and textures.

USE OF COLOUR:

It is best to avoid solid areas of colours made up of only one ink (i.e. pure cyan, magenta, yellow or black) as these can be susceptible to slight “banding’

USE OF BLACK:

In CMYK, a mix of all colours produces the richest black you can get for solid areas of colour.

Although 100% Black (C:0 M:0 Y:0 K:100) may appear black on your RGB screen, it is not the best black you can achieve and may appear washed out or even grey.

For Rich Black Use:

Standard Rich Black: C:30 M:30 Y:30 K:100

Backlit Rich Black (LED Lightboxes): C65 M:65 Y:65 K:100

This will make your blacks richer and keep the total ink coverage within recommended guidelines of our Printing Presses.

For Black Text:

Rich black (above) is created from a mix of CMYK inks. When printing, there will always be a slight shift or movement. This can be noticeable in rich black text, so make sure any text is 100% black only

C:0 M:0 Y:0 K:100.

That way there’s no risk of registration errors.

Before exporting your file as a PDF, please ensure your artwork does not contain any critically viewable content (for example text and logo’s) within the specified Clear Area/Safe Zone for the product you have ordered.

This area inside of the trimmed size is considered high risk and may be cut off. Background colours and images are fine going into the clear areas.

Pole Pockets are a finishing option on our Banner Printing

1. Ordering

If you would like pole pockets, please make sure you order your graphic at the finished size including the pockets.

For example, if you order a 1m wide x 2m height graphic and select pole pocket finishing, we will manufacture your graphic to a total height of 2m including the pockets.

2. Additional Clear Area

When selecting Pole Pockets, please leave an additional clear area where your pocket will be placed (the size of the pocket you have selected). To ensure that your pole pockets don’t obscure any critically viewable information within the pocket area, please do not place any critically viewable content e.g. text or logos within this area. Background colours and images are fine going into the clear areas.

3. Setting up artwork for Pole Pockets

For a flat pocket size of 50mm, please setup your artwork with a clear area of 90mm (at the top and the bottom), that’s 50mm for the pocket + 40mm for the Hemming. This will make the overall visually safe area 1m wide x 1.82m high.

For a flat pocket size of 100mm, please setup your artwork with a clear area of 140mm (at the top and the bottom), that’s 100mm for the pocket + 40mm for the Hemming. This will make the overall visually safe area 1m wide x 1.72m height.

For a flat pocket size of 150mm, please setup your artwork with a clear area of 190mm (at the top and the bottom), that’s 150mm for the pocket + 40mm for the Hemming. This will make the overall visually safe area 1m wide x 1.62m height.

To have your order cut to a custom shape (contour cut) you will need to provide a Vector Cut Path in your artwork file.

A Vector Cut Path is a Vectored Outline and needs to be supplied as a Spot Colour called CutContour and be on a separate layer.

File format needs to be either .AI, PDF or EPS

If you are unsure of how to do this, please contact us


Mix & match LED Lightboxes

Choose from our Mix & Match designer stands for the ultimate LED Lightbox Display.