Supplying artwork for printing
Supplying correctly prepared artwork for printing is essential to ensure that you receive the best quality print job possible.
It’s the first step in the physical print process and influences the eventual outcome.
At Express Print & Mail we recommend you follow these guidelines when supplying artwork:
Provide pdf files to finished size, with 3mm bleed* on all elements that touch the edge of the page: - for example this means an A4 document with bleed will be supplied at 216 x 303mm size
(* The position of each sheet of paper can vary ever so slightly when it goes through a commercial printing press. To compensate for this, artwork design is required to extend beyond the edge of the actual printed page area. This is referred to as bleed and at least 3mm needs to be added to the finished size of all documents.
Trim marks should also be included to indicate where the printed item should be cut to the correct size. Booklets and presentation folders require 5mm bleed.)
• Use specific fonts for bold or italic type - not the manual keyboard attributes
• Embed all fonts in the document, including those embedded in EPS files and convert to outlines or curves
• Please ensure black text is set to 100% black only and is set to overprint
• Set overprints correctly for the desired result - use the 'Simulate Overprinting' tool within the Output Preview function of Adobe Acrobat to check
• Supply images at a minimum 300dpi resolution and 1200dpi resolution for bitmap, logo and line art images. Lower resolutions than this may result in lower quality output
• Images should not be used at more than 150% of scanned size
• Please ensure all transparencies have been flattened
• Convert all images to CMYK for a four colour process job
• Do not supply images in RGB, LAB and indexed colour mode as they can produce an unexpected result
• PMS colours are required for jobs that have been specified to be produced in PMS
• To achieve a rich black outcome, we recommend 20% Cyan, 20% Magenta, 20% Yellow and 100% Black
Keep your total ink coverage below 280%. The typical CMYK colour mix gets darker as you add more ink. When selecting your % colour breakdown it’s important to keep in mind that final colours that use large % amounts of each of the CMYK colours quickly become oversaturated and produce a muted and dull result. The colour may look fine on screen but the printed result will be different.
• Provide books as single page artwork - not as spreads
• Use the ‘press quality’ export setting if using the Adobe design program
• For pull up banners - flat size is 2106 x 856mm (allow 103mm of bleed on bottom for attaching to mechanism) - finished size 2000mm x 850mm
• For clear ink or foils - file to be 100% colour (Black or Magenta) and to be a separate page from the printed file
(we require a 3 page PDF file with 3mm bleed - Front/Back/Foil or Clear)
We do not accept files from any of the following applications as they are not considered commercially acceptable for printing and can often create issues with your print files:
• Microsoft Publisher, Word, Excel or PowerPoint
• Google Docs, Sheets or Slides
• Any other word processing applications
Any alterations required to your artwork to make it print-ready will incur a cost.
If a print job is colour critical, we recommend you request a hard copy proof (you will be required to sign your approval to proceed to print) or conduct a physical press check at our premises.
You will find more information about setting up artwork correctly here.