How to supply your artwork
- We require all artwork to be provided as a high resolution PDF, 300dpi or higher
- We do not require any bleed or crop marks, as these will be added on by our software
- Make sure all fonts have been outlined and all images and text has been embedded
- We print in CMYK so make sure all images, text and background colours are in CMYK, not RGB
- We ask for the artwork to be sent over at 25% of the overall graphic area. This will make the files size smaller
Artwork that does not follow these guidelines may be required to be re-submitted, resulting in extended lead times. Please consider this if you are working to a tight deadline. Lead time is calculated from receiving correctly formatted artwork and payment.
The required artwork size for the product you're purchasing can be found on the product page under the Artwork Guides icon or on our Artwork Specifications page. The artwork specifications will provide 2 sizes; the overall artwork size and quarter size (25%). Artwork can be provided at either of these sizes, although we recommend using the 25% size to reduce the overall file size.
What is CMYK?
CMYK stands for Cyan Magenta Yellow and Black (Key). CMYK is a colour pattern in which all colours are made up of a mixture of these four colours. CMYK is the standard colour model used in printing, and is often referred to as four-colour printing. CMYK creates each colour by laying a proportion of each colour required to create a colour onto a white background. We recommend using the colour setting FOGRA39 when creating your PDF to give the best colour match.
Solid black is always an awkward colour to print. In order to achieve solid black please save your files using the following:
100 C 100 M 100 Y 100 K
What is DPI?
DPI stands for Dots Per Inch. This is used to describe how the quality of an image will be printed or shown. The higher the DPI the less pixelated the image will appear as the printer will lay more dots per inch of that image. For example an image of 300dpi will have 300 dots of ink per inch whereas a 72dpi image will only have 72 dots per inch.
What is outlining and embedding?
When printing a document the fonts can sometimes cause a problem. If you have used a typeface that we don't have or own, the document will print without the text or the font will be replaced with a similar font. Outlining all the fonts means the text is no longer text and becomes a vector image, and then can no longer be altered. This is similar to embedding which ensures that any images in the artwork can still be used when this file is opened on another computer or programme even though we do not have the original images. We ask for everything in a file to be embedded to stop any images or text being missed off when printing.
What programme should you use to create artwork?
We recommend using either Adobe InDesign or Adobe Illustrator to create your artwork as these programmes will allow you to easily create the correct template size you need and save as a PDF. There are many other programmes that are OK to use, as long as you can save your artwork at the correct size in a print-ready PDF format.
Why does the printed artwork look different to the artwork on screens?
When you view your artwork on screen it is showing in RGB (Red Green Blue) whereas we print using CMYK (Cyan Magenta Yellow Black). RGB has a larger colour range which is perfect for on screen viewing, whereas CMYK is used for printing materials. This is why your artwork colour may look different on screens to how it has been printed.
Can I see what the artwork will look like before it goes to print?
We will always print from the exact artwork you provide us and will not change or amend anything without your say so. This is why we do not offer a PDF proof as standard. If we notice something that doesn't look right or is missing we'll come straight back to you. If however you would like to see your artwork on our media to check the colour before we go to print we do offer a proofing service, where we will send you a colour proof of your artwork. These are available at an additional cost and sent by 1st class delivery.