My goal in this issue is to provide you with guidelines that will help you produce print production files at the most cost-effective and efficient means possible. I will cover platforms, applications, fonts and graphics that we may work with; image resolution, ink coverage, document structure and color space; plus sending, uploading, and PDF files. Also, items that may need a little additional work, as well as some common issues that may arise and how they can be easily fixed to keep the process moving smoothly.
You can also read the article entitled
"Some basic file submission tips"
By Tom Kubinski
in the April 2008 issue in PRINT&MEDIA Buyer
The Magazine for Media Professionals
(see bottom of this column for select other PMB submissions)
We accept files created on the Macintosh, Windows platforms.
Quark XPress, Adobe InDesign and MS Publisher are common page layout programs used in the industry. Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator are common programs for creating supporting graphics; some of them may also be used to create a page layout. Always make sure your print provider is using the same version with the same plug-ins and/or extensions. Otherwise, small or large nuances may occur, unintended and probably unwanted!
Even when using common fonts like Times, Helvetica and Palatino it is necessary to send them with your document. Fonts can vary from an old version to a new, vendor to vendor and from TrueType to Postscript and OpenType. Send both the screen and printer fonts for Postscript. Avoid mixing TrueType and Postscript or OpenType formats. If you have an EPS file that has text that has not been converted to outlines, those fonts will be needed also. Using a font management utility like Suitcase or Font Book will help you organize and provide you a way to collect your fonts for your printer. Note: Avoid stylizing fonts whenever possible and use what is available from the font menu - otherwise things may re-wrap or go astray when converting to print software.
Working with print providers - they are under the same licensing agreements as individuals and must own a license for viewing, editing, and printing any Adobe typeface. It is illegal to do the following:
Share or copy fonts beyond what the license agreement allows.
Include a font copy with source files for output, unless a print provider or consultant has a license for the font, or if the license agreement makes provisions for it.
For more information on fonts, go to:
Send copies of all your graphics that are used in your document. Also if available, any layered Photoshop files will allow us to make last minute changes when necessary. Make sure all links are current and up-to-date. It is very important that you create all common elements on the same layer. Industry standard file formats for print production are EPS (Encapsulated Postscript), TIFF (Tagged Image File Format) and JPEG (Joint Photographers Expert Group. Unsupported formats would be GIF, BMP, and WMF. Note: Make sure you provide only those documents, art and type that pertain to your project - otherwise an unrelated file could be accidentally used.
IMAGE RESOLUTION and INK COVERAGE
Grayscale and CMYK images should be 300dpi at 100% of final size. Black and white (bitmap images) can be scanned between 800 and 1200dpi. Grayscale images should not exceed 90% in the darkest area, and when printing on an uncoated stock the shadow area should be between 80% and 85%. CMYK images cannot exceed 320% maximum ink coverage if printing on a coated stock and 300% for uncoated. Example: Coated stock, Cyan-85% Magenta-75% Yellow-75% Black-85% = 320%. Please call me and I can talk you through this if you need more information.
Files should be constructed to the trim size. A standard 1/8" bleed should be built into all pages. Perfect bound documents should be set up as non-facing pages with bleed on all four sides. Please avoid any special characters when naming your files and folders.
Images that are going to be printed as 4 color should be provided in CMYK format. Images saved in an RGB format can be automatically converted into different color space, however undesirable results may occur, unless you are setup in a color managed workflow.
Quark XPress, InDesign, and MS Publisher have built-in packaging and preflight options. Preflighting your file will alert you to any problems associated with your document. Packaging your file will gather the fonts and graphics used in the document. (Please have all your files in one folder and compressed using either Stuffit or WinZip. Provide detailed instructions about the files included and for which project.) Once this is done you can send your files to Sexton Printing via email or uploading through our website - this is as easy as opening your web browser and going to www.sextonprinting.com. Click on Upload and follow the instructions on the screen. Please contact myself or Mary Albers, my CSR, when the files have been sent to Sexton Printing's Virtual Prepress Server.
With a Portable Document Format you can reliably distribute documents electronically anywhere. No matter where you are, where your client is, where the files are sent from and where they will be received. Regardless of operating system, application or version, system configuration, language and fonts - all while preserving the original document fidelity for print and viewing. PDF files are also considerably smaller than native files. If you want to find out more information about creating a PDF please contact me and I will set up time with you to do some training.
Stay tuned for the next issue of TK's Korner. You just might be surprised!
Please refer back and visit often the entire library of TK's Korners where you will find information on subjects that may be of interest to you like:
Creative Coatings Techniques
Picking the Right Paper
Press Check Tips
Ways to Save Money
What Sets Sexton Apart?
Why Work With TK?
BE SURE TO CHECK THEM OUT!
Hope this helps and stay tuned for the next issue of TK's Korner. You never know what might be covered!
If you have a production issue not discussed above that you would like me to address, or a project that needs to be looked at, please give me a call or send me an email. I will do whatever it takes to ensure you get the best value for every marketing dollar invested.
You can also check out my profile, join my network and view more client comments on LinkedIn at:http://www.linkedin.com/in/tomkubinski
Referrals are greatly appreciated, if you know someone I could help, or who might like to receive TK's Korner, please let me know.
Take care and have a great day!
Tom Kubinski, Printing Consultant
Printing Consultant Who Helps You Make Good Impressions
Selected portions reprinted in Print & Media Buyer, a national magazine for the print industry. (Search for Tom Kubinski)
Print & Media Buyer Magazine, Winter issue 2007
Below, please find a PODi case study of nationally recognized campaign plus 3 issues that have been published in a National magazine.
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