Quick Guide To Set Up Your Design For Printing

Here is a quick reference guide to help you get your file ready for printing.

From the beginner to the seasoned graphic designers, mistakes happen. Sometimes you’re in a hurry, too many things going on, or you are just ready to get on to the next project. Take a glance through this reference will help you save time and back and for emails.

Correct Size

Ensuring that your artwork is the correct size will be crucial to streamlining your artwork from prepress to print and back to you in a final product and a decent turn-around time. The best way to do this is by starting your design with the right size pallet.

Image Resolution

In terms of printing, image resolution is measured in the number of dots that can be printed in a one-inch square space. Typically, the minimum resolution needed for a quality, clean, and crisp print is 360 DPI ( Dots Per Inch ) and up to 600 DPI.


Bleed is printing that extends beyond the edge where the sheet is trimmed, leaving the illusion that the print is bleeding off the paper’s edge. Typically, the printer will need .125 inch of bleed around the edge of your artwork to account for movement while printing.

Outline Fonts

Outlining your fonts before sending it to the printer will help you in a few ways. It will help with keeping your layout and design intact and speed up the process.

Embed Images

Embedding typically relates to Illustrator. Make sure that you embed your image before sending it to the printer. In InDesign, the best way to achieve this is to package your artwork along with a flattened pdf.

File Types

Almost all print shops prefer PDF’s but will also accept native files in InDesign, Illustrator, and Photoshop. Just make sure that all required assets are with the file.

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