File Prep Guide:
Preparing your artwork with InDesign, QuarkXPress, Photoshop, and Illustrator for printing


Preparing files for printing can be tricky if unfamiliar with the process. Improper file preparation can cause costly delays and incur additional costs. Most of these problems can be avoided by following the suggestions below. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

When sending files, native software such as InDesign, Quark XPress, Photoshop, or Illustrator are generally preferred.

Files created in Word, PowerPoint, or Publisher are not designed for commercial printing. To ensure the best possible reproduction, please forward a PDF of the job. We can then offer guidance on the best way to prepare the file for output. You may need to include the following when sending over your job to print - the original file, a print ready PDF, any placed images, and fonts used.

Adobe InDesign

Application Specific Tips:
  • Remove all unused colors before sending your file.
  • Please package the file before sending it. Please include all fonts, linked graphics, and a PDF for proofing purposes. Compress (ZIP or Stuff) the packaged folder before sending.
  • Using the preflight panel and separations preview can help spot errors before the files are sent to us for printing.

Quark XPress

Application Specific Tips:
  • Remove all unused colors before sending your file.
  • Please collect the file before sending it. Please include layout, all fonts (printer and screen), linked pictures, and a PDF for proofing purposes. Compress (ZIP or Stuff) the collected folder before sending.

Adobe Photoshop

Application Specific Tips:
  • Create files in CYMK color mode
  • Resolution should be at least 300dpi
  • Add Guides to show trim area or crop marks
  • Rasterize all type
  • Rasterize any vector layers
  • Provide a layered PSD file if you have used spots colors
  • Please save files in a TIF or PSD format

Adobe Illustrator

Application Specific Tips:
  • Create files in CYMK color mode
  • Link all imported images and provide a folder with the linked files
  • Remove all unused colors before sending your file
  • Please save files in an EPS format. PDF and AI files created in Illustrator are also acceptable.
  • Illustrator CC allows the packaging of your file. Please include all fonts and linked graphics (all boxes checked)
  • Collect and supply all fonts or convert all type to outlines. Converting type to outlines will turn all type into vector graphics, and they will no longer be editable. After making sure no elements are hidden or locked, select all type in the file and go to “Type” and scroll to “Create Outlines”. Please remember to keep a copy of your file without the type converted to outlines so you can make changes to your file later if necessary.