We have prepared the following guide to assist you with your file preparation and submission. If you have a specific problem that is not covered in this guide, or have other questions, please feel free to contact us. Improperly prepared files can cause delays in manufacturing or unexpected results.

Quick Checklist

 Resolution meets the required DP.
 Spelling has been checked for accuracy.
 All fonts and strokes are converted to curves.
 Size and page layout is correct.
 Margins and bleeds are set as needed.
 Images are embedded.
 Colors are set in RGB.


Resolution

RECOMMENDED DPI: Min. 150 DPI - Max. 300 DPI

The resolution, in regards to our printing, is the number of Dots Per Inch (DPI in print) or Pixels Per Inch (PPI in digital screens). An image with a low DPI can print looking blocky or blurry.

For the best results, we recommend using vector art as often as possible as its size can be changed without losing quality.

Note: If an image has already been rasterized at a low DPI, simply changing the DPI will not make it less pixelated/blurry. If an image has a low DPI you will need to find the original Hi-Resolution image or choose a new image with an appropriate DPI.


Convert Fonts & Strokes To Curves

The actual name of this varies depending on your software (Convert to Curves, Convert to Outlines, Expand, etc.) however the function remains the same. What this will do is convert text out of a font format and change the text to objects. This will prevent changes in spacing, size, or other issues including lost text, spacing issues, and font changes that can occur at any time during the production of your art. Also converting any strokes to curves will prevent changes to the stroke size or styling that can occur during production.

Note: Changes would be a result of how different software interprets the font or stroke


Margins and Bleeds

Margins: Refers to the area between your art and the edge of the sign. Some products require a default white margin (eg. Yard Sign, ½” White Margin) and improper setup of your margin could cause art to be cropped or show too close to the edge of the print.

Bleeds: Refers to artwork that runs all the way to the edge of your piece. Bleed artwork must go all the way to the edge for prints that need to bleed. We do not require any extra art past the edge. All art should be set up to the size ordered unless otherwise specified.


Color Specifications

Color matching is the process by which a color is chosen from a printed standard as a point of reference. For jobs needing specific color matching, we offer a printed color chart to match to. Once you have received your color chart, simply apply the color codes provided on the chart to each piece of your art that corresponds.

We do not recommend adjusting a color simply on the color viewed on your monitor as the color on your monitor can be affected by monitor calibration and in room lighting as well as other factors. Also, software can often show a color shift for selected colors (color showing muted when it will print bright, or showing a red when it will print orange).

Transparency: Transparency is the method of lowering the opacity of an image or object to make it partially see through. Though this can look correct on a monitor, it often will cause a color or lightness shift when printed. When a specific color is needed we recommend setting the actual color rather than using transparency.

Blending Modes: Blending modes are a graphic effect used to blend one image/object with those below it. Though this is a great tool for making some really great art, it is not reliable for print. If your art requires blending modes, we recommend flattening your file for print.

Note: We do not guarantee any color and we do not match colors to any color matching system. However we always aim for quality and consistency in our prints and colors. We offer a free Color Matching chart for matching most colors. For more specific colors we offer more detailed spreads of color that can be ordered.


Recommended Export Settings

The following outlines the recommended export settings.

  • Color Mode: RGB
  • DPI: Minimum 150 - Maximum 300
  • Fonts and Strokes: converted to curves
  • All Images Embedded
  • PDF File Format