Should you decide to design your documents and bring them to us for print, you'll find it helpful to get some tips on how to prepare your documents properly, and which formats to use to meet our print requirements. Below you will find info on some of our requirements, tips on how to meet our requirements and information on some issues to be aware of in advance.
Bringing your materials to us for printing.
Once you've designed your document, write your files to a CD, Zip disk or Jump drive in the correct format. (any filename extensions — PDF, TIFF, JPG — should not be omitted). Including a copy of the original "raw" file, in the software you used to create it, can be a very good idea. We are a licensed Adobe Service Provider. We also support Corel Draw. We accept work in both Windows and Macintosh platforms. Be sure to include all fonts and images and any other materials used to create your document on the same disk.
Mimic the file structure used in creating the original document when writing your copied files to the disk. Be sure to test the document, making sure that it opens correctly from your disk, and properly displays on your computer screen. If you take the time to test your file, and fix any problems, you will save
yourself the additional fees that we will be forced to charge for our time in fixing your file.
Emailing your materials to us for printing.
Before emailing the file, be sure to test the document as discribed above. There are several pieces of compression software that can be used to decrease its size. This is especially important if emailing your design. Compress your files using the Aladdin's StuffIt to create a SIT file, or a Zip archiver. Many Internet service providers do not allow customers to email large files (over 2 MB). Make sure that you have the capability of sending large files.
You may want to use photos and images obtained from a digital camera, scanner or from the internet. Resolution is the key to the quality of the printed image. A picture that looks all right on a computer screen, may have jagged edges and appear fuzzy when printed. The image with in your document must be at a resolution of at least 300 dpi. To check whether your image has enough resolution, zoom in on your document to 600%. If the image looks acceptable, it will print fine. If you still decided to use a low-resolution image, resize it to make it smaller within your document. The look of a smaller image will most likely require changing the over all design of your document, but your print output quality will increase. Also, please note, we require that you have clear copyright or license to use the images present in your document.
When you design your document, the colors you see on the computer monitor are made up of the following three color components: red, green and blue (this color model is "RGB") light. The monitor mixes these three colors of light to produce other colors of light. Think of watching TV in a dark room, or working at your computer with the lights off, and you will get a feel for what we mean. Printers, copiers and press equipment use another set of color components: Cyan (blue), Magenta (red), Yellow and Black (this model is "CMYK"). Think about the last time you bought ink cartridges for your desktop printer. So please be aware when designing your document — the colors that you see on screen are bright because they are being created with light. Ink on paper may not have the same
Before you bring or email your work to us for printing, please contact us. We can discuss the best format options for your job. For most jobs a PDF is acceptable. Depending on the software that you are using to create your document, or if you are using a Windows or Macintosh based platform, there are steps that we can guide you through for saving your files, fonts and images properly for commercial printing. When you export your document to PDF, your fonts should be embedded automatically. Nevertheless, they may sometimes display incorrectly for us, depending on the software and equipment you used to create yor file. Including the font(s) with your file insures that the document will display and print properly.
Make a hard copy of your document
Before ordering thousands of copies of your document, print one to see that all is done well. This will help you to avoid mistakes, and give you a feel for the way it will look and how it will "read" on paper. Chances are good that you will see something in the printed "mock-up" that you missed while working on screen. Check spelling and punctuation! Before you send/save your documents for printing, do a doudle check of your spelling and punctuation. Don't let an unfortunate small mistake ruin all your hard work. Providing us with a copy of the printed mock-up of your document is also advisable, so that we see on paper what you are seeing on paper.
A note about proofs.
We gladly email and/or fax proofs for your approval before completion of your printed job. If placement or size of information within document is critical, please remember that faxes will skew the document size to include the date and fax number at the top of the faxed sheet, and if printing out a proof from email, desktop printers will often scale image to fit within default margins. Please check your proofs carefully, as we are not responsible for errors after your approval has been given. Checking proofs carefully insures quality and the prompt delivery of your order. If you are happy with the proof, please return a signed copy of the proof sign-off sheet by fax or email as soon as possible. If changes or modifications are needed, please indicate as such on the proof. Please Note: Alterations from your original request may be subject to additional charges. Also, because most computer monitors are not calibrated for accurate color, colors shown in emailed proofs are approximate. Actual print colors may vary. For more information, just give us a call.