Set up your documents for Print

Print is what we do here at Kaizen, it is in our name after-all. When we get your artwork sent through to us, or one of our designers sends it down to our print team, we know exactly how everything needs to be set up, from Business Cards to A1 Posters.

However, we understand that when creating artwork or getting it designed for what you need, you may be a little confused when it comes to the right requirements on how to set up your document in whatever software you are using.

In regards to this, within this article we are going to take a look at the main options you need to look at when setting a document up for print, so that it comes out looking its absolute best.

Choosing the right software:

When you have designed a really nice poster that is going to wow any who look at it, or perhaps it’s your new sleek and modern looking business cards, the last thing you want to do is throw them into any old software and try to print them from there. But you’re in luck as there are a few pieces of software that you can choose from, such as Adobe Indesign (which is our personal favourite), Microsoft Publisher or CorelDRAW. Each of these will give you a whole host of options for what you want to get printed, making those first steps easy.

Make sure to include a bleed:

A bleed on a print document is an area which comes outside of the finished design on the document, which we and all other printers will use to trim the artwork to the right size. If bleed hasn’t been applied, it would require us to either cut into your artwork, meaning your finished print will end up being smaller than you expected it to be or leave a white border around it, making it unsightly.

One thing we do request, and there is a good possibly a lot of other printers are the same, is a minimum of 3mm bleed around the document, for all small and large format print. The only time that this changes is when a Roller Banner is being printer. In this instance, we request that a 100mm bleed is left at the bottom so that it can be fitted

Including Margins:

Margins are similar to that of bleed, as they provide a safe area with which there is leeway. The margin is included in the space between the edge of your document and any important pieces of information that may be included in it. The inclusion of this ensures that nothing important within the design is cut off when it is being trimmed

Choosing the right colour format:

Colour is something that is vitally important when it comes to print, as it makes the final design. Colour needs to be perfect, as nobody wants a document that is either too washed out, or too punchy. In this regard, when setting your document up for print, it is important to make sure that you have set it up to use CMYK colours not RGB, as RGB is for documents that are going to be viewed online or in digital online format.

Make sure that any images included are high resolution:

Images can be one of the most awkward things to get right when setting documents up for print, but they don’t have to be. The reason for them being awkward is because of the format that they are in, which is Bitmap Graphics instead of Vector Graphics. This means that when an image is first brought into the document and then resized it loses some of its quality. When resizing images, just make sure that they are high quality to begin with and end up having a high DPI and they will be fine.

Make sure Type is legible:

When creating/designing a document for print, it is good to assume that you may have some form of text included in there. It is therefore important that you get the sizing of your type right, as well as using a font that everyone will be able to read, because despite how well the design of your document may look, if the type if illegible it will immediately put anyone off from reading it.

Another good thing to keep in mind when looking at the type you want to include on your document is if you are planning on including more than one type, and in this case make sure that you get your type hierarchy right. This is slightly more to do with the design, however is also good for setting up your document, as you want your main text to be big and clear, to draw the readers in, while the other type will be smaller and possibly in a different font, including all of the extra information that they will need.

We hope that this article has provided you with some information on the best way to set your documents up for printing, and in the future you can begin to see a difference in the quality of them. Speaking of printing, once you have everything set up, why not let us do the printing for you? We would be more than happy to help and have a plethora of different options available to you. Give us a call on 028 9002 2474 or get us by email via our contact form, to discuss your printing options.