Ideal file format for artwork submissions – Adobe Illustrator Document
File formats also accepted – Adobe InDesign, non compressed Adobe PDF with no transparency effects (All file formats will likely be converted to Illustrator for trapping and imposition).
Photoshop documents are acceptable as “images only” and with adequate bleeds. Additional graphics such as text, logos, etc., should be combined with the image in a vector based program.
Illustrator and InDesign Documents:
All documents should be in CMYK color mode.
The finish size (or trim size) should be called out either with a representative die line that is colored as a spot color and specifically named “Die Line”, or the finish size can be called out with trim marks and/or crop marks. The art board size can also be set to represent the finish size as long as adequate bleed is inserted clearly beyond the document bounds.
All hidden/unused layers should be deleted. Any unused graphics outside the bleed area or off the art board should be deleted.
Be sure no graphics are hidden or locked.
Artwork with multiple versions should not be submitted in multiple hidden layers. All versions should be shown in the file either side by side on a single art board or shown individually on multiple art boards/pages.
Be sure to provide the links to all placed images or embed them in the art.
If art includes live text (meaning keyboard editable), all fonts must be provided with the art. Otherwise, all text should be outlined as long as all edits are finalized. (Open Type, True Type and Postscript fonts only, we do not accept Windows PC fonts)
Artwork that is 1/2 inch or more larger than the size of the trim area and is masked should instead be cropped to control excessive file sizes.
If your design includes elaborate vector graphics with thousands of paths and anchor points, please rasterize the art at 300 Pixels Per Inch and crop it (not mask it) accordingly.
When designing multiple labels that use common elements (common elements are specific graphics that use the same color separations and are positioned identically between all label versions to allow the same press plates to be reused between versions), be sure that the common elements are positioned exactly the same between versions and that colors are assigned correctly. Your sales person can better explain the benefits of common elements in artwork.
When saving documents, do not embed any color profiles, they will not be honored when proofs and plates are output.
Minimum positive text size based on Helvetica Medium – 3 Point
Minimum reversed text size based on Helvetica Medium – 4 Point
Minimum weight for a positive solid line .25 Point
Minimum weight for a reverse solid line .375 Point
Minimum press registration tolerance for die cut – 1/32” (.03125”)
Minimum Inside Artwork Border – 1/32” (.03125”)
Minimum Bleed – 1/16” (.0625”)
Recommended Minimum Margins – 1/16” (.0625”)
Minimum Trap Tolerance – 1/2 Point (We’ll trap the files in-house)
When designing labels with the intention of using one of our stock dies, please call ahead to get exact die dimensions, corner radius and unwind direction so that the artwork can be created to the proper size from the beginning.
Photoshop Image Files:
All image files should be in CMYK, Grayscale or Bitmap file format when
submitted separately or when used within other programs. RGB is not a printable color mode and will be converted to CMYK, which will likely make the image look different than what was submitted.
300 Pixels Per Inch is standard print quality for raster (Photoshop) images and photos. Higher resolution is not necessary unless the image has extremely fine detail. Artwork with excessively high resolution that causes unnecessarily large file sizes with be downsized or possibly even rejected.
For highly detailed 4 color raster images below 2” X 2”, 600 PPI is OK as long as it does not create excessive file sizes.
For highly detailed 4 color raster images below 1” X 1”, 1200 PPI is OK as long as it does not create excessive file sizes.
Raster image files should be saved in flattened TIFF or transparent PSD formats. Jpeg files are “lossy” and should not be used for print unless no other format is available.
All raster images should be scaled in Adobe Photoshop and then imported into layout programs at 100% scale. Raster images should not be resized in vector based layout programs.
All Photoshop documents should have any unused layers deleted.
**Do not typeset text in a Photoshop document**
If Photoshop is the only software available and text is required in the design, please keep all text live (meaning keyboard editable) and on separate layers. The fonts must be provided with the file so the text can be exported in vector format.
When saving Photoshop document, do not embed any color profiles.