When you upload a file for print the files needs to be the correct aspect ratio, correct color profile for print and a good quality. We recommend using Photoshop (or any other image editing program) and to save your artwork as .PDF.
How to export your file in Adobe Photoshop (recommended)
Here’s a quick guide to setting up your artwork PDF for print using Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Lightroom. It shows best practice for designing for online printing and how to get the best results from your image file. This guide covers Adobe Photoshop.
Design tips we’ll cover are:
• Setting up your canvas
• Adding and placing an image
• Exporting the PDF document
Setting up your canvas (document)
- Open Photoshop
- Go to File > New
- Create a file (document) with the correct aspect ratio for your print (etc. 1:1.41 for A4, A3 and A2).
- Your file width and height should be at least the size you want your print in (etc. 21 x 29,7 cm. for A4).
- If you wish to print in different sizes with the same aspect ratio (etc. 1:1.41 for A4, A3 and A2) you should set your height and width to fit the largest poster size (etc. 42 x 59,4 cm. for A2).
- Choose your orientation (landscape or portrait).
- Set resolution to minimum 300dpi (recommended: 600 dpi).
- Set color mode to Adobe RGB
- Select Create
Placing the image
Before placing the image on your document please consider to put some white space around the image (margins / passepartout). Many artists use white spaces around their posters as the poster can look more exclusive. If your customer put your poster in a frame, it also prevents the outermost of the sides (about 0,5 cm.) to be covered by the frame.
Suggested margin sizes:
- A4: 1,5 – 2,5 cm.
- A3: 2 – 3 cm.
- A2: 2,5 – 3,5 cm.
On larger images it might be a good idea to make the bottom wider than the rest, especially if you have a text or signature in the bottom of the image.
Now place the image on the document by either:
- Drag an image file onto the canvas, or
- Or go to File > Place Linked to select an image from your files
- Adjust the size of the image by clicking and dragging the handles on the corners of the image.
- It is not necessary for you to add crop marks (cutting marks), our printer will do it automatically.
If the image file is smaller than the canvas (document) it might not be in a sufficient quality.
Once your image file is placed correctly on your canvas (document for print) you can make color correction changes in Photoshop if you wish. Color correction such as white balance changes in Photoshop may be necessary as the colors might have changed from the original image file when converting to Adobe RGB color profile.
Please use a good monitor to display the colors of your image correctly. If your monitor is not reflecting colors correct, the print might not look the same as on your computer monitor.
Now your image is ready to be exported.
Exporting (saving) the document
- Go to File > Save As
- On the file type selection, choose PDF
- In Save Options, uncheck ‘Layers’ and set Color to Adobe RGB.
- We recommended saving it as a copy (so you keep your original .PSD file
- Name your file
- Click Save
- Click Save PDF
- Uncheck “Optimize for web” and “Perserve Photoshop
- In the compression tab: Do not downsample and keep Image quality at maximum.
- In the output tab: Choose convert to destination, Adobe RGB and include profile.
Now we will be able to open your file once sent, and have the same colors and quality when sending it to our printer.
If the finished file size is below 15MB, you might have done something wrong or the image is simply now in a sufficient resolution.