4272 Indianola Avenue
Columbus, OH 43214
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Monday – Friday
8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
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FAQs: Prepress & Graphics
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Prepress & Graphics
Graphics or photos that are intended for a print project should be set to 300 dots per inch (dpi) or more accurately, pixels per inch (PPI). In general, images with this level of pixel detail will yield a high quality print project.
In general, we highly discourage it. Web images are typically only 72-150 DPI because a browser needs a much smaller sized image in terms of pixel dimension in order to load quickly. The same image that looks good on your website will look grainy and out of focus when printed in high definition on paper.
The best format for a digital file when printing is a press-optimized PDF. We are equipped and prepared to accept and print your project in a variety of page layout programs, graphics programs or document programs. Our trained prepress professionals will work with your files to provide high quality printed results. Please contact us with any questions about your files.
We use desktop publishing software such asAdobe® InDesign and QuarkXpress to design and develop quality projects. A true page layout or desktop publishing software allows you to work fluidly across graphic platforms; to identify colors as spot/PMS or specify CMYK mixes for accurate replication; to package and attach font sets for print shops; and to test and convert artwork to make it press-optimized and print ready. All this assures a better quality product in the end, and speeds up the time it takes to get a project completed. Word processors and desktop tools like Microsoft Publisher, while very handy for personal or office use, are not recommended when designing a complex color project for print production.
Absolutely. We have a staff of experienced prepress professionals with knowledge of layout software, graphics, copy writing and editing, proofing, and creative design. We can provide creative assistance and file development as part of your budgeted project.
Postscript is a computer language that assists in interpreting graphics and fonts for standardized replication, particularly via press and printer interaction. Postscript (PS) is the work of developers who founded Adobe Systems and worked cooperatively with Apple in the early ’80s to develop the language as a driver for laser printers. While high end printers still use PS to dramatically reduce CPU work in printing documents, Postscript’s descendant PDF — or Postscript Document Format — is the one that has become the standard for electronic document distribution.
Postscript Document Format (or PDF) was invented by Adobe Systems (see What is Postscript?) and is the open standard for electronic document exchange. The format converts your documents, forms, graphics and even web pages to printable snapshots of the original that can be read across all platforms. It removes the barrier of having the same software/versions of software in order to share documents or artwork.
A PDF is essentially a “snapshot” of your final print project. At this stage of design, there should be little to no editing required. However, our experienced prepress department can provide a moderate amount of editing if needed.
A PDF must be properly prepared in order to print. Depending on your software, this should include at least the following:
- Colors in your artwork should be assigned as spot/Pantone (see ) or CMYK, never RGB. Please be advised that raw photos are RGB and should be converted to CMYK before finalizing your project.
- Bleeds should extend 1/8″ past the edge of the finished page size.
- Fonts are unique to every computer and many are copyright protected. You should either embed the fonts to your PDF or convert the fonts to outlines.
A proof is a sample of your artwork that we develop prior to going to print. The proof allows you to review the item carefully for layout, colors, and text and correct any errors you may find during this process. Your acceptance of a proof is our guarantee that we can go to print knowing you are satisfied. We encourage you to review it carefully.
Yes, we can provide a pdf file proof to check spelling, layout and general positioning of copy. Because of the differences in color gradient between RGB and CMYK (see FAQ, Color Management) we believe in sharing this proof in person either at your place of employment or in our office. This allows you to review the artwork accurately so you are confident of your final product.
A bleed is an additional margin beyond the edge of your project’s finished page size. Kenwel Printers requires this margin to be 1/8″ (0.125). Bleeds are used in projects where an image, graphic or color extends fully to the edge of the paper. To produce your project, we print a larger size and trim back to arrive at the completed size, thus allowing color to “go to the edge.”
Prepress Help Center
Mistakes in layout and design account for 80% of prepress costs when a file goes to a commercial print shop. A graphic designer can easily improve the odds by knowing the best design practices to avoid these errors. Designing for Print is a blog that gives you our best prepress tips by topic.
We’ve developed a set of Design Templates to share our knowledge and assistance with our current and prospective customers. These Design Templates provide how-to guidance for common digital projects and they frequently provide a downloadable PDF template that you can incorporate as a layer in your design to help you with page layout.