Graphic Design & Printing Advice

Graphic Design

Is the design of your literature set to a good, professional standard? If not, consider employing a professional graphic designer.
A good designer will always be able to help you with all your questions and dilemmas as well as come up with some inspirational ideas to get each of your marketing projects off to a good start. A good designer will also ensure that each piece of artwork is created using the leading industry standard software, ie Adobe Creative Suite.

Is the design clear and concise and is the text readable? If the text is too small, then it really needs to be enlarged to at least 10pt or 12pt (depending on your chosen typeface). Spacing between lines of text can also be an important factor, so make sure your text is well spaced to make it flow better and make it easier to read.

Does the design carry your trademark or company logo and is this clear and recognisable? Carefully consider where the logo will appear within the document as this could affect the whole design.

Is there too much text within the design and if so, can it be condensed further or broken up with more images? People always see images before they see text. Images attract people to read text, so the right amount of images are vital, particularly within a lengthy brochure or booklet.

Do you use enough images in your design to attract people to read the content? Basically whatever images you use they must relate to each subject matter and be vibrant and appealing as they will instantly attract peoples attention. It is also important to get the balance right in relation to how much text there is within the document.

Can the design easily be transferred to an electronic document without too much additional work? This will be particularly useful if you want to use the document as a viewable download on your website.

Have you checked that all photos and images in your design are at least 300dpi? It is important, because some images could be affected when printed and may be heavily pixelated, which in turn will make your final printed document look amateurish. DO NOT download web images as they are unreliable and very often low-resolution, which is no good for print.

Have you converted your design work to a High Resolution PDF (Portable Document Format) and included all bleed marks? If not, make sure you do this before sending it to the printer. If you’re not sure how to do this, then check your software ‘Help’ options or ask your printer for advice.

Have you carefully proof-read the document prior to releasing it for print? If not, make sure you do so. It’s also a good idea to pass the document onto a few of your work colleagues for them to check it too. If your document goes to print and then you find a mistake afterwards then it means printing the whole thing again, which in turn means more expense!

Printing

Have you considered what material your design will be printed on? If not, look at what others are doing to give you some inspiration. If you find something you like you can always take it to your printer and ask them what type of material it is or you can simply ask for their professional advice and view some paper samples. Don’t skimp on price … if it’s worth doing it is worth doing well!! You might have a really awesome design, but if it’s printed on the wrong materials it will look cheap and nasty. Once again, it is always best to consult your printer on this.

Have you given your printer all the information he needs? Be sure to inform you printer of what type of software your document has been produced in, i.e. Photoshop, Illustrator, Indesign, QuarkXpress etc. Also inform them of all relevant fonts and pantone colours used within your document to ensure these are matched in the final printed version.

Do you need a hard copy proof from your printer? Usually this will add on an additional cost to your final bill, but it may be worth having a hard copy proof particularly when you are producing a large document, i.e. programme, brochure, magazine, etc. These are particularly useful when you have amendments to make, but if you’re only producing a small leaflet then requesting an ’email proof’ should be fine and it won’t cost you any extra money!!

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