Illustrator, like CorelDraw, is a vector-based graphics editing program. Generally, it is used to edit or create logos, clipart and other graphics which are subsequently placed in a page layout program such as Adobe  InDesign or Quark Xpress.

GENERAL

· Check the general preflighting section of this guide.

· Be sure to work in CMYK color mode and not RGB.

· Print separations to check that your job will color separate correctly.

· Make sure your file works before sending it to us. If you are having problems with it (i.e. your images are not printing right), please call us before sending it in. We are more than happy to help you fix the problem spots and if we know about it ahead of time it prevents production delays.

GRAPHICS

· Do not ‘nest’ EPS images. What’s nesting? It’s placing an EPS inside of another EPS which you subsequently place in your page layout program file. Combine all of your vector graphic elements in one Illustrator file.

· Make sure your raster images have adequate resolution. See the Photoshop section for more information.

· Most clip art is not color separated. You must edit the colors in the graphic file if you are sending us a spot color project. If you do not have the ability to do so, we can edit your file for you.

· When placing raster art inside an Illustrator file make sure you supply the raster art as a separate file with your job. To avoid potential problems, link your raster art. DO NOT copy and paste from other programs into Illustrator.

COLORS

· Be sure to work in CMYK color mode (not RGB).

· Eradicate any extraneous colors in your color palette. This prevents accidental colorization with unused shades. Text and images that are colorized with the extra color choices will get dropped at ripping time because they do not match the colors chosen for the job.

· Do not use the “Registration” color and be sure to change any “Auto” color items to 100% black.

· Use Pantone spot color names in your projects (as opposed to “grass green” or other palettes) and do not alter the CMYK definitions for these pre-defined colors.

· Count your colors; if your job is printing as spot blue and spot red, black text WILL count as a third color.

· When printing spot color projects, make sure your blends are set up as PMS colors and make sure they’re not converting to process. This is especially critical when going from a PMS to white. You should go 0% of the PMS color chosen instead of white for the blend to separate correctly. Blends will look best if you go to 4% for lightest and 98% for darkest. This helps to hold down banding issues.

LAYOUT

· Set up bleeds correctly. The image should extend off the edge of the document by at least 1/8 inch. More is okay.

· Be sure to set up margins and panels correctly. A general guideline is to make sure you put twice the amount of your outside margins between your inside columns. This is to make sure that when the brochure is folded, there will be the same amount of space between the edge of the text or graphics and the edge of the paper on all sides of the panel.

· Make sure you take into account space needed for binding.

FONTS

· Be careful of excessive tracking or kerning; stick with kerning values of 10 or less.

· Convert your fonts to curves/outlines before sending it to us. (Remember, though, that it is a good idea to keep a backup copy with editable fonts should you need to make text changes. The alternative is to provide your font files if you choose to keep your type editable.)

Please check all guides prior to sending us your projects to ensure that your files are properly prepared.