Sunset Graphics is a Mac-based graphics department.
Preferred file formats: .ai, .psd, .eps
This is to clarify our specifications for digital art files submitted to our art department. It contains detailed information, so please don't hesitate to contact us for more information on artwork. None of the widely available graphics programs directly address the needs of screen printing, so a significant amount of "pre-flight" work must be done on every file. Although we can deal with almost any file sent to us, the whole production process can be expedited, and greater quality assurances can be guaranteed, if a few moments are taken to check the items in this list before submission. We understand that circumstances do not always permit strict adherence to these guidelines, but we hope that this clarification will at the very least open the lines of communication.
For all digital files, it is essential that a print for the art be provided, showing the composite image and color breaks. If you are sending your files by e-mail please send a jpeg of the composite print.
Please submit all files at the size you wish them to be printed.
If you are unsure of what size might be appropriate, our customer service rep will be glad to help you decide. Generally, full front or back prints are between 10 and 12 inches wide by any height up to 14 inches. Left chest prints are generally range from 3 to 4 inches wide, and sleeve prints are usually 2 to 3 inches wide. Sizing is a matter of taste so these are not to be taken as strict guidelines. We are capable of printing as large as 14 by 14 inches.
Adobe Illustrator up to CS2
In general, keep in mind that most screen printing is a spot color medium, as opposed to offset, where the majority of color work is 4 color process (CMYK).
Do not apply any trapping to the image.
If identical objects overlay one another precisely, please separate by layer.
If appropriate, submit files with all colors converted to spot, and all unused colors deleted from the document.
Unless there is a large body of text in the file, please convert all type to outlines or curves. As most t-shirt designs are not text intensive, this will prevent confusion and save you the time of having to give us the fonts.
Use the Pantone Matching System for spot colors.. Be sure to check the PMS book for color accuracy as the on-screen versions are often misleading.
PIXEL BASED or PHOTOSHOP DOCUMENTS
Adobe Photoshop up to CS2
Please do not send jpgs or gifs that have been downloaded from the web. These files are sized at a low resolution in order to load quickly on a website. They do not provide enough resolution for us to use as actual artwork.
Submit all full color photographic and continuous tone files in RGB format. We can guarantee the best color fidelity if the file is in these "unadulterated" formats. If you are having an image scanned just for your T-shirt design, request RGB from your service bureau or scanner operator. Many high end scanning units will scan images in CMYK. This is great for offset, but not so hot for screen printing. Some places will simply convert the file from the original CMYK format to RGB. This is acceptable but not the best way to do things. The key issue here is that when an image is in CMYK mode it's palette of colors has been reduced for the offset printing process. If the image is to be spot color separated, we can often reproduce a wider range of colors than offset printing. Giving us the image in CMYK will limit the possibilities. Also, when a CMYK image is displayed on your monitor the appearance of the image is controlled by a number of preferences you have set up concerning dot gain and printing inks. In RGB these factors will be ignored.
Photographic and continuous tone color and grayscale files should be to size, at least 150 dpi, (dots per inch). If your files are at all detailed and are much below 150 dpi, there could be less than desirable results. There are a variety of specific techniques we can employ to compensate for a lower resolution original so please, do not simply raise the resolution by plugging in higher numbers. Please contact us early to resolve this issue.
Text files, Spot color or black & white illustrations and line drawings created or scanned into Photoshop require a very high resolution in order to maintain clean curves and and crisp edges. Please submit these files at no less than 300ppi. If you are unable to provide this resolution we can scan your original.
MEDIA and TRANSMISSION
Art submitted on CD is preferred and will allow us to view your file immediately.
Electronic transfer is also an easy and convenient way to send your files. E-mail art files to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Remember to use a compression utility like StuffIt. All files that travel over the internet get converted to text somewhere along the line. By using a compression application you can protect the files within, making them more easily accessed on our end. If you wish to send multiple files, or if your files are fairly large (over 3 megabyte) the preferred method is sending them on a CD.
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