Polk Riley's Printing & Design


Almost everyone has heard the term "Camera Ready Artwork". In the modern world of desktop publishing, where artwork is prepared on a computer, the term "Camera Ready Art" is rather obsolete. Digital artwork has become the status quo throughout the printing industry. "Print-Ready" or "Press-Ready" art is now the more accurate terminology. Although computers have transformed the entire printing process, some old issues still persist: Properly prepared artwork.


Wrong Document Size
No Bleed
Insufficient Margin
Low Image Resolution
Incorrect Color Usage
No trim/cut marks showing
Unacceptable file format

DOCUMENT SIZE - Setting your document size correctly is important. Your final document size should be set to include cut/trim marks of the final piece, plus bleed (if any). If you are unsure of the size, such as the dimensions of a "standard" business envelope or whatever product you want printed, call to find out before preparing the artwork.

Each side or page of a job must be a separate file.

BLEED - A bleed is when anything you want to print touches the edge of the paper, i.e., a line, a photo, illustration, background, etc. You must make sure all design elements which touch the edge(s) of the page are positioned 0.125" (1/8") past the cut/trim marks.

MARGIN is the opposite of bleed: Please keep all text at least 0.125 (1/8") inside the border of your document. This gives you a safe zone to guarantee no trimming of your text will occur.

IMAGE RESOLUTION - We accept a minimum of 300 dpi. Anything lower than this may result in blurry, bit-mapped or pixelated quality. Images used from the web are generally low resolution (72 dpi). Although they look fine on screen, they are not appropriate for commercial quality printing.

COLOR-CMYK (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Black) is the industry standard color space for full color commercial printing. If you are supplying artwork to be printed in full color,

please ensure that all images, text and other design elements have colors set to CMYK and do not contain RGB or Pantone colors. Using the wrong ink colors for a given type of printing in your artwork will cause problems. If you send in a job with Pantone and/or RGB colors, the CMYK conversion may create an undesirable color shift. Before providing us with your print ready document, make sure all Pantone and/or RGB colors have been converted to CMYK.

SPOT COLOR - Pantone (PMS) colors are used for spot-color printing. A PMS color, plus black would be a two color job. If you are providing artwork to be printed using one or two Pantone Color(s), choose the Pantone color(s) you desire and set all text and other design elements to that specific color. There should be no part of your artwork set to CMYK or RGB. Please ensure that there are only as many Pantone color(s) used in the document as you have ordered. We will print your job in the Pantone color(s) specified in your document unless you advise differently.

Unless you have a calibrated monitor, your artwork is likely to have slightly different colors when printed. Inks will appear different on uncoated, non-white stocks and gloss stocks. Because of differences in equipment, paper and other conditions between color proofing and production press room operations, a reasonable variation in color between an ink jet color proof and the completed job is to be expected. Pantone Color Charts can insure proper color conversions.

Please convert all text to curves/paths, embed fonts and/or provide actual fonts.

We prefer PDF document(s). These files are easier to handle and will likely speed up your turn-around. Remember to add crop marks and FLATTEN your files before sending. We also accept: jpg, jpeg, psd, tif, ti , eps, ai, and png.

Check your artwork for spelling mistakes and grammar; most programs have built-in spell check capabilities. Double check to make sure all images used are high resolution and embedded into the document. If the images are linked, you will need to supply the original images. Make sure that bleeds and margins are correct, and check ink colors for proper color printing.

Your "Print Ready" files will be printed "as is". We cannot guarantee and/or easily dissect files we did not create. If your files require additional work to prepare them for print, an additional fee may be incurred.