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  • Corporate Document Services

    A good practice guide to supplying artwork

    This booklet is printed on ERA silk (50% post-consumer UK waste and 50% virgin fibre from FSC managed forests).

  • About CDS We are a corporate communications and publishing company. Since incorporation in 1994 we have grown from 50 to over 160 employees; from a single site to 11 sites across the UK.

    We have a strong management team and experienced employees who are experts in their fields. These include writers, journalists, graphic designers, web developers, internet consultants, print managers, print staff, project managers, marketing consultants, engineers, communications consultants, account managers and support staff – all of whom share our brand ethos to meet our customers’ every need.

    We have earned a reputation as a robust, reliable, award-winning company able to deliver creative, innovative solutions within tight deadlines and limited budgets.

    For more information contact: Paul Meersman CDS 7 Eastgate Leeds LS2 7LY

    t: +44 (0)113 399 4000 f: +44 (0)113 399 4200

    e: info@cds.co.uk w: www.cds.co.uk

    CDS is the trading name of Corporate Document Services Limited

    Registered in England No. 2925653 Registered Office:

    7 Eastgate • Leeds • LS2 7LY • UK

    Corporate Document Services Ltd is a member of The Baird Group

    FS 36088 IS 82113 EMS 82111 OHS 95704

  • CDS | A good practice guide to supplying artwork 1

    Corporate Document Services

    A good practice guide to supplying artwork

    Setting up your artwork This guide was written to help you set up your artwork so that the process from design through print is smooth and efficient.

    We will take you through the procedure step by step but if you have any questions please ask us before you start on your design as we may be able to save you time and effort.

    This is not an in-depth guide so does not cover all circumstances, but is meant as an overview.

    Designers by their nature like to push the creative boundaries; however, the practicalities of making sure design prints correctly needs careful consideration.

    We hope you find the guide a useful tool. However, do please let us know if you feel we have missed something important (email paul.meersman@cds.co.uk)

    Version 1.0, November 2007

  • CDS | A good practice guide to supplying artwork2

    Setting up the page size It’s very important that you set up your page size correctly. If you don’t, some parts of your design may be chopped off, misaligned, look off-centre, or have areas of unwanted white space. Here’s what to do:

    1. Make sure you know the correct dimensions of the page size you want to set up. (See page 3 for examples of common page dimensions.) Please call us if you need help.

    2. When you open your application (InDesign, Illustrator, Quark etc) these are the dimensions you should set your page size to on your document. This will create the trim edge where the final document will be cut.

    3. Now think of the bleed area. This is normally set to 3mm on all four sides. (On facing- page documents, where pages are joined together, a bleed will not be required on the edges where one page joins another.) The bleed area allows for any small variations in cutting when automated guillotines make their cuts according to the page size.

    4. To remind yourself to add bleed, it’s sometimes useful to add some guidelines 3mm out from each edge on your page size. Make sure any images or colours that run to the edge of your page size also run over the page into the bleed area.

    5. It’s also good practice to leave a quiet zone of at least 5mm in from the trim edge. This will make your job look more professional and it won’t look like any objects are about to fall off the edge. It’s also best not to put any important objects, such as text or logos, closer than 5mm from the trim edge, or from any fold or page crease.

    6. See the diagram below for examples of trim edge, bleed area and quiet zone.

    7. No objects should extend beyond the bleed area.

    Document page size Trim edge

    Bleed area Set at 3mm


    Quiet zone 5mm clearance from trim size for all important elements

  • CDS | A good practice guide to supplying artwork 3

    Common page sizes 420mm




    420m m

    594m m

    297m m 210m






  • CDS | A good practice guide to supplying artwork4

    All about colour How is colour created? The colour we work with in the printing industry is created in two basic ways; by mixing light or by mixing inks.

    1. Monitors, digital cameras and scanners create the colours you see by mixing Red, Green and Blue (RGB) light (additive colour mixing).

    2. Printing presses, on the other hand, use subtractive colour mixing. This involves mixing four different coloured inks – Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black (CMYK) or 4 colour process.

    3. Printers also use premixed inks, called spot colours which have a specific Pantone® reference. Spot colours are often used to ensure colour accuracy, for example in a logo or corporate colour.

    4. Monochrome printing uses shades of a single ink. Images need to be converted to greyscale.

    5. Duotones and tritones can be made up by mixing spot colours. A duotone can also be achieved using two colours from CMYK, for example by mixing process blue (cyan) with black.

    Getting colour right To ensure your colours print correctly:

    • when printing in 4 colour process convert all images from RGB to CMYK using an appropriate software package like Photoshop

    • convert spot colours to CMYK if you send the job to print in 4 colour process – if a spot colour is not converted to CMYK that element may not appear in your final printed document

    • be aware that some spot colours do not have an exact CMYK equivalent, a Pantone matching guide will show you the best match (see page 6)

    • check colours by printing ‘separations’ on your desktop printer. If a colour other than cyan, magenta, yellow or black prints then you have an extra colour and you will have to either convert it to Process colour or specify a spot colour when sending the job to print.

    PANTONE186 C R 198 G 12 B 48HTML C60C30

    PANTONE186 ECC M Y K2 100 82 6


    361 EC C M

    Y K

    80 0 98 0

  • CDS | A good practice guide to supplying artwork 5

    Setting up colours Computer monitors do not show colour accurately as it will appear on a printed sheet. A standard colour matching system is required. Pantone provides the system most widely used by designers and printers.

    Selecting Pantone colours Pantone offers books that help designers see how colours will look when printed. Pantone colours are classified with numbers and a suffix. The number indicates the Pantone colour itself, and is standard across all types of stock; the suffix indicates the media or stock, which affects how the ink is formulated to achieve the specific colour.

    Same colour, different papers The type of paper used will affect the appearance of colours. Pantone uses swatch books to show you how colours look on coated, uncoated and matt paper. The number of the colour (for example, Pantone Red 032) is followed by a suffix, which indicates the type of stock your Pantone colour is meant to be printed on.

    For example: • Pantone Red 032 C for coated, shiny paper

    • Pantone Red 032 U for uncoated paper

    • Pantone Red 032 M for matt paper

    These three are the most important Pantone library abbreviations. You may, however, encounter the abbreviation CV followed by C, U or M. CV stands for Computer Video, which is the electronic representation of the Pantone colours – now discontinued, but still seen in old versions of software. Note of warning: If you use a colour with a specific suffix, don’t use it again with another suffix in the same publication. If you use the same colour but with different Pantone suffixes in the same publication, your desktop publishing software will see the colour as two different colours and this will cause the production of an extra plate, adding to the print cost. The only exception would be for example when you use the same colour in a 4-colour glossy magazine and on an insert printed on bond paper.

    Colour swatch guides There are several types of Pantone colour guides including narrow swatch books and binders with chips (rectangular swatches) that can be torn out and sent to a client with a proof.

    Pantone has guides for both premixed spot colours (Solid colour) and colours derived from mixing CMYK (Process colour).

    A special guide called the Colour Bridge shows you the spot colour and how it will look printed in CMYK, along with the appropriate CMYK values required to achieve a close match.

    PANTONE186 ECC M Y K2 100 82 6

  • CDS | A good practice guide to supplying artwork6

    Pantone Colour Bridge (Euro) In late 2005 Pantone designed its new Colour Bridge libraries to reflect current printing technology and standard practices. Printers nowadays generally use digital screens, whiter paper, cleaner printing presses, with less dot gain and improved ink pigments. New swatch books were printed to show these improvements.

    Pantone Colour Bridge libraries (Euro) There are Pantone libraries f