Although many differences exist between digital and offset printing, art results from both. Getting the most out of your digital prints requires preparation before you create your image. These quick tips will help you create the best result possible.
1. Plan your image. Keep it simple. If you’re planning a logo, it needs to appear clearly to viewers on any media from billboards to business cards. Using too many colors, shadows and details will render poorly on larger media. Avoid large solids, too, suggests Printing Industries of America. Shoot with a high quality camera at the highest resolution. Use a zoom lens, if needed.
2. Test the fonts. The gorgeous font you downloaded from a design site may contain a use restriction that prohibits .pdf printing or creation. Test each font after download to ensure you can embed it before you use it in a project.
3. Color correct images using RGB. Edit your photo before you convert to CMYK. An photo loses color information when converted from RGB to CMYK. Leave conversion to CMYK and its creation of the black separation as your final step.
4. Avoid printing photos over the fold. The toner used in digital printing varies greatly from the ink used by lithographic presses. Toner fuses to the printing surface using heat and fuser oil. Toner printers tend to band, mottle, or print large solids unevenly and to crack on the fold. If you must print along the fold, try to use rules, lines or headline text there. Ask the printer to score the printed sheet before folding if a graphic must cross the fold.
5. Use the best quality materials possible. Whether you’re creating prints to sell or business marketing materials, the quality of your print represents you. Show attention to detail, quality and care by using the best available materials.