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Adobe Illustrator Tips

All versions of InDesign are supported for both Apple Macintosh and Windows platforms. Here are some basic tips that apply to all software versions and for both platforms.

For even more tips please visit our Quick Tips section. This is our catch-all category for all manner of miscellaneous tips, tricks, program fixes, and workarounds to help you with building your artwork . We'll add new items from time to time so check in to see what's been added recently.

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Document Setup Basics

Special Note: You may also submit both copies if you think that you may have text edits but then you must be certain to include all fonts used in your original document.

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Creating Bleed

The way to create bleed is to simply make certain that the image or graphic extends off the edge of the page to a distance of 1/8" (.125) wherever you want something to bleed.

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Saving Your File as a PDF

1. Menu > File > Save As . . . 

Illustrator Save as PDF: Step 1

2. Select Format: Adobe PDF (pdf) and name your file.

Illustrator Save as PDF: Step 2

3. Select either the Commercial Printing or the PDF/X-1a:2001 Adobe PDF Preset. If you don't already have this as a preset simply set your settings to match all of the settings that you see in the next two screenshots and then click the Save Preset button and you'll always have them available with just one click. If you have already saved the Commercial Printing preset your settings should already be set up correctly. Just make sure they match the settings shown in steps 3 and 4.

Illustrator Save as PDF: Step 3

4. Select Marks and Bleeds in the left column. Check the Trim Marks box set the Trim Marks to .25 pt with an Offset value of .125". Set the Bleeds values at .125" for each side.

Tip: Click the chain symbol on the right to make all four sides the same value.

Illustrator Save as PDF: Step 4

5. If you have already saved the Commercial Printing preset you are ready to click Save PDF to save your file. If not, first select Save Preset to retain your settings and then proceed on to Save PDF.

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Converting Type to Outlines

1. Menu > Selet > All

2. Menu > Type > Create Outlines

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Converting to CMYK Color

Use the following menu options.

For an existing file:

Select File > Document Color Mode > CMYK Color

Just to make certain that everything has been converted successfully, you should then:

Select Edit > Select All and then Filter > Colors > Convert to CMYK.

For a new file:

Select File > New

Select CMYK color for the Color Mode.

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