Print Ready Artwork – Vector Files

Preparing print ready artwork to be used on printed materials and promotional products can be confusing.  We can help you get your files ready for print, convert your current artwork to a vector file, or even create artwork for you.*

In this series of blog posts, we will explain what type of artwork is needed and why to help you understand a little more about the printing process.

First, there are many different types of printing processes and each process requires a certain type of artwork.  For this post, we will discuss only one type of printing.

The type of printing (for example, screen printing) used for most promotional products like t-shirts, hats, cups, large signs, or any other non-paper product requires a vector to be considered print ready artwork.  Embroidered items also generally require a vector file.  If you have vector artwork already, great!  If not, we can help you.

What is a vector file?

A vector is a type of file that can be expanded to any size without becoming pixelated or blurred.  Here is an example of a vector file compared with a raster file:

How do I know if my file is a raster or a vector?

First, where did you get the file?  If it came from a webpage or social media, it is most likely not a vector.  Next, look at the file extension (the letters after the period in the name of the file.)  If it is .ai, .eps or .pdf it could possibly be a vector.  If it is a .jpg, .doc, .png, .gif, or .bmp it is not a vector file.

If it is an .ai, .eps, or .pdf, it could still be a raster file.  Confused yet?  Don’t worry.  If you are ordering promotional products, simply send us your file and we can let you know what type of file it is.

I still don’t understand.  Why won’t my picture from the internet work for printing?

Most printing methods only use vector files.  Furthermore, even if they did use other file types, the printing would look terrible.  We don’t want to sell you something that doesn’t look absolutely amazing!

What do I do if I don’t have a vector file of my logo?

Ask your marketing department if they have a vector file, or contact the graphic designer who created your logo for the vector file.

If no vector is available, we can re-create a vector file for you in most cases.  Please note that this is a manual process that can take a lot of time depending on the artwork.  We will let you know how long it will take and if there will be a charge for this service.

Can’t I just save my file as a .ai or .eps to make it a vector?

Unfortunately, no.  It will still not be a vector and will not be print ready artwork.

None of this makes any sense.  How do I get print ready artwork when I don’t understand any of this?

No worries!  Give us a call at 918-252-4100

*there may be an artwork fee depending on the amount of work involved.  We will provide an estimate before beginning any work if a fee is involved.

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