Our favorite ways to receive files for letterpress platemaking are by you sending us a press-ready PDF file (with fonts embedded) for platemaking. This PDF will serve as both your hard copy and your plate file. No additional faxing or email needed.

Our second favorite way is for you to send an EPS or AI file for platemaking. We also accept PDF digital files in current versions of other major design programs (i.e. Quark, InDesign, Freehand).

If you are creating your files in Photoshop, we like to say that this program is good for images but not so great for text. It’s best to convert your grayscale images in Photoshop and place them into Illustrator where you will add your text. If Photoshop is your only option, start with a file that is 600 dpi minimum so you can minimize the pixelation of your text when you convert files. More on file conversion to Image Mode of Bitmap under File Prep Tips. We prefer tif files from photoshop for upload.

Note, we can often make plates from PDFs created from Word files, however, Word is not able to format your file exactly the way we need. So please tell us your file was originally a Word document so we can anticipate and make corrections. If you are designing in Word, we suggest that you don’t use any funky or crazy fonts we won’t have access to. Oftentimes, they will just print as strange characters. Your images placed in Word will usually require some corrections too. You can email your files to plates@boxcarpress.com for an evaluation first and we’ll advise on how letterpress friendly it is.

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Posted in: File Preparation, Platemaking, Why Use Us