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FAQ

Professional Printing: crop and bleed marks

A file that is heading to your local sheffield printers requires setting up correctly to ensure that the work is printed edge to edge by either lithographic (litho) or digital printing. This often starts with adding the correct bleed area and crop marks.

Bleed Marks
This is the area of your artwork that is extended beyond the actual dimensions of the document. Any objects in your artwork that touch the edges of the document require a bleed area, for instance a background colour or image should spread to cover the entire bleed area as should any objects that creep in from the side of the page.

/images/bleed-example
printing bleed-example

A bleed of 3 - 5mm is commonly required. This 3 - 5mm accounts for each of the four sides of the page, therefore you should add 6 or 10 mm to the width and height of the document, for example:

printing bleed-example

A6 = 105mm x 148mm
105mm + 10 mm = 115mm
148mm + 10 mm = 158mm
Total Document Size = 115mm x 158mm

A5 = 210mm x 148mm
210mm + 10 mm = 220mm
148mm + 10 mm = 158mm
Total Document Size = 220mm x 158mm

A4 = 210mm x 297mm
210mm + 10 mm = 220mm
297mm + 10 mm = 307mm
Total Document Size = 220mm x 307mm

A3 = 420mm x 297mm

420mm + 10 mm = 430mm
297mm + 10 mm = 307mm
Total Document Size = 430mm x 307mm

In addition to bleed, you should also add a margin to the edges of the document to avoid having your objects look as if they are about to fall of the page or even worse actually get cropped off when the document is trimmed! The amount of margin is personal preference,  5mm or 10mm is usually used depending on the size of the overall design.

To discuss any print requirements go to www.221print.com

11th of Jan 2012