Most production problems stem from artwork that is not supplied in the proper format. There are primarily two types of graphic images - Raster Images and Vector Images. A Raster Image (such as jpegs, tiffs, pngs) is an image made up of thousands, even millions of tiny squares known as pixels or dots and therefore are resolution dependent - meaning a certain number of pixels per square inch is required for the image to appear and print clearly. Scaling a raster image up in size diminishes its pixels per square inch ratio which causes the image to become blurry (pixelated). A Vector Image (ai, eps, pdf ) uses math to draw shapesusing points, lines and curves to create the imagery and is not resolution dependent thus it is innitely scalable up or down, without loss of quality.
To ensure high quality printing, and to allow us to have full control over color value and any other necessary edits we prefer artwork in outlined Vector Format (as opposed to raster images). The most common vector file extensions are: eps, ai, or pdf.(However - eps & pdf formats could also be raster images since they can be made in pixel based programs such as Photoshop. It can be hard to tell the difference so if you are unsure, simply send it along to us and someone in our art department can verify it for you. If your artwork is not in vector format we can assist you with that. An average charge for this service is between $20-$60 depending on the complexity of the image.) If it is necessary to use a raster image for the item you are having printed... for instance if you are utilizing a photograph, we require a resolution of 300 dots-per-inch (dpi) at the actual size the image will be printed.