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Adobe Illustrator has long been a popular vector–based drawing program, but for many the learning curve is steep. In Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals, author and leading industry expert Deke McClelland shows users how to get in to the Illustrator mindset and overcome this learning curve. He covers the application's key features in a new way, making it simple and easy to master Illustrator. Deke teaches viewers how to use the core drawing and shape tools, the transformation and reshaping features, text, and the Pen tool. He also explains how to export and print. Even if learning Illustrator has been a struggle in the past, this training can help make sense of it. Exercise files accompany the course.
In this exciting exercise I'm going to show you how to change the printer marks and the Bleed Settings from inside the Print dialog box. Before we jump into the Print dialog box, I want you to remember these crop marks right here, these manual crop marks. That is to say I applied them to a shape manually here inside this illustration, if I were to click on the corner of this rectangle here using the dynamic Crop Marks effect. Notice that the crop mark comes to the very edge of the bleed. So the crop mark just so happens to come within a quarter inch of the rectangle that is defining the crop marks. It's purely coincidental that I decided to use 18 points as my bleed boundary as well.
So they are not always in alignment with each other but they are in a case of this illustration. I mentioned that because it will become important in just a moment. So let's go up to the File menu, choose the Print command or of course you can press Ctrl+P, Command+P on the Mac to display the ginormous Print dialog box. Let's switch over to Marks and Bleeds and I want you to notice this Preview here. Notice that we're seeing two dotted rectangles. The outer dotted rectangle represents the imageable area of the page. We discussed that in a previous exercise. Then there is another dotted rectangle around the artwork. It's inside the red area and that represents the artboard which is of course the trim size, so we already, by default, have a bleed going on.
Notice that Use Document Bleed Settings is turned on. This checkbox right here is turned on inside the Print dialog box. This is a new thing inside of Illustrator CS4. You used to be able to set a Bleed setting here inside the Print dialog box, but only here inside the Print dialog box. Now you can associate it with a document and then turn around and respect those settings as we see them here. So that's why we are seeing the Bleed, but we are not seeing the crop marks because the crop marks extend outside of the Bleed area. So if we wanted to see those crop marks that I had added, I would first turn off Use Document Bleed Settings which would go ahead and get rid of my Bleed, notice that. So my bleed is now down to zero, so we are only seeing the trim size of the illustration.
Then I would raise this value to something like let's take it up to 48 points and because the Chain icon is on, that will affect all the values in kind. Now notice, you can see the crop marks, if you look very closely here you can see these crop marks drawn inside of the Preview. But I also want to go ahead and turn on my automatic Trim Marks here, because for one thing they are a little bit thicker, we can't specify the line weight of the Crop Mark effect. We can set the line weight of the Trim Mark effect right here, so I'm going to turn on Trim Marks. Also notice that you can see that the Trim Marks are going to invert the artwork in the background. So they will appear black against the white background and white against the dark background.
We also have the option of seeing Registration Marks. These are all marks that you can print on any illustration actually but they are especially useful when your commercial printer is trying to align the different color separations. I could turn on Color Bars, which are going to be these little guys here and the gradient at the bottom. Page Information, which is going to tell us the name of the document, date and so on. You can specify how the printer mark is going to be applied, whether it's going to be a Roman Type printer mark, Western, or whether it's going to be Japanese.
Also you have this Trim Mark Weight option right there. So you could make your Trim Marks thinner if you wanted to, I don't recommend you go that route, because that's just an eighth of a point right there, and that could end up dropping out or being so faint, you just can't see it. You could also make it thicker or 0. 50 point wide, but if you do that, it's thick enough to see, but then it becomes an issue, well, do I trim on the right side of that 0.50 point line or do I trim on to the left side because it's getting thick enough or it has that kind of weight associated with it? I recommend when in doubt, you stick with 0.25 point, but you can always ask your printer, and they can always override as well. They can set these settings themselves if they want to. All right, so I'll set this back to 0.25 point.
Then Offset determines how far offset, all the printer marks are from the trim size. So you can move them outward if you want to. So for example, I could set this to something like, let's try 48 again. Watch these little icons move outward when I press the Tab key and notice they moved way out, they moved way too far out. Let's take them back in. Let's try 24 point here. That gives us a fair amount of wiggle room within our printer marks and our trim size so that we don't end up keeping any printer marks in our trimmed artwork, once the printer is all done with it. However, they are sufficiently far out that they fall outside the imageable area of the page.
Now, bear in mind that this is the imageable area associated with whatever this Upstairs LDC Printer is. It has nothing to do with your commercial printer's capabilities. Most commercial image setters have no imageable area constraints, so they don't require margins as we know them. So you could probably print this piece of artwork just fine, if you were to send it out to a commercial printer. So I'll just go ahead and leave things the way they are, I like it. Once again, because this is the end of this discussion, I'll click Done, you go ahead and save those settings along with your illustration and if you want to really save them, you would go to the File menu and choose the Save command.
All right, I'm not going to do that, but just wanted to give you a sense of it. Let's go ahead and back out from our artwork right here. Am I going forward a page and then going back? Well, let's just look at the skateboard and the surfboard, that's fine.
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