Sebastian Bleak shows some final checks before sending your artwork to your t-shirt printers. He walks through converting text to outlines, embedding your linked images, packaging the document, merging compound shapes, and applying clipping masks.
- [Narrator] Outline your text. Your printer might not have your fonts. They'll get a warning, letting them know they don't have the correct font, and that's going to stop production until you send them a file with outlined artwork or the actual font file. So when you're prepping your file to hand off, before outline your text, it's best practice to make a copy of the font onto a separate layer, or make a copy of the original file, so you can outline the font. For example, you have the file name dash outline.
Once you've outlined your text, it's not longer live or editable. Illustrator will only look at your text as basic shapes and paths, and the printer will be able to print your file correctly, imbed your images, or package your document. When you bring an image into AI, most of the time, it's an image linked to a file that lives on your computer. This helps to keep the file size down. The problem is if you send your AI file to your printer, they won't see the linked image because it lives on your computer.
To avoid this issue, you can a, imbed the image, which will increase the file size but it's going to ensure they see your design exactly how you see it. B, package the document by going into the file menu and choosing Package. This will automatically create a folder with all the assets used to create your artwork. This includes images and fonts. FYI, Adobe Illustrator will not package your type kit fonts, but as long as you've outlined your fonts, you'll be set.
No clipping masks or compound shapes. I put clipping masks and compound shapes together because they're similar and people get them confused with one another all the time. Most plotters still see the hidden paths, be they clipping masks or compound shapes, which means it will include the shapes that are not intended to be visible in your design. So once you've finished the design, before you're ready to send it off, make sure you merge all your shapes and apply all your clipping masks. Then your file should be good to go.
- Choosing materials to print on
- Vectors vs. pixels
- Choosing a printing method
- Online t-shirt printing options
- Designing the shirt
- Production challenges
- Location and size of design
- How your budget affects your methods
- Specialty colors and inks for screen prints