Preparing Your Own Artwork for Print

Artwork-for-printingPreparing your own design and artwork for professional litho or digital printing is quite a bit more involved than preparing jobs for in-house desk-top printing. There are several reasons for this but the main ones can be summarised as:

  1. the professional printing industry, as you might expect, uses professional standard software, written in its own industry-standard language (PostScript) which is designed to give reliable, high quality results. Not everyone has this, or can afford it;
  2. the resolution (density of image and graphics information) needed for digital and litho printing needs to be much higher than for desk-top prints;
  3. the job needs to be handed over to your printer, a third party, in such a way that all graphics and fonts are somehow included in the file otherwise they might be absent or substituted in the final printed job!

Here are some guidelines to get over these, and other, artwork hurdles:

Use the right design & artwork software

Our first major tip would be to start off using professional design and artwork software. So rather than attempting your masterpiece with Microsoft Word or Powerpoint, you should really be using something like Adobe InDesign or Quark Express for the page layouts plus Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop respectively for any vector graphics and photographs. Of course other packages exist but those mentioned are pretty much the industry standard these days. If you do not have these packages, or the professional-level equivalent of them, then it might well be best to ask us to produce your design and artwork for you otherwise the files you supply might give you unexpected printing results.

Colour space

The colour mode for photographs would usually be set in Photoshop or its equivalent.

For ‘full colour’ work (e.g. including colour photographs) all images and graphics should be saved in CMYK mode rather than RGB (the latter is for screen and will print unreliably if you use it by mistake).

Colour photos and graphics should be saved in CMYK mode not RGB.

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A Photocopying ‘Special’ for London Bridge


Southside Print in London Bridge (SE1) are offering 15% off* our professional photocopying service for a limited time. Originally a ‘Bankside Buzz’ offer, we are now extending this to all our customers. Quality is truly excellent and we’re usually able to turn even large copying quantities around in a very short timeframe (often same day). For example, just this week an order for 10,500 black and white photocopies, split over 2 jobs, arrived at the branch at 4 in the afternoon and was completed by 6.30pm the same day, the customer receiving them early the very next morning. They were so pleased they kindly emailed the following message:

“So grateful for the very quick and excellent job you have just completed, as usual great service.”

Danny Merrison, Angel Human Resources Ltd, Union Street, London SE1 1SZ.

More about the photocopying service:

Southside Print London Bridge’s photocopying service includes:

  • Colour as well as black and white copies;
  • Single-sided or duplex copying;
  • A4 or A3 and, on the colour copier, oversize A3 up to 485mm in length;
  • The black and white copier is excellent for copying text-based documents including correspondence and manuals etc;
  • The colour copier is excellent for documents which incorporate photographs and graphics as well as text;
  • Printing speed is 70 pages per minute (colour) or 110 p.p.m. for black and white;
  • Customers receive their copies neatly, in a protective carton;
  • Our team is very experienced and has  been printing and copying for 31 years;
  • Our teamwork and customer service is second-to-none; our service first class;
  • Our machinery and hardware is high tech, fast, highly capable with advanced abilities and gives customers optimum results.

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Cheque This Out!

Matt, the graphic designer and manager here at Southside Print London Bridge, recently designed and printed a huge presentation cheque for our longstanding client Essentia. The cheque was produced using a large format digital printer and 190 gsm photo satin paper mounted to 5mm Foamex.
Cheque-Essentia The enormous cheque was for on-stage presentation to Guy’s and St Thomas’ Chief Nurse, Eileen Sills, in the Trust Awards 2014. The photo shows Eileen with Martin Shaw, the Trust’s Director of Finance, both laughing because someone forgot to remove the bubble wrap before taking the cheque onto the stage!

Essentia is part of Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust and Southside Print do a large amount of printing and designing for them. Essentia’s motto is “Efficiency, Innovation, Expertise” which is not dissimilar to our own rules of conduct at Southside Print here in London Bridge. Essentia, which has Read more


Here is a selection of printed items (price lists, loyalty cards and A6 postcards) which we’ve just produced at Southside Print, London Bridge, for Brindisa. The literature was printed on a variety of papers and boards using both digital and litho printing processes, as appropriate for each item of marketing collateral.

Brindisa offers fantastic Spanish gastronomy, drawing on 25 years of carefully sourcing fine Spanish food for the U.K. market. The classic ingredients of Spanish cooking are available from their Shop at Borough Market and their online shop. They also  serve  Spanish cooking daily at their four London Tapas restaurants, including a local one at London Bridge.

Their name comes from the Spanish word “Brindis”, the act of raising your glass in celebration. ¡Qué Aproveche!

Brindisa Price Lists, Loyalty Cards and A6 postcards