Lets talk about specs baby

I mean to say specification for originals prior to subbing.


cause I used to do it really wrong - but now I am not too sure if I am doing it right.


obviously resolution and doc size are not big issue for you vector people.


But when running raster in photoshop. what document size and resolution are you working your originals in?


Cause originally I would do the whole 300dpi - but my doc size was a standard 8X11 (yeah yeah yeah yuk it up) lucky for me non of those got selected.


Now I generally go huge - 15X20 at 600dpi


But I feel like I am overkilling


Also a side note - do you guys overlap colors in layers or do you knock out of lower layers?


I have some more questions etc. - but I have to go and do something important so I am just gonna post this and update later

Watch this
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Mike4507

I thought we were going to talk about glasses and girls who wear them

shirtflirt

so you guys do a design much larger then shrink it down to submit?
one day i hope to utilize this knowledge.

againstbound
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Also a side note - do you guys overlap colors in layers or do you knock out of lower layers?

Do you mean different colors in the same layer?

ISABOA
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ahhh - i gotta go but I will make more clear later

Krakaboom
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I tend to work on A3 size (297mm x 420mm). Figure that's pretty much as big as the design should take up on the shirt anyway.

And I do try to overlap colours - wouldn't want a small registration error to result in a gap between colours.

aled
aled profile pic Alumni

A3 size at 300dpi is usually where I start and enlarge the canvas size if I need to.

If for example, I have a layer of black linework and I paint underneath pink paint on a layer (as, say, a fill), I will effectively select the black outline and delete that selected area from the 'pink' layer, so that there is no pink under the black outline. So no overlapping of colours. If you are precise and registration is right then there should be no problem in doing this.

I tend to have hundreds of layers. New year resolution is to learn Illustrator!

toopersent
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Illustrator is so much easier, you don't have to worry about any of this!

olie!
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It always depends how big the design is on the shirt, obviously you want it to be bigger than it would in real life just in case, but I usually work about 300 dpi and around 25 x 35 inches.

Krakaboom
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Fatheed, is there a specific reason why you would delete the pink from under the black in your example? I tend to do the exact opposite to avoid registration problems.

aled
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Yeah - that's what I got.

aled
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:)

Krakaboom
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Aaaaand opifan's just answered my question!

ISABOA
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fatheed on Jan 08 '09 at 5:24pm
A3 size at 300dpi is usually where I start and enlarge the canvas size if I need to.

If for example, I have a layer of black linework and I paint underneath pink paint on a layer (as, say, a fill), I will effectively select the black outline and delete that selected area from the 'pink' layer, so that there is no pink under the black outline. So no overlapping of colours. If you are precise and registration is right then there should be no problem in doing this.

I tend to have hundreds of layers. New year resolution is to learn Illustrator!


yeah - fatheed knows what I am talking about - whether you remove unseen lower layer inks - like deleting the linework from the fill below - the whole registration thing is what I am talking about.

Cause with the overlaps it makes it all much easier - but what are the ramifications during the actual process of printing

toopersent
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what is a registration error?

ISABOA
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yeah - fatheed opifan FTW

Krakaboom
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Joe: if fatheed does it and he's had 19 prints with no registration issues... I'm thinking it's OK!

aled
aled profile pic Alumni

Kraka - because if you are making screens based on a bunch of layers that have not removed unnecessary areas of colour (underneath other other colours) then you'll have a build up of inks on top of each other. That changes the texture of the tee/paper and is also likely to effect the colour of the ink.

You can ink over it, but it must surely make for neater printing if each area is clearly defined. I have a feeling if you send your file to Threadless with overlapping inks, Joes has to sort it out. I may be wrong, but just a hunch. :)

CayMike

Interesting. For shirts I get different specs for different printers.
The last shirt I did was 600dpi 12x17 - that was the printer's specs.

Overkill? Probably but it can't hurt.

Krakaboom
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toopersent: If you have a gap in one colour that's meant to be filled by another colour, you need to make sure the individual colour plates/screens match up absolutely 100% or you're left with gaps.

ISABOA
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yeah - I think so - about threadless sorting it out -

I think with y sinister dexter print they actually emailed me to do that - it was a while ago

but I F'd up the process of knocking out the lower layers on my pluribus print (really i screwed up on a bunch of things with that one)

aled
aled profile pic Alumni

I'd always work with a big canvas area. In raster, it's much easier to shrink that it is to enlarge.

ISABOA
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yeah - trooper - in screenprinting there are different screens for each color - and lining it all up is called registration .... i am pretty sure thats it

ISABOA
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on monstermash I was working on a file that was as big as a barn door -

aled
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Kraka - sometimes in photoshop it looks as though there is empty lines running between the layers of colour if you deduct one from another, but it you try flattening the canvas, you should find that those lines disappear and the registration will be fine.

CallMeSteven

Do this:

Scan in at 600 dpi.
clean up your line art until it is ready to be colored.
save as its own file
make a copy and downsize to 300dpi (at actual print size...make sure you are working at 16 x 20 for a print that is going to be 16 x 20).
color it.
save.
profit.

this way, at 300 dpi the image is manageable and print ready, but if you ever want to print it larger for something else, you can upscale the colors then overlay the original 600dpi line art. Thats what comic book artists do.

ISABOA
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opifan64 on Jan 08 '09 at 5:36pm
you don't actually have to delete the line art on the lower layers... if you keep the line art on a white background and set it for multiply, then select and lock the background white, any colour you paint beneath this on a lower layer will exclude the outline wherever you are painting - as long as the top layer has the white still selectedt


oh man I gotta try that - I have zero skills when it comes to doing things smart - I do a dance routine with color select and such that really gets tough sometimes

Krakaboom
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Is it my imagination, but when I shrink a raster image, and then decide to enlarge it again, the image loses quality?

toopersent
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ahhh, thanks.

I dont use PS much, in Illustrator its pretty easy to use one layer for each color and that is what I do.

I do have a queestion though for Illustrator users. Sometimes when doing linework I'll copy a line and angle it different and put it over the same line to give it a different shape etc (does that make sense?) So that means it will print more black ink on the overlapped area? Is this bad?

ISABOA
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CallMeSteven on Jan 08 '09 at 5:37pm
Do this:

Scan in at 600 dpi.
clean up your line art until it is ready to be colored.
save as its own file
make a copy and downsize to 300dpi (at actual print size...make sure you are working at 16 x 20 for a print that is going to be 16 x 20).
color it.
save.
profit.

this way, at 300 dpi the image is manageable and print ready, but if you ever want to print it larger for something else, you can upscale the colors then overlay the original 600dpi line art. Thats what comic book artists do.


I tried to upscale colors before and ended up with a mess - but what you said made alot of sense - coloring at 600dpi has alot of long pauses for the computer to save etc.


Krakaboom on Jan 08 '09 at 5:37pm
Is it my imagination, but when I shrink a raster image, and then decide to enlarge it again, the image loses quality?


yeah - it only gets smaller, you cant go bigger with scans linewrok that sorta stuff

olie!
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when I've done screen printing I've generally found it is good to not overlap inks, but that also depends on what color you're printing on. If you're printing on black and you want to use white and cyan inks, you generally do want to print white ink underneath wherever you're printing the cyan too, because chances are if you print straight cyan the color will change drastically against the black. This is just from my experiences, though, I don't know what kinds of inks Threadless uses

Krakaboom
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If I'm ever to do anything on 600dpi I think I'd need a new computer!

Thanks for the answer Joe.... I was just a bit confused because I thought - you bastard, I JUST shrank you! The pixels must still be there!

ISABOA
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I have seen bad shirts where back white is not used and it looks awful on dark shirts olie - good point, cause the back white would have to be one of your 8 colors

ISABOA
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haha - I think thats why I never asked before opifan


toopersent
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so can someone answer my illustrator question?

Krakaboom
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fatheed: I had NO idea you didn't use Illustrator already. I always thought that's what you used.

aled
aled profile pic Alumni

NEEDS MOAR RAM

ISABOA
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trooper - I dont have much to do with illustrator so I cannot answer it - But i woud think you would need to merge the elements together somehow.


olie!
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toopersent: t If I understand you correctly, if they are on different layers and different colors they will print thicker where they overlap, so you may want to delete the bottom part of the overlap, but if they are on the same layer and the same color they will print just fine and uniformly.

ISABOA
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i remember when I found out aled is a raster man

first I thought: HOLY CRAP! how does he get so clean and crisp

then I thought: well if it's good enough for fatheed than its good enough for me

toopersent
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they are on the same layer and same color so yay!

ISABOA
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see - I am wrong most of the time, that is a good nugget of info there

Krakaboom
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On Illustrator you don't need to keep files in different layers anyway, right? It helps when you're drawing, but the finished file can be grouped and on one layer, I think.

toopersent
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really? that would help me out majorly!

I usually uses mass layers for different colors and different areas of the design so I can select elements quickly without having to save selections...I find that to be annoying.

ISABOA
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yeah - I dont think they care if you use layers in illustrator - but it is very important in photoshop

My knock out querstion on overlapping inks was brought on by a project I ma working on now with a paper printer - he requested that i DO overlap - leave the inks below and just have broad unbroken fills

and this caught me offguard - like maybe I should not be knocking out on my threadless stuff - maybe the difference is paper and shirt?

Krakaboom
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Oh Fatheed, just saw your answers to my questions, thank you. If I ever get another print here I'll prepare the file your way! Wouldn't want to piss off off the Threadgods by sending them stuff they gotta fix :p

CayMike

All I'm thinking is that for printers, are these kind of issues still relevant with software like Fastfilms?

ISABOA
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I guess it is different depending on the situation

like in my questions about colors and PMS# - speedy joe said pretty much that they are in the business of getting work in all sorts of situations prepped for printing. so it is not a big deal - (except for the resolution and size thing)

it would be brutal to get a print notification and have to start over with scans cause you made everything too small originally

heykimby

This blog is better than specs.

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