MO Project: Contextual Branding

Suggestions For Submitting Your Files to State Printing Center


The information below will guide you in providing State Printing with the files needed to expedite your printing job quickly and efficiently through the prepress process.

Submitting Layout Files

Page layout programs such as InDesign and QuarkXpress are highly recommended for final document layout. Programs like Microsoft Publisher and Powerpoint occasionally creates problems that can delay your job. Since Microsoft Word is not intended as a graphics program, files containing more than one color are likely to be delayed during the color separation process, resulting in manipulation and/or re-creation by our graphic’s department.


Portable Document Format preserves the exact look and content of the original, complete with fonts and graphics, and can be printed. When properly created, PDF files have proven to be an excellent method for generating quality printing. PDF files should contain crop marks, bleed, and separate correctly using either CMYK or spot color.

How to Package Your InDesign Files

  • Open your INDD file in InDesign.
  • If possible, resolve any errors concerning missing links or fonts.
  • Go to File: Package.
  • Click the Package button at the bottom of the Summary window
  • Click continue on the “Printing Instructions” window.
  • Browse to where you’d like to create the package folder (desktop would be fine) and enter the name of the folder.
  • Make sure that the “Copy Fonts,” “Copy Linked Graphics,” “Update Graphic  Links in Package,” and “Include Fonts and Links from Hidden and Non-Printing Content,” “Include IDML,” and Include PDF(Print)" are all checked. PDF Preset should be Press Quality or High Quality. Other boxes should be unchecked.
  • Click the package button.
  • Find the new folder that InDesign created and verify that it contains copies of all required files.
  • Right-click the folder and choose “Compress” (Mac) or “Send to ZIP” (Windows, might be something different but similar depending on what software you have installed). This will zip it up.
  • If the file size is less than 10MB, you can probably safely e-mail it. If it’s more, then you should use some other method (FTP, CD, Thumb Drive, etc.) to share the file.

Submitting Images

All original images (eps, tiff, jpg, ai, bmp, etc.) should be included when submitting your files to State Printing. Scanned images and non-vector artwork should be at least 300 dpi. Images less than 300 dpi are subject to pixelation which will appear on the printed sheet. (Note: Opening a 72 dpi image in Photoshop and bumping the resolution to 300 dpi does not actually increase the quality of the file.) Please remove all unused text or graphics from the pasteboard outside the document image area.

Vector Image

A vector graphic is defined in a mathematical nature which makes its resolution independent. A vector graphic can be printed clearly at any size. A vector graphic is usually created in Adobe Illustrator.

Bitmap Image

A bitmap image is formed by a rectangular grid or small squares, known as pixels. Each pixel contains data that describes whether it is black, white, or a level of color. Bitmap images are resolution dependent and can appear jagged and lose detail if created at a low resolution and then enlarged or printed at a higher resolution. Bitmap images are normally created in Adobe Photoshop. Bitmap images are also generated from digital cameras and scanners.

Submitting Fonts

Include all fonts when submitting your files to State Printing. Our graphic’s department can often find an agreeable replacement font if one is missing, but font substitution usually results in text reflow issues.


The colors you choose have a major impact on the production of your layout. Avoid specifying colors based on the way they appear on your screen. Instead, choose a color from a color matching system (such as Pantone). We suggest that color layouts be CMYK or Pantone spot color. It's helpful to delete all unused colors from the color palette in your application. It is not recommended to use multiples of the same color (i.e. 340C, 340CV, 340CVC) as each of these will print as a separate spot color.


Graphics that print past the trimmed edge of a page are referred to as bleeds. To accommodate for bleed, art files should include an extra 1/8 inch on each edge where bleeding is to occur.

Safety Margins

Safety margins keep text from being cut off during the printing process. When designing your piece, be sure to use a 1/4” safety margin to keep the text inside from the edge of the page. This will accommodate the majority of printers while preserving the integrity of your design.