Many of you already know how to create a print-ready PDF. Creating a printable PDF that bleeds however can be a different story. The simple guidelines below will help to create a bleedable PDF so you’ll never have a problem with bleeds again.
Instructions for PDFing your document can vary, so we’ve include the most popular design software instructions below.
If you are working in InDesign, it is simple enough to add a .125” bleed. If starting a new document make sure all your options are showing by clicking the “more options” button. Look for Bleed and Slug at the bottom of the menu. In the bleed section type in .125” in the Top, Bottom, Inside and Outside selections.
1) If you already created your document it is easy to go back to your document settings and add the bleed. Just go to File / Document Settings and look for the Bleed and Slug options. Again if they are not showing, just click the “More Options” button.
2) Once your file is complete, go to File / Print. Select Adobe PDF as your printer. Change the following settings:
3) Setup – Page size should be set to custom, page position should be set to centered.
4) Marks and Bleeds – The ONLY things that should be selected here is “Use document bleed settings”
5) Output – Use composite CMYK. All spot colors and PMS colors should be converted to process CMYK.
6) Click on the setup button at the bottom of this window to update your adobe PDF settings. Click OK to continue and then select your Adobe PDF printer. Click the preferences button. Default settings should be set to High-Quality or Print. Click ok and then print.
7) To save this setting for future use, click the “save preset” button at the bottom of the window and call it “Print PDF”. This preset will work with any bleed or non-bleed print document. Click PRINT to create your final print PDF complete with bleeds.
Quark works a little different in that your bleed is added when you create your PDF and not when you create your document.
1) Once your document is designed, go to File / Print. Select Adobe PDF as your printer.
2) Click on the bleed tab and select “Symmetric” under Bleed Type. Amount should be set at .125”. Before hitting the Print button, click on the “Properties” button to adjust your PDF settings.
3) Increase your page size to accommodate the bleed. If your version allows you to add a custom page, enter your page size plus .25” to width and height. If your version does not allow custom page sizes, select a page size that is larger than your original trim size.
4) Default settings should be set to High-Quality or Print. Click the Layout tab and ensure your orientation is correct. Click the advanced button and also make sure your page size is consistent with your bleed selection. Click OK and then PRINT.
5) Refer to the OVERSIZE PDF instructions below to crop your document to it’s proper size.
Another way to create your files in Quark is to create your original document at bleed size, which means if you have a 8.5” x 11” document that requires bleeds, you can enlarge the document size to 8.75” x 11.25”. Just be conscious of your margins.