Going to Press – My Work-Flow for Commercial Production:

Graphics & Colors in Photoshop:

  • Convert Adobe RGB 1998 Profile to CMYK U.S. Web Coated SWOP v2
    • Image>Mode>CMYK Color
    • Check CMYK Color Values in Info Panel
    • Check All Colors for RGB Display Accuracy
    • Adjust CMYK Values as needed
    • Write down the CMYK Values
  • Export Graphics as Separate Uncompressed Tiffs
    • Maintain CMYK Profile
    • No Compression
    • Discard Layers
    • Preserve Transparency
  • Create a Color Palette with all colors you will potentially use in your final print, with colored boxes
    • Mark down all of the CMYK Values of each color, and its corresponding RGB color in a text document & Save it for Future Reference


  • All Colors & Fills set to CMYK – U.S. Web Coated SWOPv2
  • Place… Tiff Graphics imported from Photoshop
  • Create a new Color Palette with your Logo Colors, All Text Colors, Fill Colors, Background Colors, Border Colors, etc, manually filling in the CMYK values you wrote down in Photoshop
  • Check all Colors, adjust as needed back in Photoshop
  • Design and Layout your final Spreads
  • Export as EPS (Encapsulated Postscript) without Compression, at its best quality

Export for 4-Color Press:

  • Open Photoshop
  • Import Completed EPS File
  • Set Screen Resolution to 600dpi
  • Maintain CMYK Mode
  • Check Anti-Alias & Constrain Proportions
  • Output for Press:
    • Output to TIFF (Best for Print):
      • No Compression
      • No Layers
      • Preserve Transparency (Select No Transparency if not using any clear
        background paper white, or any graphics transparency )
    • Output to JPEG (Commonly Used))
      • Save Original PSD
      • Save as Reduced Size PSD
      • Reduce Photoshop Image Size to around 3000×4000 or as large as possible, whilst constraining proportions, with “Bicubic, Best for Reductions” selected, and maintaining 600dpi
        • Keep trying until you get a size that will save on your computer, and is accepted by JPEG Standards
    • Save as Jpeg, Maximum Quality
  • Repeat with every EPS Spread

Export for Digital Output (PDF):

  • Open Adobe Distiller
  • Open Distiller Options
  • Set to [Press Quality]
  • Turn off all Compression Options
  • Open EPS Files
  • Export to PDF – for Review, Archive, Easy Desktop Printing, etc
  • Export a second time, enabling compression, for emailing, etc…

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