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Artwork Submission | Gradients & Half Tone Dots | Poster Artwork
Sticker Artwork | Upload Artwork

Please read this entire page before sending artwork. The info on this page will help keep your order from being delayed because of problems with improper artwork.

Artwork Submission

Formats that Contagious Graphics can accept for artwork.

1. The original art/picture/photograph, as long as it is no larger than 8.5 x 11 (so we can scan it).

2. Digital artwork saved from Adobe Illustrator (version CS(11.0) or earlier) or Macromedia Freehand (version MX(11.0) or earlier). Converting all text to paths/outlines/or curves will eliminate the need for the fonts. Paths make logos more stable and less likely for spacing to change between letters or words. PLEASE INCLUDE ALL FONTS AND IMAGES IF YOU USE THEM. DO NOT EMBED IMPORTED IMAGES. LINK ALL IMPORTED IMAGES TO THE FILE.

3. Digital artwork saved as a TIFF, PSD, or JPEG file - 300 dpi at final size of printed image (from Photoshop (version CS (7.0), Painter or a similar pixel based program, i.e. printing 3" x 6" stickers the artwork should be the same size at 300 dpi / 900 x 1800 pixels). If you save a file as a JPEG, DO NOT compress it below an 8/high quality. The more you compress a JPEG the worse it will look when printed. Avoid JPEG's if you can. DO NOT TAKE ARTWORK FROM THE WEB. It is generally saved at 72 dpi, which will print HORRIBLY, and it may be illegal. Do not resize/blow up an image from 72 dpi to 300 dpi as it will still print badly (a pixeled image will look even more pixelated if blown up). If you are sending Black & White art with gradients make sure to change it to grayscale mode before saving, or if the artwork is solid Black & White change it to Bitmap mode. This reduces your file size and you should be able to email the file to us easily.

4. We can take digital artwork through our ftp upload site (10 megabytes max.), e-mail (if 3 megabytes or smaller. Files that are Zipped or Stuffed are fine.), floppy disk (if the file can actually fit onto it), Zip disk or CD-R. Let us know that you are sending artwork to us and how.


And now a word about drop shadows, gradients, photographs and what halftone dots are...

There is almost always a difference between what you can produce on a computer screen and how it is actually printed. Below in a example of a single color sticker with a drop shadow/blur around the type. In Photoshop it produces the gradient by varing tones of black and grey. This gives a smooth gradient. When you are screenprinting you are trying to recreate the gradient with only one color. In screenprinting this is called half tone dots and they are used to recreate the gradient or photograph. It is a similar process to what you see with pictures in the newspaper. The pictures below shows an enlarged section of a the printed sticker and photograph with its gradient using only one color (Black). Close up you can see the dots but at a distance of about 3 feet your eye blends the dots to what looks like a gradient.

Spaceman gradient
The Sticker the way it looks in Photoshop

spaceman printed gradient
A blown up section of the sticker after it is printed.

A photograph the way it looks in Photoshop
A blown up section of the photo after it is printed with half tone dots.

So be aware if you want to use gradients that this is how they will look when printed. If you do not like the way the gradients look printed, The alternative is to just use solid areas of color. ALSO NOTE IF YOU ARE DOING A 4 COLOR PROCESS (not 4 spot colors, but 4 color process, generally how full color pictures are printed) SHIRT OR STICKER THE GRADIENTS USUALLY TURN OUT A LOT SMOOTHER.

If you have any questions about the above, or some other question about artwork then feel free to call (704.529.5600) or e-mail us.

Poster Art Submission

The simpler the better - Since people are viewing it from moving cars or glancing at it while moving from section to section at a record store, in a club, etc.

Make it eye catching
- Use bold logos, cool artwork, or a photograph. When using photos or shaded images (read about gradients/halftones) the halftone dots will be large just remember the viewing distance is normally 4-6 feet not 6" from the viewers face.


Sticker Art Submission

Sticker templates - For your convenience, we have provided Standard Sticker Templates you can download. The files options are .eps, .tiff or .psd. You can use these templates to help create your artwork and make sure everything is ok.

Send it to us - We can accept almost any electronic file where the art is 300 pixels per inch (dpi is the same thing) at the actual final print size. We can also take laser prints -- no inkjet printouts, please! unless that is all you have / original artwork / etc. through regular mail.

Keep it simple - A simple high-contrast design works best. Most stickers we make are smaller sizes than a traditional "bumper sticker." Therefore, designs should be clear and easy to read, and use bold lettering. Look at our sticker samples.

Watch your borders - You need to keep an 1/8 th (0.125) inch border around your artwork, White, Black, Red or Yellow. If not we will add one around the artwork. We do not do bleeds (its when an image or design goes to the edge of the sticker) on Standard Sticker orders of 500 or less. We can do bleeds on Custom Stickers orders of 500 or more.

1/8th inch border sample

Use solid colors - Try to avoid shading, gradations, and blends. Designs or photographs with shading may, drop out or appear dotted. Use solid fills and outlines for best results.

Watch your design - Use reversed images and colored backgrounds as additional colors - A white sticker with black letters is pretty plain. Try reversing images for higher contrast.

4 colors doesn't mean "process color" - We can print 4 spot colors (or more) and/or 4 color process (aka CMYK, Full color). 4 color process is how full color magazines are printed. Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black combine to create the colors needed to reproduce a full color image. Please be aware that 4 color process does not look as good on a sticker as it does in a magazine (screenprinters use larger halftone dot screens than offset magazine printers). These options are available for custom sticker orders. 4 spot colors and 4 color process are the same price.