Using Photoshop For Typesetting
is world class graphic design software for
photo/image processing, but it's not the best design
tool for typesetting and line-art graphics that are
destined for commercial printing... especially
silkscreen printing spot-colours.
We always recommend that clients process their
photos/images in Photoshop and then place them into
Adobe Illustrator or
Adobe Indesign for assembly
with design templates, line art graphics and text.
Why is that? The image shown below displays the
The letter "A" on the left is line-art text from
Illustrator... and the letter "A" on the right is
from Photoshop. They were both created using the
same font and point size, and the image was saved at
300dpi which is the most common resolution for
commercial print in the
CD manufacturing and
DVD manufacturing world.
As you can see, the Photoshop generated letter is
noticeably fuzzy... and this is because it is a
bitmap image as opposed to line-art. Such fuzziness
isn't as big a problem for the large bold text in
your design, but it can become problematic in
smaller text and finer styles of fonts.
The fuzziness of text and graphics created in
Photoshop can play havoc with the visual quality of
silkscreen printed designs. What appears to
be sharp and smooth on your computer screen turns
into jagged and rough edges in the final print. On
the other hand, line-art does provide sharp edges
and smooth curves or silkscreen printing spot
colours as well as all types of CMYK print.
Due to this (as noted above) we always recommend
that you perfect your photos in Photoshop, save them
in high-resolution form (such as a 300dpi .TIF) and
then place them into your Illustrator or Indesign
design page where you can add your line art graphics
and do your typesetting.
The result will be sharper and
cleaner text and graphics, which equates to higher
overall visual quality and legibility.