What is bleed? Why you need bleed for print.

What is bleed? Why you need bleed for print

Col Graphic Design Leave a Comment

When you want graphics or images to go right up to the edge of your printed documents you will need to employ bleed into your artwork. By watching this short video you will learn all about what bleed actually is and how to implement bleed into your own artwork.

What is bleed?

Transcript of video:

Today we’re going to talk about bleed.

Hi, everyone. It’s Col here, from Pixels Ink. Today we’re going to talk about bleed. I’m not talking about the type of bleeds where you chop the end of your finger off when you’re using a craft knife in the design studio. In printing terms, a bleed is where the printed design goes all the way to one or more edges of your finished document. To create a printed piece with a bleed, the original artwork must extend beyond the document trim size. In the UK, this is usually by about a margin of 3 millimetres on each side of your document, but you should always check with your printer in advance because they may have a slightly different setup. It may be less bleed, or it may be more, so always check that before you send them your artwork.

By extending the artwork past the final required trim size, what you do is, you eliminate the possibility of there being a thin strip of unprinted paper along the edge of your document. This can occur if you don’t allow for bleed, and the paper might shift ever so slightly, whilst it’s being trimmed at the printers. Most printers will specify a trim margin of error, and this is usually about 1 millimetre. You might think 1 millimetre isn’t much at all, but when you get your business card back and you have maybe got a full block of colour, you will notice that 1 millimetre of white stripe down the edge.

Here are two examples of some print-ready artwork that I have created. The one on the left has no bleed applied, and the one on the right has 3 millimetres of bleed. Should the one on the left be sent off for printing, and the paper shift during the trimming process, then what you could end up with is that very thin, white line down one edge. That’s something that you really don’t want. However, by having a 3-millimeter bleed, what we do is, even though during the trimming process, the paper might shift by a millimetre or two, because we’ve got 3 millimetres of bleed we won’t end up with that white line along the edge of our document.

In a nutshell, if you want your printed materials to have your printed design go right off the edge of the paper, then you must always include bleed in your document artwork.

That’s it for today. Thanks for watching. I’d love if you could subscribe to my channel. If you found the video useful, please give it a like, and share with any colleagues or friends that you think may find it useful. Until next time, stay creative.