Bleeds in Photoshop

In this tutorial we’ll show you a simple example of incorporating bleeds into your Photoshop documents and the PDF-files created with Photoshop’s print-function. The purpose of bleeds is to ensure the edges of the document look nice when printed on a professional printer.

Written version:

Let’s begin by creating a standard A4 Photoshop document. Notice that the witdh is 210 millimeters and the height 297 millimeters.
Now we’ll add a new layer and color it with a strong color to make it easier to demonstrate how bleeds are used.
Let’s type in the word bleed just to have something in the document besides the backgound.
Now in order to accommodate bleeds in our document, we need to make it larger. We’ll use a common bleed amount of 3 millimeters. Let’s go to image, canvas size, and increae the size with our bleed amount. Notice that we need to put in twice the number because both left and right bleeds are added. So we are adding 6 mm to both numbers.
You can now see the black borders around the edges. Let’s quickly make them white just to make them easier to see.
Now the point with bleeds is that they give the printer a small safety margin when they are cutting the paper. Leaving them white doesn’t make sense because that would possibly leave a thin white stripe at the edge of our printer paper. This is exactly what we want to avoid in the first place. Instead we want to color the bleed area with the same colors that our document’s outer edges have. In this case it’s really simple because we only have a single color in the background. So let’s just fill our bleeds with red.
Now we are ready to create the pdf file. To do that select file, print.
Let’s turn on the corner crop marks. These will create thin lines on the corners of the document that tell the printer where the paper should be cut.
Next we’ll tell Photoshop that we are using 3mm bleeds.
Finally let’s go to the print settings of the pdf-file we are about to create.
For the paper size, let’s select A4 as a starting point. But now we want to actually increase the A4 size with the bleeds and also some extra whitespace for the cropmarks to show up. So we are going to click add and increase both dimensions with 12 mm because two times three for the width bleeds plus two times three for the whitespace totals 12. Then we add the same for the height. Finally let’s make sure our newly created preset is the one selected for the job.
You should now be able to see your cropmarks at the exact position of the bleeds you created.

Finally we’ll hit print and check out the finished pdf-file!

That’s how you create bleeds for professional printing in Photoshop! Thanks for watching and see you next time on fastertutorials.com!

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