What The Font?



A font is a specific part of a typeface. A typeface is a family of individual fonts. For example, Helvetica is the typeface, and Helvetica bold is the font. Many people use the term font as the go-to term when discussing typefaces. For argument’s sake, we will as well.

All information provided below is based on adobe illustrator, the preferred program.


  1. Any serif or script font below 5 pt., printed in white, or reversed out of a dark background can fill in.
    • Adding a .1 pt stroke to the text in the same color or using a bold font will help with readability.

  2. Black Text
    • Black text should be 100% black – do not use a support (any combination of CMYK) black.

  3. Outline all text on all layers. Outlining creates the text to be a graphic element vs. editable text. In addition, it prevents your font from being replaced with a different font once sent to prepress.
    • How to outline your text in Illustrator.
      • Unlock all layers.
      • Verify that text is not locked or hidden.
      • Choose Edit > Select All.
        • This will not affect any other art.
      • Choose Type > Create Outline.
        • Save your file with a new name; you may need to go back and edit any text.

  4. If you choose not to outline your fonts you can Package your fonts. Packaging your fonts is a way to collect your fonts to send with your files. This is however, NOT the preferred method.

This is an easy way to see if you can still edit your text or if it is already outlined. When text is selected the line under the text means you can still edit it. Again, when selected, if you have a blue stroke that indicaates that the text has already been outlined and uneditable.

If you have any prepress questions email prepress@rppsplash.com.

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