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Starting A New CD Design Project Using Photoshop

It doesn't matter if you're designing a CD manufacturing or CD duplication project - you're in the realm of commercial printing, and that's different than designing for the internet.

When clients are using Photoshop for commercial printing, two of the most common problems that we face are (a) low-resolution artwork, and (b) incorrect colour mode.

Internet colour mode: RGB
Typical commercial printing colour mode: CMYK
Typical internet resolution: 72 dpi (or ppi)
Typical commercial printing resolution: 300 dpi (or ppi)

Whether you are importing or opening a file in Photoshop, or you are opening a new page to begin designing from scratch, you need to set your design page properties appropriately.

When you import/open or begin a new design from scratch the "New" design page dialogue window (as shown above, or similar to) should appear first.

(Click on the image to view full size)

The name, width and height of your page properties can be left up to you as it will depend on which particular item you're designing, but make sure the resolution is set to 300 pixels/inch and the colour mode is CMYK.

In the event the "New" dialogue window does not present itself, you can still edit the settings by going to the top of your screen and selecting the following:

Image > Mode > "CMYK"
Image > Image Size > 300 pixels/inch

This should get you started with your design on the right footing!


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