File set up

Max paper size: 11" x 17"

Max printable area: 10.25" x 16.25" (Our machines can print a little outside of this, but this gives us room to add our various printer marks).

We will work with you directly to make sure that your files are set up properly to ensure the best print results. The file requirements for print are similar to screen printing. Colors need to be separated and converted to greyscale. If the artwork is set to 100% black, the color will print at 100% opacity.

In order to take your project to print, please provide the following:

  • High-res (300-600 DPI) greyscale PDFs
    • Each color layer should be saved as a separate PDF and named as such (i.e. page1-side1-layer1-green.pdf)
    • Use PS Black (pure black 75, 68, 76, 90 or #000000).
    • Use trapping when knocking-out images
    • For full bleed, please give us at least .125" past crop marks.
  • Full color mock-up PDF of your project for reference

We will accept native Adobe files and may ask you to provide them to us. If the project requires extensive file formatting we charge an hourly fee.

Risograph drum illustration

How to get the best results

The Risograph printing process has unique character and slight imperfections. These imperfections include:


Risograph ink is made from a combination of environmentally friendly soy oil, water and pigment, the prints are reminiscent of newspaper ink and with enough effort it is possible to smudge the ink. We can assist you with designing a project that is less prone to smudging. We offer top-coating services to prevent smudging, a great addition to business cards, book covers and other items that need extra durability.

Risograph smudge illustration

Uneven coverage

Large flat areas of solid ink coverage are likely to show some slight variations. We can assist you in choosing the right ink and tone for your project to get the best gradient and finished effect.

Riso is similar to screen printing, each ink color is layered on separately. A single piece of paper will run through our machines several times for multi-color projects and the overlap of colors can be irregular. We use trapping and can offer you other techniques to lesson registration issues. 
Tire marks

When a paper is fed through the machine multiple times and it is heavily inked, the paper feeder rollers may leave tire marks on the page. We try to avoid this issue by having the heaviest inked color printed last.