I'm working on some business cards in Photoshop and I come understand it's not the best medium for print since it's not vector based like Illustrator.

I want to avoid the edges of my font from coming out "fuzzy" so of course I'm considering moving the design over to Illustrator but, it's definitely not my strong suite.

Is there anyway I can keep my design as a photoshop file and have it print out "crisp"?


Is there a simple way to move it over in Illustrator and make everything vector based?

Btw: the designs are not graphic intense, more typography and shapes.

  • You can open a psd file in illustrator, just like you'd open up any vector file in it. -- That'll invoke an import window where you can choose to convert psd layers to objects or flatten it all to single image. -- Everything that can be a vector object, will be a vector object. Shapes and text layers are going to be vector. Raster images, not so much.
    – Joonas
    Commented Mar 18, 2014 at 8:11

4 Answers 4


You could always try saving your image as a Photoshop EPS, or PDF. this is usually much crisper than a PSD or JPG if placed into an Illustrator file. Unfortunately, you will probably not be able to further edit the type or image.

  • This worked perfect! Don't need to use Illustrator now. I forgot pdf is vector based.
    – delboud
    Commented Mar 18, 2014 at 21:20

InDesign would probably be the better choice but Illustrator will do. What I would suggest is placing your Photoshop File in Illustrator and then set the text again, using the design in the background as your guide. After that's done you can hide the text layers in the photoshop file. Same goes for any shapes that you created in photoshop.

  • Any reason to use InDesign? I have even less experience with that.
    – delboud
    Commented Mar 18, 2014 at 7:06
  • InDesign is just the first choice for setting up print layouts. You don't have to use it as Illustrator can export PDFs for print just the same. It just gets complicated if you want to go multi-page. Basically, if it's a one time thing, stick with Illustrator. If you want to learn print layout it wouldn't hurt learning InDesign. The basics for Adobe products are the same, so the switch shouldn't be too hard.
    – KMSTR
    Commented Mar 18, 2014 at 7:22

From Photoshop

It is possible to print vector shapes from Photoshop, although it appears to require a PostScript Printer.

Print vector data

If an image includes vector graphics, such as shapes and type, Photoshop can send the vector data to a PostScript printer. When you choose to include vector data, Photoshop sends the printer a separate image for each type layer and each vector shape layer. These additional images are printed on top of the base image, and clipped using their vector outline. Consequently, the edges of vector graphics print at the printer’s full resolution, even though the content of each layer is limited to the resolution of your image file.

Note: Some blending modes and layer effects require rasterized vector data.

  1. Choose File > Print.
  2. In the options box at right, scroll to the bottom, and expand PostScript Options.
  3. Select Include Vector Data.

From https://helpx.adobe.com/photoshop/using/printing-photoshop1.html#print_vector_data

From Adobe Reader

If you don't have a PostScript printer, then the easiest way I found was to export to PDF and ensure you select the option to include Layers. Adobe Reader (or Acrobat) seems to print vector data nicely.

As others have mentioned you could also import the data into Illustrator via PDF/EPS although it's not strictly necessary.


You can keep your background in Photoshop and continue to use Photoshop to manage the calibration, colors, resolution and effects as you like to do.

And for your texts, you can save them in a new layer file in Photoshop (a .psd), and then open this file in Illustrator.

Here is the way to do it

Once you have your text in vector (converted from your Photoshop layer file), you can simply add your background to it and use Illustrator as your new publishing software. You should now type all your texts and draw the sharp graphic in Illustrator, and not use Photoshop anymore for this.

Yes, ideally you should use Indesign especially if you need to do multiple pages layout. But Illustrator can be used for single page layouts such as postcards or business cards.

When you'll prepare your files for print-ready use, you can select all your text and do a "create outline" (menu "type") and it will make that text non-editable. Then you can save that file to PDF with the highest quality possible. (Some tricks to compress a PDF to lower size here).

if you need to create a multiple page document but still prefer to stick to Illustrator, it's always possible to merge all your PDF files in ONE single PDF file. This is how it's done if you can use Adobe Acrobat Pro that comes with the Creative Suite/Cloud from Adobe.

You could always keep working with Photoshop but... You really gain more in simply learning Illustrator and even better, Indesign. In Indesign, you can easily combine together your vector graphics from Illustrator and you pictures from Photoshop; and the best thing is InDesign creates vector texts that are always perfect for printing and is also created to handle files to the max performance of your computer. You will find this interesting if you ever need to work on a catalog for example! You can also use Master-Pages with Indesign and it saves a lot of work. Indesign is really better than Illustrator for publishing and productivity.


Note: Exporting a PDF from Photoshop WITHOUT flattening your layers should keep your text layers in vectors. Use the "save as", no need to "print" the PDF.

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