My online printer is concerned I that I not use a Live Font. I'm just not sure what that is. I see references to Apple, but I am on a PC. I'm still looking for a definition, but found this site. Can anyone help on this?

  • 3
    It's difficult to say. Most likely they want you to convert all type to outlines in whatever software you are using.
    – Scott
    Mar 25, 2015 at 22:44
  • This might be better on Super User.
    – Keavon
    Mar 26, 2015 at 1:49
  • 1
    You need to ask this question of your online printer.
    – DA01
    Mar 26, 2015 at 5:53
  • 3
    Your "online printer" probably has trouble explaining to you what he wants, whether it's due to lack of linguistic skills or lack of technical knowledge. I'm also not really sure what you mean by "online printer". Because literally you're saying your internet-connected printing device is concerned about something. In a web-developer world a Live font may refer to live webfont. A font that is not located on a client machine, but on an external server and is downloaded every time a page is loaded. And it's independent of the OS. So please clarify your question.
    – Slava
    Mar 26, 2015 at 9:40
  • 2
    You're best off asking your online printer. Just tell them you've never heard of a printer asking you for a Live Font before and I'm sure they'll just explain it to you
    – SaturnsEye
    Mar 26, 2015 at 10:43

4 Answers 4


Although your question is unclear, most probably in your case Live font was meant as a reference to "editable text", or even the opposite: "text with preserved appearance" in your document/design.


I'm pretty sure this means the internet-based printing company you're using doesn't want the artwork you send them to include text set as fonts. They want you to convert it to shapes so that no fonts are required to print the artwork as designed on their print device.

Exactly how this is achieved depends on the applications you are using. It'll probably be a menu option similar to "Convert Text Selection to Outlines".

This means you can't edit the text any more, so you'd want to make this change to a copy of your final artwork!


What they are saying is they want you to convert the text to outlines. This is easily done in Adobe Illustrator and Adobe InDesign. You just need to make a duplicate Artboard or Page or File so you can maintain the live type (editable type) if you need to make updates later for whatever reason.

They want the text done as outlines (vector shapes) so that if they don't have the font on file or it becomes corrupted or doesn't process, that your document could still look exactly as intended.


When you say online printer, I presume you mean a publishing house such as onlineprints.com, mimeo.com, or vistaprint.com.

A live font is one that is interpolated by software and allows a single font to fill many roles. See this article by Andrew Jonhson about Live Font Interpolation on the Web at alistapart.com, which is way to long in it's explanation to capture here.

Your online printer probably wants you to avoid a live font to ensure that the materials you are submitting for print will be generated exactly as you specify.

  • 1
    It is highly doubtful that any print provider is referring to webfonts when discussing production files. Your article link has absolutely no bearing in the print production world.
    – Scott
    Mar 26, 2015 at 0:48
  • Depends what he sent to said printer. If he asked to print somewebsite.com, they might have issues with a webfont. That said, it would be a very strange question indeed.
    – PieBie
    Mar 26, 2015 at 11:38

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