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I've been creating art for some very large wall graphics (approx. 23'x10') in Illustrator CC. I've been cutting the walls into 5 sections, creating separate files and laying out the art at half size but I'm still ending up with really large files. All of my art within the files is linked. The Jpegs I'm linking were saved at 300ppi, which I assume is necessary for good resolution, so I thought that could be making the file large. But do links make a file bigger? I assume the answer is yes, since that's really all that in these files. Should I reduce my link ppi? The links range from 8MB-28MB each.

The final Illustrator CC files range from about 55MB-75MB, but of course, the printer needs EPS files and those range from 700MB-2.25MB. Is there anything I can do?

Thanks!

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Resolution itself may be part of the answer. 11.5' x 5' at 300 (or effectively 23 x 10 at 150ppi) is probably overkill. You could probably easily get away with half (or even a third) of that and shave a ton off of the file sizes. Large format printing is very forgiving, unlike an item that one holds in hand for close inspection. Good luck! Alternatively, if the vendor can accept PDFs, then I would place the AI files into InDesign and export a zip-compressed (rather than jpg-compressed) PDF.

On the other hand, if you only need the file sizes to be smaller for transport, you can compress them using WinZip, 7zip, etc., to dramatically reduce the file size without loosing any image quality. Aside from that, your options are limited. Illustrator's EPS format doesn't offer much in the way of compression.

  • Thanks for the response. I took my Jpegs down to 150ppi and tested the resolution, it looked just fine. The eps files were still pretty large so I saved them as tiffs at 150ppi instead. The resolution looked great, files were smaller and the printer was happy! – JillK Dec 15 '15 at 23:12
  • Terrific! I'm glad it worked out. – 13ruce Dec 16 '15 at 12:36

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