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I am new to Illustrator and need some help. I am creating a logo that can be used for an outdoor business sign. This same logo will also be used on FB, Website, letterhead, business card etc...

I have created the logo using two different fonts:

  1. If I understand correctly I need to convert this to a vector to make it sizeable to any size such as going from a big outdoor business sign to a business card to website, etc, am I right?

  2. If this is correct do I need to do my touch up before converting or after converting to a vector?

  3. Once everything is completed, how do I save it to be transparent and what do I save it as: AI, FXG, PDF, EPS, AIT, SVG, OR SVGZ? And can I email it to my client like that? Or does it need to be saved differently?

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If you created the logo in Illustrator, it is already in the vector format and should have a transparent background. These things are both baked into a file that you create in Illustrator. You won't need to do any converting. Just save it as an AI file and you should be fine.

Depending on the particular usage of the logo in any particular situation, you will probably have to convert it into various different file types. For Facebook, for example, you will need to create a square image (so if your logo is currently rectangular, or circular, you will need to give it a border so that the final image is square) and then convert it into a file format that Facebook will accept (jpg for sure, and probably other options as well). You will want to reduce it in size and reduce the dpi as well--I usually aim for about 100 dpi for images to be viewed on screen.

First of all, check with your client to see if there are any file types or sizes they want. If they don't know, then you should do a quick review of the collateral where they are using it, so you know the approximate sizes that they use regularly. You want to at least provide them files that they can use that are optimized for use in those sizes. That means at least a set of jpgs, and also some PNGs saved with the transparency.

I usually try to provide a jpg and png that is close in dimensions to the size they will be using on their letterhead, another version that has been optimized for use on the web, and then maybe one more at about 300 dpi and 4 inches on the longest size.

I know that many people dislike the PNG format, but it is the most widely accepted format that includes transparency, so do your client a favor and give them some PNG files.

You will also want to provide your client with the AI files themselves.

If they can provide you with information about the size they will need for the outdoor business signs, then you can provide them with another jpg at that size, but they may not know at this point. Many printers can accept AI files and use those, and if not, and the client does not have the ability to convert it themselves, then I would recommend telling them that they can send you the specifications that they receive from their banner company and you will convert the image if necessary. It is really just a simple set of button clicks, and you will build good will with your client if you offer continued support in this way.

  • Great info, thank you. I just tired saving my work as AI and a window popped up that says Illustrator options – Kim Mar 15 '17 at 1:51
  • @Kim Giving the Ai file removes totally your control. Give only non-editable versions if your agreement does not say that the customer gets the right to do what he wants. This should be important to you. For example the later development and reselling. This subject has been up in other posts several times. See them. – user287001 Mar 15 '17 at 7:02
  • Kim, you need to do some googling about what those options mean and make a decision based on your and your client's needs. – magerber Mar 15 '17 at 15:24
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Starting from the beginning

  • As you used fonts keep in mind to convert them to outline. Otherwise it can give missing font errors assuming the computer that will be used to print your logo doesn't have the required fonts.
  • Illustrator is a Vector based graphic tool. Whatever you create inside it are vectors. So you don't need to worry about that.
  • If you give your final touch up in Illustrator you don't to worry about before or after. If in Photoshop then i would suggest you complete you logo Illustrator then export as .psd format.
  • I would say you give them .eps or .svg . If you are concerned about alteration of your logo I would suggest .png. Vector graphics are editable. You can ask for the templates on what they are going to use the logo Then You can generate logo of the desired sizes by scaling up or scaling down the vector. There are millions of templates for almost every products available. You can dig some template up and scale your logo according to the size. Then export .png .

Hope you will get support from the business company that you talked about. :)

  • what would I need for putting this on a digital church sign....size....format? – Kim Apr 1 '17 at 19:33
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  1. You keep the logo in your archive as AI in 2 versions: one with fonts converted to outlines, and one with editable fonts (in case changes are needed in the future).
  2. You deliver to client the AI converted to curves (not the one with editable text). Then probably a raster version, most likely a transparent PNG. Ask the client if they need more formats (sometimes they will need specific formats in specific sizes).
  3. You could also deliver an additional white-only version, which is useful in some cases (eg. to watermark photos). A black-only version is also handy sometimes, depending on your clients' needs.
  4. Also read this and this.

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