Illustrator Page Set-Up

the printer is missing parts of my image

If you're printing an image that extends beyond the "safe" printing area, then you need to use Illustrator's "Document Set-up" dialog under the FILE menu, and possibly even click the "Tile" function.

Illustrator's "Document Setup"

You can specifiy any size document up to 12 x 12 feet, however, you are limited by the "safe" printing area as dictated by your printer, and the PAGE SIZE originally set up in the "New File" dialog. You'll need to enlarge that PAGE SIZE in the "Document Set-Up" dialog in order to see and print all parts of your file.

diagram In the first diagram (Open Diagram #1 now) I've created a new document and set the page size to 15 inches square. The working space is set up with:

The dotted lines are dictated by the Printer's "ppd" file, which sends the printer's specifications to the software for configuring the available printing space.

Moving the "sheet" around the window

Zoom out to show the larger window space.

Look behind the HAND tool ... (tap: H) and pull out to reveal the "Page Tool" (a dotted-line rectangle icon with the X at the bottom left) In the second diagram, (Open Diagram #2 now), I have selected the "Page Tool" and am moving the printable page to take in the second graphic image that wouldn't fit in the original printable page.

This is the actual "printable" area as dictated by your printer in the ppd files when you specified printing -- and you can move it around to accommodate drawings which are larger than the allowable page for your printer.

Printer cutting off parts of the image

If your printer is otherwise cutting off image, that image may be partially outside of the edges you specified in the document page size.

Notice that this "Page Size" is a dynamic window, and you can actually move the sheet of paper around, and outside of that window.

Again, click with the PAGE TOOL somewhere outside those solid "page" edges and release. You'll see a portion of the page still in the safe area, and the rest cropped.

Tiling larger images

If you're creating an image which goes beyond the constraints of the single sheet defined by the printer, you may want to initiate "Tiling" to show you the different pages your image will be spread across.
You'll need to return to the Document Set-up dialog.

Clicking on "Tile Imagable Areas" button will reveal a grid of dotted lines, each numbered where a "safe" sheet of paper will be printed as designated by the printer's ppd specifications.

Take your "Page" Tool and click in the area -- note that the dotted "page" grid will snap to the point you clicked -- and indicate how the art work will be positioned across the tiling pages.

Hope the above helps you plan and successfully print your images which are larger than the printer's default page.

Come on over to James Madison University and enroll in my JMU GRPH 243 class and I'll show you how all this -- and much more -- works.

:-) Only kidding.

Thanks for reading

Fred Showker

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