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Hi, Hope this is not a really stupid question :) I am a little confused...

OK, I want to use exclusively screenprinting. I know I need to get artwork to the screenprinter in vector format. I have been using Freehand MX to create my designs.
But what happens if I have an effect I can't achieve in Freehand, can I import it from somewhere else, such as Photoshop and just save as a vector? I just want to be sure...

I am thinking of effects such as this

http://www.imaginaryfoundation.com/index.php?pagemode=detail&type=Womens T&uid=BAC3CC#

My question is really, is it only the end format that counts, or how you got there?

My main goal (obviously!) is to avoid a heap of extra artwork charges from the screenprinter when they discover they can't use what I have done... I am finding Freehand a little restrictive though, and it is the only vector based app I have available.
 

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first of all, there are NO STUPID QUESTIONS!

that said, if you import a raster image (from photoshop) into a vector file (like freehand) and then save it, it does not automatically convert the raster to vector. you can only create vector files from a vector program.

after looking at the image you linked to, i'm not sure how you would create that effect with vectors. if that is the effect you want to achieve, you should really leave it up to your screenprinter to do the separations. show them the image and discuss the best format to use.
 

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Why not do your effect in Photoshop then port that file in freehand?

Then send off thru Freehand?

Isnt it the same as importing a raster file into FH and going from there with it?

Isnt it Illustrator vectors that remain in vector state when brought into Photoshop? <-- I dont use Illo/PS enough on this one to fully answer.

Its also possible to achieve that colored sponge look with the gmesh tool, but thats a whole different ballpark i guess.

better off with PS to do them effects.
 

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Import said:
I know I need to get artwork to the screenprinter in vector format.
You don't necessarily have to - it's just the preferred file format of a lot of printers. For some art it's just not practical, and a high resolution raster file (a good .psd for example) should be fine.
 

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Import said:
My main goal (obviously!) is to avoid a heap of extra artwork charges from the screenprinter when they discover they can't use what I have done...
my screenprinters will charge us extra for index separations but not for spot color seps because it takes more work on their part.

maybe try this approach, set up each color "splotch" as a grayscale tif in photoshop. if you use quark or indesign, you can place each tif and add a spot color to it there. you may be able to do this with freehand, also (i know you can do it with a bitmap tif in illustrator). this way, the file will separate into individual spots. it will be more work for you, but less for your screenprinter.
 

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Some screen printers do not charge for index separations or art charges if you bring in a high resolution raster (photoshop/tiff/jpg/png) file.

Check with a few printers to see if you can avoid this fee without having to try to change your artwork to vector.
 

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Not to argue....

Don't base your decision on no art fees. There are good and bad seperations.

Find a printer that really knows how to sep this kind of art. It's a one time fee and will be worth the money to have it done right.

Fluid is much more knowledgeable than I am when it comes to this stuff. He's also a VERY talented printer and artist. ;)
 

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Find a printer that really knows how to sep this kind of art. It's a one time fee and will be worth the money to have it done right.
Great point :) I guess I was saying that it IS possible to have great separations done and have them done for free. Not all great printers charge for them, although a lot of them do.

But as you said, I would pick a "great" paid separation over a bad "free" one. But they don't have to be mutually exclusive (you can have great and free).
 
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