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Adobe InDesign - Bleed and Printer's Marks

This document will show you how to incorporate bleed and printer's marks into your document.


Two of the most important printer’s marks are Crop Marks and Bleed. Bleed is the parts of text or objects that extend past the page boundary to account for slight inaccuracy when trimming. It is highly recommended to use a bleed, and set it early on if the artwork will be trimmed. Crop marks mark off where the page is to be trimmed. Slug area is an area outside the page and bleed that contains printer instructions or job sign-off information.

When adding crop marks and a bleed or slug area, make sure that the artwork is extended past the crop marks in the document to accommodate the bleed.

Setting Up Bleed:

  1. To begin, click any object and drag it out onto the pasteboard. Guides will help determine the amount bleed.
  2. To create a guide, click File then choose Document Setup.
    1. Look for the “Bleed and Slug”  option in the dialogue box. If it’s not there, click the little triangle to extend the menu.
    2. Most printers are in between 9-18 points for the bleed.
    3. To include a Slug, choose “slug.”
    4. Click “OK”.
    5. Extend the objects, images or text to the red guides on the sides of the page, until it “snaps” into place.
  3. To see what the page will look like after it was printed and trimmed, select w on the keyboard to go into preview mode.
  4. When you’re ready, there is an option in the print dialogue box that must be selected.
    1. Choose File, Print, (or cmd+p for mac, ctrl+p for windows) then choose Marks and Bleeds.
    2. Be sure to have box checked where it says “Use Document Bleed Settings”. If this is not selected, InDesign will crop/cut them off at the original point.
    3. If the Slug area needs to be included in this print, select “Include Slug Area”, just below the document settings box.

Setting Up Crop Marks and Other Printer Marks:

  1. Choose File > Print.
  2. Click Marks and Bleed on the left side of the Print dialog box.
  3. Select either All Printer’s Marks or individual marks
    • To override bleed settings in the Document Setup dialog box, uncheck Use Document Bleed Settings and enter values from 0 to 6 inches (or equivalents) for Top, Bottom, Left, and Right (for single-sided documents), or Top, Bottom, Inside, and Outside (for double‑sided documents with facing pages).
    • To extend the offset evenly on all sides of the page, click the Make All Settings The Same icon.

If you need further assistance please contact the Information Technology Help Desk at 920-424-3020 or

Keywords:bleed, basics, marks, printing, "crop marks", "individual marks"   Doc ID:64344
Owner:Aarron V.Group:UW Oshkosh
Created:2016-06-22 09:16 CSTUpdated:2016-12-20 12:23 CST
Sites:UW Oshkosh
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