Preparing And Submitting Artwork

Computers and graphic design programs are both highly sophisticated and incredibly easy to use. With clients using a diverse range of platforms and software, Rosco will try to accept almost any electronic file. Of course, many designer still work in paper and photographic medium and we will happily take these "hard copy" artwork formats as well. Below is a set of guidelines to assist you in preparing your design - in whatever - format for a successful transfer to a custom gobo.

Electronic Designs

Postscript Formats

Adobe Illustrator (.ai)

For almost any style design except for photographic images, the preferred, ideal file format is a native Adobe Illustrator file. This kind of vector-based artwork creates the best gobo toolings.


EPS Files (.eps)

A close second to Illustrator files are files saved in eps format. This format can be created from many of the popular graphics programs available. EPS files maintain excellent image qualities and allow for moderate resizing without degrading the image quality.


PDF Documents (.pdf)

PDF files are usually created from good art files such as above but have been converted from the original file to pdf so that a dealer or customer can open it. If you have an art file you can't open due to format, always send us this file first. We are happy to then convert it for you to an easier format for you to see the art as well. This helps us to get the best art possible and to keep it from being down graded to lesser art quality.


Word Documents (.doc)

Word Documents generally are not great art files but can be used for text-only art. We ask that you please include the font name & or the actual fonts when sending over this type of file. A faxed copy of the actual artwork is also requested for Word Document text art.


Rasterized Formats

Adobe Photoshop (.psd, .eps)

Native Photoshop files provide tremendous versatility by allowing all the elements of a design to be edited by Rosco's graphic designers. This file format maintains text editing (v.5 and higher) and preserves layers. In addition, Photoshop is the ideal format for photographic designs or Hi-Definition Photogobos.


TIFF Files (.tif)

Digital cameras and many graphics programs provide means for saving images in TIFF format. These files are uncompressed and maintain a very high image quality. However, they are often extremely large, so much so that electronic transfers are difficult. Despite that, this file format produces excellent gobos. TIFF files work wonderfully if they are a Photoshop created, layered file and are unlocked. This is especially so for full photographic quality gobos.


JPG (.jpg), GIF (.gif)

These file types are commonly found in use on the World Wide Web. In general, they are less well suited as artwork for custom gobos. GIF files are 72dpi, and contain a limited color table. This means that altering the file in any way - resizing, adjusting contrast, color correcting - is virtually impossible to accomplish without significantly degrading the image. So unless the file provided needs no alteration at all (very uncommon), it is a poor format choice. JPG files are a compressed file type that helps to keep even very complex images relatively small. But this compression makes it difficult to alter the image without introducing artifacts which degrade the image quality. If you will be submitting jpg files, make sure to submit a file that is 2x the size of the finished gobo.


CAD Files (.dxf, .dwg)

CAD files should not be submitted at all. Despite claims by the software companies to the contrary, these file types almost never successfully convert into a usable file format.


Image Size and Resolution Guidelines

First, if you are working in Adobe Illustrator, this section is irrelevant to you. Resizing in Illustrator is accomplished with no loss of detail or quality.

Otherwise, you must decide at what the resolution and size to create your design. Your choice of gobo type will influence this decision. In general, you should create your design at full size, which is 100% of the size of the finished gobo, or larger.

Type DPI Notes
Custom Steel 150 dpi Line art is not usually degraded by low resolution files. But small text may be difficult to render.
B/W line art, B/W Grey Scale or Photographic B/W 600 dpi Smooth tonal values require high resolution images.
Multi color line art or Hi-Def color photo gobo 800 dpi To achieve smooth color blends and fine details requires a very high resolution file.
To calculate the pixel size of your design, multiply gobo size (in inches) by the recommended resolution. The result is the recommended size of your artwork. For example, if you are creating artwork for multi-colored logo in B size gobo: 2.54 inches x 300 pixels/inch = 762 pixels. So the artwork you submit to Rosco should be no less than 762 x 762 pixels, though larger is perfectly fine.
Note that pixel size is independent of resolution and so is a preferred manner of describing file size.

Pixel Size = Size (inches) x Dots (pixels) Per Inch.

Hard Copy Artwork

If you will be providing paper artwork, make sure that it is at least 100% of size. Do not submit artwork that has been printed with a noticeable screen angle like newspaper, magazines or computer prints. For best results, submit photographs, chromes, or camera-ready slicks.

Submitting Your Files to Rosco

Archive Your files

Using a commercial archive and compression tool like WinZip, PKZip or Stuffit, archive all of your artwork files into one file. Archives larger than 10MB should be broken up into multiple archives.


Attach you artwork archive to an email message addressed to Make sure to include contact information in the body of youremail. Rosco receives well over 100 pieces of artwork each day. One of the most common problemsdelaying the delivery of Custom Gobo orders is "orphaned artwork" which arrives with no name or other identifying information. Too often, a client's order information is complete except Rosco has not received the artwork. Later, after much running around, we discover that we had the artwork all along: it had been emailed from a graphic designer with no identifying information included with the file, which is descriptively named "logo.jpg."


Rosco does have FTP servers available for you to use if you prefer. Contact us for the address and instructions for using our FTP site by emailing us at

Conventional Mail

Again, make sure to include all pertinent contact and job information. Then send hard copy artwork or disks (floppy, Zip100, CD, or DVD only) to:

Rosco Labs
1600 Chisolm Trail
Round Rock, TX 78681
Att: Custom Gobo