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How to print a large tiled poster using single sheets of letter sized paper using Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator

The print dialog box for Adobe Illustrator CS3 showing how to set for tiled poster prints

The print dialog box for Adobe Illustrator CS3 showing how to set for tiled poster prints

There are some programs that do this on their own, but if you use Adobe programs you may want to stick with those rather than experimenting with new software which may or may not work.

Adobe Photoshop can be forced do this, but you must do it manually–either by slicing or using various methods (using the ruler, setting guides and selecting 7.5×10 sized slices, then pasting into a new file for each letter sized piece of the image).

However, the best way to do this is to use Adobe Illustrator (if you have it). This tutorial is set up using Adobe CS3, but it certainly works in CS2 and CS4 and likely most versions back for a very long time.

HOW TO PRINT A TILED POSTER USINGĀ  ADOBE ILLUSTRATOR:

1. Create a new file in Illustrator and set your page dimensions to your desired final print size.

2. Go to View menu, select Show Page Tiling

3. Go to File, select Print

4. On the main Print setup screen, find the Media area on the right size and set the paper size to letter (or whatever is the paper size/largest your printer can go. usually this is letter, 8.5×11″).

5. Make sure your printer-specific settings are also set to letter size by clicking the “setup” button in the lower left corner of the “Print” settings box. While in your printer’s control panel, pick your options for color, speed, and quality settings.

6. In the small box with different subheadings, click Setup (under General).

7. Go to Tiling, select “tile imageable areas”. This will account for your printer’s margins/printable area. Drag artwork so page seams will be at less detailed areas of your image. This will make the final product easier to match up and overall better looking. You can do this by dragging around the image in the lower left corner of the print setup screen.

8. Click Print–It should automatically print all pages that you will later match up to create a larger image.

9. Cutting the printed pages. You’ll have to manually cut off the margins of your pages unless your printer can do borderless printing. The best way I found to do this is with a knife (exacto or utility) and a metal ruler. If you plan to do this a lot, a self-healing cutting mat is a good cutting surface, otherwise you could use dense (not corrugated) cardboard, masonite, or any wood board to cut on top of. Then tape all the pages together or paste them onto a piece of tagboard/cardboard/etc. Rubber cement or spray adhesive would be ideal but any glue would work.

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4 Comments

  1. Thanks a lot for this tip! I’ve been looking a simpler way to print poster-size materials in a small deskjet printer. =)

  2. Very well done!!!! was looking for something like this for quite a while…CHEERS

  3. Thank you! Just what I was looking for.

  4. Thanks. Found I could do it also, if I saved image as PDF, but I like the Illustrator suggestion better.

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