Bleed is a term used to describe the area of an artwork layout that extends beyond the final trim dimensions. It is a crucial printing term in which graphic designers and print productions must be familiar with to ensure that printed materials are produced correctly.
Print specifications require bleed to allow margin for errors that may occur during printing, cutting, and trimming processes. Without bleed, white edges may appear on printed materials, which can ruin the final product's clarity and aesthetics.
Not every artwork layout needs a bleed, but it's an essential element when designing elements with images or colored backgrounds that extend close to or over the trim edge.
To add bleed to your artwork layouts, you can adjust your canvas size and extend them around the edges by at least 1/8 inch or 3mm. Consult with your printer spec for recommendations.
The results of not including bleed in your artwork include white edges on printed materials or even incorrect cropping of text and graphics.
In conclusion, understanding print bleed is vital for anyone working in graphic design or print production. Always keep in mind that printing mistakes happen all too often, but including bleed makes sure that these issues are minimized as much as possible. Be sure always to adhere to print specifications provided by printers or photographers who will handle prints jobs for you accordingly.