3 Replies Latest reply on Jan 25, 2013 7:23 AM by JFWX5

    Printing Certificates via FileMaker


      Hey all,

      Does any use their solution to print certificates? Do you design the certificate in FM, or do you design it in other programs and import that picture file into FileMaker?

      What is the best practice? I know the best way to import is a png file, but i've found doing the whole 8.5 x 11 design in InDesign or Illustrator, and then importing into Filemaker as a pic gets really large and makes the printing slow.


      DO you break your design apart and import each smaller piece into FIlemaker onto a layout?


      Or do you use Filemaker as a mail-merge kind of thing, desiging the printable fields in such a way to fit the pre-printed decorated certificate?


      If i did design the pieces and put them in, would it be better to put them in as elements on the layout or is it better to place them in container fields?



        • 1. Re: Printing Certificates via FileMaker

          There are a number of ways to skin this particular cat.


          You are best to add each part of the design as individual elements in FileMaker rather than importing a full-page graphic. As long as you have the right fonts, you can usually replicate designs pretty well in FileMaker if you are careful and meticulous.


          In general, though, I have found that using FileMaker to fill in the blanks on pre-printed forms to be painful to set up and get right. It usually can be done, particularly if you can fit everything you want to print within fairly wide margins (that way it is less vulnerable to variations between printers and printer drivers).


          Important note: do your print development and testing on the platform (Mac or Windows) that the "real thing" will be printed from. There are subtle differences between Mac and Windows in rendering fonts that can ruin your careful alignments if you develop and test on one platform and "go live" on the other.


          If you want a pre-printed element to your design, it is best to do the merging within FileMaker for the whole section that contains the individual information. That is, have your fancy heading/logo section and your "certified by" with signature section pre-printed, and do the bit in between wholly by FileMaker. That way you know that the name will be exactly placed within the rest of the certification text.


          I hope that makes sense. Please let me know if you want clarification.



          • 2. Re: Printing Certificates via FileMaker

            Jeremy Brown wrote:


            I know the best way to import is a png file


            That is most certainly not the best way. If you want to print over an existing graphic, use a vector format: PDF if on Mac, WMF if on Windows.


            There are also a few things you can do to optimize the handling of bitmap graphics such as PNG, but printing them in decent quality will never be fast.

            • 3. Re: Printing Certificates via FileMaker




              I've printed hundreds of certificates.


              1) Purchase a certificate font for your computer.


              2) Set the layout up in landscape mode for design and printing.


              3) Buy a quality blank paper from staples.


              4) Always use the same computer and printer to print the certificates from.


              Good luck,