If anyone has any advice on this I'd be very grateful! I have created a piece of artwork in illustrator which is to be printed 4x3m for a wall mural. Therefore the file I am working with must either be a vecor or a large enough raster to be printed at such as size. I have set it up at 1 to 10 so its currently A3ish size. Each component of the collage is a separate ai file and contains many points as they are all live traces. It was no problem linking in all these initially but I now need to embed them so as I can give the printers a complete file. I have succeeded embedding every image apart from one last complex one which is crashing the whole thing. Are there any settings I may be able to change to reduce the file size or simplify the graphic (whilst remaining vectors.) Below is the file with the linked images and also the outline of the embedded version so far. The problem I am having is basically because of the final output size required.
The only thing I can think of doing is opening each separate component and saving as a raster then relinking these - but will this be even more problematic for illustrator that thousands of vector points? I can do it in photoshop if needs be but as the final image is to be printed 4x3m will this be too large to handle? The ai file with all images linked was 25MB but now 500MB with the sky still to embed.
Normally the artwork for a mural may be a rather low res file. So pixels might be not as big as you'd expect them to be. Have you at any time talked to the folks who will be printing it? What did they tell you about the specifications of the file?
Thanks for your quick reply, Monika. Yes I think we can print at 150dpi, I think I will try importing this all into photoshop at half the final size (at 300dpi)...just worried again this might be too large a file for photoshop to handle! Perhaps pasting the ai file in as a smart vector would work?
4x3m is quite large, and the comfortable/relevant viewing distance is so much larger than the one you use to read this that you should be bold here, bolder than just saying 150DPI which may be used at normal reading distance depending on printing method.
You may (literally) see it this way: the viewing angle is important: when you look at a larger image, you move back until you have a comfortable viewing angle, and at the same viewing angle, the viewing distance is proportional to the size. This means that you can determine how the actual final size in pixel x pixel looks under a certain viewing angle at normal reading distance.
To add to what Jacob said, I'm attaching links to a couple of articles dealing with viewing distance and resolution that may help.
4 x 3 m is not large. Consider: 20 x 90 ft billboards are printed every day without resorting to autotracing.
Nothing is gained by auto-tracing such a thing. You don't gain any resolution (actual image information), so you don't really gain the scaleabiliy advatages of intelligently-drawn vector artwork. That's a myth . Scaling the artwork larger than suitable for the resolution is just as bad for autotraced vector paths as it is for pixels. You just trade one kind of ugly "jaggedness" for another.