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At a basic level, this is easy enough to do in two main steps:
1) Run an action or script to create the “gallery wrap” bleed and save the file (either content aware or mirrored bleed)
2) Open a template file and replace the links with the new image (the template file would contain 1up or 5up stepped with crop marks, and linked “placeholder” images that would be linked to the new image, then the final EPS would be exported/saved. This could be created in either Illustrator or InDesign.
With more work this could probably be scripted into a “single script” (using OS level VB or Apple Script scripting if this was not possible with ExtendScript), however the basic two step approach above would get you 99% of the way there to start with.
Why do this in Illustrator, is it only to output an EPS?
Why do this in InDesign, then rasterize in Photoshop and save an EPS? InDesign can export direct to EPS.
InDesign can export to eps? Ive never found that. I'll have to take a closer look. If that's the case, I could at least simplify the process to only use Ps and Id, and then create 2 scripts as you suggested.
Okay, so Id can totally output eps files. Never knew that, and I went to school for this. That alone is a huge help.
I should also mention that this whole thing is more my boss's idea than mine. He's all about automation, coming from an engineering background where everything was the same, over and over again. We're a %99 custom print shop, and very rarely do jobs follow any sort of template or "standard." Because of that, we've been setting everything up manually for a long time. Something like a template, which would normally make tons of sense, would be almost useless because I'd need a template for every size poster that comes through. Now multiply that by 4 for the different machines we have (all different processes) and it becomes genuinely faster to just set each job up individually. But at least I'm trying to fulfill his wishes, so I can say that.
Sounds like what you really need is an updated RIP that can work with PDF files that also offers nesting/tiling or other software to automate the multi-up imposition/step and repeat work.