27 Replies Latest reply on Sep 16, 2017 11:32 PM by mollykitti

    print to .pdf

    mollykitti Level 1

      I have a Photoshop picture I have been working on at an exaggerated large size so I can see details.  Now I finished the pic and I need to a) print it to .pdf and b) shrink it to a more normal size.  No biggy, right?  I just print to .pdf setting my scale to 25%, right?  I tried that and it came out okay but tiny because silly me forgot for a second that on screen size 100% and print size 100% are not the same thing.  No big deal, I'll just print it again scaled to 60% instead, right?  Nothing happened.  Pdf file still has first size.  Okay, maybe I need to delete first print to .pdf, then reprint?  Nope, nothing.  When I try and search for it: "file not found".  So... how do I print it to .pdf?


      (PS I have tried the workaround of adjusting image size, then saving as .pdf.  When I adjust the image size it gets REALLY blurry - don't know why.  But even if I go with it, when I try to open in Acrobat I get a "drawing error".  I'm not trying to solve the blurriness problem though, I'd rather print to .pdf)

        • 1. Re: print to .pdf
          Derek Cross Adobe Community Professional

          Never print to PDF, save it as a Photoshop PDF and select one of the presets - for example High Quality Print for a desktop inkjet printer, which allows the printer's software to convert your RGB image to CMYK or CMYK +.


          Regarding the size, keep your original, make a copy and reduce the size of this using the Image Size facility

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: print to .pdf
            Test Screen Name Most Valuable Participant

            Fix the blur by turning OFF resample image. Done. I agree, forget printing to PDF, that's so 20th century.

            1 person found this helpful
            • 3. Re: print to .pdf
              Test Screen Name Most Valuable Participant

              Oh and if your problem is really that the PDF is a different size on screen than in Photoshop, get used to it. Expecting the same size is a common mistake, causing much needless frustration.

              • 4. Re: print to .pdf
                mollykitti Level 1

                I knew the size would be different.  I just forgot for a second.  It's very late where I am, I had a ditzy moment.


                Printing to .pdf worked really well - when it worked.  So far, I haven't been able to successfully *save* to .pdf.  I'll try turning off "resample image", but I still have the problem of not being able to save to .pdf.  I keep getting error messages.



                Printing to .pdf worked without error messages - the first time.  I just can't seem to replicate the process.

                • 5. Re: print to .pdf
                  Test Screen Name Most Valuable Participant

                  What error message? Please quote it exactly or post a screen shot (but please DON'T try to reply by email with a screen shot, it won't work).

                  • 6. Re: print to .pdf
                    mollykitti Level 1

                    I'm not worried about RGB vs. CMYK.  The important part of this image is the fine details in black, the rest of the colors just need to be a reasonable approximation.  There's never going to be a hard copy of this printed, so matching a printer's preset is not at all important.  I'm converting it to .pdf because I need to be able to share the file across multiple phones, tablets, and laptops.  Yes, I know, there are free Photoshop apps now.  They kind of work, but .pdf works much more reliably across operating systems.


                    The problem with saving to .pdf is it doesn't work.  When I try and open a "saved to .pdf" file I get the error message "drawing error".  Printing to .pdf on the other hand, was working - at least at first.

                    • 7. Re: print to .pdf
                      mollykitti Level 1

                      It was something about "drawing error".  I'm trying to re-save and get an exact quote, but at the large size it takes a while to save, bare with me.

                      • 8. Re: print to .pdf
                        mollykitti Level 1

                        Yeah, it just says "A drawing error occurred." with an "okay" button.  When I press 'okay', Acrobat closes.

                        • 9. Re: print to .pdf
                          Test Screen Name Most Valuable Participant

                          That's very odd and unusual. Are you able to share a problem PDF? It would have to be on your own file sharing site, Dropbox etc.

                          • 10. Re: print to .pdf
                            mollykitti Level 1

                            Not sure what you mean.  The attempted save is already in Dropbox, so yes, I can open it on other devices, but I get the same error message.


                            Again, I'm not really trying to save to .pdf.  Print to .pdf worked really well the first time, just not sure why it's not working now.

                            • 11. Re: print to .pdf
                              Test Screen Name Most Valuable Participant

                              Sorry not clear. I'm asking if you can share it publicly and post the link here. Someone might've interested to take a look.

                              • 12. Re: print to .pdf
                                mollykitti Level 1

                                I'm 98% sure I'm okay to post.  This is based off a famous painting, but I've changed color, added pixellation, and overlaid symbols.  I think I've changed enough to not worry about copyrights. Link:


                                Dropbox - Transparent_Final Starry Night Symbols.pdf

                                • 13. Re: print to .pdf
                                  Test Screen Name Most Valuable Participant

                                  Curious. The file is enormous (over 1GB) but opens fine for me in Acrobat DC 2017.012.20098.

                                  • 14. Re: print to .pdf
                                    mglush Adobe Community Professional

                                    One thing you might try before you save/print it to a pdf, is flatten your file (make sure you have the original file with layers saved before you do this) and after flattening your file, then save/print. We've had people do this in the past, and the error disappears.


                                    Also, a couple of questions--it looks like you used the pen tool to create paths in your document--is that correct? Sometimes you can get an error because of the path order.


                                    And, when you "print" to a pdf, what are your steps?



                                    • 15. Re: print to .pdf
                                      mollykitti Level 1

                                      Every Photoshop document I've ever created is enormous.  This I made a bunch of changes to, but I've had others that I was just opening a 10MB file and resaving with Photoshop and it's come out close to or over 1GB.  I just assumed Photoshop wasn't a very efficient - or more accurately was a highly detailed - program.  Yes, I do tend to save a max quality.  Is this setting/file size not normal?

                                      • 16. Re: print to .pdf
                                        mglush Adobe Community Professional

                                        If your pdfs are over a gig, wha size is your psd file? What is the normal measurements and resolution of your images? he file size does seem out of the ordinary, but I would love to know a little bit more info. Whatever screen shots you can show us really helps.



                                        • 17. Re: print to .pdf
                                          mollykitti Level 1

                                          I haven't tried flattening this recently.  I think I did at some point in the process and I think there was some kind of error with this too, but I forget what it was.  I guess it's time to try again.

                                          I didn't directly use the pen tool in this document, but I did use a pen to create a grid pattern for another document and I did a fill layer with the same saved grid pattern.  Not sure if that would cause the error your describing.

                                          To print to .pdf:
                                          1.  I choose "print" from the file menu.
                                          2.  Choose "Adobe pdf" as my printer.
                                          3.  Use "print settings" to change my print size to the document size.
                                          4.  Click the print button at the bottom.


                                          The first time, this worked 100% fine.  It prompted me for a file name and saved.  It took a moment to create the .pdf, but it opened when it was done.  The only reason it didn't work was because I scaled it wrong.


                                          I re-scaled it in Photoshop and tried to print to .pdf again using the exact same process.  That time nothing at all happened.  After I clicked print: it never prompted for a file name, I never got the spinning Adobe icon, nothing is saved in the previous folder, nothing opens.  Not sure what I'm doing wrong.

                                          • 18. Re: print to .pdf
                                            mollykitti Level 1

                                            My .psd file is essentially the same size as my .pdf (technically 100KB bigger, but basically the same).  Most of my documents are a normal size 5x7, 8.5x11, etc.  This one is deliberately large: 65"x100".  I made it larger so I could see fine details on what I was doing.  I was planning on eventually sizing it down to 36x48, but as you can see from above, I've run into some issues scaling down (due to late night computing ).  The one I shared is still at the original size.

                                            • 19. Re: print to .pdf
                                              Test Screen Name Most Valuable Participant

                                              I think you may be using sizing in a way that is unusual. Not necessarily wrong but it makes it hard to understand and help and sometimes if you do unusual things you push software beyond its limits. You say "made it larger so I could see the fine details". Can you explain how/why that helps in a way that, say, just zooming in wouldn't help?

                                              • 20. Re: print to .pdf
                                                mollykitti Level 1

                                                I don't know if you've opened/looked at the file, but there is a symbol overlaying each color where each color is a small pixelated cell.  When I'm actually using the file later, I just need to be able to distinguish one symbol from another - they do not need to be very big (each square edge represents 1/18").  To create the file, the squares had to be big enough where I can click each color cell.  I used the magic wand to select all squares of a specific color.  At 500% at this larger size, the squares are just big enough to select without fat fingering everything.  When I blow it up bigger than 500%, my system shows individual pixels - in the color patches as well as the symbols.  It's still possible to select colors this way, but the screen is busier and generally more confusing to follow.

                                                • 21. Re: print to .pdf
                                                  mglush Adobe Community Professional

                                                  Did it work to flatten the image? Are you still getting the same error message?

                                                  • 22. Re: print to .pdf
                                                    mglush Adobe Community Professional

                                                    Thanks for walking through the steps--I really appreciate your explanation. When you printed to the pdf, did the pdf dialog box appear? Can you show a screenshot of the settings that you changed in that dialog box?


                                                    This time, try saving it as a pdf from the Save As menu option. When the dialog box appears, change the settings to what you want and hit ok, and save it. Let's see if that works, and then we can go back and refine it. The only thing that you will need to be careful of is that when you save it as a pdf--it changes the file name. Make sure to save your original as your psd file before you save as pdf.



                                                    • 23. Re: print to .pdf
                                                      mollykitti Level 1

                                                      Flattening worked.  It's a little more blurry than I'd like, but it'll work.  I don't get the .pdf dialog box when I print to .pdf, just when I save as.  The save as is what I've been doing and it works when I flatten first, gives a drawing error when I don't.  I'm guessing that means my computer doesn't have enough memory to open the larger file size.

                                                      • 24. Re: print to .pdf
                                                        mglush Adobe Community Professional

                                                        You might be right--it may be the size of the file that is causing the drawing error. But I am concerned about it getting blurry when you flatten--it shouldn't get any blurrier if you choose flatten file. Are you resizing the image before you flatten?

                                                        • 25. Re: print to .pdf
                                                          mollykitti Level 1

                                                          No, I'm not resizing, but blur may not be the exact right term.  Have you ever tried to photocopy something that was already laminated?  Where the copier can't quite figure out that colors and the lines aren't crisp.  It's not bad though.  It'll work.

                                                          • 26. Re: print to .pdf
                                                            mglush Adobe Community Professional

                                                            I'm glad it will work, but I just have one more thought. In the Preferences panel under Options there is a line that says "Snap Vector Tools and Transfors to pixel Grid. Is that turned on in your version of Photoshop?


                                                            Here is what it looks like in prefs:

                                                            screenshot pixel grid.png


                                                            Here is a sample of what that looks like (I googled that phrase) so you can see the difference. Below this image is a link to a tutorial about it on the Photoshop Training Channel, or you can look it up on Google and check out some of the other options that come up.


                                                            I am not sure that it will help you with this image. I think it has to be turned on before you start working. But this might be the answer to why things get that "photocopy" look. If the pen lines that sit above the image while you are working are not aligned to the pixel grid, then when you flatten the image they (not being aligned) would look softer.


                                                            I am glad to hear that you are able to move forward, but check this out for the future!



                                                            Screen Shot 2017-09-16 at 10.59.59 PM.png

                                                            Snap Vectors To The Pixel Grid - Photoshop Training Channel



                                                            1 person found this helpful
                                                            • 27. Re: print to .pdf
                                                              mollykitti Level 1

                                                              Interesting.  I'll definitely have to remember that, but that is turned on in my options already, so not the culprit this time, but that is definitely the effect I'm describing.  Awesome thing about Photoshop is there are SOOO many options you can change and control that will effect your image.  The bad thing about Photoshop is there are SOOO many options you have to change to effect your image.