Help with designing Truck wrap and wrap for a wall in a ZOO?

I have a client that wants me to make a design for car and truck trailer wrap,the design is not a problem but I never had designed a design for this type of printing (big wrapping), since I make the design in Photoshop should I start the design in some big size like 5000x6000 (or something like that a said the number just as an example)? Because I don’t want the design to loses the quality when it’s printed an a big surface such as a truck trailer or big wall… I’m really not experienced in that, and I would be really thankful if someone could give me some advices and explain it to me how it should me done?

Thanks in advance! :grinning:

Well you should have a auto graphics place already chosen and ask for their guidelines. I used to do auto graphics and we had people deliver stuff to us that was absolutely unusable. It would be better to design it in Illustrator if a large part of the graphic can be rendered in vector, then resolution is not a problem. If images are to be used, and depending on how they are used, once again you need to consult the shop that is going to to the wrap work.


If using raster images (fully in photoshop)
100%=150 dpi
50%=300 dpi
25%=600 dpi

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The most of the design are photos of what their company does… I made the design in around 2000x 3000
I think I maybe only do the text in illustrator but that’s a small part

Yes most of the design are raster images…could you explain me more what you mean by


Whatever that advice is from wookiesgrl, its best to ignore it. I would tell you that except on rare occasions we only would accept Illustrator files for doing our wraps. I know there are some shops that will accept other formats. For our printing we wanted everything to full scale and 72dpi. Some shops might want higher dpi, but they will probably still prefer full scale, not something scaled down while increasing the dpi.

Wow that’s rude. I’m just trying to help with knowledge I have printing wraps for the last 10 years and having to deal with people who don’t know how to scale their art. I’m really starting to not like this forum.

If you create it at 100% of the size of the final piece, if you do that then you can drop your dpi down to 150.
If you create it at 50% of the original size, you make it 300 dpi
If you create it at 25% of the final size, you make it 600 dpi.

but, ignore me, since i don’t know what i’m talking about apparently.

Thanks, I don’t know how can I vectorize it when it mostly are photos/… I really don’t have experience in this, so what exactly means to scale it, english is not my first language that’s maybe why I not understand what it means in my language, is that proportion?

scaling is reducing or enlarging the size

Thank you very much, si I don;t have the exact measurements of the truck trailer i saw it only on the photo so i made a proportion that will fit,do you think when it is printed it will lose the quality, the size i started the design is 3000x2000

You absolutely need to know the size of the trailer, there is no way to know if it will fit unless you get measurements.

What you are saying is correct, if the shop requires 150 dpi @ a scale of 1:1. But my original advice was that the Britva absolutely needs to inquire who will be printing it. Because for many printing @ 72 dpi is a industry standard, or at least used to be. So in that case if the scale was 1:10 it should be designed at 720 dpi.

You need to find out what the make and model of the truck and trailer are and find some “blueprints” or vector vehicle outlines to use to get your exact dimensions. We had a database of our own for the vehicle outlines, but you can find many for free online. Search for “vehicle vector outlines” on google.

You definitely don’t want to guess at any of this. Get all the info you need before starting, and it will save you and your client a lot of time and likely money too.

If I were working on this job, I’d set it up in Illustrator. Do any bitmap work that needs to be done in Photoshop, of course. Store a layered version of your PSDs, but then flatten them and save them as a JPEG to bring into AI for the layout work and to marry with your type and logo. There are a ton of vector files out there for trucks, cars, and trailers that can be used as a template. You can very easily use that template to crop any JPEGs you import into AI.

If you are unfamiliar with how to scale resolution, you are not qualified to do this job.
Pretty much.

150ppi is high for a car wrap. 75-100 if you can get there without interpolating too much is fairly standard.

Definitely Illustrator with images placed and all text converted to outlines.

If you are working with a shop that will do the printing and wrapping, ask them for the template for the make and model of the vehicles. They may be able to supply them. Otherwise, you need fairly accurate measurements. Not just a photo.

DO NOT FORGET YOUR BLEEDS! They are larger than the bleeds you would normally use for conventional printing. For the wall wrap, be aware of where your seams will fall so you can try to dodge text. I hate installing text heavy wall art with a seam right thru a paragraph. You need to ask your installer/printer what the panel width will be, or keep it 50" or under for standard wrap media.

Please tell me you aren’t doing the wrap install yourself.

When I design vehicle wraps (1-2 a month for the last 10 years), I always take the measurements and pictures of the vehicle- then make the template myself if they’re not coming from a trusted source. I used to use this company that provided templates of vehicles, but two times the templates were off. And they’re (or were) a popular company.Luckily we always measure before printing.


I had typed a long paragraph, but went to get a cup of coffee before submitting and PrintDriver responded with nearly exactly what I was going to say.

Even the all caps bleed statement. So I guess that’s really important!

Trust, but verify. I trust my clients, but always measure for myself. Haven’t had a template off by too much, but I don’t do wraps all that often. Hate them. Farm it out.

I would think that’s a time-consuming process.

Maybe the first few times. You would be surprised how quick you can get at something through repetition.

Whether I have freelance clients who I sell wraps to or I’m designing them for my old boss, they’re always on a vehicle lift ready for me to walk in and do my thing. So the measurement and picture taking is quick.

The making of the template itself is mostly pen tool/color adjustment.

I have printed them in the past. And I have helped someone install one or two (that’s not my thing). I usually have the same guy print + install them because he does it overnight and they’re always ready in the morning.

I actually really enjoy them because they’re reasonably quick to design, and I get to pocket a whole lot of cash- especially if I sell them to a freelance client.

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