Even if your customers supply you with the artwork that you will print, you must still have the proper programs to view, adjust, and print the electronic art files.
We'll show how to find everything you need and at a cost anyone can afford—free!
Here's a description of some free graphics programs (and links to their websites):
DrawPlus A powerful vector graphics program from Serif complete with clipart and is totally free.
Paint.net A highly rated photo and bitmap editing program that works great and is absolutely free.
PhotoPlus A great free bitmap and photo editing program from Serif.
Gimp A top rated photo and bitmap editing program that works great and is absolutely free.
Inkscape A free, feature laden vector graphics program like CorelDraw or Adobe Illustrator.
It is also a good idea to have a program that can read Microsoft Word, Adobe Acrobat, and Microsoft Powerpoint files. Many of your customers are office workers and these are the type of programs that they use. We also understand that you may not have the funds to purchase these programs at the start of business so here’s where to get a great "office suite" freebie--Open Office. Open Office is a totally free office suite program. It is an almost certainty that you will receive Microsoft Word files. To be able to view them, you will need a program to do so. Open Office is a terrific program that does almost everything Microsoft Word will do—but with the perfect price tag—free! In addition to Word files, you will also be to open and view PowerPoint files (a popular format with the military who buy plenty of custom printed programs.)
Once your business is making a profit and you have extra cash, you can spring for the workhorse programs like CorelDraw, Adobe Photoshop, Microsoft Office and more. But in the meantime, check out the free stuff. It can get the job done--and the price is right.