ILLUSTRATOR lost font

darioluca

Well-known member
Have you ever opened a file in ILLUSTRATOR and then, after saving it as AI+PDF, realized that some font had not been embedded correctly?
And then, simply by opening and resaving, the problem disappeared?
 

Dov Isaacs

Well-known member
Exactly how are you saving the Illustrator file? As a PDF with editing capability? Or as an Illustrator file with PDF compatibility? All bets are off on the latter and the former is not particularly good practice. The fonts embedded in the PDF portion of the files saved as PDF are not subsequently accessible to Illustrator on a system that doesn't have those fonts installed.

Generally speaking, it is best practice to totally separate the concept of native Illustrator files (.ai files) from pure PDF files (.pdf files). Don't make the .ai files “PDF compatible” and don't put private Illustrator information in .pdf files. Be aware that you can't save PDF/X files with the private Illustrator information in them anyway!

- Dov
 

chriscozi

Well-known member
Well, as to the OP, we try to steer clear of AI native files because of 'issues' with PDF's.
If you DO use AI you can convert all fonts to outlines for maximum reliability ahead of saving as a PDF that goes "somewhere else" to be printed. Just be sure to save the non-outlined version for later edits.
This leaves you with not-editable text BUT reliable text output.

Fonts, fonts and more fonts.

On another topic in response to Dov -
I am wondering why Adobe Illustrator has issues saving for Adobe Acrobat?
Then again we don't use Adobe Photoshop saved as PDF either - the few designers that do send us Adobe Photoshop files we request an EPS file with the fonts embedded. We then promptly convert this to a PDF with Distiller.
This yields the best for us in that instance.
YMMV
 

Dov Isaacs

Well-known member
Remember that “Font” is a four letter word beginning with an ‘F’ …

Quite frankly, we are not at all aware of any issues with saving PDF files from Adobe Illustrator in terms of fonts, assuming of course that the fonts in fact have at least preview and print embeddability permissions (in which case, the font's foundry EULA most like doesn't allow “text outlining” as a workaround.

A few further comments:

(1) Unless one has an ancient coal-powered, steam-driven archaic RIP from the late 1990s, we don't know of any RIP using either Adobe technology or Global Graphics technology that has issues with fonts. If the PDF file text using embedded fonts displays correctly in Acrobat, it is exceptionally unlikely that there will be any problems at a RIP. I speak with many in the industry and when push comes to shove, such font “issues” seem to always come down not to first hand experience, but rather, belief that unnamed “others” suffer from such issues. It other words, this is a complete bubbameister!

(2) The process of “text outlining” is really not best practice. You completely lose the font “hinting” which allows for proper rendering at smaller magnifications (product of point size and resolution) and with more decorative fonts; the typical symptoms of this are overly-bold and often blotchy rendering. PDF files with “text outlining” are typically very bloated in size, taking more time to communicate and to RIP. You cannot search for text in Acrobat. And you cannot use the text editing capability in Acrobat or other applications.

(3) EPS is really an obsolete, legacy graphics format that doesn't support color management, live transparency, OpenType fonts (natively), etc. In terms of graphics exchange for print, your best best is PDF/X-4 with live transparency, maintaining colors in their original color spaces (such as ICC color-managed RGB, especially for raster images).

I very intensely use InDesign, Illustrator, and Photoshop and are aware of no issues in terms of PDF save/export associated with fonts. (31 years at Adobe!) Of course, if someone sends you one of these source files to work on without the assets (such as fonts or placed vector and/or raster graphics), you will certainly have problems. But “text outlining” doesn't solve that.

If you have a particular example of such issues that you think are bugs or limitations in this software (and are willing to share the assets such that we can try to reproduce what you are experience), contact me offline! 😁

- Dov
 

darioluca

Well-known member
Exactly how are you saving the Illustrator file? As a PDF with editing capability? Or as an Illustrator file with PDF compatibility? All bets are off on the latter and the former is not particularly good practice. The fonts embedded in the PDF portion of the files saved as PDF are not subsequently accessible to Illustrator on a system that doesn't have those fonts installed.
It was precisely an Illustrator file with PDF compatibility - the font loss was visible opening the file in Acrobat.

I could argue with the fact of saving an AI file using PDF compatibility was not an issue for those who programmed this feature into Illustrator... But still, I don't wanna go into a fight with a specialist Adobe guru!
 

Dov Isaacs

Well-known member
Making believe that Illustrator files were really PDF files was a marketing-driven decision made sometime back in the Illustrator 8 timeframe. I disagreed with it then and still do. Too many possible issues … and that's exactly why I make the recommendations that I do, for better or worse!

- Dov
 

darioluca

Well-known member
you know, apart from the initial topic...
I may agree with you, and you may convince everyone you say this to, but the fact remains that 99% of designers will never know about these ideas of yours, and will continue to use this feature just because it exists.
It's really sad by a repro point of view 🙁
 
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Joe

Well-known member
Making believe that Illustrator files were really PDF files was a marketing-driven decision made sometime back in the Illustrator 8 timeframe. I disagreed with it then and still do. Too many possible issues … and that's exactly why I make the recommendations that I do, for better or worse!

- Dov
Had Adobe not made the option to open PDF's in Illustrator and Photoshop the world would be a better place. And don't get me started with people setting type and doing page layout in Photoshop.
 

chriscozi

Well-known member
Well, I am not alone.
This has been seen in the wild . . .
 

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Ulrich

Well-known member
Come on fellows, stop that bashing now:

Do you really want to go back to the use of the lens in Freehand, gradients from QuarkXpress and Enfocus Tailor "to see" a Postscrip Level 2 file not as a cryptic writing? To all the troubling font managing software as suitcase or fontmanager on Mac and Win?

I mean, it came still enough appreciated progress with the Adobe products and that issues you mentioned are really manageable compared with the past ;-)
 

chriscozi

Well-known member
Come on fellows, stop that bashing now:
When McDonalds screws up my hamburger I can complain to the store manager.
When Adobe screws up my workflow with arbitrary (to me) changes to their software and my (and others) complaints are locked to comments or deleted on 'their' forums why can't I complain here with other software users?
NOT making it personal.
NOT trolling.
Do you really want to go back to the use of the lens in Freehand, gradients from QuarkXpress and Enfocus Tailor "to see" a Postscript Level 2 file not as a cryptic writing? To all the troubling font managing software as suitcase or font manager on Mac and Win?
Wow. You have been there with me. No need to go backward, agreed.
I remember the DECADE we waited for Postscript Level3 RIPS to handle the unflattened transparency which designers created in their apps. Don't get me started
I mean, it came still enough appreciated progress with the Adobe products and that issues you mentioned are really manageable compared with the past ;-)
Yes. Some things work MUCH better. Some things, like font usage, are being changed right now.
I comprehend the reasoning for the changes. I am not oblivious to nor against improvements.
But when the first real recent competitor (Serif Affinity) is working to make font management 'better' in their apps it seems strange to me that the 'Adobe font management' app eco system is undergoing regular changes.
Sigh.
Titans at War ;-) and we are just observers.
 

Ulrich

Well-known member
Titans at War ;-) and we are just observers
It is not the prepress, it is up to the graphic departement to set Adobe under fire with Affinity.

In prepress i do not aee coming up an altenative to AcrobatPro, we will need still a longer time.

I have got some affinity files meanwhile. Graphic folks they do not bother to some technically necessarities in Adobe Apps, do not start with that in affinity. E.g. Checking and Preflight.

Let us see, Indsign Verion 1 was not perfect already, too: Did not they took the printing dialougue just from Illustrator, which was horrible to use?
 

chriscozi

Well-known member
Indesign v1 was considerably flawed. Most of us who tried it said we would wait and see unless we were fed up with Quark which many of us were.
Remember Adobe had purchased Aldus and were trying to convert Pagemaker users.
I think Adobe took their long-document layout app (don't remember the name) with massive changes and rushed it out the door as Indesign.
It was FREE to all Pagemaker users and $100 to everyone else but you could get a free license easily.
Quark was selling at ~$300.00 then if memory serves.
 

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