Billboard production

Hi, everyone.

I'm a communication design student in Hong Kong searching for information on billboard production. I know loads of creative directors, art directors and designers visit this site, so may u help answer the following questions? many thanks.

1. What are the specifications required in the billboard artwork? (format, size, resolutions, colour setting..etc.)
2. How is it printed? what is the printing technique used in the production process?
3. On what materials are billboard printed on?
4. How long is the time normally required for production? (from printing process to installation)
(5. How much does it cost? )
6. What happen to the billboard after use?

any other information about billboard production is welcomed. many thanks again!!

circlel's picture
Activity Score 65

to clarify, i know i should use the word 'output' instead of 'printing'.

million thanks again!!

Kaz's picture
Activity Score 163

This all will depend on many factors...
For example if your billboard size is 4m x 10m, a resolution of 30 is reasonable. The file should be in CMYK colour and in TIFF format.

One thing that might help you as well:
If you're using the above size scaling it might save you some processing time.

You can use 40cm x 100cm at a resolution of 300, then resample it.
Depends on your machine as well.

I'm afraid i know nothing about the materials..etc.

Hope this has been helpful.

ivan's picture

1. Usually billboards are designed a scale of 1:10 at 300dpi. But you can make the artwork as big as possible. Contrary to popular belief, billboards don't need very high resolution images, because you are looking at them at a distance. The biggest resolution image should be used for a DPS.

2. Four color process is used and they are printing a billboard in pieces.

3. Depends on your budget, but usually it's just a strong weather proof paper.

4. It can be as little as 24 hours.

5. This really depends on too many things that giving even an indication would be wrong. Quantity, quality, location, etc.

6. Usually it's scraped down. But I've seen some more advanced glues, that allow you to peel them off without much damage, not that anybody needs them, just to make the work easier. In the old days, they used to paste one billboard over the other.

There is very little general information about billboards, because there are so many different sizes, standards and methods of production. I've seen quite a few billboards printed on certain flexible plastic material for example. These last much longer, but much heavier too.

circlel's picture
Activity Score 65

Thank you very much for your info, Kaz.
I've contacted some of the local ad agencies, thankfully, some of them were willing to answer my questions, tho none of them tell me about the 'printing technique' behind.

I've found out that billboard is a very general term, in the ad agencies, it maybe called on wall poster, banner, etc., depending on the size. n onowadays, most billboards are output on the material 'vinyl', n after used, they are either kept by clients themselves, or be dumped.

some related info:

circlel's picture
Activity Score 65

Thanks, Ivan.