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How do I make a PDF or Portable Document Format?

A PDF is an open standard for document exchange. This means the standard is publicly available and has various rights to use associated with it. Making your document a PDF ensures that the person receiving the document will be able to open the file and the formatting will not be altered.

There are a number of programs that can create PDFs such as Illustrator, Word, Photoshop, PowerPoint, InDesign and others.



Once you have composed your document, we suggest you save the file in the native file format it was created. This will allow you to come back and make changes if necessary. Once you have saved the file in the native file format, then go to SAVE AS which is generally found under the menu. You will then see a dialogue box appear with a pull-down menu for which type of format you would like to SAVE AS, choose. The dialogue box will look slightly different from program to program but will function similarly. Here are some examples of different SAVE AS dialogue boxes.

Microsoft Word


Adobe Illustrator


Adobe Photoshop


Once the file has been saved as a PDF you can email it or post it, and you can be sure that your formatting will be correct and that anyone will be able to open the document.

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