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FAQs - Design

Do you provide free design software?
Yes, please download and try ASUKABOOK Maker. This software does not require any Adobe or other paid design softwares. We do also offer a free plug-in for Adobe® InDesign®, ASUKABOOK InDesign Tool.

What design program is recommended for designing an AsukaBook?
We recommend our free design software, ASUKABOOK Maker, Photoshop® or ASUKABOOK InDesign Tool with Adobe InDesign.

Can I use other programs such as Smart Albums to create my album layout?
Yes, you may use other design programs to lay out a product design, but you must transfer your design into the AsukaBook blank Photoshop templates, or import your design into ASUKABOOK Maker and generate a PDF within there.

Do you provide color correction and retouching services?
We do not retouch or color correct any of the files provided. It is your responsibility to ensure that all corrections and adjustments to your images have been completed before designing and ordering. Please make sure you soft proof your book files. We print exactly what is submitted.

What is the proper image size for the layouts?
The cover and inside pages have predetermined resolution and canvas size, though they are not the exact size of the book as we must allow space for the gutter area and trim lines around the edges. Please do not change the resolution or canvas size, as this will result in errors when uploading the files. Simply place your images onto the blank templates and design your product.

Why are the templates required when designing in applications other than ASUKABOOK Maker or in Indesign with ABId?
The templates have the correct dimensions, resolution, and color space that our printers need. You only have to focus on the layout and design of your book.

Why are the templates blank?
The blank templates allow creative freedom when designing so you can add as many images, texts, color blocks and other graphic elements and enhancements to the layout. If you would prefer to use layout templates, we recommend using ASUKABOOK Maker which provides hundreds of layout templates.

How do I get my page designs created with Kevin Kubota's AutoAlbum into an AsukaBook template?
Your layout will be placed on the template and will automatically shrink to fit the template if it is larger. By using this method, it places the file as a SMART Object which is a unique single layer file. However, you can RIGHT-CLICK (control click if you do not have a right click mouse) on the layer itself and choose EDIT CONTENTS. This allows you to open a copy of the layered file in case you need to make any positioning adjustments later.

What do the Photoshop guidelines on the blank templates represent?
Turning Guides On:

View > Show > Guides or Command + ; (semicolon)


  • The outer guidelines represent the area where the cover will be folded over the cover.
  • The center guidelines represent the spine of the book.


  • The outer guidelines represent the area where the pages will be trimmed.
  • The center guidelines represent the center or gutter of the book.

Tip: Place your images at least 1/4 inch away from the blue guidelines to avoid any desired trimming.

Tip: Place image to the edge of the canvas to ensure a "Full Bleed".

Tip: Place important parts of an image (such as a face) or text away from the centerline to ensure nothing will be unintentionally lost in the gutter.

Please click HERE for more layout and design tips.

Can I have a variable number of pages/sides in my book?
Our page increments are pre-set. Most products offer 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, and 100 sides but some offer other options. Our NeoClassic, Heirloom, and Cosmopolitan albums all have a maximum of 60 sides. Our DVD Presentation Book, USB/Keepsake Presentation Book, Vista Layflat Book, and Curve books provide options starting at 4 sides. The Zen Layflat Hard Cover book line offers sides in even increments between 10 and 100 sides.

How many images can I place on each page/side?
You may place as many images as you would like.

Can I add text as part of the design?
You may add text anywhere on the design. We recommend not placing text on the divot area or close to trim lines and gutters as any text and image information placed there may be lost.

What laser inscription fonts are available on the Heirloom Album?
We offer three fonts for you to choose from - Cursive, Sans-Serif and Serif. The approximate font size varies for each size of book. A 10x10 is 24pt, an 8x8 is 18pt, and a 5x5 is 13 pt.

What is the font and size of the hot stamp text?
The font type is Skia which is a Mac OS standard font. You have up to 30 characters including spaces and only a single line of text.

The approximate font size varies for each size of book. For example, a 10x10 is 24pt, an 8x8 is 18pt, a 7x7 is 16 pt, a 5x5 is 13 pt, etc.

Do I have to place an image on the cover?
No. The design is totally up to you so you can have an image on the cover or you can do something different. The cover file will be the 000000.psd in the downloaded folder of templates. Once you've opened that in Photoshop and made sure you can see the guidelines, you can design it however you would like. You can have an image wrap around to the back cover, a single image, or multiple images on the front and/or back. You may also leave it blank and have the color of your canvas as the printed color. You may also add text to the front and/or back cover as well as the spine.

Can you design on the spine or back cover of the Cosmopolitan Album?
The front cover of the album is the only designable space at this time. The spine and back are simply covered in a red or black textured fabric.

Do I have to convert my files to CMYK before submitting?
No. Submit your files in either Adobe RGB or sRGB.  The production center will convert the files to CMYK for you.

How do I resize my book layout from one size to another?
In Photoshop®, you may simply drag and drop or use the "place" option (under the "file" menu) to move your layouts into the smaller template. Be sure to review your file for bleeds and gutter concerns once the design has been transferred to new template sizes. Both ABM and ABId offer automatic size changes.

When saving images in JPEG format, which degree of compression should be used?
We recommend the image quality be set to 11(Maximum) with "Baseline Optimized."

Can you provide a proof sheet of my book order before it is printed?
We do not offer proof sheets at this time. We can print test prints for a small fee, as well as we provide you with the tools to ensure that you receive a product you are happy with. We provide information on design tips and accurate color HERE. If you would like sample pages printed on the press with the type of paper and page finish used, or test prints of your images, please contact Customer Care to request them.

Are there any restrictions on what can be printed?
AsukaBook requires that you have copyright permission for all images included in your order. Additionally, your files will not be sent into production if they contain illegal and/or immoral content, or if the subject may be offensive to the public. We are also unable to print books with exposed genitalia or that show implied sexual acts.