COVID-19 Updates

All TMEA-sponsored events through January 10, 2021, will be held virtually. For the latest updates, go to the COVID-19 Updates page. The information on the COVID-19 webpage supersedes any standard program information presented on this website.

The following guidelines apply to all publications:
Send all ad files to

Repeated advertising: To re-run an advertisement previously run in Southwestern Musician, do not resend the ad file. Specify the magazine issue from which the ad should be re-run and provide the headline to allow our confirmation.

Preferred delivery: We prefer receiving actual files by email. We can accept files via file transfer sites; however, the file link must be valid through the insertion date of the magazine in which the ad runs.

Magazine and Convention Program Format

These publications are 8.5" x 11" and are perfect bound.

File Format

Submit a Press Quality PDF with these specifications:

  • Make the document size the exact size of the ad.
  • Be sure to include bleed for Full Page Bleed ads (does not apply to any other size).
  • Do not place non-printing marks inside the bleed area (9 pt/0.125″ on all sides).
  • Use the Press Quality setting (or Illustrator Default) when creating the file.
  • Make sure that your continuous-tone bitmaps do not get downsampled below 300 dpi or your monochrome bitmaps below 1200 dpi.
  • Make sure all fonts embed correctly.

Get more help on creating a Press Quality PDF

Ad File Size

Make your document size equal to the ad space you are reserving instead of an oversize sheet with crop marks (e.g., if you’re reserving a 1/2-page horizontal ad space, create a document size of 7.625 × 4.875 inches). Check the Ad Sizes page for guidance on each ad size. 

If your full-page ad bleeds to the edge of the printed magazine, extend all elements 0.125″ beyond the document edge on all sides that bleed. See more information below on creating full page ads.

File Orientation

Ad layout should follow the orientation of the magazine and be read top-to-bottom.

Ad Color Specifications
  • Black only: All elements, including bitmaps, must be black & white or grayscale.
  • Black plus one spot color: Define the spot color using PMS numbers. All elements must be shades of black or shades of the spot color. Bitmaps must be monochrome (1-bit), grayscale, or duotone. Include the PMS value in the body of the email that includes the file.
  • 4-color process: Convert any spot colors to CMYK. Bitmaps must be monochrome (1-bit), grayscale, or CMYK. RGB and paletted graphics will not separate correctly and must be converted to the appropriate color depth.

Preferred dpi for continuous-tone bitmaps is 300 dpi at the size they will be when printed. Monochrome (1-bit) bitmaps should be 1,200 dpi at the size they will be when printed.

Full Page Ads: Special Instructions

Full Page Without Bleed: If the Full Page ad is not designed to bleed to the edge of the magazine (when printed it will have a border of white space around), make the document size 7.5″×10″. Do not extend any text or graphics beyond the 7.5″×10″ area. Create the PDF based on these instructions.

Full Page With Bleed: For art to extend to the edge of the printed page, the art must extend 0.125″ on each side beyond the 8.5″×11″ area. For example, for a black background to extend to the edge, the black frame must equal 8.75″×11.25″ (extending 0.125″ beyond each side of the the 8.5″×11″ area). That additional 0.125″ on each side must be included in the PDF (more information is included in the instructions on creating a Press Quality PDF). If the ad is set up as described here, we prefer that you do not include any crop marks (or other file info).

Text and Art Placement: For a Full Page Bleed ad, constrain all text and graphic elements that should be visible to the 7.75″×10.5″ area in the center of the document. If these elements extend beyond those dimensions, they could be obscured based on ad page placement in the magazine and the magazine size.