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Share & Approve has extensive support for combining graphic documents (PDF files) and structural documents. Structural documents describe a 3-dimensional packaging object, such as ARD files for folding carton boxes or Collada files for molded plastic containers. The Share & Approve Viewer can visualize the graphics onto the 3-dimensional shape, showing the package in an interactive 3D widget. This article guides you on how to setup a 3D visualization from within the Share & Approve Viewer.

Printable Areas

Before a Collada file (.ZAE, .DAE) can act as a structure for graphics, it must have "Esko Printable Areas" added to it.
These can be added in two ways:

  • Using Esko Studio Toolkit to add a label to an existing ZAE.
  • By downloading ready-made (or customized) Collada files from Esko Shapes (again using Studio).

No special preparation is needed for ARD files. Each ARD file automatically has a default printable area.


  1. Upload the graphic and structural files to a folder on your Share & Approve site.
  2. Open the graphic file in the Viewer by clicking the document thumbnail.
  3. Click the 3D Button in the top menu bar. The 3D Setup widget appears.
  4. In the 3D Setup widget, click the Shape drop-down list and select Find more documents.
  5. A popup appears showing all the structural documents (ZAE and ARD) you have access to. Files in the same folder as the PDF are listed first. Select the desired structural file and click OK.
  6. Ensure that the Apply Graphics to Model checkbox is selected in the 3D Setup widget.
  7. If multiple Printable Areas are present in the structural document, select the right area in the Label drop-down list.
  8. Select a finishing profile from the Finishing Profile drop-down list.

    For more information on Finishing Profiles see:

  9. Click Preview to see the settings in effect. If you are an Editor or an Approval Master, you can save the settings. Share & Approve will show the 3D view the next time a user opens the document.
  • Graphics can be visualized on a flat or curved sheet without needing a structural document. Select the required shape in the Shape drop-down list.
  • Users viewing the graphical document in the Viewer need access rights to the saved structural document to see the effects. The 3D defaults to a flat sheet if the user does not have access to the structure.
  • If you only want to link a structure without applying the graphics to the model, uncheck the Apply Graphics to Model option.
  • The 3D view will always be rendered with the latest version of the structural document.

Article information
Applies to

Share & Approve all versions



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