Category: Adobe Apps

Drag instead of “Place” files into InDesign

Did you know that you can drag any file ID can place normally right from an application, or the Finder? If you have a folder full of images and text, select them all and drag them to an open ID window. Wherever your mouse is when you let go, that’s where ID will start displaying the images/text (it will cascade them down the page). As you are dragging the files from the finder, you should notice a ghosted icon for each file over the ID window as you drag it around. id_drag-to-window You can also open a MS Word file with tables in it, select it all and drag it to an open ID window – which will keep the Word Table intact & editable. (QUITE HANDY!). This tip is a great time-saver if you have a lot of images to place all contained in one folder. Once they’re in ID, you can size them and move them around normally.

Duotone support in Adobe Illustrator

Adobe brought transparency to the Illustrator world back with version 9. One of the many complaints about the poor-selling AI9 (and believe me, if you used it, you could see why nobody liked it after only 5 minutes of use!) was the inability of linked spot color EPS photos to interact with all the transparency features. In order for the Pantone colors to output correctly, you HAD to embed the photo in AI, which resulted in absolutely huge file sizes and a pretty decent wait while the file saved. If you forgot to embed the photo, AI would output it as a CMYK or RGB image, depending on what document color space you were in. Illustrator finally fixed this with version 11 (Illustrator CS). You can now link spot color EPS images into AI and not embed them – Even if you have an object with a drop shadow on top of it. This is great because you can keep a more modular workflow this way. Of course, there are very few instances where I would use a placed photo in Illustrator to begin with (at least in the advertising design business anyway). But, this is one old habit I’m happy to say I can finally break!

Edit multiple text layers in Photoshop

Many times, you have several type layers in a Photoshop document and you want to change the font, color or size for all of them. Normally you would apply the changes to each layer individually. But did you know you could do them all at once? To perform this trick, simply link all the type layers in the Layers Palette that you want to change, select one of the linked type layers to activate it, hold the Shift key down, then change the attributes you want in the Type palette (kerning, leading, font, size, color, etc…). The attributes you change on the active type layer will be carried out on all the linked text layers at the same time.

Fade the effect of your Photoshop filter

ps_filterfadeAfter running a filter in Photoshop, you can reduce the amount of effect the filter produced by clicking Edit in the menu bar and select Fade…. This will bring up a dialog box which will allow you to customize the settings of the filter reduction.

Create a new Photoshop document with same size

If you need a new Photoshop document the same size as the one you have open, there are two ways I know of to create one without actually checking the document size dialog box. First, you can select all and copy the background layer of the open document, then Command + N for a new document. Photoshop will automatically set the size to whatever you copied to the clipboard, which in this case was the entire background layer of the open document. The second way requires a trip to a menu, but is just as easy. When you have a document already open, hit Command + N, while the new document dialog is open, click the Window Menu in the menu bar and select the open document’s name.

Extending InDesign’s pasteboard

If you’re the type that places all your images and text onto the pasteboard before you start your design/layout work in Adobe InDesign, then this tip is for you.

id_pasteboardYou can expand the pasteboard space by hitting Command + K to open the Preferences dialog and select the Guides Panel. Simply change the Minimum Vertical Offset amount to the size you want your pasteboard to be and click OK. Now you have all the room you need!

InDesign guide snapping

Did you know that Guides in Adobe InDesign will snap to the edge of an object when you have that object selected? Pull a guide out of the rulers to the edge of a selected object and watch it snap.

Using InDesign’s page jumping feature

One of the first features you may not have noticed because it’s “hidden right in front of you” is the Jump feature. In Quark XPress, you would hit Command + J and a dialog box would come up asking you what page you wanted to jump to, then you hit the OK button. At first glance, this feature doesn’t appear to be in Adobe InDesign, you hit Command + J and no box opens. Well, that’s partially true. The feature is there, Adobe just doesn’t bother you to present a dialog box and force you to click an OK button. When you hit Command + J in ID you’ll notice the page number is highlighted in the page number box in the lower left of your document window. Simply hit the page number you want and press enter – this includes Master Pages (if you hit “A” you’ll be taken to the first Master Page, etc.)

Zoom in/out with the spacebar in Illustrator and InDesign

This may be obvious to anyone who has used Illustrator and InDesign for a while, but not everyone has done so. When you’re working on a large file in Adobe InDesign, you can zoom in on an area by holding down the Command + Spacebar keys while using your mouse to select an area on the screen. Upon release of the mouse button, the area you selected will appear larger on the screen. Add the Option key to that and you can zoom out as well.This may be obvious to anyone who has used Illustrator and InDesign for a while, but not everyone has done so. When you’re working on a large file in Adobe InDesign, you can zoom in on an area by holding down the Command + Spacebar keys while using your mouse to select an area on the screen. Upon release of the mouse button, the area you selected will appear larger on the screen. Add the Option key to that and you can zoom out as well.

Bring palettes to the foreground in Photoshop

Many times, I’m in the Levels, Curves or Selective Color dialog box adjusting an image when I remember that I don’t have the Info palette open, which will show me the color readings (essential for good color correction). I used to close out the dialog box and hope that I could remember what settings I changed, but then I stumbled onto something that was right in front of my face. The Window menu is active when you’re in a dialog box such as levels, etc. Simply click the Window menu and hit the Fkey assigned to the palette you want to open, or click on the menu item itself. Any palette that isn’t already open (including ones in the palette well) should be available from the menu. The downside is that you can’t alter the palette’s position – so the info palette is usually somewhere near the edge of my screen to I can see the color readings while in an adjustment box.