2013 InDesign Tips and Tricks

Preserve Vectors when moving files from Photoshop to InDesign

There could be numerous reasons why you’d want to move your print files from Photoshop to InDesign CS6. Manipulating the Photoshop design in InDesign can improve productivity and save a lot of time if you’re familiar with both products. In particular, InDesign has great text features and is faster when dealing with higher DPI files. If you want to move your Photoshop files to InDesign, and maintain vector or type layers, you should save the file as a PDF in Photoshop. Vector graphics are made up of lines and curves, determined by their mathematical characteristics. If you zoom in or out, they maintain their smooth lines and edges. If you save your Photoshop files as PSD or TIFF, they will be turned into bitmaps and your lines will be pixilated when you go to print your design. Bitmaps, on the other hand, are made up of pixels that create jagged or saw tooth edges when blown up. Save your files as PDF’s with fonts embedded and your vector lines are maintained. However, some of those PDF files exported to InDesign can take a while to print depending on the number of text and raster background layers.

Converting Master Text Frames in Older Versions of InDesign to CS6

The Primary Text Frame (replacing The Master Text Frame in older versions of InDesign) represents the primary text flow on the master page. If you create a new document, and specify it has a primary text frame, in the new dialog box, it automatically creates that text frame on the master page. If you swap out a primary text frame with another, the application automatically ports the text over seamlessly to the new primary text frame.

Primary Text FrameTo apply a Primary Text Frame, you can use either of the following techniques:

  • Simply select the Primary Text Frame checkbox from the New Document dialog box.
  • On a master page, click on the frame icon on the top left of the frame you wish to convert to a primary text frame.

When porting over InDesign files from older versions of InDesign, the master text frame feature is greyed out. The master text frames are visible but they are not enabled so text will not flow into them. The text on your document pages will sit above the old master text frames. The simplest way to convert your master text frames from older designs is to simply create a new primary text frame from scratch.

More to come….