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Creating a First Web Site with Dreamweaver CS4 shows the basics of doing just that—building a first web site. Adobe Certified Instructor Paul Trani walks through the important steps of creating a web site from concept to publishing, using Dreamweaver CS4. He teaches how to create basic web pages, add text and image content, use Cascading Style Sheets for design and layout, create a photo gallery, and even check the final site for browser compatibility. He also demonstrates how to create a contact form to encourage viewer feedback on the site. Exercise files accompany the course.
Just like with any design, it's really a fine balance of images and text. So, imagery versus content, and what's really great is Dreamweaver gives you the ability to import and position images pretty anywhere you want and really gives you a lot of control over those images. Really, what I want to do is I want to break up some of this text by adding an image. So on this homepage I would like to insert an image maybe on the right side. And also on the About page, I'd like to break up some of this content within image as well.
Back to the Home page, all I need to do is insert my cursor maybe after this last quote here and to insert an image, I just need to go to Insert > Image. From there, all I need to do is go to my Images folder and locate the image I want to import and in this case, it's going to be JaneDoe.jpg. That's the image I want to import, so I'm going to click choose, and then I get this dialog box.
I get the opportunity to add accessibility attributes. So, what these are-- for instance, the alternate text is going to be the text that describes this image. So, again it's an image of Jane Doe, so it's pretty straightforward there. But really this is the text that's displayed. Before the image fully loads, you might see this alternate text in place of where the image will be once it loads, as well as for screen readers. So for the visually impaired, they might have a screen reader that will read this alternate text or even a long description if I have it about what this image is.
I always want to make sure I have alternate text for my images. I'm going to select OK, and sure enough, it inserts this image. It's looking pretty good. It's a good image, but I want to position it differently on the page. In fact again, I want to move it to right side. So it's really just a matter of selecting that image and going down to the Properties panel below. Down here, there are some various editing options that I can do, but what I want to focus on is the Alignment. So, I can change the Alignment from Default to Right, Justified, and we'll move it to the right side, and don't forget the text in the page in general is scalable.
So it has this liquid layout, so it will wrap around that image. So, it works pretty darn well. I really like the effect that we're getting there. It kind of breaks up that text. That's just importing a JPEG. I can also import other file formats. In fact, if I go to the About page, I want to insert an image say further down on this page, down here, and I can insert an image again and instead locating a JPEG or a GIF or a PNG file or any one of those sort of web image formats, I can actually go to my Exercise Files, into my Assets and I can locate a PSD, which is not an image format for the web.
It's a Photoshop document. So it's pretty large, but I really want to use this PSD and if I select this Thailand.psd and click Choose, Dreamweaver gives me the opportunity to save out this PSD as a JPEG. In fact if I look on the left side, I can choose which format I want it to be in. I can select JPEG and maybe adjust the quality and really it's kind of a fine art determining what the quality will be.
What I would also suggest you do is go to your various saved settings because there are already some pre-built in here and really I want to go for better quality for this, so I'm going to select Better Quality. In essence, that gives it a quality of about 80%, so that's pretty good. The image looks really good too. I would say that's pretty darn good and that's what I want to go with. In fact it tells me the file size. It would be right up here. Again, I'll just select OK and now that I have it optimized, so that's what I just did, I optimized it for the web, I can then save it into my Images folder.
I'm going to call it Thailand. Click Save and it saves that JPEG. So again, I get the opportunity to give it some alternate text, Jane Doe with Long Neck Karen Tribe. Select OK and it puts that image right in there. So again, I have the same issue where it just drops the image right in there where I have my cursor, but I really want more control over the positioning.
I can change the Alignment from Default, say for instance to Left if I want to, and I can maybe move it around or I can even change it to right. I kind of like it on the right side better. In fact I do want to move it down to Travels. That fits pretty darn well in this section and it's looking pretty good, but I would like to change this image and that's what's going happen is you might import an image and you might need to change it and if you import a PSD, and you make the JPEG, there is still a reference back to the original PSD, the Photoshop file.
This is really helpful because this enables me to do what is called roundtrip editing. With this image selected, I can go to Edit and I can select this PS icon, which stands for Photoshop, but if I click on it, it will open up that image. In fact with that image open in Photoshop, I can go ahead and adjust the image. Maybe I'm going to change the Hue or Saturation or anything. I can go ahead and adjust and maybe make it a little bit brighter. Maybe a little more vibrant as well.
So, again, the original was like that. Maybe the new image, something like that. In fact, I could even scale it down if I want to. So, whatever edits you want to make to it, you can do that all in Photoshop. Shrink it down in the size so we get sort of more of the environment in there and then all I need to do is save this PSD file. So, with this saved, I can even close that file and go back into Dreamweaver and with it saved, I then need to update this image. In fact look what I get here.
It says hey, you know what? The original asset was modified. So it gives me the opportunity. It doesn't just update it automatically. I actually get the choice of updating if I want to and in this case, I do want to update this image. So I'm going to go down to My Properties panel and just go to this button Update from Original. If I click on it, it updates that image, gives me two green arrows, kind of hard to see over that tree, but you can see I'm able to update that from the original and it's looking really good.
Last thing, I'm gong to do is I'm going to save this page and save this Index page and Preview in Browser, which is a common last step. I can see that image looks really good, breaks up that text, as well as the About page. This image looks really good. So again, Dreamweaver makes it really efficient and just really easy to import an image, to really spice up your site, but not only that. It also builds in a connection to other Adobe programs like Photoshop, giving you the ability to do roundtrip editing.
Really the result is hopefully a rich site, full of dynamic content and imagery as well.
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