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Discover how to build web sites, prototypes, and more in this course on Adobe Dreamweaver CS6. Author James Williamson shows designers how to take control of their site by properly naming and structuring files and folders; how to create new documents and web pages from scratch or with starter pages; and how to add content such as text, images, tables, and links. James also provides a background on the languages that power projects built in Dreamweaver—HTML and CSS—and introduces the programming features in the application, for developers who want to dig right into the code. The last chapter shows how to finesse your project with interactive content such as CSS3 transitions and Spry widgets.
In this chapter, we're going to talk about working with images within Dreamweaver. Now, before we discuss placing and modifying images on your pages, I want to take a moment to talk about managing your images in Dreamweaver using the Assets Panel. The Assets Panel provides you with a nice central location to manage and control a number of assets including images. It allows you to organize your images, place images directly on the page by dragging-and-dropping them, gives you a thumbnail preview, and it also displays additional image information. So you notice, for this particular exercise, I don't have a file opened.
Well, I don't need to, because what I am going to do is I am going to show you guys the Assets Panel just make sure that if you're following along with me with Exercise Files that you have the site defined to the 07_01 folder. So you just need to make sure that, that folder is defined as the root folder for the site. Okay. Now, I'm going to expand my panel dock a little bit to give my Assets Panel a little bit more room, so we can see everything that it has going on, and then I am going to click on the Assets Panel, it's typically right beside the Files Panel. And if you don't see it, remember you can always go up to Window and you can choose Assets right there. Okay.
So the first thing I am going to show off about the Assets Panel is that on the left-hand side, we have a series of icons here that allow you to manage and control different types of assets. So things like Flash movies, and external script files and things like that, you can manage directly from the Assets Panel. Now, the top icon is the one that deals with images and since that's what we're focusing on in this chapter, make sure you have that selected. Now, what you're going to see in the Assets Panel is every single image in your site. You will notice that the majority of my images are found within the directory _images. However, some of them are found in a directory called _assets.
So it doesn't really matter where within your site your images are located, the Assets Panel is going to show that for you. It's also going to show you the name of the image, the dimensions of it, so it's a very quick and easy way to tell what the dimensions of any of the images that you are working with are going to be, the size, what type of file, and the full path of it. So you get a lot of information out of the Assets Panel just by sort of scanning through it. Another nice thing that I really love about the Assets Panel, you will notice you can resize the sort of top window. If I click through these, it gives me a nice preview of the image itself.
So if I'm curious about one, you'll notice for example that I have a bunch of them here named feature1 feature2, if I remember the image that I want, but I don't remember what I named it, but I knew it was one of those feature images, I can simply click one time, and highlight those and go through them, and find which image I was looking for. So I really like that feature, I think that's really cool. Now, another thing that you're going to notice is that we have two radio buttons at top, one says Site, and the other one says Favorites. If I click the Favorites radio button, this is totally empty. Essentially, favorites is a way for you to filter out your images if you have a site that has say hundreds of images in it, looking for exactly the right one within your Assets Panel can be really, really tricky.
So they give you the sort of Favorites as a way of organizing your images. Let's go ahead and test out using that, and what we're going to do, I am going to flip over to Favorites, and I am going to create a couple of folders. Down there in the lower right-hand corner, I have a few icons, and one of them will be New Favorites folder, I am going to click that, I am going to title the first one banner, and then I am going to add another folder, and I am going to call this folder spotlight, there we go! Now, you can arrange directory structures any way that you want, you can even have folders inside of folders here, that's fine.
But, I want to point out something, I want to be really clear about something. This is not creating a folder on your hard-drive. The only place this is creating a directory and organizing something is right here in this panel. So you're not going to be moving images on your site, you are not going to be changing your directory structure at all, you're simply adding organization within this panel. Okay, I am going to go back to my Site radio button here so I can see all of the images in my site. And what I want to do now is I want to go through these accent photos. These are the photos that we're using for the banners at the top of the page.
So I want to make all of those part of my favorites. So I am going to select all of those, and I am going to scroll down, and find this main_back as well. So I am going to hold the Ctrl or the Command key down, and click on that one, so that I've selected all of those at once, so sort of a noncontiguous selection if you will. And I notice at the very bottom right-hand corner of the Assets Panel, there's a little ribbon with a Plus symbol on it. If I find that I can click on that, and that is the Add to Favorites. So if I click on that, Dreamweaver is going to let me know that hey! Those images have now been added to the Favorites.
Now, if you find this message annoying, you can always turn that off. Okay, if I click over on Favorites, here are all my banner images. Now, I want the spotlight images as well. So, if I go back to site, those are those featured images, and I'm going to show you a couple of different techniques to get an image over in Favorites. First, you can just highlight an image or multiple images, you could right-click them, and you can choose Add to Favorites, so that's an option. But, you even add something to the favorites without actually being in the Assets Panel. If I switch to the Files Panel, and I open up the _images directory, you can see here, if I select the remaining feature graphics, in this case, feature2 through 9, if I grab those and right-click, you can see, right there Add to Image Favorites is available to me in the Files Panel itself.
So that's really nice. You don't even have to be in the Assets Panel in order to declare an image a favorite. So now I want to go back to Assets, and click on Favorites. I can see that I'm not looking at quite as big a list as I was before. Of course, you can also see that as you begin to add images to your favorites, you can get pretty cluttered over here too, and that's the reason we created those directories. So now what I can do is I can highlight all those banner images, and put them in the banner folder, and I can highlight all of those featured images, and put them in the spotlight folder, and I can take that main_back and put it in the banner folder as well, so you can organize these into these directories anytime you want.
And at this point, I can close those directories and then open them up whenever I want, I can select those images and take a look at them, and scan through them if you will anytime I want to. Now, at this point, I have the full range of features of working with images whether I'm looking at the Full Site View, or whether I'm looking at my Favorites. So if I double-click an image, it's going to open that image up in whatever program in Dreamweaver is defined as the default editor for that particular file type. Now, you can set that up via Preference or you can just go with Dreamweaver's default. I am going to switch back to Dreamweaver here really quickly.
Now, there are a few other things that I can do. If I had a page for example, I could drag-and-drop the image on the page, I could do that, right-clicking an image in the Assets Panel gives you the ability to edit it as well. You can also do what's known as edit a nickname. If I do a nickname, well, I move it in favorites, if I click on this, I'm able to give this a nickname like arrows, and let's say if I grab this one, I could give it a nickname like wall. Now, I'm not actually changing the name of that image. In the Files Panel, the image will still be known as feature1.jpg.
But, what that does is it gives me a way to sort of immediately identify what painting or what image that is. So that's actually another nice little feature of the Assets Panel, if you had this really long name of a graphic or a confusing name of a graphic, you can give it a nickname here. It doesn't change the name of the graphic, but it does allow you to identify it in a much easier and more precise fashion. So, the Assets Panel isn't for everyone. I know several designers that don't use it at all in their workflow. However, for a site where you're going to be managing images quite frequently, using the Asset Panel to organize and manage your image assets can really speed up your image related tasks.
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