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Exploring the Image Export options

From: InDesign CS5.5 New Features

Video: Exploring the Image Export options

In the previous video we discussed the General export options, but now let's take a look at the Image export options. In previous versions of InDesign the image export options were quite limited. To get better control over the images in an EPUB you'd end up having to open up the EPUB file itself and hand tweak the code. Now with the improved export options, you can get better control over the images from your exported file. Before I export this layout to an ePub, if I want individually control any of the images, I can select that image and go to Object > Object Export Options.

Exploring the Image Export options

In the previous video we discussed the General export options, but now let's take a look at the Image export options. In previous versions of InDesign the image export options were quite limited. To get better control over the images in an EPUB you'd end up having to open up the EPUB file itself and hand tweak the code. Now with the improved export options, you can get better control over the images from your exported file. Before I export this layout to an ePub, if I want individually control any of the images, I can select that image and go to Object > Object Export Options.

Inside the Object Export Options, I can apply Custom Rasterization and spacing settings. For now I'm going to leave this off, if you want to learn more about the Object Export Options dialog you can check it out it in an earlier chapter. I'm going to go back and I'm going to export this to an EPUB by hitting Command+E on the Mac or Ctrl+E on the PC and I'm going to throw this on my Desktop and call it epub-image. I'll make sure the format is EPUB and click Save. Inside my General Options I'm going to leave everything alone. But I want to go to the second option: Image. But rather than clicking on that I'm going to use the keyboard shortcut Command+2 on the Mac or Ctrl+2 on the PC.

In fact, whenever you see a list like this; when you're dealing with styles, exporting, printing, or even your preferences, you can use Command or Ctrl and the number to jump to that item in the list. The top check boxes preserve appearance from layout. In previous versions of InDesign this was referred to as formatted. What this check box does is applies any effects that you've used on an image in the layout. For example, if you have an image with a drop shadow, when you turn this check box on, the image in the EPUB will have a drop shadow. If you have this check box off the image in the EPUB won't have the drop shadow.

Under Resolution we have a variety of options. In earlier versions of InDesign you didn't even have control; everything would be 72. But now in addition to 72 we can choose 96 which is good for Windows screen resolution or 150, which is standard for a digital reader, or 300 which is print quality or retina display on the iPhone 4. For now I'm going to leave everything at 150. In image size I can either choose Fixed or Relative to Page. Fixed means it remains the same as it was inside InDesign.

So if you were to resize the window or change your layout from landscape to portrait or portrait to landscape, the image wouldn't change its size. Relative to page will scale an image depending on the width of the layout. For example, let's say you're reading a book in portrait mode. Well when you turn it sideways the width of the page is wider. This will cause the image to scale up and get larger. For now I'll leave it at Fixed. Image Alignment and Spacing lets me control all of the images in the layout. I could force all of them to align left, center, or right. For now I'm going to leave them at center.

I can also put a space before and a space after all of my images. That spacing can be either set in Ems or in Pixels. For now I'm going to leave it at Ems. If you're going to be creating a cookbook, you might be using the Page Break. For example, the first page might have all of the ingredients and the directions listed. On the next page you might have a full-sized image of the finished piece. You'd want to put a page break before and after so the picture can be by itself. For now I'm going to leave this off. I can also apply these settings to all of the Anchored objects.

For this layout, I am going to apply it to all of the anchored objects. Under Image Conversion I can leave it at Automatic which is InDesign guessing, but I like to have a little more control than that. I can also apply JPEG or GIF, and now finally inside InDesign CS5.5 I can use PNG. The reason that you would use GIF is if you had a logo or areas with the flat color. If you were going to use GIF, you'd want to choose Adaptive. The other options here are legacy and you generally don't use those anymore. You could apply Interlace if you want to see the image as it downloads.

But in reality EPUBs are usually locally on your machine, so you don't really need to see this option. If you go with the JPEG, you can choose the Image Quality, anywhere from Low all the way to Maximum. But keep in mind it's always a balance between file size and quality. I found a difference between medium and high can be as much as 200 K. So I generally leave them at medium. For the Format Method we can choose Progressive or Baseline. Progressive will show you the image as it downloads, Baseline ignores that. But once again this image will be local and it doesn't really matter, so you can just stick with whatever's default.

If you set up any custom image export settings they'll be used in the export. But if you want to ignore them, you can hit this little check box and these settings will override whatever settings you'd used. Now that we have this setup, let's click OK and see what the result is. Here we are, as move down to the next page. The first page is the cover and as we go down, we can see here is our smaller image. It's centered the way we set it up with space before and after. Taking the time to set up your Objects Export Settings will help you create an easier to read and better looking EPUB document.

Now with the General and Image export options covered we have one option to go. In the next video we'll take a look at the final EPUB export option: Contents.

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InDesign CS5.5 New Features

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