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In this series, David Blatner and Anne-Marie Concepción, co-hosts of the web's top resource for InDesign tips and tricks, InDesignSecrets.com, share some hidden and sometimes surprising workflow tips that will make working in InDesign more efficient and more fun. The course covers built-in timesaving features such as Quick Apply and auto-expanding text, but also little-known tricks, such as using the eyedropper to copy and paste character and paragraph text attributes and making accurate selections by selecting through or even into objects.
New techniques will be added to the collection every other week, so check back early and often. Find more tips and tricks at indesignsecrets.com.
Have you ever wished that InDesign had a Save for Web feature? I have. I know that I often need to export just a single image or the entire layout to JPEG, or GIF or PNG, but there's no File Save for Web command here. I mean Photoshop has one, if we jump over to Photoshop. If you have, if you're working on some piece of art and you want to save this out for the web at a particular resolution, a web friendly format, just go to File > Save For Web. Right, there it is right there.
Illustrator has Save For Web, let me jump over to Illustrator. I've opened up the same brochure, in Illustrator. And if I go to File > Save For Web, right there, even though it's a vector program. Well, the truth is that InDesign, though it doesn't have a dedicated Save for Web dialog box, like this beautiful thing, in many ways, InDesign is much more flexible than either Illustrator or PhotoShop when you want to save out a layout, or portions of a layout, to the web. For example, here in Illustrator, if I just wanted to export, say, this logo to the web, or this spiral to the web, it's kind of a pain.
If I just select it, in Illustrator, for example, like I select this and then I go to File Save For Web, you would expect that that's going to be the only thing in the Save for Web dialog box. But, it ain't so, you have to export the whole thing. In order to isolate that one element of the layout, you have to jump through a bunch of hoops. You either have to use slices, like table slices, or you have to hide everything else except for this item, which is also kind of a pain. And then export and make sure and turn off clip to art board and so on. Same thing in Photoshop.
It's really difficult to just export a single portion of a larger canvas to the web, you'd have to create a new document, or use table slices. But InDesign, though it doesn't have the Save For Web dialog box, lets you export either the entire layout or individual items right to web friendly formats. So to export the entire layout, pretty simple, you just go to File Export. And you have your choice of either a JPEG or a PNG file. So if I said export this whole thing to the desktop as a JPEG, then you're able to also choose the quality on the JPEG, the format that writes the JPEG in, the resolution of the JPEG or you could just type in your own resolution.
Like, let's say I want it to be 162 pixels per inch for some reason, the color space, CMYK, pretty cool, And other options for the JPEG. In other words, it has a lot of the same options that you would choose in Save for Web and PhotoShop. So, if we wanted to save this out as a JPEG, here is the quality. Whether it's optimized or progressive, what kind of color profile, and so on. But better than that, is that we can export individual items really easily. For example, if I just wanted to export this spiral, I could just select it, and then go to File>export, or press Cmd+E, or Ctrl+E on a PC.
And say that I want to export just that as a JPEG or just that as a PNG file. Click Save, and, as long as you remember to turn on Selection, then you're good to go. I don't know why Save for Web for Photoshop and Illustrator, doesn't have a selection command, it's really weird. But again, just for this selection, we can go ahead and export it with the quality that we want, the resolution and so on. Let's go ahead and export this just to see what it looks like. So I'll export it at these settings. So we'll jump over to Safari, choose File>Open File, and on my desktop, is just the spiral.
I forgot to change the name to just the spiral. So there it is a lovely PNG file, 187 by 190. But wait, there's more. We can use the Articles Panel to export a bunch of individual objects to JPEG or PNG or GIF, all on the fly in one fell swoop. Just go to Window > Articles and then drag the objects over that you want to export. So, I want to export the spiral, for example. And don't worry about the names of any articles that it asked you to create. Just drag and drop things over there so that they appear.
And then I want to drag, let's say, this logo over. And I'll just put him right below this one, and make sure there's a black line appearing here, so that you don't have to keep creating superfluous articles. The names that they are getting are the same names that they have in the Links panel, or in the Layers panel. And I'll get this photographer. And then this, I would also like to export, but it's text. So, if I wanted to export a text frame, to Save for Web, I could do that one at a time. I could just select this, and choose Cmd or Ctrl+E to export, export it to PNG or JPG, call this text And so, it would just export, it would rasterize this selection and export it as a JPG.
But if I want to include it, because I'm going to export all of these things, then I would select this and go to Object>Object Export Options, and turn on Rasterize, so that it's going to rasterize it when I export it. And we'll add that as well. Now we just export this whole thing to HTML, but we're going to tell it, only export the stuff that we listed in the Articles panel. So it's going to export, in other words, four images> File> Export> Export to HTML. Make sure that you say Same as Articles Panel, here under Content Order.
And under image, you can choose what resolution you want for these. Make sure that you turn on Preserve Appearance from Layout so that it maintains the same cropping, just as though you had selected something and exported a selection. If you don't turn this on, it'll export the original image at it's larger size or smaller size, whatever it was when you first brought it in. And under Image Conversion, leave as automatic. That's all fine. We don't really care what the HTML file looks like. I'm going to go ahead and export it. It opens up in Safari. But what we care about is, let's jump over to the desktop.
And here's that HTML file, but it created a folder called Resources. And here we have all of our images. There's the logo, there's our rasterized text, the spiral and there's the guy. So though InDesign doesn't have it's own Save for Web command, who needs it? InDesign has much more powerful features, for exporting individual objects, or the entire layout to web friendly formats.
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