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Sometimes you need to colorize an image, that is, apply a color to an imported image. You can do this in InDesign, but there are conditions. It has to be a pixel-based image, that means no Illustrator vector files. The image has to be saved in Grayscale mode, it can't already be color and there cannot be any transparency in the image. So it has to be a flattened grayscale image, like a TIFF or PSD file. I'll show you how it works. First, I'm going to import an image, I'll draw a frame that I want to put the image into.
I'm just going to fill this whole panel over here with one, and I'll go to the File menu and choose Place. The image I'm looking for is down here, it has the word gray in it and it's a JPEG file. I'll click Open, I want to fill that whole frame, so I'm going to click on the Fill Frame proportionally button in the Control panel, and then I want to colorize that image. To apply a color you might be tempted to choose it with the Selection tool, go to the Swatches panel, choose Fill and apply a color. Unfortunately, that fills the frame not the image.
Now I have a grayscale image on top of a colored frame. That's not what I was trying to do; I was trying to colorize the image. So to do that I need to select the image inside the frame, not the frame itself, I'm going to undo that with the Command+Z or Ctrl+Z on Windows, and I'll double-click on this image. Now the image inside the frame is selected, so when I go to the Swatches panel I can fill it with a color. Depending on what effect I'm trying to get, I'll choose a different color.
Let's try this blue color down here; of course, this image is overlapping my other images, so I need to send it behind. So I'll double-click on this to select a frame, and then I'll go to the Object menu and I'll choose Arrange > Send to Back. That looks much better. I can't tell you how many people have emailed me saying they can't figure out how to achieve this effect. Well, now you know.
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