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Creating buttons

From: InDesign CS5 Essential Training

Video: Creating buttons

If I asked you what kind of frames InDesign had, you'd probably answer text frames and graphic frames, maybe unassigned frames that don't have anything in them. But InDesign has another kind of frame too that most folks don't know about. Button frames, usually just called buttons. And buttons are only useful when you're making interactive PDF files or SWF files, but they can do all kinds of things like jump to another page, play a movie, or even hide or show other objects on the page. I have my interactive catalog open here, and I'm going to show you how to make two different kinds of buttons.

Creating buttons

If I asked you what kind of frames InDesign had, you'd probably answer text frames and graphic frames, maybe unassigned frames that don't have anything in them. But InDesign has another kind of frame too that most folks don't know about. Button frames, usually just called buttons. And buttons are only useful when you're making interactive PDF files or SWF files, but they can do all kinds of things like jump to another page, play a movie, or even hide or show other objects on the page. I have my interactive catalog open here, and I'm going to show you how to make two different kinds of buttons.

The first one is going to be down here on this video. Now that image of a flower is not a static image. It's actually a Flash movie and I've imported it just the way I'd import any other kind of image. I just went to the File menu, chose Place, grabbed it, positioned it, and so on. It's as easy as that. But I want to have a button start to play the movie, and this is going to be that button. So I select it on my page, and to turn it into a button, I need the Buttons panel. Because I'm in the Interactive workspace right now, the Buttons panel is showing up here in the dock.

So I'll simply click on its tile to open it. Now, here is how hard it is to make a button. You just select your object and click on this button at the bottom of the Buttons panel. That's it. Now it's a button. That button doesn't do anything yet, but it at least is now a button. I want to give it a name up here in the Name field, something descriptive like play video button. That's what I'll call it, and I'm going to give it an action. First, I need to specify what is going to trigger the action. In this case, the event is going to be On Release.

On Release means when the user lets go of the mouse button. You click down and then you click up, and click up means On Release. The action is going to be something from the Actions pop-up menu, and there are all kinds of things buttons can do. In this case, I'm going to do something with video. So I'll choose Video out of here, and you'll see that the Buttons panel expands to give me more options. First, I need to choose which video in my document I want to do something to. There's only one movie. So this is really easy. I'll just select that. And then I need to say, what do I want to do to that movie? Do I want to play it, stop it, pause and so on? I'm going to play it. That's it.

I'm done. I have a button that's going to play that movie. It's as simple as that. Let's go ahead and look at another button. I'm going to zoom back to Fit Page in Window with Command+Option+0, Ctrl+Alt+0. Actually that will fit the whole spread in the window, and I would like to make my interactive table of contents appear and disappear with some buttons. Now, these objects are on a master page. I can tell that because there is a dotted line around everything. So I'm going to jump to my master page by pressing Command+J or Ctrl+J on Windows and then hit A and then Enter or Return to press the OK button. Okay.

Here's my master page. Let's go ahead and zoom in here so we can see this better. Now, I've gone ahead and made most of these objects buttons already. You can see that just by selecting them. I clicked on Golden Gate and you can see that it's a button in the Buttons panel. The reason these are buttons is because they actually take you somewhere. Each of these is going to go to a destination. I've also made a button out of this object up here. This one is going to close my interactive table of contents. But I haven't yet made this object into a button.

This is the semi-transparent white background, which makes my table of contents look better. In order to show or hide any object on the page, you must make it a button. So I'm going to select that, click on Make a Button, and then I'm going to say this is the white frame behind toc. You can call it anything you want. And it's not going to actually do anything. It's just going to sit there behind everything else. But in order to control something in an interactive document, you must make it a button. So once you make it a button, I can tell InDesign to show it or hide it.

Now, there is one more thing I need to do to this button. And that is turn on the Hidden Until Triggered checkbox. When you turn that on you are telling InDesign to hide this at first. Make it hidden so nobody can see it until it's specifically turned on. So I'm going to now do that. I'm going to make a button to make that visible. I'll do that on this object down here, the Contents object. I'll turn this into a button. I'll give it a name. I'll call it show TOC, and I'm going to make it do something.

And the thing it's going to do is Show/Hide Buttons. Now, which buttons should it show? It should show all of these buttons here, even the Close button. So I need to tell it to do that. I'm going to click on the Close button and then click on that little X next to it, and that turns on the eyeball. That means make it visible. I'll scroll down this list a little bit, and I see a whole bunch of buttons, all of these buttons in here that I've made already. I'm going to grab all of those by clicking on the first one and then Shift+Clicking on the last one.

That just selects all of them at once. And I can turn all of those on. In other words, make them all visible by clicking on the eyeball button. There we go. Now they're all visible. I've got one more I need to turn on and that's that white frame. Let's go ahead and turn that one on. There we go. So I now have the white frame, the Close box, and all of these other buttons made visible as soon as I turn on the contents. Let's go ahead and check out our Close button, what that does. That does the same action, Show/Hide Buttons. But instead, we'll see that all of these buttons have a little eyeball with a red slash through them.

That means make them invisible. So the Close button, all of these other ones, and we better choose our white frame and make that invisible as well. So when somebody clicks on this Close button, it's going to make all of those invisible. Got it? Good! Now, there is one last thing I'd like to do and that is make this not only hide and show those things but I want to make it a rollover button. That is, when the user places the cursor over it, I want it to light up to show them that this is interactive.

Can I go that too in InDesign? Absolutely. Look down here in the bottom of the Buttons panel and you'll see the word Rollover. In order to make a rollover state, all I have to do is click it. As soon as I click that, it gives it a Rollover state. Technically, what's going on here is that InDesign is duplicating all the objects inside this button, and it's making some of those objects visible when I'm on the Rollover state, and different objects visible when I'm in the Normal state. So in order to change the appearance of my rollover, I simply click on the Rollover.

That makes the rollover objects visible and then I change the appearance. In this case, I'm going to go to the Window menu, choose Effects, and I'll just give it some kind of glow like this Outer Glow effect. That'll be nice. Move this out of the way so I can seeita better. I'm going to make it a Screen blending mode. I will click on this little white area, which brings up the effect color. Let me pick something bright like a yellow. There we go. A nice yellow glow and I'll make it even brighter by setting the opacity higher. There we go. Looks great! That's a really strong glow so I'll click OK.

So I've now made a Rollover state for this button. I'll click on Normal and you see that I see the object that has no effect. Click on Rollover, and I see the object that has the effect. That's it. We're done. We've made our buttons. Let's test them out. I'll go ahead and close my FX panel, close my Buttons panel, let's jump back to our spread with Command+J or Ctrl+J on Windows, and I'm going to page 6 and let's look at the whole spread, Command+Otion+0 or Ctrl+Alt+0. It's looking pretty good.

And let's go ahead and preview it by clicking on the Preview pane. Now there are three different options at the bottom of the Preview panel. I can preview the entire document, which would actually take a little while because this is a pretty complex document, or I can preview just the object. That's the first button down here, the selected object down here, or the whole spread. That's what I'm going to do. I'm going to preview that whole spread by clicking the Play button. InDesign writes this out to disc as a SWF file and then puts it back in the Preview panel and there we go.

Here is our spread with our buttons. Let's try it out. I'm going to click on the Play Video button and you can see that the movie is playing! Now, I'm going to click in this lower left corner of the window. If you squint, you'll see a little Pause button there. So I'm going to pause the video there and let's try out our other button, the Contents button. As soon as I roll over it, it lights up. See that? Roll off, roll on. So it lights up. The rollover works. Then when I click on it, up comes the table of contents with all of our different buttons that we've made, and then to close it, click on the Close button.

You can see how easy it is to make interactive buttons in InDesign and any object can become a button from text to graphics, even lines.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for InDesign CS5 Essential Training
InDesign CS5 Essential Training

135 video lessons · 89825 viewers

David Blatner
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 5m 50s
    1. Welcome
      1m 33s
    2. What is InDesign CS5?
      2m 26s
    3. Using the exercise files
      1m 51s
  2. 54m 49s
    1. Understanding the Application window
      6m 0s
    2. Navigating pages
      6m 39s
    3. Zooming and magnifying
      6m 57s
    4. Managing more than one document window
      3m 36s
    5. Setting rulers and measurements
      2m 9s
    6. Positioning panels correctly
      6m 28s
    7. Saving time by making workspaces
      3m 24s
    8. Setting the view quality of artwork
      4m 9s
    9. Adjusting View and Preview settings
      4m 56s
    10. Rotating pages and spreads
      3m 2s
    11. Displaying a new view with the New Window feature
      3m 29s
    12. Setting application and document preferences
      4m 0s
  3. 21m 31s
    1. Using the Tool panel
      8m 1s
    2. Learning and editing keyboard shortcuts
      6m 24s
    3. Working with spring-loaded tool shortcuts
      1m 17s
    4. Using contextual menus
      2m 51s
    5. Choosing menu items with Quick Apply
      2m 58s
  4. 45m 25s
    1. Creating new documents
      7m 28s
    2. Saving and reverting documents
      3m 41s
    3. Using multiple Undo and Revert
      4m 28s
    4. Setting margin and column guides
      5m 16s
    5. Using ruler guides
      8m 10s
    6. Bleeding colors or images off the side of the page
      4m 29s
    7. Saving objects in libraries
      4m 49s
    8. Exporting and importing page snippets
      4m 29s
    9. Saving for CS4 with IDML
      2m 35s
  5. 31m 18s
    1. Inserting, deleting, and moving pages
      7m 23s
    2. Changing page size
      6m 14s
    3. Adding page numbering
      3m 43s
    4. Changing page numbering with sections
      5m 58s
    5. Creating and applying master pages
      5m 20s
    6. Overriding master page items
      2m 40s
  6. 1h 21m
    1. Understanding text frames
      4m 6s
    2. Typing and editing text
      4m 36s
    3. Filling with placeholder text
      2m 38s
    4. Inserting special characters
      4m 43s
    5. Importing text
      7m 49s
    6. Threading text frames
      4m 1s
    7. Setting text frame columns and insets
      6m 32s
    8. Setting vertical justification and first baseline position
      6m 9s
    9. Putting text on a path
      6m 51s
    10. Using the Story Editor
      8m 43s
    11. Checking spelling
      7m 42s
    12. Using Find/Change
      9m 25s
    13. Tracking text changes
      8m 1s
  7. 49m 50s
    1. Importing graphics
      8m 11s
    2. Importing from Mini Bridge
      5m 27s
    3. Using the Links panel
      6m 34s
    4. Embedding links
      2m 37s
    5. Editing graphics in their original app
      3m 14s
    6. Fitting graphics to a frame
      6m 12s
    7. Taking advantage of image transparency and clipping paths
      4m 53s
    8. Adding live captions
      5m 56s
    9. Colorizing images
      2m 1s
    10. Turning image layers on and off
      4m 45s
  8. 46m 15s
    1. Selecting objects
      5m 32s
    2. Applying basic strokes and fills
      8m 18s
    3. Using advanced strokes
      3m 28s
    4. Adjusting transparency
      4m 38s
    5. Adding drop shadows
      6m 41s
    6. Applying feathering
      4m 25s
    7. Copying formatting with the Eyedropper tool
      4m 35s
    8. Finding and changing object formatting
      4m 50s
    9. Making polygons and starbursts
      3m 48s
  9. 22m 56s
    1. Making interactive documents
      2m 6s
    2. Adding hyperlinks
      5m 52s
    3. Building bookmarks
      3m 38s
    4. Creating buttons
      8m 57s
    5. Animating an object
      2m 23s
  10. 23m 29s
    1. Creating color swatches
      5m 52s
    2. The danger and power of unnamed colors
      4m 47s
    3. Building tint swatches
      2m 18s
    4. Creating gradient swatches
      3m 56s
    5. Applying gradients
      6m 36s
  11. 50m 0s
    1. Positioning objects with the Page Gap tool
      2m 53s
    2. Stacking objects
      2m 13s
    3. Creating and controlling layers
      3m 53s
    4. Managing objects in the Layers panel
      3m 37s
    5. Nesting objects
      2m 46s
    6. Editing frame and path shapes
      4m 6s
    7. Adding rounded corners and other corner options
      3m 57s
    8. Grouping objects
      3m 14s
    9. Locking objects
      2m 39s
    10. Aligning and distributing
      5m 43s
    11. Understanding text wrap
      8m 13s
    12. Using anchored objects
      6m 46s
  12. 18m 49s
    1. Duplicating objects
      5m 39s
    2. Rotating objects
      3m 3s
    3. Scaling objects
      3m 57s
    4. Mirroring objects
      3m 46s
    5. Using the Transform Again feature
      2m 24s
  13. 25m 52s
    1. Applying basic character styling
      7m 8s
    2. Applying advanced character formatting
      4m 54s
    3. Changing case
      2m 51s
    4. Understanding OpenType features
      3m 19s
    5. Using Find/Change for text formatting
      3m 18s
    6. Using Find Font
      4m 22s
  14. 45m 27s
    1. Applying formatting to a paragraph
      4m 14s
    2. Spanning a paragraph across multiple columns
      3m 5s
    3. Splitting a paragraph into multiple columns
      2m 1s
    4. Using drop caps
      3m 16s
    5. Adjusting text hyphenation
      3m 21s
    6. Fine-tuning justified text
      4m 19s
    7. Setting tabs
      5m 54s
    8. Aligning to a baseline grid
      4m 24s
    9. Controlling orphans and widows with Keep Options
      2m 39s
    10. Adding rules (lines) above or below a paragraph
      3m 14s
    11. Adding automatic bullets
      4m 39s
    12. Working with numbered lists
      4m 21s
  15. 31m 3s
    1. Creating and applying paragraph styles
      6m 34s
    2. Using character styles
      5m 43s
    3. Applying styles automatically with Nested Styles
      7m 19s
    4. Using object styles
      3m 27s
    5. Using Quick Apply with styles
      2m 49s
    6. Cleaning up a local formatting mess
      5m 11s
  16. 37m 0s
    1. Creating a table
      5m 54s
    2. Adjusting rows and columns
      6m 35s
    3. Formatting a table
      8m 5s
    4. Adding headers and footers
      1m 58s
    5. Applying table styles
      5m 32s
    6. Adding Microsoft Word and Excel tables
      8m 56s
  17. 10m 26s
    1. Checking your document with the Preflight panel
      2m 54s
    2. Creating a custom preflight profile
      4m 45s
    3. Checking color with the Separations Preview
      2m 47s
  18. 31m 7s
    1. Packaging for output
      4m 13s
    2. Using the Print dialog box
      10m 22s
    3. Exporting a PDF
      8m 47s
    4. Exporting an interactive PDF
      3m 59s
    5. Exporting text
      1m 36s
    6. Exporting SWF files
      2m 10s
  19. 1m 32s
    1. Finding more information and help
      1m 12s
    2. Goodbye
      20s

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