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Creating gradient swatches

From: InDesign CS5 Essential Training

Video: Creating gradient swatches

Gradients, blends, vignettes. Whatever you want to call them, they can be beautiful, or they can make your life a study in frustration. I'm going to show you how to make them in the Swatches panel first and then in the next movie, I'll talk about how to apply and customize them. To make a gradient swatch, go to the Swatches panel menu and choose New Gradient Swatch. By default, we get a gradient that goes from white to black. That's not very exciting, so let's go ahead and change that. To choose different colors, click on these gradient stops at the bottom of the Gradient Ramp.

Creating gradient swatches

Gradients, blends, vignettes. Whatever you want to call them, they can be beautiful, or they can make your life a study in frustration. I'm going to show you how to make them in the Swatches panel first and then in the next movie, I'll talk about how to apply and customize them. To make a gradient swatch, go to the Swatches panel menu and choose New Gradient Swatch. By default, we get a gradient that goes from white to black. That's not very exciting, so let's go ahead and change that. To choose different colors, click on these gradient stops at the bottom of the Gradient Ramp.

I'll click on the one on the left and I'll set it to cyan. Now I'm going to click on the gradient stop on the right, this black one. Notice that it switches to a list of all my swatches. I don't know why it does that. For some reason it always does, but you can change it back to CMYK by changing the Stop Color pop-up menu to CMYK, or any of these other modes. In this case, I'm going to leave it set to Swatches and simply choose my yellow swatch. So I now have a gradient that goes from cyan to yellow. If I want to add another color to this, it's easy to do.

I simply click on the bottom of the Gradient Ramp to add a new color stop. Let's make this one kind of dark and mysterious, kind of a darker blue color. Now I can change this and position it exactly where I want it. So I've created a blend that goes from cyan to dark blue to yellow. And I want to give it a name. It's good to give it a descriptive name. How about cyan to blue to yellow? That's easy enough, and then click OK. You can see that it adds my gradient swatch to the bottom of the Swatches panel.

Let's go ahead and create one more gradient swatch. I'll choose New Gradient Swatch and you can see that the Gradient Ramp is all setup with the last gradient I created. But I don't want it to look like this. I only want two colors, one on either end. So to get rid of this gradient stop that I added there, all I have to do is click on it and drag it away. Now it goes from cyan to yellow again, but I'm going to change this to some other color. I'd like to have this violet color to something else. How about we change this to CMYK, then how about to green.

So we've got sort of a violet to a green color, and in this case, I want it to be not a linear blend, but a radial blend, kind of as a circle or an ellipse. I'll give it a name, violet to green. You can call it anything you want, but that's what I'm going to call mine and I'll click OK. At the very bottom of the Swatches panel there are series of buttons and those are filters to help you when you have a lot of swatches listed here. The first means show me all the swatches, the second one means show me just the solid color swatches, not the gradient swatches, and the third one means show me only the gradients.

So that's kind of handy when you have a lot of different swatches in there and you need to find just the one that you wanted. Let's go ahead and try and apply these gradients just to see what they look like. I'm going to select this text frame and click on the first one we made, and you can see that it's a three-color linear blend. I'll click on the second one, and you can see that it's a circular violet to green with violet in the center. To edit the gradient swatch, I right- click on it and choose Swatch Options, and up comes the Gradient Options dialog box and I can change this to anything else I want.

For example, instead of green maybe I'll make it-- how about red instead? I better change this name so it reflects the reality of this color swatch, and you may notice in here that there is no option for changing that opacity. For example, you can't fade a blend from violet to transparent. If you need that effect, take a look at the movie in an earlier chapter about the feathering transparency effects. That's how you do that. I'll click OK and you can see it updates on my page.

Now that you know how to make a gradient swatch, it's time to learn some of the ways that InDesign lets you fine- tune those swatches, and even apply them to text.

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This video is part of

Image for InDesign CS5 Essential Training
InDesign CS5 Essential Training

135 video lessons · 89622 viewers

David Blatner
Author

 
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  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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