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InDesign is an essential tool for design firms, ad agencies, magazines, newspapers, book publishers, and freelance designers around the world. This course presents the core features and techniques that make this powerful page layout application fun and easy to use. Author David Blatner shows how to navigate and customize the workspace, manage documents and pages, work with text frames and graphics, export and print finished documents, explore creating interactive documents, and much more. He also covers popular topics such as EPUBs and long documents and includes advice on working with overset text, unnamed colors, and other troublesome issues that may arise for first-time designers.
When you import an image it often doesn't appear at the correct size on your page. For example, I'll go ahead and create a new graphic frame here, and then I will place an image into it. I will go to the Place dialog box and I am going to choose an image down here like the spirals Illustrator file. I can tell immediately that that's not what I was hoping for; I wanted it to fit inside this frame. In fact, if I switch to the Selection tool and double-click on this frame it switches to the image itself, it selects the image inside the frame and I can see the edge of this image is huge, it's much bigger than the frame.
We are going to explore Scaling in the chapter on Transforming Objects later. But let me quickly show you one feature which really comes in handy when you're trying to fit images. In fact, the name of the feature itself is Fitting; you can find it under the Object menu, under the Fitting submenu. There are five different features here in fact. Fill Frame Proportionally means make sure that the image fills the frame even if some of the image is cropped out a little bit; make sure it fills the frame. Fit Content Proportionally means scale the image up or down until it fits inside the frame, but make sure none of it gets cropped out.
Fit Frame to Content is kind of the opposite; it changes the size of the frame so that matches the current size of the image. In this case that frame would get much bigger. And Fit Content to Frame will scale the image inside the frame to fit even if it means scaling it disproportionately, I almost never use that. Center Content is obvious; it just centers the image inside the frame. In this case I am going to be using Fit Content Proportionally, but I am going to choose it out of the menu, instead I'm going to choose one of these buttons in the Control panel, just because that's faster and easier.
If you can't tell which of these buttons does what, all you need to do is hover the cursor over them for a moment until you see the tooltip. The first one is Fill frame and the second one is the one we want Fit content proportionally. Once again that scales the image to fit inside the frame so that none of it gets cropped out. Even if it means there are some blank areas to the left and right of it. That's okay for this image. Let's zoom in to 400% here with a Command+4 for Ctrl+4 on Windows, and you can see that indeed of the image is smaller than the frame.
If you want to make the frame the same size as the image, remember there's another option for that. I'll go back to Control panel and I will hover over these buttons until I find Fit frame to content, click on that and now the image and the frame around it are the same size. By the way, if you are working quickly sometimes you'll find yourself moving images inside the frames accidentally, so that they're sitting outside the frame. That's where Center image in the frame comes in handy. I will click on that last button and the image snaps back so it's centered inside the frame which is exactly where I wanted it.
Let me show you another example of fitting, I will zoom back to fit the spread in window and I'm going to import a new image inside of a frame. Here's a frame, I will go to the File > Place dialog box and choose an image. I am going to choose this photographer image. In comes the image, but once again it's not the right size. Now in this case I know that I want to scale the image down to fill the frame even if it means some of the image is going to get cropped out. I'll switch back to the Selection tool and I will come over to the buttons and click on the first one, that's Fill frame proportionally.
It fills it even though some of it is taking out the top and the bottom. I will double-click on this to select the image and you can see that some of it is above and below that frame. It's cropped out. Now that looks good, but what happens if I'd put a different image into this frame. Well, I'd have to go back and click the button again or what happens if I come over here and resize this frame. I'd have to click the button again, it's very frustrating having to keep going back and clicking those buttons. Let me undo that with a Command+Z or Ctrl+Z on windows. Instead, InDesign has a feature called Auto-Fit; it's this little checkbox right here.
And you can see that now every time I change this frame, it automatically updates. If I make it tall instead of why it updates, if I make it wider instead of tall it updates. It always automatically applies whatever the last Fitting option I used was. In this case I use Fill frame proportionally, so it's going to apply Fill frame proportionally every time I change it. Even if I replace this with a different image by going to File > Place, pick another image just by random here and I will make sure Replace Selected Item is turned on and when I click Open it imports it and fills that frame automatically.
That image would've come in much larger, but it scaled it down to fill the frame proportionally. You certainly don't have to make your images fill your frames or your frames fit your images but it's often helpful, especially when trying to lay out a document or template quickly. Now let's get back to images themselves and specifically using images that have transparent areas or clipping paths.
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