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Changing the background

From: Lightroom 4 Essentials: 03 Creating Prints and Books

Video: Changing the background

Another way that we can customize our book projects is by changing the background. This is kind of fascinating and actually really quite simple. Let's take a look at how we can use the Background panel in order to make changes to the background of a single page or to our entire book. You can find the Background panel, the right-hand side in the panels down at the base of the panels, and what I'm going to do is create a new layout, just so we have a demo layout that we can start to play with. You notice at the end of this book project, I have a blank page.

Changing the background

Another way that we can customize our book projects is by changing the background. This is kind of fascinating and actually really quite simple. Let's take a look at how we can use the Background panel in order to make changes to the background of a single page or to our entire book. You can find the Background panel, the right-hand side in the panels down at the base of the panels, and what I'm going to do is create a new layout, just so we have a demo layout that we can start to play with. You notice at the end of this book project, I have a blank page.

Click on that and then right-click or Ctrl+Click and choose Add Page. These will give us this blank page here, kind of a blank canvas to experiment with. Next, press Command or Ctrl plus in order to zoom in. Well here if we want to add an image to the layout, we can simply drag and drop in order to do that. Now we have an image inside of this cell. Next on to changing the background. Well we can work with backgrounds either globally or locally. With this check box turned on, it will make adjustments to the entire book project.

With these turned off, what we have to do is click on the page. I'll click on this page here. You notice that icon is now illuminated or lit up. We can use photographs or textures or graphics' background, we can also use a background color. For example, let's go ahead and choose Background Color here then click on the color chip and then I'll choose black, or I could change the color, perhaps I want a hue in the background in order to create something which fits my images. So we can do these simply by using this option and choosing these background colors.

To unselect that or to remove that, click that off. Okay well, what about photographs or what about graphics? Well I want to add a background to both of these pages. So I click on 1, hold down Command or Ctrl, click on another. Next I want to add a photographic backdrop. Select your photo and drop it into this photo dropbox here. You can see that this now shows up behind my image. Let's increase the Opacity so we can see this a little bit more clearly.

Again, it's the same picture. It's repeating on each page just showing up behind these photographs. And sometimes what will happen is we'll have a little bit more of a complicated layout than just one image. Let's look at that. Here I'll click on this menu which opens up the Modify Page menu. I'm going to go to Travel. Here I want to choose something a little bit more complicated, something perhaps with multiple images and some copy. Let's use this one right here. Well now, with all of these different image cells, what I'm going to do is drag and drop photographs into these cells and we can do this really arbitrarily so that we can see how these images appear on these pages.

And again, I'm not doing these in a way that it necessarily looks good, but more to illustrate how these images interact with this background graphic. Because I have this new layout here, we can kind of see through it a little bit more. Another thing that we could do is, we could change the layout, let's go to this page, and here I'm going to go just to a single image. Let's go to Clean and perhaps we'll go back to the layout we seen before; this one here. Now as I do that, I can see my single image sitting on top of the background, and I decide that rather than this single image, I just want it blank.

Click on the image, right-click, Ctrl+Click, remove the photo. And rather than this background element, I want something a bit more travel oriented. I want this to be kind of an ending page or maybe a page with the strong graphic. To change this page, make sure Apply Background Globally is turned off. Then click on this icon here. This allows us to choose different background graphics. Here, the image is selected. We could also go to Wedding, we have different decorative elements here, or Travel.

Travel has some fun options; maps and also compasses and different things. Let's choose a compass. Well now that compass shows up on this page and it just looks kind of interesting, but the previous page just doesn't make sense. So we'll click on that one and then choose a different graphic. This time we'll choose a graphic like a map. A little bit of a texture there in the background, and now we could see how we could start to build a travel book, right and we could have these background elements which kind of connect the overall book project.

The trick, of course, is to work with these backgrounds and to figure out how bright they should be. Typically, backgrounds you're going to want or bring down if it's a little bit more of a texture element. If it's something like this page, which is a bit more prominent, well, maybe you want it stronger. You wanted it a little more bold. So as you design your book, just experiment with different types of backgrounds, and what I recommend is that you try these on demo pages as I've done here. And then after you've decided on the background that you like, well then, you can go ahead and click on the box to apply that globally to the entire project, but rather than applying it to the entire project first, try it out on a few pages and see how those layouts might work. All right! well, here what I want to do is I want to get rid of this background graphic.

If we go back to our view where we can see multiple pages at one time, I have a problem where I have this really clean layout and then one that's cumbersome with the travel background and this compass rows here, it just doesn't fit my book project. In order to remove a graphic or background, you can just click on this button here and it will remove that or disable it. So that's no longer displayed. This page as well, we can go ahead and take that off. Of course, you can also simply right- click or Ctrl+Click on the page and then you can remove that page in order to delete it if it's a demo page, as it was for me.

So here what I've done is really just remove those background elements, because after experimenting with them for a project like this, well, they just don't make sense. Yet hopefully, it was helpful to see how you can work with those controls and how in certain situations being able to customize the background might help out.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Lightroom 4 Essentials: 03 Creating Prints and Books
Lightroom 4 Essentials: 03 Creating Prints and Books

57 video lessons · 6844 viewers

Chris Orwig
Author

 
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  1. 2m 22s
    1. Welcome
      1m 2s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 20s
  2. 41m 46s
    1. Making basic adjustments in the Develop module
      3m 43s
    2. Creating better prints by soft proofing
      6m 32s
    3. Choosing a rendering intent
      8m 49s
    4. Correcting a soft proof copy
      4m 57s
    5. Painting away soft proof gamut problems
      6m 52s
    6. Soft proofing to add visual snap
      5m 48s
    7. Fine-tuning soft proof color
      5m 5s
  3. 17m 32s
    1. Making print collections
      3m 33s
    2. Using print templates
      5m 35s
    3. Creating a contact sheet
      4m 21s
    4. Creating your own custom templates
      4m 3s
  4. 24m 31s
    1. Customizing the layout of a single image
      4m 24s
    2. Exploring page options for a single image
      6m 59s
    3. Using the Picture Package layout style
      7m 42s
    4. Using custom layout styles
      5m 26s
  5. 25m 48s
    1. Exploring different types of printers and papers
      3m 44s
    2. Configuring page setup and print settings
      3m 10s
    3. Exploring desktop print job settings
      5m 17s
    4. Setting up to print JPEG images
      2m 47s
    5. Looking at brightness and contrast in print samples
      5m 25s
    6. Reviewing prints
      5m 25s
  6. 5m 19s
    1. Why build a book and why use Lightroom?
      1m 36s
    2. Reviewing samples of both printed and digital books
      3m 43s
  7. 21m 0s
    1. Creating collections for a book project
      6m 39s
    2. Choosing book settings and preferences
      4m 3s
    3. Exploring the Auto Layout option and tips for viewing pages and spreads
      5m 9s
    4. Editing Auto Layout presets
      5m 9s
  8. 35m 40s
    1. Customizing the page layout
      5m 50s
    2. Using guides and cell controls
      6m 0s
    3. Modifying individual images and page sequence
      5m 25s
    4. Swapping image position
      1m 46s
    5. Changing page spread sequence
      2m 6s
    6. Changing the zoom rate for multiple images
      2m 9s
    7. Changing the background
      6m 11s
    8. Reviewing the layout
      3m 38s
    9. Saving a book layout
      2m 35s
  9. 8m 42s
    1. Using the Print module to design a layout
      4m 33s
    2. Including a custom layout in a project
      4m 9s
  10. 5m 56s
    1. Making specific adjustments
      3m 42s
    2. Applying global adjustments to multiple photographs
      2m 14s
  11. 14m 59s
    1. Adding captions
      4m 4s
    2. Customizing type, part 1
      5m 40s
    3. Customizing type, part 2
      3m 5s
    4. Creating and using type presets
      2m 10s
  12. 22m 0s
    1. Changing the layout
      3m 56s
    2. A creative approach to selecting a book title
      5m 46s
    3. Adding a text field to a cover
      6m 55s
    4. Selecting an alternate cover layout
      5m 23s
  13. 30m 36s
    1. Selecting the keepers
      7m 27s
    2. A conceptual approach to setting image sequence
      11m 57s
    3. Reviewing the layout
      4m 55s
    4. Duplicating the book design
      6m 17s
  14. 6m 42s
    1. Exporting to PDF
      3m 7s
    2. Exporting to Blurb and evaluating the book online
      3m 35s
  15. 35s
    1. Goodbye
      35s

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