Join Brian Wood for an in-depth discussion in this video Creating custom dynamic stamps, part of Acrobat 8 Professional Beyond the Basics.
- [Instructor] I'd like to take your stamp knowledge just a little bit further. I'm going to show you how to create your own custom dynamic stamp. I've got the GCC annual report open from the previous exercise. If you look, I've got the Comment & Markup toolbar open, if you don't have that open, you can come under Review & Comment, and open it. You look at the stamps right here, if you take a look on the right arrow, click on the right arrow, you're going to notice that there are dynamic stamps under here. Now, I've got a category called Brian, this is from the Essentials title, you may not have that. If you look under Dynamic, you're going to notice there are stamps that actually have, like, date, time, and they pick it up and put whatever the date and time is.
Go ahead and select that, and if you take a look, it should show you this stamp that looks something like this. You can create this in almost anywhere. It's a picture I saved as a pdf, but it gives you several options, several different file formats you can use. What I did though that was different about this stamp, is I actually made this in Illustrator. I made a little bit bigger box here, so that we could put some custom information, some dynamic information down here. So I kind of set it up ahead of time. Then I saved it as a PDF, and I just set it somewhere. Go ahead and click OK. What it's going to do is it's going to say all right, we're going to create a custom stamp. We can pick a category, here.
I'm actually going to type it directly in. You could also choose to put it in the dynamic category if you want to, but I'll say this is Brian Dynamic, how about that? That way, I can separate these out. You can give the stamp a name, I'll call it FPO date, or something like that. Down sample's going to make it a little bit smaller in file size, it helps a lot. Select image lets you go back and pick another picture. Go ahead and click OK. Now, we made a stamp. As a matter of fact, if I come out here and take a look, I should be able to see whatever dynamic, whatever you named it, and there's your stamp.
Now the only problem is, it's not dynamic, okay? All it does is put the picture on the page right now. So we need to make it dynamic. So the key is, we have to open up the file that runs this. To do that, on Windows, let me do this. I'm going to go to File, Open. So Mac and Windows, let's go to File, Open. What I'm going to do is, I'm going to go to my hard drive here, my computer. I'll give you the path in Windows, then I'll tell you what it is on Mac. So go to your hard drive, Documents and Settings, your user folder. The Application Data, now here's the thing.
This may be hidden, so you may need to go out to your operating system and show these hidden files. Open up Application Data, Adobe, Acrobat. It's a little deep, going into 8, it depends on the versions you have. I'm going to go into 8, here. And I should be able to see, if you look in here, a Stamps folder. Go ahead and double click on Stamps. And we've got a couple different things in here. Now, you may have one thing in here, one file. When you make custom stamps, sometimes what it does is it actually, it'll make a PDF file in here, and this is where it draws your stamps from, whenever you make your own custom stamps.
Okay, so I'm going to try this one right here. If you just have one in there, just choose the one that you've got. Sometimes, it's hard to recognize the names. I usually look at the modification dates to be able to tell, you know, which one this is. So I'll see, let's see if this one's it. Go ahead and click Open. Now, on Mac, the path to get to that, go to your user folder, or whatever you're logged in as, I usually do Brian Wood. Go into the Library folder, then go into the Acrobat User Data, then go into 8.0, the folder, and then go into the Stamps folder, and you should be able to see something similar to what I see now.
You're probably not going to see the same string of characters, letters, numbers, et cetera, that's fine, okay? Go ahead and open up the PDF you see in there, and if you've made other custom stamps, you need to check and make sure it's the right one. So what I'll do is as soon as I open it up, I'll see probably nothing. I'm going to go show one page at a time. There's two pages to this thing, so I'll go to the second page, and lo and behold, there's my stamp. My point is, open the PDFs in that folder until you find the one that's got this in it. Our last thing here is to make a text field. Now, here's what I'm going to do. I already have the Forms toolbar open. What we'll do is this.
Come up to your toolbars. If you right click on them, or Control-click on a Mac, you can come to Forms. You're not going to be able to do this in standard. Standard does not have forms tools inside of them, so as a dynamic stamp, you could copy/paste from something else, but we won't go there right now. See, you'll be able to see right here, you've got a text field. I'm going to take my text field, I'm going to draw out a text field down here, just click and drag to draw it out. Let go. I'm going to name it. Going to General, here. Now, I haven't covered form fields yet, but we will do that in the forms exercise.
Click OK, and if you take a look, you should be able to see it automatically put the date and time in there for you. So I'm going to go ahead and close that up. Your only thing you got to do here now, is to save this file, okay? You can do a File, Save As, or Save. I literally just usually do a Save. File, Save, so do a File, Save, I just did it. Go ahead and close it up. So this is your stamp file, this is what Acrobat's going to draw from. Close up that file, come back to your annual report, or whatever page you have open. Take a look under your stamps, you should be able to see in your dynamic stamp folder now, it does have that in there.
Skill Level Intermediate
Q: How do I create a document that requires users to fill in all required fields before being able to print the document? Users should be able to see which fields are required and the PDF should display a message to users if all required fields are not filled in.
A: Since version 7 of Reader and Acrobat, form fields are highlighted by default on the page. To further highlight the fields by applying borders or a background color (or change any form fields), check out the video "Creating text fields" in the Acrobat 9 Pro: Creating Forms title.