Place Images & Logos in InDesign®
Images are a little bit different in InDesign, simply because they require their own container. But they also work differently from when we use images and graphics in other applications. And the reason why is because, when I wanna bring in a logo or graphic, I go under File Place, just like I would do for a Word document, and I can go and I can navigate to my files that I would like to bring in, and I'll be able to go and take any of these items, and I select my image, and I wanna bring this in, so I select my image and I click Open. Then I get my loaded cursor and I wanna draw my container so that I can place my image in that container. It needs to be in a container. One drawback, though, is you may have your text container selected, you've forgotten your text container is selected, you go into the File menu and you choose Place, you navigate to your image where you've got your image, and you click OK, and it automatically throws your type away, and you're like, no! And it's like yeah...
, guess what, it's a container, and InDesign's like, hey, you want a container? Image goes in a container, so does text. It's like, no. Thank goodness you can always go under Undo. It gives you your text back and then it gives you your loaded cursor as well. One word of advice, when you do go in and you're placing an object here, and you go under File Place, I wanna go in, and let me grab this here. We're gonna go into Photoshop and grab my Photoshop files that I have. I'm gonna go in, and I'm gonna bring in this image right here. A lot of people just simply click, and when they click, the image comes in at actual size. And sometimes it comes in huge. Like across pages, across state lines, even across, you know, it's huge. And the people are like, oh, my gosh. That happens because you didn't click and drag and actually show the size that you wanted. You just simply clicked. If you click with your loaded cursor, it just gives you the entire image. Well, probably not the best thing to do. So you want to be able to click and drag with your image. I don't ever want to go and copy something from outside of InDesign, some image or graphic or logo, and copy it from another application or copy it from someplace, and go in and just paste into InDesign. Don't wanna do that. Here's the reason why. These images, and these logos that we have in here, don't actually live in InDesign like we would normally think them to live. So what we have here is, we've got our logos right there, everything's there. And if I were to give you this file, and you were to open up this file, the first thing it would tell you when you opened up this file, where are the images? And it'll warn you, it's like these images are missing. And you'll say no, but they're right here. Guess what? These are only the previews. And one of the reasons why InDesign works so fast and efficiently is that we don't actually store the images in this file. And I'm sure you all have done a PowerPoint presentation and once you reach the 120-slide mark, it gets so loaded with images that it just quits working. OK? 'Cause every image is being stored in the file. Not with InDesign. It takes too long. It takes up too much. I did a catalog with, like, over a thousand images in there. Could you imagine? You could never use the file. So what InDesign does is it treats them as links. And we manage that under the Links panel, which is under the Window menu. Now, the Links panel tells us what's going on. So when we bring a file in, we are actually placing a placeholder image that we can size, that we can see, that we can look at, that we can position, but that file isn't actually the entire file. The actual file is sitting there on my hard drive. So best practices is, if you are very bad at organization, this is not the kinda thing that you wanna use. Because people will put in their flash drive to their computer. They'll go under File Place, navigate to their flash drive, pull it off their flash drive, bring it into InDesign, and they think, it's there, and it's there. Pull out the flash drive, then all of a sudden, you open up the file again and it's like, where is the image? And you're like, it's right here, and it's, like, no. That's just a picture of it. So when I go in and I place a file in InDesign, it always has to be in a container, and then I have a link established with the original file back on my hard drive here. So if you're not good with organization, here's what happens. We all assume that when we leave our house or car, we come back and it's in the same location, right? InDesign assumes the same thing. But if you move files around and rename them and throw them away, InDesign goes back to the same location where you brought it in from and it can't find it. So you find this and you're just like, missing or modified images, and you're like, oh, whatever, they're in InDesign. Mm-mmm. It's just the preview. So people like, well, isn't that fine? It's like, what would you rather have? A hundred dollar bill, or a picture of a hundred dollar bill? There you go. That answers that question. So when you bring this in, this is just the placeholder. OK? So let me take a look at this placeholder here. And you're like, oh, you know, that doesn't look so good. Right. Because this is just a placeholder. OK? The actual file is sitting there on my hard drive and it's actually called Bakery Logo. And this is why it's called a Links panel because it's linking back to the original file. If I were to export this file to a .pdf, or publish this online or print this or package the entire file and send it to you, I need that physical Bakery Logo Illustrator file to go with this file in order for this to work. That's all there is to it. And then people question, they're like, you know, that doesn't look very good. Is it gonna look that bad? And it's like, well, if you don't have the file, yeah, that's as good as it's going to look. But InDesign also renders all these placeholder images at just low quality so that the redraw happens really fast. So you get a thousand images in your document here, it goes slow. So I would like to make sure that this actually looks a whole lot better than it does. Now, we could always go back and open the file back up in Illustrator, which I could do very easily. I could go over to my Links panel, I could right-click on this, and say edit the original file. It'll find the file and it'll launch Illustrator, and it'll open it up, and there's my files right there, and it's like, great. I can edit this, I can save and close, I can get rid of that, I can save that file, close that, and I can come back into InDesign and it's gonna update the file exactly. Don't have to replace it, don't have to reposition it. Everything stays in the same location. But when I opened it, it looked really good in Illustrator but it doesn't look good here. It's all because it's a low-res preview. So under the View menu, I can choose Display Performance, and I have Fast Display, which looks like that, super fast, takes up no memory whatsoever. And then I have High Quality Display, which makes it look good. It will redraw slower. People are like, oh, I like that. Fine. But keep in mind that it will redraw slower when you have a lot of images. And I can see what it looks like and if I have just a lower-res preview here, under the View menu, Display Performance, Typical, you'll see, it's a little bit hard to see, but it's like, yeah, you know, it doesn't look that great, but if I set this under View, Display Performance, and I set it to High Quality Display, you can see it just renders ever so slightly better. Fine. That's one way you can check to make sure that the image is actually good. That's something that you'll get used to over time, but when people start off, they really begin to question it. You can always open the original file, or you can just set the preview to be a higher-quality preview with that. Now, when you have these links with the file, everything has to be in the same location, named the same, or else if it isn't, and you open up the file, you have problems. So I'm gonna save this file and I'm gonna close out of this file, and then I'm gonna go in and I'm gonna purposely edit one of the files here outside of InDesign. You may go in and edit that file. So I'm gonna go and I'm gonna open my Bakery Logo here, and I'm gonna change the color of something, so as I go here, I'm gonna change the border around this, I'm gonna save the file, I'm gonna close it. Now I come back the next day, I open up my InDesign file, I open it up, and it comes up and it says, blah blah blah blah blah, and nobody reads, so they're like, oh, OK, it's the active button, so I'm gonna do it. Well, what this is saying here is that it's saying, these links are important. If I'm missing a link, it means that it no longer knows where it is. The preview will still show up in the file, but if I go to print it, it's gonna warn me 'cause I don't have any data to back up that file. The modified link means it knows where it is, it can find the link, but it isn't the most current one. If I click Don't Update, here's what happens. In my file, you'll see I get this little link here in the corner, so everything's good. But I get this little warning sign over that, and it's like, what do I do? Oh, what do I do? What do I do? You know? So you hover over that, and it's like, what do I do? There's that thing right there, too. Well, it's simple, folks. Hover over it and follow the instructions. It says Click to Update. Oh, my gosh, really? Yeah. And it's there. But you have to have the most recent version. If you open up the file, and that file is actually missing here, so if I were to take this and I were to take this file and actually make it go missing. This is important as well. And I were to throw this in the Trash, someplace when I actually get to that. I could take that file and I could toss that in the Trash right there, I could go back to my InDesign file, I could open that back up again, and I open it out, all of a sudden it says one's missing. And it's like, eh, whatever, and it's like, no, it's there. Uh-uh. Now if I go to print it, guess what it's gonna look like. Exactly like that. That's all it has, is it just has the preview. So with that stop sign there, what does that mean? Everything's fine. No, it means you have to go find that file. Well, I put it in a different folder, I threw it away, I renamed it. Now you have to go back in and you have to double-click on this, and it says, OK, go find it. Show me where it is. And it's like, yeah, you do this with all your files, you gotta make sure everything's there. So a word of advice when you go through and do this. What you wanna do when you do this is you want to make sure, and this is what I do for best practices. If you're gonna work on a file, create an image folder, and put all of your images in that folder. Everything for that project. Every time you wanna use an image or a graphic or logo, copy it into that folder on your hard drive or wherever it is, and always go directly to that folder for all of your content. That way everything's there, everything's organized, it's neat and tidy, and it's always in the same location. You park your car, you expect it to be in the same place when you come back. OK? Yeah. Do that with the images as well, and the logos and the graphics, it'll all be good. So once we bring these in, we have our image and we have our container. And this is where things get really confusing. So when I click on my image here, by default, we have this little thing that's in here and that is going to be my Content Grabber. It's that little teeny focus ring. Adobe added this. It's horrible. Did I say that out loud? It's horrible. OK? Because we're dealing with both the container and the graphic here, they're two separate elements, and we have to be able to work with both those elements. So one advantage of having a graphic in a container here is this. If I have an image, and I would like to crop my image, I can select my image, and I can change the size of my container, and it just simply crops the image. Awesome. Doesn't scale the image or anything. It's like, this is great. I don't have to go into Photoshop. I can go in and I can just crop my image to exactly what I wanna see. Fantastic. And now I wanna move my image, and where's the location that most people grab? In the middle of their image, and they grab it, and their picture goes, and their container sits right there. There's nothing like having your pants stay there as you walk away. OK? It's an annoying feature. And it's like, OK, so why do they do that? So you can get access to your image. Turn it off. There's better ways to do this. OK? Here's how you turn it off. Turn off the Content Grabber. Make it very clear. View, Extras, no more Content Grabber. And then people are like, well, how do you grab your image? In a whole lot easier way. OK? Here's what you do. When we bring our image in, it's always gonna fit into the container that we have. I may wanna resize my container to crop this however I want to, but I also may want to do something else with my image, too. This one's a little bit crooked. Well, I don't wanna go in and turn my box here, because that looks kinda goofy. I'd like to turn my image inside my box, 'cause my box is my frame that frames my picture. I need to get to my picture. Well, the Content Grabber only allows you to move it around. It doesn't allow you to do anything else. But if I take my selection tool and double-click on my image, now I get my entire image. Which I can move all around any way that I want to and, just like any other container, I can also rotate this inside my picture frame. Beautiful. When I'm done, I double-click again, get right back to my image. Now when I click and I move this, it doesn't move my image free of my container. Double-click, I get to my image, move it all around, I can scale this by holding down my Shift key, up and down, move it around, double-click, get back to my image, crop this however I want to. But it makes it really annoying if I wanna resize both my container and my image. Do I have to size my container and then size my image and then size my container? I could be mean and say yes, you do. Or I could show you this trick. And this trick, to size both your image and your container together. First of all, I don't wanna distort this, so I wanna make sure I hold down my Shift key. And I'm gonna hold down Shift + Command on the Mac, or Control on the PC. Shift is gonna constrain this, and then Command on the Mac or Control on the PC is gonna scale both my image and my container at once. So Shift + Command and scale, Shift + Command and scale, scales everything at the same time. Rockin' cool. OK? Now, I can move this around, I can do whatever I want to with it, this is great. But I don't know if I can see my entire image. So here's another cool feature. I may have gotten this file and I don't know if this is a really big file or if this is as small as it gets. Don't know. I could go back and hunt it down, open it up in Photoshop, don't have the time. So I can double-click on my image and then I can click and hold, and it will actually give me a ghosted little border around there so I can see what else is beyond my image. Simple. So click on it, double-click, and then click and hold, and it seems like forever, it's like a quarter of a second that you have to wait, and it's like, heh, there you go. If I would like to return my container back to the full bounds of my picture, not a problem. Remember that cool little shortcut we used for our text menu where we could go ahead and shore up the bottom just by double-clicking on the bottom pull handle? Well, I can do that with my text container, or my image container. If I do this on the bottom it'll shore up the height. If I do it on the right-hand side it'll do the width. But if I do the lower right-hand corner, it will just open the box up to my image. So if the box is really big and I want to snap it to there, I can double-click on the lower right-hand corner. If it's all the way cropped, double-click on the lower right-hand corner. Shift + Command, pull on the corner, scale it, move it around, double-click and get my image. I can rotate my image separately from there, double-click, back to my container. Every image is in a container. I can only have one image in a container. That's it. If I want five logos, I have to import them separately. But I don't have to sit there and import one at a time. So I can go in under File Place, I can get my images, and with my images here, I can select multiple images at once. I click Open, I get my loaded cursor, and you can see, zoom in here, you can see I've got five. If I use my arrows I can cycle through all of the images and I can place them in whatever order that I want. If I get to one and it's like, oh, I don't want that, you hit Escape, you knock it out of the running. Now I can take what I've done here and I can click and drag, click and drag, click and drag, click and drag. 'Cause you're gonna place a lot of images. Yep. The images never sit in the type. They're always their own container. OK? So unlike Word or PowerPoint, we paste them in, nope. These are separate entities, completely independent of everything else. Now I'd like to take these and I would like to put one of these into my text so that I have my content wrapping around my text. So I want to call up my Text Wrap box. And I wanna wrap the text around my image. I select my image container, go under the Window, gonna call up Text Wrap. And Text Wrap allows me to set a little buffer zone and a little bit more force field around my object, and now anytime that I get text around there, it's going to force it away.