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Create an Online Portfolio

Lesson 3 of 11

The InDesign Environment

Erica Gamet

Create an Online Portfolio

Erica Gamet

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Lesson Info

3. The InDesign Environment

Lesson Info

The InDesign Environment

Alright, so let's look at the environment. So now we're inside InDesign. And if you're using other Adobe products, which you probably are, if you haven't used InDesign but you have it, chances are you got it because you're working in say Photoshop, especially if you are a photographer. That might be the one program that you use all the time, but you've got all these other great programs available to you with the whole entire creative creative cloud, and you just haven't dabbled but it can be overwhelming and I get it. For me, it looks comfortable, it looks like home. I'm used to InDesign. But that's me, I get it when I go into Premiere. I look at all these panels and these menus and I don't know what to do with everything that's here. And also, just to add to the confusion, there are things that are named the same in InDesign that exist in Photoshop but they're not the same thing. Layers comes to mind. And so, just getting used to the panels that are there and the tools that you have a...

vailable to you will help you ease into it. And we're not gonna cover all of them by any means, this is a shorter class. But I'm gonna show you a couple of the tools that we need to be aware of and a couple of the panels that we need to be aware of so that we can start laying items out. And then, the great thing is, I think, with a lot of the Adobe products is once you learn the basic tools, then you feel like you can play and experiment and move on from there. So hopefully that's what we'll do. By the time we're done, we'll have that spirit of adventure ready to go. So the first thing we see is this pasteboard. So this entire thing is the pasteboard. So the gray area, back behind, and this is the art board. And again, sometimes I call this the pasteboard cause why would you paste off to the side? But this is actually the pasteboard, and then this here is the art board. Whatever you call it, the white part that's here, is the part where we're gonna put the stuff that goes in our portfolio. We're gonna start putting text in here, and we're gonna put images in here. And how do we do that? We're gonna use a couple different panels and a couple different tools. So the first thing over here is the tool panel. So off to the side, this whole thing is the tool panel. And I'm gonna actually just grab it by the little gray bar at the top and pull it off. So I have this floating panel. And if you don't have that panel open, up under your window menu is where most of your panels live, and some of them live well-hidden inside some sub-menus that are there. And the great thing is, they like to move it every version. And so I just always play, 'where has Adobe hidden my panels'? So, find where that is. They do try to make it make sense. All the styles are now in one place. If you have an older version, your menus are definitely going to look different. This is the one menu that changes all the time. But, the great thing is you can always come up into the help and search the name of a menu. Maybe we want interactive and we start typing it, and it'll actually show you where my interactive panels are. So if you don't see one, if you don't see tools, make sure you open it here. And a couple of the tools that I'm gonna point out are, the top two are selection tools and this is I think one of the most confusing things about InDesign for someone that's new to it, is that there are two selection tools. Now if you're using Illustrator, not so strange to you. If you're coming from another program, it might be. So we've got a selection tool and a direct selection tool. And the easy way to remember is that the selection tool selects the container, so a frame, whether it's a text frame or an image frame, and then the direct selection tool, I think I called this the selection tool. The selection tool's the solid one, the direct selection tool is the hollow one, and that is for selecting the content of a frame. So whether that's an image that's inside or other items that are nested inside. So that's the one for digging inside. The other tools to know about are the type tool, type tool for making text frames. Sometimes I'll use the wrong term. Text, type, they're kind of interchangeable. And anytime there's a little triangle on the side it means there's more tools down below. So type on a path is the only one that lives underneath there. And then we've got two shaped frame tools. And this is another one that's sort of confusing, why do I have two? Well I have one that has an X in it and one that doesn't. Basically, the one with an X is the frame tool and it says, I'm gonna put this frame here, and whether it's a rectangle or an ellipse or a polygon, I'm going to put something in that. And that's what that X means. It's sort of a placeholder. I'm going to put something in there, like an image. Over here we just basically have a shape tool. And I always call that a shape for shape's sake. I wanna make a rectangle, and maybe I fill it with color, maybe I don't, I just want a shape but it doesn't have anything in it. The great thing is at any point, if you drop an image inside a frame, it will automatically change to the graphics frame for you. And vise versa. You could have a graphics frame that you just never put an image in. It's kind of confusing that there are two of them. I basically keep one set as a ellipse and one set as a rectangle, so I kind of have each one available to me on the fly. And we're also gonna talk a little bit about the eyedropper tool as we go along. And the other couple things to know about, here we have strokes and fills. If you are familiar with those from Illustrator, those will look the same to you. We'll talk about that when we get to color. And then we've got our last color used, our last gradient used, and then our color of none. And here are our viewing modes. So normal basically is what we're in. It shows everything. It shows all the guides that we've set up. We have that margin, we have that bleed mark, all of that is there. We can also come into preview mode. So preview mode basically gets rid of all that stuff. Anything that's set not to print won't show up. So only stuff that's set to print or export in this case, cause we're going digital, only those things will show up. Everything else kind of goes away. Also, we have a presentation mode down here which is great and actually, I'll show you presentation mode when we have something to actually look at. If we come over here to presentation mode, we can actually, this is basically a digital portfolio as it is. If I were sitting side-by-side with someone and I just wanted to show them what I had done without them seeing kind of behind the magic curtain, right, just see the item that I have created, I can bring it into presentation mode and I can just scroll through and look at each page individually this way without the distractions of everything else. Just hit escape to come back from that. So the two modes I use the most are preview and normal. And normal, like I said, shows me all my tools and everything that I need. Alright, so those are a couple of the tools that I'm using. I've got some panels off to the side. And again, if you're used to any other Adobe products you're used to panels. Panels that we're gonna use today are the pages panel and we're probably gonna use the links panel cause we're gonna put a lot of images inside our document and those are links. So it's linked to the image file. And we're also gonna talk about character and paragraph, and character and paragraph styles. So that's when we get to text. We're gonna talk about that. So basically, we're gonna talk about images, color, and text, and then how we output all of that. And we are gonna do a little bit of inner activity as well in the very end. So that's sort of the environment. And also, I wanna mention one more thing is workspaces. I have this workspace up here called Erica. It's gonna come with, I think Essentials is the one that's turned on. So basically, it's just a way of organizing your panels in a way that you have the ones available to you so you don't have to keep going over to the window menu and grabbing what you need from there. So I can save that when I've got them set up exactly how I want. I can go ahead and save that workspace. Just create new workspace, and save it, and tell it yes, wherever I've put a panel I'd like that to stay. And also if I've done any menu customization. For instance, changing a menu to a specific color. I can save that. So I have one here called Erica. And what it's going to do however, is it's going to remember whatever the last state that workspace was in, that's what it's gonna bring up. But at some point, I realize I've made a mess of my panels. I need to make this clean so I can see my pages back behind. I'm gonna come up under the workspace menu again and I'm gonna say reset Erica. And it's gonna bring it back to exactly how I want it. Now I know I have all the panels off to the side that I need that I wanna work with for the session today. So again, you can have different workspaces depending on what it is you're doing.

Class Description

The presentation is everything in an online portfolio, but creating one can be a daunting task. This beginner-friendly class will cover all the basics you need to create a portfolio. Erica Gamet is an Adobe Certified Expert.

In this class, Erica will walk you through the process for creating a layout from scratch. 

In this class you'll learn how to:

  • How to place, arrange, and manipulate photos in a layout
  • How to create a layout in InDesign and incorporate images and text
  • How to export that layout for digital consumption

This course is for you if you’re a DIYer, photographer, crafter, or a small business owner needing to put together a digital portfolio featuring images of your product. From real estate brochures to photo books to a small product catalog, you will have the knowledge to showcase your imagery in a logical and well-laid out manner.

Software Used: Adobe InDesign CC 2018

Class Materials

Bonus Materials

Create an Online Portfolio Bonus Files

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

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Sonya Messier

This course give great advice on how to work in In-Design. Erica does a great job on how to use some tools to achieve a portfolio. Thank you.

Carolyn Hicks

This course was so jam-packed with valuable and clear information. I had avoided InDesign as I found it very overwhelming learning it all on my own. Here, Erica explains perfectly how to do so much with this software, and how to do it easily. I am now excited to get back on InDesign. This course is really for a lot more than just creating a portfolio. Thank you!

a Creativelive Student

A quick but comprehensive lesson on InDesign that is incidentally applied to creating a photo portfolio. This is general information for beginners, that can be applied to other online and print projects.