Variables: Engagement Announcement Template
I had karen make up additional template. This one was maura thought of us like an engagement announcement was the idea and here's what you came up with that's not lauren rich but karen sister's name is laura and she's engaged to rich so she put that is her template and with this one let's take a look at some of the features that we have uh first off the photo there's a layer above it called bmw that is a black and white adjustment layer and I want to make that a visibility variable to decide do I want a color photo or do I want a black and white photo in that way khun easily have that then let's say that some people don't like this particular layout they find it to be too masculine well, he also came out with a fancier version amore fenin feminine version so if I hide this group and show the one that's below it here's the fancier version and so I want to be able to choose between those two fancy version so people you know I could have five or six versions in here and just show people a...
prince out of the particular choices they have and then in my text file I want to just be ableto define which one uh they wanted have it switched that out for me uh let's see what else we have in here I also want control over the name of the file you know how our files have been called the end result that it spits out it was just called like data set one or day set to data set three well that's hard to deal with once again it's fed to you I might want it to instead include let's say a client number so that I can reference this to a database I have clients or maybe I even wanted to be their address so that when this comes out somebody knows what address to send these too s o I want that but that's information that I don't want to have visible in the file itself so let's see how we can set all this stuff up first off there is a special layer in here that's hidden it is a layer called data set name and all it is is a text layer that is has the text of data set name if I create the text layer turn off the eyeball on it so it's never used in my layout we can still vary the text in senate sounds kind of weird because you never see it but if it's the very first variable defined in my spreadsheet I mean the left most one we can use it to determine the file name so let's first set that one up I'm gonna come over here and choose define I'm going to go. It looks like we already have data says to find so do you see all the little ass tricks is in here? So that means I've used this file before. With this, I can turn off this little check box and just go to each one of these. I'm gonna undefined them because I want to start from scratch here. I didn't realize that I had saved over my original with one that has thes variable. So let's, turn these off. All I'm doing is going to each one that has an ass tricks and turning it off, and then we'll define them one at a time. So you get a good sense for how that's done and then we'll get fancy. All right, so first thing I wanted to find is there was that layer called data set name, and I'm going to call that a text replacement layer. And why don't we just call it file name and therefore the very first entry in my spreadsheet he's going to be one cold filing now, this is how I might want to do this. I'm going to define a variable, and then I'm going to switch over to my spreadsheet program, I'm gonna create a brand new spreadsheet for this each time I create a new variable I'm going to just type it in on here therefore I can make sure I get them all and make sure the names precisely match because once you get a complex example you might end up with fifteen or twenty different variables in it and it's really hard to remember what the names are of all of them in all that so his first one I'll just call it file name I think that's what I called it I'll switch back over to photo shop and let's define another variable so do you see the names appear rich and laura? Well, I'll click up here and see if I can find that here's one rich and laura I'm going to say that's a text replacement variable and I'm going to call it name then I'll switch over to my spreadsheet to make sure I have an entry for that and I'll just come over here and call this name switch back over the photo shop I'm just gonna go back and forth because otherwise it's so common for me to forget to define a variable in the spreadsheet or to have too many liketo have an address field when there's no address in my uh in my photoshopped file but by going back and forth it's going to be easy to be able to deal with that now we have an issue here and that is I have two different versions of the text one that's fancy that uses a script in one that uses a slab serif that's a bit more of a masculine look and that contains the exact same text kind of weird well if I come in here you'll notice I have two different variables in here for ah rich and laura to see rich and laura up here in rich and laura down there that's because there are two different layers that contain the exact same text it's just we're going to hide one and show the other so I'm going to grab that other one going to say text replacement and instead of typing in something down here I could try typing in name but that's not always good enough for it to know that I want the exact same text to be used so what you could do is instead of typing in a name for your variable here do you see this little up and down a rookie on the right click on it this will list the variables you've already created of that same type so I've already created one for the other layer that has the text of ricin laura I'm going to say put it up with the exact same one so now what I have is to text layers and they're both to find the exact same variable so one entry in my spreadsheet the entry called name is now going to supply the text for two separate layers and that's just because when I defined the second one instead of just typing something in I went to the side menu where it listed uh the name of all the other text replacement variables and link them together now we also have to do the same thing with a few other areas we have at the bottom the date and the year see that well those are things we need to vary so let's go over here and find one of those here is there's a year I'm going to say tex replacement and I'm going to call it a year now I'm going to find the other version there's two versions one in the script or not in the script file format but one in this and one possibly another I think she did two of them yeah it's up here and I'm going to turn that on and instead of typing in a name I'm going to go to the side and say hey link that up to a variable that's already defined called year and now we're gonna do one more which is gonna be the date find the second version of that in text replacement link it up to the thing called which one is this this is the day it cancels the other link now I needed to find both of those over my spreadsheets I don't forget so come over here my spreadsheet I'm gonna put in a date and year remember the order doesn't matter in here the on ly one that matters is the very first one the very first one is the only one it can use for defining a file name so that's a little but these could be in any order you want doesn't have be in the same order they were defined in photo shop so let's go back to photo shop now what I want to do is we have it so would switch out the text in those two but how can I get it to switch between the fancy version and the plain version? Well, the way they're structured in here is they were put in groups, so one group contains all the texts I used the script, the other group contains all the text that used this slab serif so all I'm going to do is come over here and define the one called me a second to find it fancy and I'm going to save visibility variable, which means hide the entire contents of this group and I'll just call it fancy and then I'm gonna go over here and find the one called plane making a visibility variable and call that plane now over in my spreadsheet, I'm gonna put an entry called fancy in an entry called plain in the way I'll control which one is visible, I'll set one of these too true and I'll set the other one to false if I said I'm both untrue, they overlap each other and haven't both visible the same time. Does that make sense so I can swap that out? Let's, go back to photo shop, see if there's anything else we need to do well, we need the photo to be able to swap out, right? So let's, define that. See which one of these has the photo? Hopefully it's got a name that is recognisable if you can't see it in here sometimes I just might my eyes start to gloss over when I look at a list like that, just glance over to the file itself and I can see over here in the layers panel it's called folks, so click there and see if I can find layer called folks that is going to be a pixel replacement variable, and I'm just going to call it photo extents, and since this is in a relatively defined space here, I'm either going to choose fit or fill. I can't decide let's use phil, we'll put it centered. So now I go back to my spreadsheet credit entry called photo go back to photo shop now I don't know if you remember this or not, but I also wanted to determine if that photo ends up looking black and white or in color. Remember there's an adjustment layer if you look in my layers panel, do you see it right here? That's a black and white adjustment I want to turn on and off so let's define it is variable the name of that layer is bmw for black and white I'm going to say of visibility and I'm just going to call it bw for black and white then I have to go back to my spreadsheet. I'm just going to create an entry called pw and that's gonna be true or false to say true if I want it black and white falsify don't go back to photo shop see if we need anything else now I could go in and out of this dialog box multiple times I just happen to show you that you could do it all together. I might click on here just take a look to see if there's anything else. Remember the ones that have ass trick asses are already defined us variables the ones that don't have ass trick six say the word are not defined this variable, so those are the ones you still have possibilities with. The swirls, I think is the swirls around the date the bottom I think I want to keep that in all of them. The bars, I think, are the horizontal bars that are to the right and left divorce is save the date um we got to save the date text the banner at the top I think is the graphic for the banner squirrels, bars so I think we have most everything visible defined. The only thing I could think of is do I want people to be able to control things like if these little round circles air, they're they're supposed to look like a refrigerator magnets holding something? Do I want to be able to switch on the background or anything like that? But I think we're set so let's click okay, now I'm going to save this file just so I make sure I don't have to redo that if I screw something up and then let's go and see what kind of data we have to plug into it first, I'm going to go to bridge in here I have one, two, three, four photos I want to use to have it swap out, so I'm going to move those four photos to the same folder that has the text we're usually do the other way around where I just move the text file, but I'm doing it this way just so I don't screw up what I already have um what I already have set up here for teaching now let's go to our spreadsheet and let's fill in the info we want so the first thing I'm going to do in here is maybe to find the photo that's used because that's really going to define what were ended up using here and so I'll just go to bridge and these are the names of the photos even though there's a copy of my desktop but the name's air here I can click on the first one and just select all the taxed copy it go to my spreadsheet pasted in up here then I go back to bridge this could either be bridge or I could be in my operating system, but to make sure you get the file names to exactly match, I'm going to copy them and come over here because one typo on uppercase letter that is different, you know, opera versus lower case a space anything in here is going to break this so it won't work thes file names need to be exact, so I've defined the various photos they're going to be used now we need to decide should they be black and white or not? And it's personal choice I'll just make a few of them black and white and a few from not just realized that I think in here there's one photo that's already black and white so even if I said that to false for the black and white adjustment layer, you know it can't bring color back into it yeah, so just so you're aware of that so in here I'm gonna side should this be true that is black and white or should this be false true true so therefore we have are black and whites that I'm gonna decide do we need fancy airplane and I could look at the pictures or whatever this is something that usually though I'm going to do for a large number of images in this might be that I have let's say a database set up if I was a photographer and I was going to be doing this a lot for these engagements I would probably set up a database and something like filemaker pro and in there I just type in the client's name right when they first come to the office I'm putting in their general information they're billing information all sorts of things and then I'd have a little faith form within the database that just says, hey, what kind of template do you want? It might have little pictures of the various templates like fancy versus plane and I'd just be checking little check boxes in the filemaker pro database would generate this info you set that up once and you could make it a pretty nice fluid thing, but for here we need some information so I'm going to put these I'm gonna make most of the used to be fancy in just one plane I just need to make sure these are the exact opposite each other otherwise we're gonna end up with either no text if both of them we were set to false where we're gonna end up with two layers attacks on top of each other overlaying each other if I had him both set to that I have to put in my years actually we're both two thousand thirteen because that's when we got married so actually knows who doesn't fourteen it was january fourth no thirteen stay two thousand fourteen yes, it's already happened so two thousand thirteen lauren richard getting married in two thousand fourteen so we'll do that you passed fourteen ah, the date cars was january fourth I don't know their date, karen would know anyway, I need to insert data for each one of these entries I can't really have any empties, so now a problem you can encounter which is a problem I'm encountering right now is certain spreadsheets will try to do some work for you and I did not type in the year here, yet it shows to put in the year two thousand thirteen that's going to cause a problem, but we'll get that any minute now the final aim is never going to be seen in the file itself it's on lee going to be used to actually create the file name of the photoshopped file that generated so it's up to you what this says but this could be a client number this could be any kind of thing you want it's completely up to you this could be that your database within the file name puts the client number and then the number of copies they want of this image and then the size whatever so we need some sort of entry there all right so I think we have pretty much all our data let's then crop arl ourselves here so we don't have any empties because that could create an issue let me show you what it does if you have too many if you don't pull that in I'm just gonna leave an extra one or two in here and that will save this file and now it's going to have an extra comma in an empty field in an extra comma now photo shop is going to say hey, wait a minute something's weird here and so let's see what happens let's go over the photo shop I'm going to do what I usually do which is go today to say sets and when I go over here and hit import I hit select file and I feed it that file when did I ever export it? I don't know that I did let me go export it real quick remember we need the one with comments not the one in the file format that it does by default saw export sir, I forgot that step okay should have the data it needs goto photo shop I'm already in here except where I was last I'll try to select that file and now click ok, but look at what it comes up. You can't deal with it because it says it can't deal with the data set. There are too many variables names in the first line of the text file that tells you right there there are too many variables names in the first line of the text file tells he wants not working so what that means is if I go back to my spreadsheet and you look at the first line it means that here I have one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight but even though these are empty there's still considered because it puts commas in for them. So there's nine there's ten data sets here and I don't have that many defined in photoshopped, so I need to kind of crop those outs. We don't get those extra comments commas and then I'll come over here and exported again. I'll just save it over the original let's see if I can handle it now I think we're still going to run into an issue and I'll show you why in a moment it's just be the air message will be different is all don't look like it actually worked I'm actually surprised but we'll find out uh what might mess something's up in a moment so now I'm going to pre v these I'm just going to use the right and left arrow keys up here or I can hit previous and next and let's see if it's doing what we wanted to sew takes it a second to figure it out in just because that layer was rotated on the original one it doesn't know that so it's going to put it in if if the photo you wanted to apply was rotated it would noto put it in that way but if it's straight it keeps it straight eso let's see we got the fancy version we got a color photo in the next one we got a fancy version with black and white photo in the next one masculine version black and white photo although that original is black and white so it's hard to tell anyway you can cycle through all these and tested now some problems you might encounter is just like with the original template we created is that the tax might end up in too long and some of these so if I go through here and look at these and just cycle through them one at a time here do you see how it put the date in there with the comma and the year and that's the spreadsheet doing that automatically I'm sure there's a setting in the spreadsheet to prevent it from doing that I'm not a numbers guy, so I don't know how the heck could do it, so what I might need to do is actually open this resulting file in a word processor in manually take that out. The other thing I'm surprised that it didn't mess up with is these air comma delineated files? I'm surprised it didn't think of that comma right? There is the beginning of the next entry, then the air message I expected it to give me was that there's too many entries and it would tell me what line of the file it is, he would say in line five there too many entries because there's an extra calm in there usually what you need to dio is if he ever have an entry that would need a comment like you have an address in its city comma state and then zip is you need to enclose that in quotation marks because when it runs into a quotation mark in the file, it knows to ignore any thing that would usually separate entries until it runs into the next um uh quotation mark and therefore you can use commas, so I'm surprised it didn't give me an heir message other things to see no, sometimes you need use, quote let's say that somebody has a nickname and wherever you used their name within the file, you wanted to say, ben pixel head wilmore and have quotes around that. Well, usually you can't have quotes used in that way, it wouldn't end up it thinks the quotes are ways of of saying ignore formatting in this area, so it's kind of weird, but you enclosed the entire entry in quotes. So if I really needed ben pixel had wilmore and pixel heads in quotes, I'd put that entire entry and larger quotes because it notices that if the very first part of an entry is a quotation mark it's going to keep going until it hits another quotation mark with a comma after it kind of weird, but there are some of those, uh, oddities the other thing I might want to check here are the size of the images because I think I might have told it to fit instead of phil, and so some of them might end up being a bit on the large side. And so what I would usually do when I created template is put the photo that I'm going to put in there as a square. If I do a square that I know if I have a vertical photo it's going to go no taller than this square by the horizontal photo and goingto wider than the square. And regardless, it's not going to get any bigger than that square if I tell it tio fit so it could be a nicer way to create your template. So anyway, it looks like it's working, and I actually thought it was going to give me an heir message because of that comma so let's talk about other things we could do is faras becoming fancy? Or somebody wanted to know, how could I change the color of text? It was not a question we ran into so here's how it can change the color of text let's say, I want somebody be able to choose what color the texas at the top make it their favorite color pink bloops I in whatever well let's say that you we standardized on a few colors uh, maybe we only offered them a few of those choices, so I'm going to go to the layer that contains the text instead of directly changing the color of that text I'm going toe instead make it so, however, I changed the color of the tax it's on a separate layer, then I can always have a visibility variable to toggle that on or off, so I'm gonna go over here and say, I want a solid color layer in solid color layer I'll choose red is my color. And then I'm going to clip it toe layer that's underneath you can clip it by going to the layer menu there's a choice called create clipping mask if you watch in my layers panel, you'll find that now that layer has little down pointing arrow, which means this only shows up where that is and I might name that layer something like red then I could create another one of those solid color layer and maybe I choose blue I can clip it is well and I'll call it blue and I could make us many of those I need then if I want to be able to change that where the person can choose the color, then I come over here and add it to my variables and I just come over here and take the layer called blue making visibility one and just called blue take the one called red his ability and call it bread and then back in my database I would need to have two more entries I would have one called red hat have one called flew and it needs to be an entry for both, so I could just say true for this one because they want read and I can say false for this one because they want blue I mean, they think don't want blue and I just need them to be the kind of the opposites of each other and then I'm sorry can you remind me that just needs some sort of an entry so you could do like a one or two or an extra zero or what you're actually don't know I'm used to always using true or false I would have to experiment or or google who look up is there any other thing we can put in there but I know true and false works great there's a small chance that something like yes or no it worked but I'm not certain on that it might need to be true or false now what I could do here is do false in false and then both of them would be hidden would have the original color of the text but we do need an entry in there in all the only things I know of that work are true and false so anyway that can control which color is available and remember if you want to use that color in multiple areas of your design just have multiple layers set up in the same way and point them at the same variable remember how when you are about to type in the name there's that little pop up menu next to it you can say hey, I line this up to another variable we follow he'd already defined so it could turn on and off more than one, uh layer that's set to blue that kind of thing uh now I'm just gonna export this again is the csb put it over the original and then go back to photo shop and it doesn't automatically know that that file changed and so I do need to come up here to image chu's data sets and imported again, although it looked like it did pick it up uh what color that wass and then this is where when you're importing, you have a special option and that is on ly when you're importing the data said there's a check box called use first column for data set names okay, remember that first column I put ben one you know, bought stuff well trained on that one check box is going to now make it so we don't have a generic name for each data set. Instead, we have whatever was in the first column of that spread sheet, even though it's linked up to a text layer that's never visible in this file and that which is the data set name when I click okay can be used when I come over here and I export data sets his files one of the choices in here for file naming wass dates that name and so I could just get rid of all these other settings, setting them none and now that very first, uh, entry in each one completely defines the file name and so therefore, I can have some great file names and click okay, cross my fingers, hoping it works so it's a matter of once spending the time to create the template once testing that template on a variety of data, especially for various lengths in then remembering how you have it set up. So maybe have a spreadsheet set up that you could just fill in the extra info. Or my favorite is to have a database like filemaker pro, that you spend a good amount of time developing like it's. What used to track all your clients and all your billing and everything else, and just within that database you have check boxes for they want the fancy one and they want the pink version and they want whatever, innit, within a database like filemaker pro. If you're versed enough in the database software you khun make it, spit out a text file that would create exactly the data that's needed for that so that it could become a very streamlined version. Or it could be very streamlined within your workflow. It just takes time to get it set up to begin with with variables cool. Yeah, well, then I think we have just enough time for one quick question before we go to break and dpt cam would like to know are all the variables that air saved? Are they saved in the psd? Yeah, all the variables we just find its right in this photo shopped file grated data set is only going to be in there if when you're in here and you choose data sets after you import the data set you hit, apply over here on the right grand. All the tax that was in that text file is in this photo shopped file to send it off to your client. They connected it they could, and if you go up to the image menu, choose variables and choose data set. If you feed it a new file, like if I had import and I select the file you see right here, it says, replace existing that is great if I had that turned off instead, it would add to them you could just get more and more entries in their perfect but yeah, they they are stored in the file. As long as you cook the apply button here, then it should be stored right in the photoshopped file.