Section 56. Working with Illustrator Graphics

#56. Working with Illustrator Graphics

InDesign and Illustrator are close cousins and very much alike. They're both vector-based programs, they're both from Adobe, and they share many of the same features. One benefit of the similarity between Illustrator and InDesign is that you can copy objects between the two programs. This lets you take advantage of the features in both programs to create graphic elements.

The easiest way to add an Illustrator file to an InDesign layout is to use the Place command (File menu). When you place a graphic into a layout, InDesign maintains a link to the graphic file and uses the original file when displaying, printing, and exporting the graphic. (When you place an Illustrator graphic into an InDesign layout, you cannot modify any of the objects within the graphic. If you need to modify the graphic, you must open it in Illustrator and then make the changes.) Subsequent changes you make to the graphic file in Illustrator are reflected in the InDesign layout. Not only does InDesign support native Illustrator (.ai) files, it also supports illustrations saved as EPS or PDF.

In addition to importing Illustrator graphics into InDesign layouts, you can also copy and paste and drag and drop objects between the two programs. The benefit of being able to use these methods is that they let you use InDesign to modify objects you've created in Illustrator, and vice versa. Before you copy and paste or drag and drop Illustrator objects into InDesign, make sure to check AICB (Adobe Illustrator Clipboard) in the File Handling & Clipboard panel of Illustrator's Preferences dialog box (Illustrator > Preferences > File Handling & Clipboard [Mac OS]; Edit > Preferences > File Handling & Clipboard [Windows]).

To use the copy-and-paste method:


Select one or more objects in Illustrator.


Choose Edit > Copy.


Switch to InDesign and choose Edit > Paste. The copied elements are pasted into InDesign as a group of editable objects.

Adjusting Layer Visibility in Illustrator Graphics

If you've created an Illustrator graphic that contains multiple layers and you want to place the graphic into an InDesign layout and then show or hide individual layers, you should save the graphic as a layered PDF file. When you save the PDF file (File > Save As), choose Acrobat 7 (1.6) or Acrobat 6 (1.5) in the Compatibility menu in the General panel of the Save Adobe PDF dialog box and check Create Acrobat Layers from Top-Level Layers.

When you import a layered PDF file into an InDesign layout, check Show Import Options in the Place dialog box. When you click OK, the Place PDF dialog box is displayed. Use the controls in the Layers panel to show and hide individual layers. After you've placed a layered PDF file, you can use the Object Layer Options command (Object menu) to adjust the visibility of the layers. (Note: In Illustrator, keep the layers that you want to show or hide in InDesign at the top level or within a layer set at the top level.)

To use the drag-and-drop method:


Arrange an Illustrator document window and an InDesign document window so you can see both onscreen.


Select one or more Illustrator objects, drag them into the InDesign window, and then release the mouse button.

When you copy and paste or drag and drop Illustrator objects into an InDesign layout, the objects behave as though you created them in InDesign, and InDesign does not maintain a link to the Illustrator file (that is, they're not listed in the Links palette).

Yet another option for working with Illustrator is to copy and paste or drag and drop InDesign objects into Illustrator, modify them in Illustrator, and then copy and paste or drag and drop the modified objects back into InDesign. This is called "round tripping." See Figure 56 for an example.

Figure 56. The original checkerboard graphic (left) was created in InDesign, and then copied and pasted into an Illustrator document. Illustrator's Twirl tool was used to create the variation on the right, which was copied and pasted into the InDesign layout to complete the round trip.

Adobe InDesign CS2 How-Tos(c) 100 Essential Techniques
Adobe InDesign CS2 How-Tos: 100 Essential Techniques
ISBN: 0321321901
EAN: 2147483647
Year: N/A
Pages: 142

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