Monday, April 27, 2009

Illustrator tip Mirror images

Ever heard of the Rorschach inkblot test? Good news you can draw them yourself in Illustrator. Who knows you may find out more about your inner self.

It works as follows
1. Draw an object and select it.

2. Go to Effect> Distort and Transform> Transform.
3. Enter the following values and check the Reflect Y. Make sure the reference point is below and centre and set copies to 1. Click OK. A copy of your image will be placed.

4. Select the object.5. Go to Window> Graphic Styles and click on the new graphic style icon to add the style. Now you can apply this Graphic Styles to any object.

6. You can also apply the style to a layer. Make a new layer. target this layer by clicking on the button. Then click on the graphic style. The style will now be applied to everything you draw.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

InDesign CS4 bug or is it a Mac thing

I had done some work at home on my fairly new imac OSX latest version etc. It was an InDesign CS4 document that I packaged and put on a USB stick. At work I needed to work on the document. It's the same type of Mac, InDesign CS4 english version, but when I opened the document an error message appeared complaining about Condtional text plugin updates and something else. Clicked OK, But InDesign could not open the document and told me to upgrade the plugins or the get lastest version of InDesign CS4. As far as I know we aren't yet higher then CS4 and I always update when prompted. Now it was panic time.
When I asked a collegue what was going and I double clicked to open the document to show him the error, he noticed that InDy CS3 was trying to open the document and not automatically (as you would expect) CS4 (both were open on the computer), therefore the conflict with the plug-ins and new features and telling me to upgrade.
Mac or InDy thing I don't know, but I'm glad I now know what to look out for.

Friday, April 10, 2009

InDesign Tip: Hyperlink to email

In InDesign you can make hyperlinks that work when exporting the file to PDF. One of the most useful hyperlinks is to an E-mail address. In InDesign CS3 and older it works as follows.

1. Type the text i.e.
2. Select the text with the text tool.
3. Go to Window> Interactive> Hyperlinks
4. Click on the Create New Hyperlink
5. Select URL in the type field

6. In the URL field type and click OK
7. Go to File> Export
8. Choose PDF and click save
9. Be sure to check the option hyperlinks in the dialogue box
10. Open the PDF and click on the hyperlink and your mail programme will automatically start up.

In CS4 (we love CS4) it's even easier. In the Hyperlink panel there is an option to Link to Email in the pulldown menu. What's even beter is that you can add a character Style.

And because it is fun Friday and almost Easter, check out this site. It takes a while to start, but is well worth it. Once it starts move your mouse. Super cool. Here's the link.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

InDesign tip: Quick Apply

If you want to apply a paragraph style to text, this can be done via several different panels. The paragraph styles panel, the pulldown menu in the control bar and less known via 'Quick Apply". Place the text cursor in the paragraph. Use the keys Command-enter (Mac) Control-enter (Win) and a panel will open with a list of all your styles. Click on the desired style for your paragraph and press the enter key.

As you can see there is a lot more then just styles in the list. You can also select menus, tools, etc.

By typing the first few letters of your style InDesign will find that style for you in the list. That's why you should give your styles logical and sensible names. Press the enter key to apply the style.