Integrating InDesign with Photoshop

Integrating InDesign with Photoshop

Many people create their designs in Photoshop (which we discuss thoroughly in Book IV), and then import the native PSD files from Photoshop 4 or greater right into InDesign. InDesign supports many of the features you can find in Photoshop, so you can have additional control over the designs after the image is imported into InDesign. You should note, however, that when you import a PSD file, the layers within it are not retained in InDesign. The document is flattened (all the layers are smashed into a single layer) when you import the PSD file, which means you can’t work with or edit content on individual layers. Importing and exporting is covered in detail in Chapter 15 of this minibook.

Transparency support and clipping paths

Many Photoshop files use transparency. The transparency in the PSD files is imported and interpreted by InDesign. This is particularly useful when you have an established background or want to have an interesting text wrap around an image that you import from Photoshop. Basically, you can use the transparency as a clipping path in InDesign. Clipping paths are like hard-edged masks that hide parts of an image, such as a background that you don’t want visible around a certain part of the image. (See Book IV, Chapter 31, for more about Photoshop clipping paths.)

Alpha channels, paths, and masks that you create in Photoshop can be used in InDesign. InDesign recognizes these parts of the PSD, so you can use them when you’re wrapping text around the image or when you want to create a clipping path. Alternatively, you can also use these parts to remove a background from the image. For example, if you have an image with one of these assets, you can use the Detect Edges feature in InDesign to detect the edges and wrap text around the image. (We explain text wrapping in Chapter 12 of this minibook.)

Photoshop spot colors in InDesign

If you’re using spot colors in an image you import from Photoshop, those colors show up in the Swatches palette in InDesign. There is a chance that a color from your spot colors channel won’t be recognized. If that’s the case, the color is shown as gray instead. You can find more information on spot and process colors in Chapter 14 of this minibook.

The swatches imported with the Photoshop file can be used with other parts of your file. Simply use the swatches as you would any other swatch in InDesign. You cannot delete these swatches unless you remove the Photoshop file that you imported into InDesign. For more information about using the Swatches palette in InDesign, see Chapter 14 of this minibook.

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