Printing Collections or Album Pages






Printing Collections or Album Pages

One of the most popular Paint Shop Pro features is the ability to print multiple images. It’s a great way to create album pages or make collages of photos to celebrate an event.

First, select in the image browser the images you want to print (hold down the Ctrl key and click them — or refer to Chapter 1 for another way), and then choose File→Print Layout. Your entire Paint Shop Pro window changes to the multi-image printing tool shown in Figure.

Click To expand
Figure: Composing a multiimage page.

The multi-image printing tool occupies the entire Paint Shop Pro window. To exit from it and return to the normal window, choose File→Close Print Layout. Unless you have saved your layout (see the section “Saving and reusing your template,” later in this chapter), closing the tool discards your layout.

With the multi-image printing tool onscreen, here’s the basic procedure:

  1. Choose the page orientation.

    Paint Shop Pro initially gives you a portrait-oriented page (long dimension vertically). If you want a landscape- (sideways-) oriented page, choose File→Print Setup and then click Landscape in the Print Setup dialog box that appears. Click OK.

  2. If you want to use a template for your images, choose FileOpen Template.

    A template is a prefab layout you can use to arrange your photos to save time. As a bonus, templates look nicer than dragging pictures helter-skelter onto the page (well, better than the way we drag them, anyway). Paint Shop Pro gives you a dialog box with three categories of templates you can choose from: Avery, Combinations, and Standard Sizes. Click a category to bring up a gallery of templates:

    • Avery templates: Intended for the industry-standard Avery labels — sheets of precut stickers you can use in your printer. Yes, you can print stickers with your baby on it! Each Avery template has a number underneath it, like Avery 8386; this number refers to the product number of a specific Avery label sheet, which you can buy at your local office supply store. Use the right sheet with the right template, and you have perfect stickers.

    • Standard sizes: Templates in which all the images are one size: 5x7, wallet-size photos, miniwallets, and the like.

    • Combination sizes: Templates with mixtures of sizes, generally one or two larger photos at the top and a bunch of smaller ones at the bottom.

    Each template has a small thumbnail that shows you what its layout is like; click a template and click OK to apply it, or click Cancel to escape.

  3. Drag images, one at a time, from the left column onto the page.

    If you have a template applied, drag the photo into each of the boxes; Paint Shop Pro automatically resizes the photo so that it fits as best it can into the box.

    If you don’t have a template applied, you have to resize the photos manually. If the images are too large for the page, Paint Shop Pro asks if you want to scale it. If you click Yes, your image appears with handles (square dots) at the corners that you can drag to resize the image. Choose No if you want to use the Paint Shop Pro autoarrange feature (see Step 4) to place and size the image for you.

    If an image is rotated 90 degrees the wrong way, drag it to the page and click the 90+ (clockwise) or 90– (counterclockwise) button on the toolbar to rotate the image.

  4. If you haven’t applied a template and want to position the images yourself, drag them into position.

    If you don’t want to use a template but still want everything lined up neatly, you can choose Preferences→Auto Arrange, which lines up your images for you sans template.

  5. To print your page, click the Print icon on the toolbar or choose FilePrint.

    Neither choice gives you a Print dialog box, but immediately sends the page to your printer. If you need to change any printer settings, do so before sending the page to the printer. Choose File→Print Setup and click the Printer button in the Print Setup dialog box that appears.

If you’re done, return to the normal Paint Shop Pro window by choosing File→Close Print or click the Close button on the toolbar (the door-with-arrow icon).

Warning 

If you’re using a pregenerated template and Paint Shop Pro asks “The current template has changed, would you like to change it?” when you exit, do not accept the default name if you choose to save it. (Avery templates in particular do not like being fiddled with — and by just clicking OK, you’re overwriting the template, potentially changing vital placement information.)

Fooling With The Pictures And Layout

You can fiddle with the pictures and their arrangement all you want, after they’re on the page. Most controls for fiddling are duplicated on the menu bar, the toolbar across the top of the window, or, if you right-click an image, on the context menu that appears. Nearly everything can be done fastest by the right-clicking approach, so that’s mainly what’s in the following list. Here are some basic fiddlings you may want to do:

  • To select a picture so that you can do something with it, click it. (Handles appear at its corners.)

  • To move a picture, drag it.

  • To position a picture in the center or at any of the four corners of the page, click any of the five positioning buttons at the far right end of the toolbar. The icon indicates the position the button delivers. Pause your cursor over the button for a text indication of its positioning.

  • To resize a picture, drag any of its handles.

  • To remove a picture from the layout, either click it and press the Delete button on your keyboard or right-click it and choose Remove from the context menu.

  • To rotate a picture, right-click it and choose Rotate 90+ or Rotate 90– from the context menu that appears (+ is clockwise).

  • To see an alignment grid, right-click the white page background and choose Show Grid from the context menu. (Repeat to turn the grid off; this action doesn’t work if you have a template loaded.)

  • To make photos snap to the grid when you move them, right-click the white page background and choose Snap To Grid from the context menu. (The grid must be on first, or else this command is grayed out.)

Saving And Reusing Your Template

To save this attractive arrangement of photos, choose File→Save Template. In the Save As dialog box that appears, enter a name for your layout in the filename text box. Unless you tell Paint Shop Pro otherwise, it saves the layout as a set of empty boxes, forgetting what photos were there; you can tell it to remember the photos by checking the Save with Images check box.

To reuse this layout, reopen the Print Layout screen and then choose File→ Open Template. Select your template in the Open dialog box that appears.

Tip 

When you open a template, it brings up the image in its current condition, whatever that may be. For that reason, be sure not to move any images to other folders or rename them because then the multi-image print tool can’t find them.



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