InDesign CS5 Tutorial: Placing Pictures – Import, Numbering & Captions (Part 5a)

InDesign CS5 Tutorial: Placing Pictures – Import, Numbering & Captions (Part 5a)


Hello, today we talk about pictures. I first going to show basic functions an also how to import pictures. Than we going to add some numbering under the picture, with a text. And i also going to show how to use several pictures if you group them, how to get labeling like “ABC” on the pictures. Than i finally show how to get those pictures into your text. If you want to follow along with the tutorial you find as always the sample documents we are using today on my Website [LuckyLion.de] Lets get started! There are two ways to import a picture you can go on *File* ->*Place…* or you can drop your picture directly into InDesign, from your folder Now we get a little preview picture and we can click and there is our picture. You should notice, that we see our picture in the *Links* panel. If we would move the picture in our folder It would break the link and we can restore it in here. But the best idea is to never move your pictures once you use them in your document. I would like to reduce the size of the picture. I can do this by using the % bars this will preserve the ratio of the picture. But I’m going to undue this and show you an alternative way. You can also use the handles of your picture frame. And this will just rescale the frame The picture itself stays the same If I want the picture itself to scale i can activate auto-fit and than it will scale as well. However, if I now double click on the picture I get to the picture itself and can move it around and scale it. If I scale it, i should press the Shift key to preserve the ratio of the picture. Also if you look at the top you have some functions, that will help you to get the optimal size for your picture frame. It’s worth trying some of these out! If you are happy with your picture it’s time to create a headline. We need to create a new text box and define a Paragraph Style for our picture numbering. we call this “Figure Numbering” You can go on *edit* and make it based on “Font” And than we can go on *Bullets & Numbering* ->*Numbers* and now we need to define a new list because we are using the default list already for our headlines we create a new list and call it “Pictures” Click on *OK* and in *Number* we insert “Fig.^#:” “^#” is representing the actual number and “Fig.” stands in-front of this number and “: ” is following after the number. Were going to see this in a second. We also want to use a Character Style for the Numbering. We are using “Bold” To make it bold click on *OK* And if we now type something “Picture” we see it is now saying: “Fig. 1:” Actually i would prefer to have the whole word “Figure” written. Lets change that. We can go on *Edit* again *Bullets & Numbering* and type in “Figure” and there we go. its updates automatically. Now its time to get the picture into our text frame. Therefore we want to create a new line that holds our picture. We want to assign a paragraph style without formatting for example “[basic Paragraph]” and we can copy the picture into this box by pressing “Cmd”+”C” when we have selected the picture. double click onto the box and press “Cmd”+”V” and there we have our picture. we can resize the box and there we go. If you want to control the distance between the picture and the text you can move it around. Drag it up or down. But we want to have a fixed distance between the text under the picture and the picture itself. We need to create a style for our object (the Picture). We go on *New* and call the Object Style “Picture” and than you can go on *edit* and deselect almost everything except *Anchored Object Options* Now you can tweak the distance if you activate *preview* you can see how the distance between your text and the picture is changing. You can chose a distance that you like (-1mm) for example. go on *OK* Now you would assign the style to all pictures you have. If you want to change the distance later on you can do that in the Object Style, and it will change in all your pictures. Now we want to create a figure that contains several pictures. We need to take care of alignment and also numbering with “ABC” on the picture itself. First we going to import some pictures you can approximately drag them out in the size you need. We want to make sure that the pictures are aligned together. We going to look, how wide this picture is and copy the same number onto the other picture. Now they have the same proportions. When we start with the alignment we can select both pictures and go to the *Align* tool. With this button you can align them to the edge and also we want to have spacing. If we use the same spacing (3mm) over our whole thesis it will look quite nice. Click the “Spacing button” to get a 3mm spacing. Now we can group the pictures. Press “Cmd”+”G” to group them. The group is indicated by a dotted line. And we see now the height of the group We can copy it transfer it to the other picture. Align both pictures to get a spacing of 3mm. Double click in the picture box, to resize the picture (hold “Shift”) Now the pictures are nicely aligned we want to resolve the group again *Ungroup* Next we get numbering on each picture (A, B and C). Therefore we want to create a circle. If we press “Shift” it gets the right proportions. A good size is 7 mm. Click into the circle with the type tool and type the letter “A”. Make sure to give the Letter its own Paragraph Style create a new one. We call the Style “ABC” The Letter should be aligned in the center should have another font, for example “Arial” and we want to have the font in bold. Also the alignment should be in the middle So we are going to click on “Align center”. We need to redefine the style. We can now place this letter on the picture and we see, it does not have a background. We need to give the circle a background. The best one is white. Than we can copy it and place it onto other pictures as well. Of cause we need to change the letters to “B” and “C”. Now we need to get them aligned to each corner of the pictures. Therefore you can select one picture and the circle. We go back to our *Align* tool and we click *Align to left* and to the top. We do this for each picture. If we select the whole thing now and than press the “Shift” key and deselect the pictures we don’t want. We only have the 3 Letters selected. Now we can move them down with the arrow key. And you should always move them down the same keystrokes on each picture. To get an nice consistent layout in your thesis. I would say 5 (keys) down and 5 to the right are just fine. Now we can take a look, how it looks atm. If you are happy, select everything an go group it. Now its time to put the stuff into a text box You need to create a text box. We want to use the style “Figure numbering”. And you can take the whole picture, copy and paste it into your text box. Resize the box a little bit. Actually if you want to have the right size you can look how wide your picture is. copy the value and apply it to the text box. to get a nice accurate fit. If you want to add some information about the sub pictures like “A”, “B” or “C” what they are showing you can type “A” and add information. the same thing for B and C. Assign the “Bold” character style to A. Finally adjust the size of the text frame And also (important); assign the Object Style for the picture. Click on picture, to get the right distance. We could place the Picture now into the text But we are going to talk about something else first…

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  1. Thanks for this unluckylion, but is there any way to automate the processes more? What if i have a document that needs over 2000 photos imported and each one numbered, is there any way to do automated numbers on each picture?

  2. Hello, I am afraid Im not aware of a tick that could do such a thing. What might help is to get all the text frames for image subtitle and the image dimensions it self (just an empty box) in place and then duplicate that page a 100 times or something like this. then at least the layout is done when inserting the pictures (File -> place -> select all the images you would like to import). I hope this helps a little bit.

  3. Thank you this video, it was helpful!

    And speaking of accent, I think your accent makes it easier to listen to the instructions, as the words are easier to distinguish different words, so I like it:) 

  4. You have just saved me hours of work labeling figures by teaching me how to insert Figure^# within the paragraph style numbering. Thank you!

  5. Hi, maybe I missed something but when I am trying to edit my paragraph style it does not show "fonts (tool box)" as an option. I do just have the tutorial version so maybe that's it. What should I change to select this option?

  6. I have a question, if you lets say placed a picture with figure 1 in page 2 first, then you decided you wanted to place a picture before page 2, how can i change the numbers of figure according to their page orders?

  7. 2:40 Based on Font is not an option (Indesign CC 2019)?
    3:23 There are no options for character style?

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