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Illustrator .ai file turns White in InDesign CS5

Mar 2, 2013 4:25 PM

Tags: #illustrator #cs5 #help #indesign #computer #question #frustration #inconsistent #stupid #anger

I hope this is the right place for this question since it involves 2 applications.

 

I have Illustrator vector files for a storyboard.  When I go to place the illustrator files into InDesign they show up correctly.  But when I do shift+W or export the page to a pdf, all of the colors dissapear and the vector images change to white blobs.  I have never experienced this before. What is going on?

 

screen1.pngscreen2.png

 
Replies
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 2, 2013 4:41 PM   in reply to jpettit

    This is a (very) wild guess, but are the blue areas set to screen or some other blend mode?

     
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    Mar 2, 2013 4:48 PM   in reply to jpettit

    In both ID and Illustrator?

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 2, 2013 5:07 PM   in reply to jpettit

    The fill is showing the question mark in your screen shot because you have multiple objects selected with different fills. You'll need to check individual shapes (in both applications, if they were pasted) by selecting them either from the layers panel or using the direct select tool.

     

    I'm no expert in Illy, but this behavior certainly mimics what I see in ID when applying a screen blend mode to a color over white.

     
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    Mar 2, 2013 5:27 PM   in reply to jpettit

    In normal layout view you don't see the effects of blending modes, just as non-printing objects don't disappear until you choose a preview mode.

     
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    Mar 2, 2013 5:39 PM   in reply to jpettit

    OK, that is REALLY wierd. Never heard of anything like that before.

     

    Try an export to .idml. See Remove minor corruption by exporting

     
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    Mar 2, 2013 5:59 PM   in reply to jpettit

    Do you have another computer on which you can test the file?

     

    Would you be willing to send it to me for examination?

     
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    Mar 2, 2013 6:09 PM   in reply to jpettit

    OK. I'll send you anupload link by private message in a moment. It's late here, but I'll take a look in the morning and see what I can figure out. No promises, though.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 3, 2013 6:25 AM   in reply to jpettit

    I've looked over the file you sent, and the bad news is the problem is in the .ai files, but the good news is they seem to be fixable.

     

    The file you sent has the links embedded, so if they are embedded in your version, unembed them first, then Edit Original to open in Illustrator and expand all of the layers and groups in the layers panel.

     

    In the layers panel click the dot to the right of each Clipping Mask to select it, then delete it. Now working from the bottom up click next to each group label to select, and ungroup. I don't know why the grouping is causing this, but it is, so you do need to get down to just object on a layer, then resave and update in ID.

     
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    Mar 3, 2013 6:29 AM   in reply to Peter Spier

    I don't have the file here to look at or test but what if you opened it

    in Acrobat? How does it look there?

     

    Bob

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 3, 2013 7:33 AM   in reply to Bob Levine

    Are you asking me?

     

    In the text file the shapes are knocking out the background completely (and do it in a new file, too), and the seps preview matches what you see in the screen grabs above. I only have the ID file, but when I make a PDF from it the shapes are missing in Acrobat, and I can follow the procedure I outlined above to replace one or two images and they show up in the PDF (and in ID), but the others are still just knockouts.

     

    Want to play with the file? If it's OK with the OP I'll send it to you.

     
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    Mar 3, 2013 7:46 AM   in reply to Peter Spier

    I'm asking anyone. What happens if you open the AI file in Acrobat?

     

    Bob

     
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    Mar 3, 2013 7:57 AM   in reply to Bob Levine

    They look fine (they also look fine when opened in Illy). The problem only seems to happen when they are in font of a colored background.

     

    It looks like it might be transparency related in some way. They knowck out completely from a CMYk background, but different parts come and go if you use a spot color and change the spot. It's very wierd, to say the least.

     
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    Mar 3, 2013 8:00 AM   in reply to Peter Spier

    If the OP is willing, I would look at the file.

     

    Mike

     
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    Mar 3, 2013 8:37 AM   in reply to MW Design

    JW, Can I pass it around?

     
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    Mar 3, 2013 10:38 AM   in reply to jpettit

    I think Mike can be trusted. I'll forward him a link.

     
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    Mar 3, 2013 12:08 PM   in reply to jpettit

    I'm gald to provide a fix. I just wish I knew WHY it wasn't working to start with....

     
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    Mar 4, 2013 7:46 AM   in reply to jpettit

    Peter provided the best solution, which is to rid the files of the clipping masks. I don't know how or why they got there in the AI files as there seems no good reason to have them.

     

    In AI CS6--after a Win8 refresh I didn't install older versions--if I unembed one of the files and load it into Illy, all I need to do is ungroup the top level and resave (here as an Illy CS5 file to keep things relatively the same).

     

    For the screen shots below I placed a grey rectangle behind the image so one can see what is like in ID when hitting Shift+W. Illustrator's normal working view shows the same behavior.

     

    capture-000026.png

     

    And when I complete the ungroup, one sees:

     

    capture-000027.png

     

    At this point the file can be resaved and ID will display it properly. Edit to add, at least once the rectangle is deleted if one adds it when playing along...

     

    The AI file is simply strange in this behavior. Never seen it before. It may be that someone in the AI forum would know why this is happening. But I don't. Neither the group, nor none of the clipping masks nor any of the parts have blend modes other than "normal."

     

    I have deleted the files from my computer already, so I cannot look further, but as I mentioned, I don't think there is anything I could determine that I didn't already investigate last night.

     

    Take care, Mike

     

    Message was edited by: MikeWenzloff

     
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