3 Replies Latest reply on Feb 27, 2014 6:22 AM by Eugene Tyson

    Fill pre-made clipart shape with text?

    ebh777

      Hi I am brand new to the CC suite, and at the beginning stages of the learning curve.

       

      My question pertains to InDesign (I just got all the CC programs last week - thanks student discount!), but I am learning in PS and Illustrator also, so if the solution to my question below involves the use of all three programs, that's fine.

       

      My overall document is a newspaper column style layout in InDesign, and I want to include a shape of the state of Alabama filled with text. I found a couple of free cliparts in the shape of Alabama, but I can't figure out how to convert them to the kind of shape that I can fill with text.

       

      My pen/pencil freehand drawing skills are terrible and I work on a trackpad, so I'd really like to take this free downloaded clipart and convert it (either in InDesign, PS or Illustrator) to something I can resize and fill with text in InDesign rather than drawing a new shape or tracing this one.

       

      Thanks in advance!

        • 1. Re: Fill pre-made clipart shape with text?
          Eugene Tyson Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          Place the outline in Illustrator

           

          File>Place

           

          Use live trace     http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2010/11/15/illustrator-s-live-trace-sketch-to-vector/

           

          Separate the outline from the background so all you have is the outline of the state selectable.

           

           

          Copy and paste this to InDesign from Illustrator.

           

          Once you have the shape copy and pasted to InDesign you can use the

           

          Object> Content>Text

           

          And now you can use it like a Text Frame within InDesign.

           

           

          Note: It's not wise to copy and paste everything from Illustrator. It's simply not a safe practice.

           

          However, you want to use the shape as a container, so this method is fine.

          • 2. Re: Fill pre-made clipart shape with text?
            ebh777 Level 1

            Wow, excellent, thank you for this swift reply - I will do this at once.

             

            So I know for the future, what are the potential problems in copying and pasting from Illustrator?

             

            Thanks!

            • 3. Re: Fill pre-made clipart shape with text?
              Eugene Tyson Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              Simple shapes are fine. Complex illustrations are not. Sometimes they work great. Sometimes not so great.

               

              Best practice is to use File>Place

               

              Otherwise if you intend to edit in InDesign then you can copy and paste it in, and make changes in InDesign.

               

              If you don't need to make changes in InDesign then use File>Place - usual practice.

               

               

              Complex images from Illustrator that are pasted in could cause drastic effect on the performance of InDesign.

               

              Complex images from Illustrator that are pasted in could cause untold damage to the image that would be only noticeable when printed by a professional printers.