8 Replies Latest reply on Nov 10, 2011 10:27 AM by ladyinblack1964

    Disappearing objects

    ladyinblack1964 Level 1

      I am sure there is a logical explanation for this. I'm new to using "Place" instead of just drawing a picture box and putting the object in it.


      When I place an object on my page, and then try to move it around, a brown box appears around it (this is in addition to the blue box I started out with), and then the object inside disappears.


      I'm also discovering you don't need a picture box anymore. I can just copy and paste from PS into ID.


      My instructor has us doing the "Place" thing. I just read in the Help menu that you can even just drag and drop. So maybe I'm worrying too much?


      Thanks again!

        • 1. Re: Disappearing objects
          M Blackburn Level 3

          When you Place an object, you are placing it in a picture box (frame). There is always a frame that images sit inside even if you  copy and paste from Photoshop or Illustrator.


          If you select it with the Direct Selection tool, or select the Donut in the middle with the Selection Tool, you are selecting what is in the box. This will typically be the Red (or brown) Box. The Blue box (and that will be whatever the Layer colour that the object is on)  is the frame. The frame crops whatever is inside it, so if you select the internal image and move it around, you can move it right outside the box. If this happens, you can use the Object>Fitting commands to position either the frame or the content as you like.

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Disappearing objects
            mckayk_777 Level 2



            Was just wondering if a copy and paste from PS to ID is a done thing, I have never thought about or considered doing such a thing, have always saved the PS files as TIF PSD or JPG depending on what it was going to be used for.

            • 3. Re: Disappearing objects
              Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

              Looks like Mblackburn's reponse was helpful. You can turn OFF the donut (official name Content Grabber) in the view menu if it bothers you and then you don't need to be quite so careful about where you click when you want to move a frame. It does take some getting used to. And you can still draw the frame first, then Place, if it makes you happy, but it's basically a waste of effort in most cases.


              When placing images without an existing frame you have two choices. Click and release and your image will be placed at 100% scale (according to the dimensions and resolution stored inthe file). Click and drag and you will draw a frame to wahtever size you want, proportionally scaled to the image dimensions.


              As far as pasting from Photoshop, it's not a good workflow in most cases. For years pasting would get you only the low-resolution screen preview. This seems to have finally changed in CS5 so you get full res, but it is still only pasting RGB, and the biggest downside is you don't have a link to the original image, so no easy way to edit what you've pasted if you need to, and no way to update the image if you edit the origiinal or want to replace it.

              • 4. Re: Disappearing objects
                ladyinblack1964 Level 1

                I still don't understand why the image is disappearing after I move it. I also do understand how fitting an object works, but I'm just having trouble with the darned thing vanishing on me--and how to get it back.


                I am sorry if I'm not being clear here about what I am trying to do. sometimes I don't express myself very well.

                • 5. Re: Disappearing objects
                  Bo LeBeau Level 4

                  In InDesign the BLACK arrow is the Selection tool, this will allow you to select your image frame and the content (the actual image)

                  This will give you the blue frame and you can drag it from here to Nebraska and back around the page and it will still be visible.


                  The WHITE arrow is the Direct Selection tool and will select the content (the actual image) independent of the frame. This will show the brown frame. It appears you have been using the Direct Selection tool and are dragging the image outside of the frame.


                  In the example below the image was placed using the PLACE command. InDesign automatically ALWAYS creates a frame. The frame is blue.  The lower frame is a copy of the upper one. The blue frame was around the image. I then took the white arrow and dragged the content of the frame (the image and moved it halfway up and to the left). The brown frame shows the limit of the image. You can see the half the image is outside the frame.


                  Long story short, you will use the BLACK arrow for selecting things in InDesign 99.5% of the time. Stop using the WHITE arrow!

                  To get you content back in the frame go to Object menu - Fitting - and choose one of the fitting options.


                  And Peter is right, you don't want to copy and paste content for other application like Photoshop.

                  Always use the PLACE command, you may not think it makes much different, but it does and sooner or later it will bite you in the butt.

                  Trust us on this!



                  1 person found this helpful
                  • 6. Re: Disappearing objects
                    ladyinblack1964 Level 1

                    I think I'm beginning to understand now. This is all so different from the last time I used CS. Thanks very much--the screen shot is helpful, too.

                    • 7. Re: Disappearing objects
                      Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                      The behavior of the image relative to the frame isn't any different -- you could always use the direct select tool to move the content completely outside the visibility window of the frame containing it -- but the behavior of the selection tool and the content grabber are new, and though they defiinitely speed up production for experineced users, they also make it MUCH easier to accidentally move content instead of the frame. It still drives me nuts sometimes because I haven't completely retrained myself not to go for the center when moving a frame.


                      If you want the same behavior as CS3, turn off the content grabber in the view menu and you will be forced to actively switch between selecting the frame and selecting the content. That said, I'm a big believer in leaving new enhancements like this active (OK, I turned of Smart Text Reflow) and trying to learn how to use them to speed up my work. The content grabber is pretty cool if you place an image and need to crop it. You can place the image so one corner or edge is already in final position, then drag the frame bounds to final shape and use the content grabber to adjust the image position inside the frame without ever changing tools.

                      • 8. Re: Disappearing objects
                        ladyinblack1964 Level 1

                        Thanks for that tip on turning off the content grabber.


                        However, as the Borg used to say, "I will adapt." It's better to learn the newest way, I think.