10 Replies Latest reply on Dec 14, 2011 7:12 AM by 3clovers

    Placing Illustrator Files into InDesign-Apparel Industry Related?

    3clovers Level 1

      Hi,

      I am working on a larger document, approx. 60+ pages.

      I'm actually having 2 issues:

       

      The apparel sketches are done in Illustrator, and normally what I do is raterize the files and place them into InDesign. I've been encountering some difficulties lately, however and I wanted to see if I could get some input as to whether or not this is best practice. (It has never been an issue in the past, but the document size was maybe half- around 20-30 pages.)

       

      Also, these documents grow to an enormous size of 2.74 GB in the last case and I had a heck of a time getting it down to under 10MB in pdf format when it needed to be sent off. Is there anything I can do to make this easier on myself?

       

      And last when making a pdf, it has happened that some of the apparel illustrations come through discolored or blacked out, if you have any insight to this as well, I'd appreciate it.

       

      I've only been working with 5.5 for a few months and never on documents this large, but this project is ongoing, so I need to get a handle on this situation.

      Thanks

        • 1. Re: Placing Illustrator Files into InDesign-Apparel Industry Related?
          Joel Cherney Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          The apparel sketches are done in Illustrator, and normally what I do is raterize the files and place them into InDesign.

           

          Raster meaning, they started as vector illustrations in Illy? I'd leave 'em as vector, frankly - but the fact that I can't see any advantage your workflow doesn't mean that there aren't any advantages. Why do you rasterize them?

           

          Also, these documents grow to an enormous size of 2.74 GB in the last case and I had a heck of a time getting it down to under 10MB in pdf format when it needed to be sent off. Is there anything I can do to make this easier on myself?

           

          2+gig INDD or 2+gig PDF? Are you embedding your raster files in your INDDs? I know you said "placing" but an INDD of 60 pages and 2+gigs says to me either "600ppi images embedded; bad workflow" or "Corrupt file that is about to explode messily."

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Placing Illustrator Files into InDesign-Apparel Industry Related?
            Joel Cherney Adobe Community Professional & MVP

            Sorry, wasn't finished yet. (In Jive, which keystroke is "post before you're done writing?" I hit that shortcut all the time, apparently.)

             

            So, if your INDD is 2+gigs, have you performed a Save As? Or an export-to-IDML-and-reopen? The former of these reduces file size, the latter can potentially repair corrupt files. Speaking of which...

             

            I've only been working with 5.5 for a few months and never on documents this large, but this project is ongoing, so I need to get a handle on this situation.

             

            Did you inherit this file from someone else? Was the file started in CS5.5, or did you take an older file and open it in CS5.5 to start working on it?

            1 person found this helpful
            • 3. Re: Placing Illustrator Files into InDesign-Apparel Industry Related?
              3clovers Level 1

                  

              Thanks for your response!

               

              Raster meaning, they started as vector illustrations in Illy? I'd leave 'em as vector, frankly - but the fact that I can't see any advantage your workflow doesn't mean that there aren't any advantages. Why do you rasterize them?

               

              Rasterizing flattens them and usually brings the file size down b/c the vector illustrations contain custom brushes (for zippers, trims, etc) as well as swatches for color.

               

              2+gig INDD or 2+gig PDF? Are you embedding your raster files in your INDDs? I know you said "placing" but an INDD of 60 pages and 2+gigs says to me either "600ppi images embedded; bad workflow" or "Corrupt file that is about to explode messily."

               

              The files are linked, not embedded and it's a 2+gig INDD. How would I know if the file is corrupt?


              So, if your INDD is 2+gigs, have you performed a Save As? Or an export-to-IDML-and-reopen? The former of these reduces file size, the latter can potentially repair corrupt files. Speaking of which...

              Did you inherit this file from someone else? Was the file started in CS5.5, or did you take an older file and open it in CS5.5 to start working on it?

               

              I did inherit it, but have since used it as a template and "saved as" various versions. I'm not really sure if it started in 5 or not. I have not tried to export-to-IDML-and-reopen, but I certainly will. What does this do exactly?

              • 4. Re: Placing Illustrator Files into InDesign-Apparel Industry Related?
                Joel Cherney Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                Hm, okay.

                How would I know if the file is corrupt?

                Well, you often don't, until it crashes and is unrecoverable. Then it's too late. But "insanely swollen file size" is a symptom. However, I can't know if your file size is reasonable or not, depends on the content, and it sounds like your content is pretty heavyweight. For instance - I thought it was possilbe to strip out custom brushes when saving AI files to bring file size down. I've never touched an AI file that was too large because of the number of swatches. So, depending on how much you have in there, then maybe your two-gig file isn't on the verge of crashing and burning.

                I did inherit it, but have since used it as a template and "saved as" various versions. I'm not really sure if it started in 5 or not.

                Cool trick: Click on Help, then hold down Control when you click on About. This will take you to a "Component Information" screen, and in the lower-left-hand corner you can see the Document History. So you can learn if you inherited a file that started in CS5. Or in CS3, or in PageMaker.

                 

                General best-practices as recommended by forum regulars is to finish a file in the format in which it started. If a file has to be moved from an older version to a newer version, then exporting IDML or INX before moving is advised. This is because of a lot of anecdotal evidence that opening up old files in newer versions and then doing a bunch of work is correlated with file corruption.

                 

                I have not tried to export-to-IDML-and-reopen, but I certainly will. What does this do exactly?

                 

                Well, it'll do a bunch of different things. It'll reinterpret the file format, which can strip out corruption. It'll strip out all image previews. If there is cruft in your file, then this will probably remove it.

                • 5. Re: Placing Illustrator Files into InDesign-Apparel Industry Related?
                  macinbytes Level 4

                  Depending on how the illustrations are built raster files can be better. I know with some items other artists in the shop have worked with the client would complain of file size. There is no real way to control how InDesign makes previews for placed illustrations that are vector and sometimes it can really bloat a document.

                   

                  In Acrobat Pro you can do file audit and determine where the bulk of the file weight is. If you see most of your document is ate up in shading information and color spaces rasterizing will eliminate it. I've had documents that were 8 mb for a single postcard size item size down to 800k by rasterizing. Even then I was rasterizing over 400ppi.

                   

                  When you are dealing with files with that much illustration weight you are at risk to exceed Acrobat's maximum file size. Rasterizing is not just an option at that point, it's the only reasonable way to keep the document manageable. If the illustrations are so complex that they are producing files this size you most likely wouldn't have any benefit to leaving them vector. They would be impossible to trap in a prepress system anyway.

                  • 6. Re: Placing Illustrator Files into InDesign-Apparel Industry Related?
                    Joel Cherney Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    When you are dealing with files with that much illustration weight you are at risk to exceed Acrobat's maximum file size. Rasterizing is not just an option at that point, it's the only reasonable way to keep the document manageable. If the illustrations are so complex that they are producing files this size you most likely wouldn't have any benefit to leaving them vector. They would be impossible to trap in a prepress system anyway.

                     

                    ...oh. That explains a great deal.

                     

                    It also means that 3clovers' file is probably gigantic due to file contents, not file corruption.

                    • 7. Re: Placing Illustrator Files into InDesign-Apparel Industry Related?
                      3clovers Level 1

                      Yeah, file size in this industry when it come to the Illustrator docs are ridiculous. But it seems to just be the nature of the beast.

                       

                      It is becoming industry standard for apparel companies to use InDesign to organize these Illy docs, so they can be printed, pdf'd together. (In my experience, anyways)

                      Thank you both for all your help. I'm going to try to put some of these tips to use, on Monday after I get done wrestling with another project. Keep you posted...

                      • 8. Re: Placing Illustrator Files into InDesign-Apparel Industry Related?
                        BobLevine MVP & Adobe Community Professional

                        3clovers wrote:

                         

                        It is becoming industry standard for apparel companies to use InDesign to organize these Illy docs, so they can be printed, pdf'd together. (In my experience, anyways)

                        I've worked with a couple of clients in the apparel industry moving them from Illy only to an Illy/ID workflow.

                         

                        Bob

                        • 9. Re: Placing Illustrator Files into InDesign-Apparel Industry Related?
                          John Hawkinson Level 5

                          Joel:

                          ...oh. That explains a great deal.

                          It also means that 3clovers' file is probably gigantic due to file contents, not file corruption.

                          How so? His Illustrator documents are linked, he said, so their incredible size and complexity should not have much effect on the InDesign file size.

                           

                          It might be worth checking in on the Illustrator forum, I think there are some recommended practices for dealing with Illustrator files with huge amounts of brushwork that can be used to reduce file size, possibly short of rasterization.

                           

                          Actually, rereading the initial post, I'm even more confused. The 3GB InDesign file is with the rasterized Illustrator drawings? That doesn't make any sense at all! Can we be a lot more explicit about how big what is here? What PDF file is produced from what size INDD file with what sized placed files that are of what format?

                           

                          I'd second the recommendation of a trip through IDML (save a backup though!). See what it does to your ID filesize.

                          • 10. Re: Placing Illustrator Files into InDesign-Apparel Industry Related?
                            3clovers Level 1

                            For any that were still interested, I did run through IDML, and the file size is down to 49 MB. So I guess I was dealing with a corrupt file. I'm still going to go over to the Illy board to hopefully pick up some more tips, but I just wanted to say thanks to everyone.