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Illustrator and InDesign


This article appeared in Issue 110 of InDesign Magazine.

The Dynamic Design Duo

If you want to understand InDesign, you have to get to know its faithful partner, Illustrator—after all, Illustrator was Adobe’s first commercial product, its first tool, invented in the 1980s to provide a human face for an ugly programming language called PostScript. More importantly, if you want to be efficient with InDesign, you should understand how to combine the unique superpowers of these two programs, and how together they make an unbeatable design duo.

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Steve Caplin
Steve Caplin is a freelance designer, illustrator, and speaker at CreativePro Week 2018. His YouTube channel 2-Minute Photoshop is a growing, free library of Photoshop techniques, each just two minutes long. Steve makes unlikely furniture in his spare time, which you can see at curieaux.com, and you can find out more about him (and even read his 1,000- word short stories) at stevecaplin.com.
Steve Caplin

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4 Comments on “Illustrator and InDesign

  1. Steve, thank you, great article! Here are two more gotchas for pasting from Illustrator into InDesign:
    1. It can make finding specific artwork difficult to find if you don’t also save it as an .ai file. I often search archives for [company name] logo.ai – if it’s pasted into a document, I may never find it.

    2. Don’t Copy/Paste complex vector artwork into InDesign – thousands of points, raster effects, transparencies, etc. can drastically slow down InDesign, Exporting to PDF and print processing, among other prepress nightmares!

  2. Thanks for the quick fix. Yes now when I re-login to this site, The READ/Subscribe button was replaced with PDF download buttons.
    I have another question:
    Another issue I have is that, when I click on the READ button from the June Issue, only the first article from this issue of the Magazine is highlighted and allow me to click and read to the linked URL page. However, the rest of the articles listed on this main page actually are not accessible – they seemed like not linked to any URL at all therefore I have no way to click and read. – Was this only me ? Or is this really the way this page designed for ? Thanks, Liyun

    • Yes, that’s the way it is for now. The PDF is released first and then each week another article from the magazine is published as a post on the website (and I add the link to the issue page). It’s a goal of mine to have all the articles up on the website the same day that the PDF is released, but we’re not there yet. Hopefully soon!

  3. if you want to be efficient with InDesign, you should understand how to combine the unique superpowers 1. It can make finding specific artwork difficult to find if you don’t also save it as an .ai file.

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