I need to create a two-color poster for my choir's Christmas concert. I'm choosing the colors red and gold, and will liaise with the printer when it comes to printing about what specifically they will be to work best.

While I'm fine with a nice big, red background, and with adding gold text, I'm really struggling with how to add vectors with transparent background and faded foreground. I have a nice EPS stock image I bought a while ago with some musical notes on, but it's on a cream background with dark-brown staff-lines and musical notes. I've managed to fiddle with it in various ways in Photoshop (which I know pretty well) and Illustrator (which I don't know at all), but I cannot work out how to do it. What I'd love to do is just place a file in my InDesign document, and then change the stroke/fill color and the transparency.

All advice would be greatly appreciated! I have the full Creative Cloud, so can work with most Adobe apps, if required.

  • 2
    You need to open it in Adobe Illustrator. To manipulate it. Also note that 'gold' isn't a run-of-the-mill color. You'll be running a metallic ink for that. Make sure your printer knows that.
    – DA01
    Commented Oct 30, 2012 at 5:20

1 Answer 1


If the stock image is in EPS, you should be able to open it in Illustrator, grab each piece, and change the colors as needed. That's the easiest way. If you click on a piece and it grabs all of the artwork, try ungrouping objects or using the Direct Selection tool (instead of the black Selection tool). Or, you can open up the layers palette and grab each piece that way.

  • So, there is no way of importing a "shape" to be decorated by InDesign?
    – Martin
    Commented Oct 30, 2012 at 9:16
  • Not sure what you mean by "decorated". I believe you should be able to copy a vector shape in Illustrator and paste it into InDesign. Otherwise, placing it InDesign won't give you the ability to change the fill and stroke colors (assuming that's what you're after).
    – A Herrera
    Commented Oct 30, 2012 at 15:05

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