I have created a Massive document in illustrator out of sheer ignorance. Like 10 pages of graphics with text, because thats how I roll apparently (never do things the easy way). I also Have a 10ish page document in indesign with mostly text and the cover page images.

Combining the two has proven to be a bit of a conundrum. I have tried to exporting the illustrator file as a jpg but it looks BAD in the text department. I need text to explain my images.

I am making a sewing pattern of instructional images with text. Suggestions for the best way to do this without killing my computer and/or ways to streamline.

Should I only be making my sketches/ drawings in illustrator and then adding text in indesign after importing the pictures etc or is there some other way to go about this that I have yet to uncover?

  • Illustrations in Illustrator and layout (putting art and text together into a book-like format) in InDesign. That said, perhaps using PDF exports from both applications and then use Acrobat Pro to put the PDF's together might be an easier option for you at this point.
    – bemdesign
    Jan 14, 2016 at 4:20
  • 1
    I think I might export the existing pages as a pdf from Illustrator and import to Indesign using this script. Generally you let Indesign handle the text and import graphic elements as pdf ( or some other vector format ) if possible. I guess there is a chance that you could import the text to Indesign separately as well, but that depends on how you've made the .ai doc.
    – Joonas
    Jan 14, 2016 at 6:05
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1 Answer 1


To fix your particular situation, I would simply save and import your .ai pages into your indesign document. (File -» Import). Make sure you check "Import options" to select all the artboards. That will keep your text and visuals crisp and vectorised.

For the future, the generally desirable workflow is to use inDesign for all your text treatment and images, and using Illustrator to create your icons and graphical elements. Then, you import the graphics created in Illustrator into inDesign as .eps or .ai files.

I don't recommend copy/pasting from Illustrator to inDesign, as funny stuff tends to happen to elements with strokes/masks when you resize in inDesign. It can be tempting because it's much faster but it only works well with expanded paths. Anytime you'll have pathfinders or strokes in there, it will break your image on resize.

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