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I'm illustrating a book. I'm using Photoshop to add effects, my text is in Illustrator and all of the illustrated pages live and will print from InDesign. My book size is 10.25 x 10.25 inches, and all images are set to 600dpi and CMYK color. I intend to produce an e-book and a print book.

My process is:

  1. From photoshop I Save As into a Photoshop EPS file.
  2. When I open this in Illustrator I notice some size distortion in the file. I fix it and, once I'm done, I do Save As to PDF.
  3. I open Indesign and "place" my PDF into the page.

Is this the right way of doing this, or is there a better way?

  • Why dont you just place the PSD and ai directly. – joojaa May 6 '16 at 14:55
  • @joojaa is there any disadvantage of placing an ai, psd, etc directly? It seems silly to go to the extra step of saving/exporting to EPS (or whatever). – Scribblemacher Apr 11 at 15:07
  • @Scribblemacher not really. Unless you count the ability to edit the eps with a text editor – joojaa Apr 11 at 17:33
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The optimum way to do what you're seeking is to create the book in InDesign, as you mentioned, but...

1) The text should all be done in InDesign, not Illustrator or Photoshop. Your file size will be much smaller, you'll have a much easier time editing the text, and your printed product will be better. Illustrator and PS are hugely powerful, but page layout is not what they are made for. InDesign is made for this. Use the right tools for the right jobs.

2) If you're creating images in Photoshop, you can them Place (import) them into InDesign using Cmd+D (on a Mac, Ctrl+D on PC)... but 300dpi (CMYK) is the optimum resolution. 600 is overkill, and will only make your file size bigger, which can lead to much longer processing time at the printer. There are differing opinions on which format is best, but .psd, .tif, .jpg or .eps are all fine.

3) I'm assuming your illustrations are done in Illustrator... if so, save those as either .ai or .eps, then Place (import) them into your InDesign file as well.

4) When the book is complete, you can export (Cmd+E on Mac, Ctrl+E on PC) a hi-res (images at 300dpi) PDF for your printed version, with printer's marks, and a lower res (images at 72 or 96dpi) pdf for your eBook version... an eBook by nature will be viewed only on screen, so 300dpi is unncessary.

  • When you say import, I think that it's important to use app-specific terminology, like place instead of import, and show through screenshots how this is accomplished. I think it's also important to mention how crucial master pages and paragraph styles are to efficiently bring consistency to a publication. – Peacockerie May 6 '16 at 15:53
  • Valid point on the "Place vs. Import" terminology... as for master pages, paragraph styles, and publication consistency, it seems that type of teaching would require a tutorial in InDesign from the start, not just a couple of screenshots. – DLev May 6 '16 at 17:03

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