Making your pages stand out with backgrounds


How to add backgrounds to your pages

Adding a background adds a professional, complete look to your page.  Some of the backgrounds included are full-page images, while others are more of a border leaving the center of the page white.  This year we have also included sets of backgrounds for use with two-page spreads and for use with covers.



Add a background to any page

To add a background to your page, click the Add Background button in the Elements Toolbar.


You can also assign a solid color background to your page by clicking on the Background Color selection tool.


A list of available backgrounds will appear in the image browser area, with a thumbnail image representing each one.  Click the left and right arrow buttons in the upper right to page through all the available backgrounds.


Once you've found a background you like to try, you can add it to your page by either dragging and dropping the thumbnail onto the page, or by clicking once on the thumbnail to select it and then clicking the '+' button below the thumbnails.


Once you've added a background, you can replace it with a different background by simply following this same procedure again, choosing a different thumbnail.



Remove a background to any page

Removing a background is similar to adding a background.  Bring up the backgrounds list in the image browser by clicking the Add Background button.


Click the NO button to remove the background that is currently on the page.


The background will be removed and you will see the familiar white workspace with no background.



Finding the right background

If you know what background you're looking for already, you can use the find feature as a shortcut rather than paging through the list.  Click in the textbox below the background thumbnails and type in a search word, then click the right-pointing arrow button to show only those backgrounds that match your search term.  Click the ALL button to return to the complete list.


You can also jump ahead to a specific page number by typing the number in the textbox and clicking the Go to page button to the right of the ALL button.


Solid color background

New this year is the ability to add a solid color background.  To do so, click on the color swatch labeled "Background Color".  This will bring up a range of colors you can select from, and once selected, the color will be applied to the page.

Hint:   If you choose White from this pallet, any selected background will be removed.



Add Your Own Image As a Background

You are not limited to the background choices before you, in fact adding your own custom images as backgrounds adds a memorable touch to your pages. Adding your own image usually requires some additional software like a photo editor.


To begin you need to determine the correct dimensions for the background.  Backgrounds are not stretched to fill the page, and need to be exactly the right height and width to be printed properly.  The easiest method is to navigate to the Backgrounds folder (typically C:\Books12\Backgrounds\) and inspect any of the high resolution JPG background images.  You can determine the height and width of the backgrounds a number of ways, and as long as you make your image the same size it will appear on the page as intended.


Once you've prepared an image, open up the backgrounds list again by clicking Background from the page editor.  Next, click the Import Background button just below the thumbnail area, indicated by a folder icon.


Browse to the image file you've prepared and click Open.  Your custom background will now appear in the list.  (If you don't see it, click the drop-down at the bottom of the browser and choose Custom to show just the custom backgrounds you've imported.  Choose All from the drop-down to return to the full list.)


Custom backgrounds that you've imported will also appear in the Image List area of the program, so you can manage them together with your candid images.


You should always create a PDF file of a blank page with only your custom image applied to it, and view it for accuracy.  The image may look fine on the screen, but you may discover in the proof that the image does not stretch all the way to the right or bottom of the page.  This is because the image is not the proper height and/or width for the final page size.