I’ve said it before and I will say it again I LOVE designing albums! You can review my ten step album workflow here. InDesign is my favorite album design tool, hands down!

Today I want to touch on one of the best time saving features of InDesign for designing albums – InDesign Libraries.

Libraries allow you to store objects for future use. I have a library filled with each and every album page layout I commonly use. This makes designing an album drag and drop easy…and now I will show you how!

Step 1:

It’s really easy to create a new Library.

Choose File > New > Library.

Name and save your new library to a location where you can easily find it again. When you open your library, it will open in a panel and the name you chose will become the name of the library’s panel tab. Closing your library removes it from the current document, but doesn’t delete the original file.

Step 2:

Create a simple page layout. Use the Frame Tool to create a simple album page layout. Make sure all the frames are in the final position you would like them. To add your page layout to the library select the frames on the page hold down the Alt Key (Option Key on a Mac) and drag the object(s) into the library panel. Holding down the Alt Key automatically opens a dialog box where you can name your object.

Using InDesign Libraries to Speed Up your Album Design Workflow by Hailey Lorraine

Step 3:

To place your page layout you can simply drag and drop it onto the document window. This will place the page layout wherever you release the mouse. However, a better way to place your page layout is by going to the Object Library panel menu where you can add an object by selecting Place Item(s). Using this option will place your page layout in the exact position as where it was originally saved from (Note: Placing in the exact place will only work if the document size/attributes are identical to where the object was saved from).

Using InDesign Libraries to Speed Up your Album Design Workflow by Hailey Lorraine

Step 4:

Now that you have your page layout placed from your library simply drag and drop the images into the frames. It’s that easy…really!

To get you started I have created a sample library with a few basic page layouts for you to try out and experiment with. Download them here (right click and save as to download). Practice inserting them into a document, play around with the layouts and get creative!

Using InDesign Libraries to Speed Up your Album Design Workflow by Hailey Lorraine

… the time savings adds up quickly by using the Library.

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Millers Professional Imaging

Thank you to our generous sponsor of today’s blog post, Miller’s Professional Imaging!  Today they are so generously giving away a $50 lab credit to be applied to your next Miller’s order.  Simply leave us a comment telling us what your favorite subject to photograph is to enter.  The winner will be randomly chosen and announced next Monday, June 3, 2013 at noon EST.  We’ll update this post with the winner so make sure and come back to see if you’re the lucky one!

winner update

Congratulations to who Karthika said, “Family Hiking and Camping trips in the mountains! :)”!  I will contact you about claiming your awesome prize.