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FreemindVisionary
01-24-2013, 11:35 AM
Is there a way to run the Batch command in Illustrator without it re-saving the files afterwards? I want to convert all text to outlines before exporting, but I'd still like to have live text when I'm done.

JimCampbell
01-24-2013, 12:24 PM
I run a batch operation that goes Select All -> Create Outlines -> Save As EPS / Use Artboards and saves the result into a separate folder.

This saves a copy of the file (with an .ai extension which seems to be interchangeable with .eps) but leaves the original file with outlined text open but unsaved. If you close the open file without saving, then your original file will still have editable text but the new files will all have the text outlined.

You have to manually close the open documents and click 'Don't Save' every time, which is a pain in the arse, but you'll get the result you're after.

Cheers

Jim

FreemindVisionary
01-24-2013, 12:40 PM
Thanks for the reply, Jim. A little more info: My original files were PDF's with both art and lettering and I was exporting as high-res TIFF's. My action was Select All > Create Outlines > Export. As soon as it ran the action, it resaved and closed rather than leaving the files open. I did send them to the same folder, could that have been my mistake? Oh, and I'm running CS5 on Mac if that makes a difference.

F!NCH
01-24-2013, 01:25 PM
Insert an Undo command after Export and before Save and Close, and Bob's your uncle.

JimCampbell
01-24-2013, 01:36 PM
Insert an Undo command after Export and before Save and Close, and Bob's your uncle.

Smart!

Cheers

Jim

JimCampbell
01-24-2013, 01:38 PM
Thanks for the reply, Jim. A little more info: My original files were PDF's with both art and lettering and I was exporting as high-res TIFF's. My action was Select All > Create Outlines > Export. As soon as it ran the action, it resaved and closed rather than leaving the files open. I did send them to the same folder, could that have been my mistake? Oh, and I'm running CS5 on Mac if that makes a difference.

Actually, why are you outlining before exporting as TIFF? TIFF is a bitmap format and can't contain font data -- your type will be rendered as pixels as part of the TIFF export.

Cheers

Jim

FreemindVisionary
01-24-2013, 03:23 PM
I've found that when you don't convert before exporting, the letters look a little on the thin side. Converting them beefs them up to what they should actually look like. On the Hunter Black webcomic I letter (www.HunterBlackComics.com *shameless plug*) if I don't convert before exporting I can immediately tell once it's been posted.

Good call on adding the Undo in there. That should certainly work, though I still wonder if there's a way to control whether or not the file stays open or resaves and closes after the action.

JimCampbell
01-24-2013, 04:48 PM
I've found that when you don't convert before exporting, the letters look a little on the thin side. Converting them beefs them up to what they should actually look like.

CS5 introduced a couple of extra options in the TIFF export -- have you tried the 'Type Optimized' option for anti-aliasing?

Cheers

Jim

FreemindVisionary
01-24-2013, 05:10 PM
Yup, Type Optimized reduces the quality of the art significantly.

JimCampbell
01-24-2013, 06:08 PM
Really? I use it on 100+ pages a week without issue. Anti-aliasing should have no effect on placed art, so you may colour me baffled!

Cheers

Jim

FreemindVisionary
01-24-2013, 10:12 PM
Really? I use it on 100+ pages a week without issue. Anti-aliasing should have no effect on placed art, so you may colour me baffled!

Cheers

Jim

Did a little test and figured out what the discrepancy is. On high-res art, you're absolutely right, the difference is minimal. However, when outputting pages at 72 dpi for a webcomic, there's a marked difference in image quality. When I switched to CS5, the first thing I exported was that week's Hunter Black pages. Art Optimized looked far superior to Type Optimized which came out weirdly pixelated and muddled. Since then, I've always assumed Text Optimized would do that at any resolution, but now I know differently, so thanks for making me test that out!

To illustrate what I was saying about converting to outlines, check out this page: http://www.hunterblackcomics.com/?comic=1959

That was a page I didn't convert to outlines. If you click to the next page, which I did convert, the letters are noticably beefier.

JimCampbell
01-25-2013, 06:36 AM
That was a page I didn't convert to outlines. If you click to the next page, which I did convert, the letters are noticably beefier.

That's remarkable. I can't figure out why it's happening, but the difference is certainly striking.

I should stress that I'm not criticising your workflow -- whatever gets you the results you want is obviously the right one for you. It's just that I'm a bit OCD about eliminating unnecessary steps from work processes…!

Cheers

Jim

FreemindVisionary
01-25-2013, 10:22 AM
No criticism taken. I'm not a fan of doing more work than necessary either. In this digital age we're bound to Illustrator's whims. Best that we all know its in a myriad of situations.

Comics Commando
02-02-2013, 02:38 AM
I've been doing more photoshop work than usual...and I'm certainly no expert...but I've fallen in love with the droplet.

I can make a separate app [kind of] from photoshop--then, I just drop the files I want to convert [or whatnot]--on the droplet icon--and the files undergo the parameters of the droplet [scale to 50%, make greyscale--whatever].

Boom...instant conversion.

Then I investigated doing the same thing in illustrator--converting to outlines, removing the art layer, flattening the layers, etc....with a droplet.

No go--no droplets in Illustrator.

I've been familiar with the batch converter for years, but never took to it.

I still open each file [7 to 10 at a time]--then go thru the routine--remove art--create outlines, etc. It does seem kind of archaic--even as I'm doing it, but I move so fast--and I set up my templates with this in mind--that it goes verrr-rry quickly.....maybe 6 or 7 minutes for a whole book.

Jim may be a bit OCD...but I think I have the market cornered. My theory from the get go of computers is that every mouse click is time--and we know from Einstein's theory of relativity that time equals money. Or speed turns everything red--I forget.

So I've set up my template and my workflow to incorporate as few mouse clicks as possible to get each page done. A minimum of working layers--I use the 3-layer balloon method so I don't have to "unite" at the end, etc.

Economy--so I can concentrate on balloon placement and storytelling. To the casual observer, it may seem anal, but I do hundreds of pages per month and the time saved adds up. I can read on the can, watch a TV show at the end of the day, or sign on to this site and rant. All thanks to OCD.


Kurt Hathaway
khathawayart@gmail.com