Subscribe / Unsubscribe Enewsletters | Login | Register

Pencil Banner

Creaticity: The trick to adding text to a print layout in Lightroom

Lesa Snider | Dec. 18, 2014
Lightroom's Print module makes it easy to design gorgeous print templates, but adding custom text to a print layout is tricky. Oddly enough, Lightroom's Identity Plate feature is the easiest way to get it done, though formatting text can be challenging. In this column you'll learn how to create a new identity plate for use in a print layout, how to create a multi-line identity plate, and how to design your own plate in image editing software.

Formatting text you can't see

To edit the text and its formatting, reopen the editor by double-clicking the text box in your print layout. Since you can't see the second line of text in the editor, here's the trick to formatting it: type the second line first, format it to your liking, use the Option-Return key trick mentioned above to add a line, and then use your keyboard's up arrow key to get back to the first line in order to type and format that first line. It's weird but it works.

To control the overall size of the new identity plate, use the Page panel's Scale slider. However, to change font size of individual lines of text, you have to reopen the identity plate editor and tweak the font size — it'll be impossible to highlight the second line of text in order to resize it, so you may need to start over. Nevertheless, after several (possibly frustrating) moments of experimentation, you'll get the text formatted just right.

It's easier with help

For more control, and the ability to see the identity plate as you're creating it (!), use an image editor such as Photoshop, Photoshop Elements, or Pixelmator. Simply create a new document at the size and resolution of your Lightroom print, style your text, and then crop the document down to the size of the text (Photoshop's Image > Trim command is handy for this).

Choose File > Save As and pick PNG from the resulting dialog's format menu so your text stays crisp. To create a transparent identity plate, turn off the visibility of any colored background layer before saving the file as a PNG. Over in Lightroom, open the identity plate editor as described earlier, turn on the "Use a graphical style identity plate" radio button, and then follow the onscreen instructions to import your new graphic.

As you can see, it takes a little effort to add custom text to your Lightroom prints but it can be worth it and the results make great gifts! Until next time, may the creative force be with you all!


Previous Page  1  2 

Sign up for Computerworld eNewsletters.