PDF2DTP – PDF to InDesign – Interview with graphic designer Glen Saville

Good day everybody. David Dilling from Markzware. And today we’re going to ichat in,
via iSight here on the Macintosh, one of our valued customers, his name is Glen Saville. We are going to find out what he does and also, most excitingly,
what he thinks about a new product he’s beta tested for Markzware called PDF2DTP to get PDF files right back into your native desktop publishing environment, inside QuarkXPress or Adobe InDesign. Alright, so let’s give Glenn a call here. Hi glen! Hi, my name’s Glen Saville, I’ve been a book designer for quite a few years and art director at Simon and Schuster UK. I have been in books and self employed for the last ten years. I primarily work on book covers and I do all sorts of graphic design,
basically anything that comes along. That’s my background. So, a broad background. From art director
to book designer or graphic designer. Yes, I started out before the computers came in, so I’ve experienced it
really the old-fashioned, hard way, sticking bits of paper
onto other bits of paper. Wow, so did a founder of Markzware,
Patrick Marchese. He used to do
exactly the same thing over there at Foote Koone and Belding
is where he started, which was an advertising agency
and that was a big change, computers. It is, I mean Macs came along and it was like some pressed a magic button and said, this is what you have been waiting for. I love the technology and I
have always thought you’re better able to meet the demand
of what your customers want if you keep an eye on new technology and new tools that can help you do the design job. Q2ID and ID2Q from Markzware, for example,
have always been really useful plugins. I’ve used FlightCheck as well, excellent software which saves time. Great! As a self-employed graphic designer saving my time means that
I can work on more jobs. So if it is saving me, I’m very interested in it! And just another point, Glen.
You mentioned FlightCheck. Did you know that FlightCheck…
Well, you probably know that FlightCheck collects and packages
InDesign and Quark files, with all fonts, images and artwork,
but it also will package Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator files as well, which, you know, now-a-days in InDesign, you have a package feature, but in Illustrator and Photoshop
you don’t. So, if you ever create complex artwork where you have fonts
which you don’t want to convert to
outlines just yet, you can use FlightCheck to also
collect or package the fonts and images used. Yeah, a lot
of people overlook that. So, I thought I’d mention it.
FlightCheck is a very useful tool. Right, excellent! Cool. It works for people who need it.
I am on Adobe CS6 and on lots of the InDesign work, a lot of clients are
still on InDesign CS4. My main sort of love
is Adobe Photoshop. So, Photoshop CS6 is the
first thing that get’s launched and then the CS version of
InDesign I need to use that particular day. Have you tried that new
Content Fill Aware feature
in Adobe Photoshop CS6? Ah, yeah, fantastic, absolutely
fantastic. It is almost like there is this little man inside Photoshop, thinking for you. [laughing erupts]
Yeah, It’s amazing, the technology and great job Adobe has done here. I like what Adobe has done with
it, and it is just so much faster. If you compare Photoshop CS6 to CS4 the speed of it is quite astonishing. Yeah, thanks for the
background information, Glen. How did you hear about
PDF2DTP in particular?
Was it an email or a… I go to the InDesign User Group for London. Unfortunately, I couldn’t make the last one. On the catch-up email they sent around the PDF2DTP for InDesign beta link and I
thought, “Oh, I better have a look at this.” And, coincidentally, the very next day, I had email from a customer that has two design jobs that they ONLY have PDFs for!
So, wow, this was a wonderful opportunity to
test PDF2DTP for InDesign in real-time; because, there is nothing like having
something that you need to make a deadline on, to actually test something
and see how it works.
Great! I was very, very impressed with that first
beta version of PDF2DTP for InDesign! It gave me the option to create style sheets from the text that
was in the PDF. It gave me the option to export graphics I think the thing that most amazed me was the fact that
there was a lot of placed EPS in those PDF jobs and it converted those to InDesign objects. Right there I thought, “I must
have this (PDF2DTP for InDesign)!” [laughs] As the betas improved, it
got even better and better but unfortunately the beta is closed
now and I have another PDF job I needed converted into InDesign! I really found myself
missing the plugin (PDF2DTP) Very, very exciting!
I think the thing for me
was that, usually with a beta you expect a few problems here and there,
but I’m very impressed with how stable PDF2DTP was right from the outset.
There were little tiny things,
like spaces in URLS, little things that happen,
and you think that it is a nightmare. It was just so impressive,
right out of the box! Saved me a lot of time. Great, the (Markzware) engineers
will love to hear that! Like I said, you know, when I
worked on this other job, I really, really found myself missing the plugin. It really wasn’t much fun without PDF2DTP!
Wow, yeah. I did that new job now where all I had was
the PDF, but it must have taken twice as long. Just a general question:
How many PDFs do you have on your hard drive or your back up drives?
How many PDFs do you personally think you have? Thousands. Absolutely thousands. Companies archive and sometimes
all they have saved is the PDF. So this is a tool that I am very interested in. Quite often, you’re having
to re-create the job from practically nothing,
other than a preview PDF. Having PDF2DTP InDesign you have that
extra ability to meet customers demands without it taking forever to do. Yeah, interesting.
Very interested about that. I have worked with various different
publishers (book publishing companies) and I have seen how archives
get in a mess, and this tool (PDF2DTP) really will be a game-changer PDF2DTP really will be a game-changer
for people who understand just what it can do for them. It is not just the ability to re-create the PDF job and re-purpose it for a re-print,
for instance, for a publisher. It is also the fact that the
publisher may want to create an audio book and all they have is
a PDF of the cover. PDF2DTP enables publishers to get at some of the lost source material, so that they can re-create it. Corruptions. You only have to leave a CD in the sunlight for a summer and some of those files
are going to be corrupted. Yeah, they get baked. I just think this (PDF2DTP) will be an indispensable tool for anyone who is dealing day-in-day-out with new and old files. I would recommend that most make sure they have a copy of this (PDF2DTP), because it is something that could get them out of a sticky corner, very, very quickly. Yes, we think so too,
but it is great to hear this from a real user and a real
beta tester. This is exactly what we have been thinking, so, thank you, Glen. Well, the thing with the beta is, that was used on a real job. It wasn’t something where I was tinkering around with something I already had. This was real (design) work. So, it saved me time.
Yeah. So, yeah, when you export text
from it, you… I mean, the latest version of
Adobe Acrobat is better than previous versions. and you can export to a Word file, rich text format, so on and so forth, but it’s still, a mess. You know, someone’s put something in an extra box (in Quark
or InDesign) to work with a run-around and suddenly you get this text in the created PDF. Via Acrobat that exported text
ends up not even on the same page as the text where the rest of it was on (in the layout). whereas, at least the
plugin (PDF2DTP) understood that was on the same page. It actually knew the page it was on. When you export text from Acrobat, it’s not much fun. Let’s face it, most of the jobs where
someone wants something to convert from an old PDF (to InDesign), they’re not going to want
to spend a fortune. Now, if you can save time… You know, the payment you’re
going to make for it (PDF2DTP) is definitely going to be worth the money. Just get 1 or 2 of these PDF jobs
a year and it’s going to pay for itself in the time that it’ll save you,
not just time you’re spending re-doing the PDFs the long way; it’s the time your losing on other design work. Yeah, Glen is using PDF2DTP for InDesign, there also is a QuarkXPress version for Quark users, as well. OK, let’s see here, Glen, you know, you’ve answered a lot of my questions.
You’re giving great information. have you ever had a layout, you know, the InDesign, or even a
Quark, file go corrupt and all you had left
was a PDF file? Yes, yes I have. I was working on a catalog
and the (layout) file went corrupt and we basically had to re-create from the last save. and, you know, it would have been nice to be able
to extract some of the information because I think it would have
saved us time re-creating this. Invariably, these things go corrupt when
all the other designers have gone home. So, back then I had to
re-type all of the text and format. So from my point of view,
this (PDF2DTP) will be
an indispensable tool, because… a lot of the work I get is all about opening up the
files the customers give me.
Just having that extra tool to be able to even look at how a file works, is just going to save
me a lot of time. I mean, my experience
with the beta convinced me straight away. I mean, on the first run, straight away, I wanted to get this product! Wow! Do you ever find PDFs on the
internet or whatever it might be,
where you think, “Oh, wow, I’d like to pop that (PDF) open in
InDesign.” Do you see a use there for PDF2DTP? I can see a use for it. Well, I think, I mean, for somebody that is a book cover designer, when you’re designing a cover, you’re given all kinds of source material to look at and to do things and quite often, you may be given a PDF to look at, and just having that, I mean, I did some books a few years ago on Suduko files and I think having PDF2DTP would be quite handy. As you can imagine, it’s quite laborious, I found myself almost falling asleep working on them! (laughs) Whatever uses, I mean, you gave a lot
of real-life scenarios here, but do you have any other ideas or uses that
you could see for PDF2DTP (PDF to
InDesign or PDF to QuarkXPress) being used…? Yeah, I have a publisher, which is kind of small and they haven’t got a huge budget, and they asked me to do
updates on their website. They have advanced information
sheets in PDF format for their books, and they generally send me a PDF,
and it’s, you know, because it’s opening the PDF, selecting the text and copying pasting it, and then putting everything into HTML. Being able to open that and have it straight into InDesign means that I can copy and
paste the text much quicker, so it just
saves me time on a job that’s not earning me
a great deal of money, so I can see actually uses for this. I think it is like most of these plugins, you find uses for it, as you go along. What I found interesting was the fact
the moment I installed the beta of PDF2DTP for InDesign, I actually had two real jobs and then when the beta expired I had another two jobs.
So I got to experience the difference between using the
plugin and not using the plugin. PDF2DTP does save time,
so I was very, very happy. Great. Well, Glen, it has
been a pleasure meeting you and hearing your real-life feedback, as a graphic designer, book cover designer, and art director and how you can see PDF2DTP for InDesign being extremely useful. We really appreciate your time. OK, thanks very much indeed. thank you for your business. OK, thank you very much. Thank you Glen for taking the
time to answer the questions. Very interesting workflow. Nice (design) work you do there and great
to hear you’re so excited about PDF2DTP
from Markzware, in this case, for InDesign For all of you out there who would like more information on PDF2DTP, cruise on over to Markzware.com today
and check it out for yourself. Hopefully, by the time you’re viewing this,
it (PDF2DTP) will be shipping. Thank you, David Dilling from Markzware,
on behalf of Markzware and Glen,
wishing you a fantastic day!

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