Q 1. I know that PDF portfolios are just as common as a tangible book portfolio. But how do I make one? Photoshop? Acrobat? Do I convert my Photoshop files to JPEG? What size should I make my pages? 8x11? 10x13? Resolution? How many megabytes is an acceptable size for a PDF?
Q 2. I have 6 images that I want to put together in one pdf file.
I can create a single pdf file using adobe illustrator, but that’s as far as i can go.
I don't have adobe acrobat pro, or anything of the sort.
How can I create a portfolio without having to purchase any software?
PDF presentations are becoming more and more popular. I guess it's nicer to send one complete PDF file to client that is put in order rather than sending a bunch of individual jpegs.
Solution 1. If you have InDesign, just drop every image to a separate page and export the whole thing. InDesign is made by Adobe. If you have Creative Suite, you have InDesign.
Solution 2. If you have your jpegs ready there is a very quick and easy way to put them into a PDF file using Photoshop. Open all the files. Select File/ Automate/ PDF Presentation. You will have an option to include all open files on the very top of the window, switch it on.
Now, drag around the files names in the window to put the images in order.
You can select from the options to have a simple multi page document or a slideshow with transition and timing. The latter is great for portfolios, but will only display properly if your client is using Acrobat Reader. Otherwise it will be a simple multi-page document.
In the next dialog window you will have many options. One useful feature is to give a password to protect the document. Unfortunately this feature makes the document lose its thumbs in Preview.
Solution 3. If you don't know InDesign and you have CS4 you can also do it very well from Illustrator. Illustrator supports multiple artboards which get translated into pdf pages. Just make as many artboards as you need pages (you can add or remove with the new artboard tool if you like), specify the size you like.
This being done in Illustrator all of the vector data will be output as vectors and the text will be actual text so the whole file will take up less space.
After you're done save your file as PDF. It will output to a fairly large file. Open the pdf in Acrobat (Professional not the Reader), go to file-save as, choose Adobe PDF Optimized - click settings and set your compression preferences. (I use Bicubic downsampling to 100 ppi for images above 150; Compression Jpeg, Quality: High)
I think a monitor resolution is best for an electronic format, like 1024/768 because the portfolio will most likely be viewed on a computer. Also it will take less space than using a print format and it will fit better on an e-mail.
The images will most likely not look like the jpegs on your computer due to the downsampling and the way that Acrobat handles zoomed images but this is to be expected and hopefully good design shines through choppy images.
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