InDesign FX: Creating looks without fill

Published by | Thursday, April 11th, 2013

If this week’s InDesign FX video leaves you with an “empty” feeling, don’t worry—that’s exactly what we’re aiming for, as we explore “no fill” effects in Adobe InDesign.



These effects can vary widely in their looks, but they all help to integrate type with a background photo. Removing the fill makes the type seem more like just another element in the photo, and less like something you added on top of the photo. This is especially true when you make an effort to match the angles of lighting with the highlights and shadows in effects like Bevel and Emboss.

In the top example, a large Outer Glow creates a soft lighting effect, somewhat like a neon sign.



The middle example shows how you can use an Inner Shadow on a white stroke to create a metallic look, like the letters are made out of bent wire.



The bottom example shows how you can use Inner Glow, with a maximum amount of noise to create a gritty texture like chalk or sand.



Of course these examples barely scratch the surface of what you can do with no-fill effects applied to text or shapes. Use them as starting points for your own experiments. Tweak the settings, combine effects, and come up with your own new variations.

For members, I have another new video that’s one of my all-time favorites in the InDesign FX series. It shows how to create beautiful, unique spiral patterns from simple, random lines. The technique is easy and it always produces interesting and unexpected results.



See you here again in two weeks with another InDesign effect!

Interested in more?

• Start a free trial membership at
• The entire InDesign FX biweekly series
• Courses by Mike Rankin on
• All InDesign courses on

Adobe and InDesign are registered trademarks of Adobe Systems Incorporated.

Share this:Share on Facebook2Tweet about this on Twitter4Share on Google+0Pin on Pinterest0Share on LinkedIn2 - start learning today

Tags: , , ,

Leave a Reply