How do I create a gradient in Adobe® InDesign®?

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Create the gradient

  • Open Swatches palette
  • InDesign CS5, CS4 and CS3: Choose New Gradient Swatch from the Swatches panel menu
  • InDesign CS2 and CS: Choose New Gradient from the Swatches palette menu
    • Type a name for the gradient
    • In the Type: field, Choose Linear or Radial
    • Click on the left color stop in the Gradient Ramp (Color stop)
    • In the Stop Color: field, choose Swatches for the color type
    • Click on a color from the list
    • Click on the right color stop in the Gradient Ramp (Color stop)
    • In the Stop Color: field, choose Swatches for the color type
    • Click on a color from the list
    • Adjust the midpoint control to change the position where the two colors mix.

    InDesign CS4 Create New Gradient

    • To add more color stops, click below the Gradient Ramp.
    •  InDesign CS4 Gradient Ramp
    • Color stops can be moved to new positions by dragging.
    • To delete a color stop, just drag it away from the ramp.
  • Click OK to add the gradient to the Swatches palette
  • Click Add to add the gradient to the Swatches palette and be able to define a new gradient.

InDesign CS4 Swatches with gradientsApply gradient to an object

  • Select the object with the Selection tool
  • Open the Swatches palette
    • Choose the Fill icon
    • Click on the gradient swatch
  • To adjust the gradient
    • Select the object with the Selection tool
    • Choose the Gradient tool from the toolbox
    • Drag the gradient tool over the object in the direction the gradient should follow.

InDesign - Change gradient angle

InDesign - ovals with gradients

Apply gradient to text

  • Create the text with the Type tool
    • Highlight the text with the Type tool or 
    • Convert the text to outlines
      • Select the text with the Selection tool
      • Go to Type>Create Outlines
  • Open the Swatches palette
    • Click on the Fill icon
    • Click on a gradient swatch
  • To adjust the gradient
    • Choose the Gradient tool from the toolbox
    • Drag the gradient tool over the text in the direction the gradient should follow.
  • A stroke can be added to the text also
    • Click on the Stroke icon in the Swatches palette to bring it to the front
    • Click on a color in the palette
  • To change the stroke size, open the Stroke palette
    • Weight: Choose a stroke size from the pop-up menu

InDesign - Text with gradient