How to use Pages to create PDFs + My experience of the passions challenge

PDF - image by Robyna MayThis month, we have been concentrating on our passions and talents and finding ways to share our value.  My passion and talent sweet spot lies within design and IT. So today, I want to show you how to use Mac’s Pages to create printable PDFs.

For those that blog and use a Mac, you might find the tutorial useful. For those that use Pages*, you might discover some thing you didn’t know.

Note: the latest version of Pages is quite different from the one shown here.  If I have time, I will do another video on how to do the same thing with Pages 5.5.

If you are one of those people who are too impatient to watch YouTube videos (I am one of those people), then here is a summary of my top four tips. They are all in the video, so go there if you need more information.

>> Colour Picker <<
The colour picker within Pages (you access it by clicking on the colour in the toolbar and then choosing the magnifying glass) allows you to select any colour on your screen. So if you want your text, border or fill to match the colour of your site, it’s really easy.  You can also use the colour inspector to find out the hex number of a particular colour, making it very useful when choosing and documenting blog colour schemes.  This is still available in Pages 5.5, but it now looks like a pipette and is located at the bottom of the colour inspector.

>> Align Objects <<
No-one wants to spend time trying to align objects by hand. You don’t need to. Select all the objects you wish to distribute across your document (use ctrl + a to select all), choose Arrange > Distribute Objects > Horizontally.  Want to make sure they all line up?  Choose Arrange > Align Objects and choose from the menu.

>> Floating and Wrapping <<
Pages is a page layout tool as well as a word processor and it’s really useful for manipulating text and object boxes. If your objects aren’t behaving in the way you would like, it might be that they don’t have the correct float and wrap settings. If you are wanting complete control over where you place your object, make sure it’s floating with no wrap selected. In Pages 5.5, this is available in right hand inspector bar (which shows automatically) under Arrange.  You want to select Stay on Page and Text Wrap > None.

>> Bonus Extra: Creating an image from your PDF <<
When you create your PDF, it’s handy to also have an image of it. You can use this on your blog to link to your PDF and to provide an image for Pinterest. To do this easily, you can open your PDF using Preview (the icon looks like a couple of photos with a photo magnifier).  From this program, you can choose to export to an image file.

 I chose to share this with you because IT and design have always been passions of mine.  As part of our passions challenge, I thought about the things that came easily to me, but may not to others. IT and design was top of the list.

 You can find this month’s challenge here.
It’s all about re-igniting your passion and realising your value.

Passions - Image Credit Robyna May

In doing this month’s challenge, I reflected on the things that have brought me the most joy over the years. Writing, designing and coding featured heavily and have since I was quite young. I am grateful that my career has aligned with these particular passions.

I am also grateful that certain things in my life have shifted to allow me to pursue my love of writing. What I need to work on now is balance – how can I integrate these passions into my life without robbing my family of time that belongs to them?  When you become particularly passionate about something – when it grabs you and won’t loosen its hold – how do you be present in the other moments in your life? These are questions that I need to answer – if only for the sake of my poor husband.

*Pages is a word processing and page layout application available on Mac. 

Where does your talent and passion intersect?  Have any Pages tricks? Have a passion that has overtaken your life?