Friday, January 05, 2007

Extracting portions of a Pages document for separate use

Sometimes I need to have just a small portion of a Pages document to display or send out separately from everything else on the page. For instance, just the photo with a caption (not the full file photo, but exactly as it appears in the document), or just the laid-out article without the ads or other material on the page, or a part of the page to upload to the web.

A full PDF of the page is ok in most cases. But now and again I've needed to have just a particular area of the page to display. Here is how I do it:

- Prepare a PDF of the full page;
- in Acrobat go to Document - Crop Pages. Dialogue window opens. Here it's straightforward: adjust the measurements in the dialogue window so the dotted lines surround the area you want to extract. The changes are instantly viewable. Or, even easier, click on dotted lines and drag to fit around the area to extract;
- hit Return - and you get a crisp new PDF of just the part of the Pages document you want as a separate file.

This is useful when you want to have a picture with a caption, or a table or graph, or a map to use separately, i.e. to send via e-mail, to upload to an internet site, to print out etc.

Of course, Grab utility or Screenshot option (Shift-⌘-4) can be used to do the same thing, but the files you get never have the same high quality as a cropped PDF which retains the crispness of the original document.

If anyone knows a quicker way of extracting portions of PDFs I would appreciate your comments and advice.

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