How to Create a Multi-State Object Slideshow in Adobe InDesign

The Object States Panel can create multiple versions, or states, of an object in a layout. With the addition of navigation buttons, an interactive slideshow can be produced.

This feature works the same in InDesign CS5, CS6, and CC versions.

  1. Go to the Window menu, scroll to Interactive, and choose Object States.
    Object States in Window Menu

  2. Using the Selection Tool, select an image frame, then go to the Object States Panel and click the Convert button at the lower right.
    Convert Button

  3. Highlight the Object Name field at the top of the panel and type "images".

  4. Two states are created that will be listed in the panel. It's important to be aware of which state is highlighted. Make sure the second state is selected, then go to the center of the image frame and click when the cursor changes to the hand icon to activate the content.
    Hand Icon in Center of Image Frame

  5. Go to the File menu and choose Place. In the dialog box, turn on Replace Selected Item and choose a different image.
    Place Dialog Box

  6. To add additional images, click back on the image frame, then go to the Object States Panel and click the Create New State button.
    Create New State in Object States Panel

  7. Repeat Steps 4–5 for the third state.

  8. Repeat Step 6, then Steps 4–5 to add as many images as needed.

  9. Next, you'll add buttons to let the viewer navigate the slideshow. Go to the Window menu, scroll to Interactive, and choose Buttons and Forms.
    Buttons and Forms in Window Menu

  10. Click the Buttons and Forms Panel Menu and select Sample Buttons And Forms.
    Buttons Panel Menu

  11. Use any right-pointing arrow button you like. To add to the layout, click and hold on the button and drag it to the page.
    Sample Buttons And Forms

  12. Repeat Step 11 to add a left-pointing arrow button.

  13. Sample buttons already have default actions assigned to them, so now you'll customize the action. Select the right-pointing button in the layout and go to the Buttons and Forms Panel. Name the button "Next".
    Buttons and Forms Panel

  14. The Go To Next Page default action is assigned. Delete it by clicking the Delete Selected Action button. Click OK on the message.
    Selected Action Button

  15. Create a new action by clicking the Add New Action button and choosing Go To Next State from the menu.
    Add New Action

  16. In the layout, select the left-pointing arrow button. Repeat Steps 13–14, naming the button "Previous".

  17. Click the Add New Action button and choose Go To Previous State from the menu.
    Go To Previous State

  18. Because the images multi-state object is the only interactive object on the page, it is detected by each button in the Buttons and Forms Object menu. Also note that there's a Stop at... option that can be turned on for each button.
    Settings for Next and Previous Buttons

  19. To export the slideshow as a SWF, go to the File menu and select Export.
    Export in File Menu

  20. Select Flash Player (SWF) from the Save as type menu and click Save.
    Export Dialog Box

  21. In the next dialog box, check Generate HTML File and View SWF after Exporting. Set Interactivity and Media to Include All, and click OK.
    Export Dialog Box
Author: Kate Cahill

Kate Cahill is a graphic designer, writer, and creative director who has developed content for print and web. As creative director, she has produced award-winning work for agencies focused on the pharmaceutical and health and beauty aid industries. She has also served as production manager, with responsibility for the successful fulfillment of long-run print contracts. Kate has been delivering training for Webucator clients since 2010. Her enthusiasm for cutting-edge technology, combined with hands-on practical experience, brings an added benefit to her classes. Kate teaches real-world techniques and integration of Adobe software, as well as Microsoft PowerPoint, to produce a fully developed and cohesive brand identity.

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