How to Get Rid of White Space Around a Photo With InDesign

By Laurel Storm

If you drop a photo with a white background on top of a colored content frame in InDesign, the background isn't automatically removed. Similarly, text, by default, remains in a rectangular frame. Just because digital images are unavoidably rectangular, though, doesn't mean that the layout of your documents must inevitably follow straight lines. Instead, you can hide the background of an image, so that whatever is behind it shows through, and wrap text around the contours of any shape.

Removing a White Background

Step 1

Launch Adobe InDesign, open your document, click the "Selection" tool in the Tools bar, and then click to select the image from which you want to remove the background.

Step 2

Press "Ctrl-Alt-Shift-K" to open the Clipping Path dialog box, and then select the "Detect Edges" option from the "Type" drop-down menu.

Step 3

Activate the "Preview" check box to see a live preview of what your image will look like with the background removed. Adjust the "Threshold" and "Tolerance" sliders until you are satisfied with the result, and then click "OK."

Adjust the resulting clipping path to hide any parts of the background that were missed by the automated tool, if necessary (see Resources).

Wrapping Text Around Your Image

Step 1

Click the "Selection" tool in the Tools bar, and then click the photo around which you want to wrap text to select it.

Step 2

Press "Alt-Ctrl-W" to display the Text Wrap panel, if it isn't already visible.

Step 3

Click the "Wrap Around Object Shape" button. Any text that would ordinarily be placed over the image now wraps around it.

Step 4

Choose how the text wraps around the image by selecting an option from the "Wrap To" drop-down menu. If you're unsure which option to select, try them all and pick the one that looks best.

Adjust the values in the Offset text fields, if necessary, to move the wrapped text closer to or farther away from the image. Positive values move the text farther away, while negative ones move it closer.