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2. Copy and paste into Photoshop.

Now let's bring our box into Photoshop as a Smart Object. Choose Edit > Copy. You could just as easily use Edit > Cut if you like to live on the edge. Open Photoshop if it's not open already, and select File > New. Photoshop is smart when it comes to copy-and-paste. It knows the size of your Illustrator artwork on the clipboard. You'll see that the new document Size field is automatically set to what's on the clipboard.

You may wish to change the size of this document as well as the actual resolution. In this case (Figure 2), we made our document slightly larger so that we could add a drop shadow later on. We also chose a transparent background, so that when we place it into InDesign later, we can use a different background color if we like.

Go ahead and click OK to make the new document; then select Edit > Paste, or the shortcut Command+V (Mac) or Ctrl+V (Windows). You'll be courteously prompted by Photoshop as to how you want this clipboard entity pasted. No surprise here: Select Smart Object.

The Smart Object itself is pure genius. When you paste, you're in fact embedding the Illustrator artwork into this Photoshop file. Not linking; embedding. This is important. You can still edit this artwork by simply double-clicking on its icon in Photoshop's Layers panel. It will launch in Illustrator and allow you to edit it. We'll look at that in more detail later on.

Figure 2

Figure 2 Pasting your artwork into a new Photoshop document as a Smart Object layer

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