[OS X TeX] using Latexit

Jens Nöckel noeckel at uoregon.edu
Mon Aug 22 04:32:13 CEST 2005

Hi - just subscribed to the list recently, so excuse me if I'm 
duplicating information given earlier (I know these issues have been 
around for a long time). As Pierre Chatelier knows, I've been quite 
interested in LaTeXiT for use with Illustrator...

On Aug 21, 2005, at 4:26 PM, Charles Chapman Pugh wrote:

> Hello.
> I'm trying to use Latexit 1.4.0 with Tiger, Adobe Illustrator 10.0.3, 
> and/or Canvas 8, to make figure labels in Latex format. Latexit looks 
> like just what I need.  One feature of the labels that I want is that 
> they have an opaque white background.  This makes them easier to read 
> because they don't interact with the figure they label.   There are a 
> few issues.
> 1.  Latexit is listed in the Services submenus of both the drawing 
> programs, but when an expression such as \frac{df}{dx}  is typed onto 
> the art display area and highlighted, the Latexit service stays grayed 
> out and unusable.  Not crucial, but it would be nice to have this type 
> of interface.
This is really not possible as far as I know. I agree it would be nice 
because it conforms more to the ideal of a monolithic application where 
everything is accessible from within one main window.
> 2.  Direct drag and drop from Latexit to the drawing programs seems to 
> produce no result.  Nothing drops.
As for this problem, I observed two different behaviors with 
Illustrator CS, depending on the OS X version: with Tiger, dragging 
into Illustrator from LaTeXiT works without restrictions: I can drag 
directly onto the artboard or also onto the Illustratot ICON. With 
Panther, I can still drag into any open artboard in Illustrator, but 
dragging onto the Illustrator icon has no effect.

Perhaps you're seeing something different, though: if you don't have 
the proper fonts installed in Illustrator, then it might be that 
something is dropped into the artboard but just not displayed properly. 
In Illustrator, if you go to the Type menu and choose "Find Fonts...", 
it might give you a clue whether there are objects whose fonts are not 
known by Illustrator (they'd be in <angle brackets>, if I recall 
> 3.  When a label such as the above df/dx is typed and saved by Latexit 
> as a pdf file, Canvas gets stuck when asked to place it (no response 
> for indefinite time).  Canvas does agree to place the corresponding 
> eps file, after converting it to Canvas format.  Illustrator, on the 
> other hand, will place the pdf file on its artboard.
  Can you open the output EPS file in Preview (assuming Tiger) or  maybe 
TeXShop? That would be a way to check if it's defective... another way 
would of course be ghostview. I only have an old version of Canvas,  
never use it because it has no pdf import. So can't say anything else 
about the EPS problem...
However, for Illustrator, it's important to keep in mind the 
distinction between placing and importing. Placing means you can't edit 
the object. That matters for what you asked next. However, for 
importing you have to make sure Illustrator has the fonts you need (see 

> 4.  Both Canvas and Illustrator place the label object with a 
> transparent background.  I've tried creating the label with a colored 
> background in Latexit, and although the background display in Latexit 
> is colored, the color is lost when pasted into the drawing programs.  
> Likewise I can't seem to make the drawing programs add an opaque fill 
> to the object, so it blocks out the part of the figure under it.
You can't do that directly. With a placed object, all you can do is to 
draw a box with the desired fill over the object, then put it behind 
the object and perhaps group it with the original object.
With an _imported_ pdf or eps, Illustrator will let you select any 
individual letter or the whole text, and you'll see that the fill color 
is the color of the letters themselves while the border is absent. 
There is no background fill because there is no background object to 
fill. If you want to have that created right in LaTeXiT, you may want 
to try the following simple trick:
This way LaTeXiT creates a pdf with a box around your equation (leave 
out the \displaystyle if you want an inline style formula). When 
imported (or dropped) into LaTeX, it should then be possible to select 
only the box element and give it a fill color of your choice. I figured 
that there's no point suggesting any fancy color box within LaTeXiT 
because you obviously want to go on doing the rest of the job in 
Illustrator anyway.

The remaining problem is how to get this kind of import to work in 
Illustrator with LaTeX math fonts. I have some info about this on my 
web page, so I won't repeat that here but just give the link:
You may want to try the easiest solution first, which involves the 
TeX/Illustrator Fonts by Alberto Arabia. I've also tried the ones by 
Selwyn Hollis but they conflict with another application I have (LyX).

Hope this helps,


Jens Uwe Nöckel
Assistant Professor
Department of Physics
University of Oregon

--------------------- Info ---------------------
Mac-TeX Website: http://www.esm.psu.edu/mac-tex/
           & FAQ: http://latex.yauh.de/faq/
TeX FAQ: http://www.tex.ac.uk/faq
List Post: <mailto:MacOSX-TeX at email.esm.psu.edu>

More information about the macostex-archives mailing list