Monday, November 8, 2010

Windows Live Writer - Adding Captions

Switching to Windows Live Writer from the Blogger post editor has worked wonders for me. But admittedly nothing is perfect; I noticed one function Writer does not have: adding image or photo captions.

I listed below three workarounds on adding image/photo captions using Windows Live Writer, with each having its own advantages.

Note: This guide was created using Windows Live Writer 2011 installed on Windows 7 operating system.

Watermark

The easiest, and possibly the best, method to add captions to images is through watermarking.

How to watermark a image/photo:

  1. Select (by left-clicking) the desired image/photo to watermark.
  2. Once selected, go to the Format tab that appears on the ribbon toolbar.
  3. In the Picture styles group, click Watermark.
  4. A dialog box will appear where you can customize your watermark.

Only the text, its font, font size and position on the image/photo may be customized. The text must fit in one line only, since there is no option to wrap text.

Watermark is a convenient way to copyright your photos. When positioned cleverly, a watermark can deter people from using the image as their own without acknowledging you as source.

Be careful with the positioning though, or your image or photo may lose its beauty; We don’t want to distract your viewers with annoying text.

Polaroid Picture Plugin

Writer has a free-for-download plugin called Polaroid Picture. It is similar to the normal inserting of pictures but presents the pictures a la Polaroid style.

How to insert a picture and add captions via the Polaroid Picture plugin:

  1. Download and install the plugin.
  2. Once installed, click Polaroid Picture… that appears on the list in the Plug-ins group on the Insert tab.
  3. Browse and select your desired picture.
  4. If the inserted picture is selected, the plugin’s options pane appears at the right side of Writer.
  5. At the options pane you will find the ability to add the caption for your picture.

The caption is positioned below the photo and aligned in the center.  Unlike the watermark, captions using this plugin is multiline when the text becomes too long. There are also more options for the font’s appearance.

Borderless Table

The last method is done by inserting a 1x2 (1 column, 2 rows) table with no visible borders. The first row contains the photo while the second has the corresponding caption.

How to insert a borderless table:

  1. On the Insert tab, click Table to open the Insert Table dialog box.
  2. Enter 2 for Rows, 1 for Columns.
  3. The width depends on the size of your photo. (This can be adjusted later.)
  4. Uncheck Show table border.
  5. Click Insert to finish.
  6. Insert the photo in the first row and the caption in the next row.

Chrysanthemum

Note that while editing your post, dotted lines represent the borders of your table. This will disappear when you publish the post, as shown in the photo above or when viewed in Writer’s preview.

Also, the borderless table method is excellent for inserting pictures from the web, as pictures stored online cannot be edited.