How to Import Bitmap Images into Flash CS5 - dummies

By Jennifer Smith, Christopher Smith, Fred Gerantabee

When you need to make use of a photo or graphic file in Adobe Flash Creative Suite 5, such as JPEG, GIF, or PNG, import it into Flash by choosing File→Import.

Imported bitmaps are added to your library as assets. Assets aren’t to be mistaken for symbols, which you can duplicate and manage from the library. Assets are simply non-Flash items that you import, store, and use throughout your movie. Although bitmap assets can be converted to symbols, they’re not automatically converted on import; you still need to add them as symbols.

To import a bitmap image, follow these steps:

  1. In a new Flash document, choose File→Import→Import to Stage.

    The Import dialog box appears, asking you to find a file on your local computer.

To import an image (or images) to the library for later use, such as a series of photos that will be used in a photo gallery, choose File→Import→Import to Library. This command places the chosen images directly in the library so that you can use them when you’re ready.

  1. Locate on your hard drive a bitmap file such as JPEG or GIF, select it, and click Open (Windows) or Import (Mac).

    The file is imported and placed on your stage on the active layer.

  2. Locate and open the Library panel (choose Window→Library), and you see that the bitmap has also been placed in your library.

If you try to import an image to the stage and the active layer is locked, the Import to Stage option is unavailable (grayed out). In that case, choose a different, unlocked layer or unlock the active layer.