How to Change the Color of a PDF Document

Adobe Acrobat’s Portable Document Format (PDF) is primarily an end-user format. While you can make some changes in Acrobat Pro, it’s usually easier to make formatting changes, such as background and font colors, in the “host” application—the program in which you originally created the document, such as Word or InDesign. However, you can make some color changes to your PDFs with Acrobat Pro’s “Background” and “Text TouchUp” features.

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Changing PDF background and font colors.

Changing a PDF’s Background Color

Step

Open the PDF in Acrobat Pro like this: Click “File” on the menu bar and choose “Open.” You will see the Open dialog box. Navigate to the PDF, select it, and click the “Open” button.

Step

Click “Document” on the menu bar, choose “Background,” and then select “Add/Replace” from the fly-out menu. This opens the Add Background dialog box.

Step

Click the “From Color” radio button to select it.

Step

Click a color swatch next to “From Color.” Choose a color from the swatches on the drop-down, or click “Other Color” to create a color in the “Color” dialog box.

Step

Click “OK” to apply the color and close the Add Background dialog box.

Changing PDF Font Colors

Step

Open the PDF in Acrobat Pro like this: Click “File” on the menu bar and choose “Open.” When you see the Open dialog box, navigate to the PDF, select it, and click the “Open” button.

Step

Click “Tools” on the menu bar and choose “Advanced Editing,” and then select “TouchUp Text Tool” from the fly-out menu.

Step

Drag the mouse cursor over the text you want to change to highlight it. (PDFs break large blocks of text into smaller blocks based on paragraph breaks. You can select only one paragraph at time.)

Step

Right-click the selected text and choose “Properties” from the fly-out menu. This opens the TouchUp Properties dialog box.

Step

Click a color swatch next to “Fill.” Choose the color from swatches on the drop-down, or click “Other Color” to create a color in the “Color” dialog box. Click “Close” to apply the color and close the TouchUp Properties dialog box.