Legend and Graphics transparency in ArcGIS 10

Discussion created by lfloch_usfs on Apr 20, 2011
Latest reply on Mar 4, 2012 by jrflannery
Just installed ArcGIS 10 Desktop. Did I miss it or are we still not able to make our legend backgrouds or any graphics transparent? I thought this was a much overdue function that would be applied to 10. This was all I could find:

Ask A Cartographer
Make transparent graphic box to place behind legend items

July 20 2010 | 0 comments
Categories: Map Elements

I would like to add a transparent box behind my legend features, so that I can still see underlying map features. Apart from making a feature layer that can be set to transparent, how else can this effect be achieved using a graphic feature. My only other alternative is to complete the legend outside of Desktop using a graphics program (eg. Photoshop, Corel, etc.). I have access to ArcInfo 9.3 / 9.3.1 / 10.

Mapping Center Answer:

You cannot apply transparency to graphic elements in ArcMap, but you can to geographic features.  As you surmised, one way to do what you want to do is to draw a graphic rectangle for the area that you want to be transparent, then right click the data frame and select the option to Convert Graphics to Features.  Note that you have to be in Data View to do this.  Then you can apply the color and transparency you want to the feature.  But you can do all of this in ArcMap and not have to use a graphics program.

Is this for real? That is their solution? What if I need to change the scale of the map? So they spent a bunch of time working on making the GUI different and didn't build in this functionality? Must be taking product tips from Apple.