Effective Tips For Adobe InDesign Users – It is a herculean task to rate few features as the best from an ocean of powerful tools Adobe InDesign software offers. Though the usage of the software and its tools vary from Industry to Industry, there are some common features that serve the purpose for almost everyone making using of InDesign.
We brought a set of tools and features together to compile a list of quick tips that comes handy for the users. The list will help you to find the most out of common and useful tools and quickly fix your designs irrespective of the Industry you are working.
10 Adobe InDesign Tips and Tricks For Users Work
Power of Math to achieve precision resizing
How many times have you tried to fit those images and frames to the perfect size manually? It is a tedious job, and how hard you may try to get it done, you are nowhere near to perfection when you try to resize objects with a mouse or Wacom tablet.
When it comes to resizing objects, math is the best way to save the day. Adobe InDesign applies Math calculations to simplify the task of resizing and define the dimensions of layouts and objects exactly the in the size you wanted to make it. You can calculate and resize designs within Transform Palette or Control Palette.
You can find the transform palette at: Window > Object & Layout > Transform
To find the Control palette follow the instruction below: Window > Control
In both cases, you can use the numbers on your keyboard; it is as simple as using a calculator while working. To increase the size of an object twice its size, use the multiple symbols (*) and find the précised result.
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For example: To increase the size of a frame twice. Select the frame, and in the width and height column use original dimensions * 2 and hit enter. Immediately, you will find the dimensions resized precisely.
Do not forget to enable Constraint proportions for scaling option, to achieve proportionate width and height dimensions while the object is enlarged.
Sync your text well with the Story Editor
Are you still stuck with the old school Quark tricks, and creating more and more text frames on the pasteboard to get over the overflow text? Say a goodbye to the tiresome days. It’s time to know the Story Editor – one of the dominating features of Adobe InDesign software to take control over the overflowing text frames.
Here is the brief note for those users who have no idea about Overflow text. It is the long form of text that won’t fit into the text frames. InDesign indicates such overflowing text content in a red+ symbol at the lower right corner of the text frame.
In the overset text box, the red+ symbol only indicates about the extra text which is not displayed due to lack of space in the text frame. On the other hand, Story Editor tool can show you the hidden text content so you can plan the change in the text frame of your layout. Over that, Story Editor helps you to handle complex text documents easily.
Toggle between Text and Frame with Swap Swatch Panel
Traditionally, selecting the text content in a frame is a process. First, you should select the frame and double click on the frame to select the text and then make the required changes.
The method is fine if you want to select and edit the text frame and possibly apply a stroke or some other effect. But, if you want to change the color of a text, you should follow through the process again and again. There is an option to use the type tool and select the entire text to change the color.
For Adobe InDesign users, it is not necessary to use multiple tools to get the job done. With the help of the swap swatch tool, toggling between the text frame and the text is made so simple, that it is just a click away. Press the letter J to toggle between both the objects.
Remember the painful days when drawing rounded edges were a manual job. Or designers used to import vectors and objects with rounded corners from other software.
But, the days of labor are over with the introduction of Live Corners in the Adobe InDesign software.
Draw an object with sharp or rigid corners as a rectangle or a square.
You will find a yellow box attached to the object. To activate the rounded corner boxes on all the sides of the square, click on the yellow square.
Click on the square and drag it horizontally to the center of the square to obtain the curvature at all the edges of the object.
In case you want to leave out any of the corners, hold shift first and then start to click and drag.
To find more options for adding corner effects use Object > Corner Options.
We know Adobe InDesign documents have a lot of text, and it is a humdrum job to check for the mistakes, gaps and errors from the ocean of letters in each document. InDesign found a solution for the longing problem. With the introduction of the classic Find Changes feature, it became easy to check the draft for mistakes before you forward it to the proofreader.
With the help of Find Changes tool, find out double spaces, unwanted symbols, mistakes in the typo. You can also replace a symbol or a word into your intended text or symbols.
For example, convert the minus symbols into hyphens. Or correct the common spelling mistake throughout the document in one go.
The Scripting advantage in Adobe InDesign
The longing worry of the designing community is the inability to design with the help of code. Most of the designers are not scripting experts, but many of them can use codes and tags. It offers an advantage of doing routine stuff quickly which saves more time and completes design job relatively in less time.
With Adobe InDesign, anything that is done manually can be done on codes. And the best thing is that you need not be a hardcore coder to use the InDesign codes for a script. By simply copying and pasting the script into respective folder in the InDesign folder designers can quickly achieve the intended results.
By default, InDesign ships with numerous scripts already installed with the software. You can access the scripts panel through Window > Utilities > Scripts command and have a look through the sample scripts.
Designing is a tedious craft. The more you work on it, the more beautiful it is and just like every other art the finishing is the job that demands more and more time. Miniature jobs like aligning the text or applying styles and colors to objects, resizing takes as much time as designing the layout and in many cases, they may take longer than the actual job.
InDesign’s attempt to minimize the time investing in designing went successful with Quick Apply feature. As the name speaks for itself, the feature access menu commands and apply styles quickly. Press ctrl + enter or cmd + enter to launch quick apply and type the intended menu or style. Enter to apply the style to the object.
Now, mimicking the settings of one object to the other is just a click away. The eyedropper functionality which was first introduced in Adobe Illustrator to copy the color, fill and stroke from one object to another was an overnight success. Immediately, the same feature is used in Adobe InDesign, which helps the designers much better than the former.
To copy and apply the style from one parent object to the children objects do the following
Select the children elements which you want to affect.
Choose the eyedropper tool and click on the parent object.
You can choose to carry on the same process by double-clicking on the eye dropper tool in InDesign. An options box appears with various selection and de-selection options.
If your document is overwhelming with a heavy load of images, text, frames and all sort of objects on top of each other, it is surely a tough job for you to manage them all while designing. With the help of stacked frames feature, you can move through the whole bunch of objects one by one at a time.
To use the stacked frame feature, hold ctrl/cmd and click on the top most object you want to start the selection. Hold the mouse bottom until Adobe InDesign digs deep its way to select the last object which you need.
When you take a look at the document on your screen, all you find is the frame edges, mess and guides scrambled everywhere on your pasteboard. But, it is not the way the document is going to look at its final stage. If your intention is to take a better look at your document without wasting the papers and follow the process to create a PDF file, InDesign has got you covered.
At a press of the key W, InDesign will take you to the preview mode removing the gray out, guides, frame edges and every component that won’t be present in the final document.
Another way to take a look at the final document is achieved by press and hold the Preview icon in the toolbar. It displays multiple preview modes including slug, bleed and new presentation mode.
InDesign is huge software with a numerous number of options that can come handy to designers and layout artists from diverse industries. The article intends to present some of the easiest and effective tools that will come to use for as many professionals as possible. We hope the set of features discussed will let you explore more possibilities out of InDesign.