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Creating drop caps

From: Designing a Newsletter

Video: Creating drop caps

Our next task is going to be to finesse our drop caps that are used in all of our major articles there, there, and there. Now the exact ordering which I'm doing this could vary. So it's not essential that drop caps should follow the design in your color panels. The order of many of these things is interchangeable. So we already have a paragraph style called Body First that is consistently applied to our opening paragraph treatments, but we just want to make it slightly more finessed and slightly more unified with the rest of the design.

Creating drop caps

Our next task is going to be to finesse our drop caps that are used in all of our major articles there, there, and there. Now the exact ordering which I'm doing this could vary. So it's not essential that drop caps should follow the design in your color panels. The order of many of these things is interchangeable. So we already have a paragraph style called Body First that is consistently applied to our opening paragraph treatments, but we just want to make it slightly more finessed and slightly more unified with the rest of the design.

If we take a look at the finished version, this is how the drop cap looks. You will see it's using a sans serif family, the Myriad Pro. It's also using our secondary color, the green, and as an added embellishment, and I'm still undecided about whether or not I like this or not, it has an underline on it. So we'll see how we can both apply that and should we change our mind, how we can get rid of it. So I'm going to come over to newsletter19, our work in progress. I already have the component parts of this setup. What we are going to be doing here is creating a nested style with the character style that will make it green and Sans Serif and underlined, nested or incorporated within the Body First paragraph style.

The one that we are talking about is called drop caps, so the drop cap character style has already been created. I have created that in the same way as I created other character styles. I selected a bit of text, I made it green, I made it Myriad Pro, I made it underlined, and then I came over here and chose New Character Style. So that's where we pick up the action here because I'm now going to go to the Paragraph Styles panel and right-click on body first, edit that, and come to Drop Caps and Nested Styles, and here is where we incorporate that character style into the body first paragraph style.

I will change that to drop cap and there we see it looks the way we want it to look, mostly the way we want to look. A couple of refinements. I'm going to choose Align Left Edge and if you watch very closely when I do that, the drop cap is going to move ever so slightly to the left so that it's flushed with the left-hand edge of the text frame. Now here is a slight drawback of using that underline. I cannot align that underline exactly to the left edge and for that reason, I think I might get rid of it. So if we do want to remove the underline and just before we do that, let me just hammer home the point that that's affected all instances of that drop cap, not just that one.

But to remove now that underline, we can do this. We go in edit the character style definition, right-click on drop cap, come to Underline Options and we'll turn it off. It's gone. So there is our drop cap treatment and of course the drop cap, the purpose of that, is a visual cue to the reader that that is where they start the article and we don't want to over do it. Don't over use them. Don't make them too big so that they overwhelm the headlines and we do want to unify them with our headline treatment and we are doing that by choosing the same typeface.

Just in terms of visual cues, I'm going to throw one more thing in here. It's a very minor point, but one worth making, and that is we have the visual cue to begin the story. We also want a visual cue that the story has ended. Now if we move to the last page, we see here we just have a bullet that is set to green and this, the way this was achieved, I'll need to make sure that my text layer isn't locked in order to be able to get into that text. I'll just go ahead and delete that one and type myself another bullet like that, then highlight that, and this is the end character style. That way we make sure that all of those are consistent and it's a nice subtle graphic element and a useful visual cue to your reader.

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This video is part of

Image for Designing a Newsletter
Designing a Newsletter

47 video lessons · 20650 viewers

Nigel French
Author

 
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  1. 6m 54s
    1. Welcome
      1m 8s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 28s
    3. Overview
      4m 18s
  2. 22m 2s
    1. Saving a custom workspace
      2m 8s
    2. Deconstructing the document
      3m 3s
    3. Using a template
      1m 38s
    4. Setting up the workspace
      4m 58s
    5. Setting up the document
      1m 49s
    6. Creating layers
      1m 7s
    7. Creating the baseline grid
      3m 5s
    8. Creating text and picture frames
      4m 14s
  3. 23m 45s
    1. Choosing images
      2m 17s
    2. Placing images
      3m 24s
    3. Fitting images with object styles
      2m 26s
    4. Cropping images
      3m 9s
    5. Creating cutouts
      4m 26s
    6. Creating partial cutouts
      2m 24s
    7. Fixing a problem image
      5m 39s
  4. 39m 45s
    1. Placing text
      6m 30s
    2. Cleaning up text
      2m 49s
    3. Designing body text
      8m 46s
    4. Designing headlines: 36, 24, 16, 12
      11m 20s
    5. Loading styles
      1m 54s
    6. Applying styles
      4m 35s
    7. Working with text wraps
      3m 51s
  5. 1h 22m
    1. Designing the nameplate
      11m 49s
    2. Designing footers
      6m 0s
    3. Choosing and creating colors
      4m 49s
    4. Designing color panels
      8m 16s
    5. Creating drop caps
      4m 19s
    6. Creating department heads
      9m 8s
    7. Designing a review section
      7m 12s
    8. Designing a calendar
      4m 39s
    9. Finessing text
      5m 33s
    10. Designing the masthead
      5m 8s
    11. Designing the feature spread
      3m 10s
    12. Creating pull quotes, captions, and photo credits
      7m 24s
    13. Designing a mailing area
      2m 32s
    14. Designing a table of contents
      2m 15s
  6. 27m 20s
    1. Using live preflight
      6m 8s
    2. Proofing and imposing pages
      4m 33s
    3. Making a print-ready PDF
      4m 15s
    4. Making a screen PDF
      1m 49s
    5. Packaging
      3m 17s
    6. Saving snippets
      3m 48s
    7. Saving as a template
      3m 30s
  7. 29s
    1. Goodbye
      29s

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