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In this installment of Illustrator Insider Training, author Mordy Golding shows how to create type that’s both beautiful and communicative, whether it’s destined for logos, brochures, signs, infographics, or simple documents. This course covers core typography concepts, such as working with Unicode and OpenType fonts, applying character and paragraph settings, managing text with styles and text threads, placing text along a path, and wrapping text around graphics.
As we've been working with styles, we've seen that sometimes when applying a style, a little plus sign appears after the style itself. What does that mean? Well, let's a create a new document here inside of Illustrator. I am going to press Command+N to create a new document. I will chose just the Print Profile here and click OK. Next, I am going to go ahead now and take my Type tool and I am going to click here and just type in some words, maybe "say it with flowers." Now notice over here that I have my type selected. I am going to switch to my Regular Selection tool here, and you can see that because I have defined nothing right now, Illustrator is using my Normal Character Style, which is default for this document.
So it's set to Myriad Pro, Regular, and 12 pts. Now we have been using different typefaces here. For example, we have been using Chaparral Pro. So I am going to change my typeface here to Chaparral Pro. So, I am going to go here and just choose it from this little pop-up here. And we have been using like a point size of 80 for the headline here. Maybe just move it over here into position. Actually it should be centered here, Paragraph setting, kind of bring that right here. By the way, you can use the Alignment settings inside of Illustrator for working with text as well. So if I want this to be aligned to the center of the artboard here, I would click on the Align button here.
I want to choose Align to Artboard, make sure that option is checked right here, and then I am simply going to choose Align Center. Normally, align would work when you have two objects selected, but because I have the Align To set to the artboard, then that means now that if I go ahead now and click on this button, it's going to center it to the artboard. So I have my text over here centered. Let me go ahead now and just click on it to select it. And you can see that where it says Normal Character Style, there is now a plus sign. The plus sign means that there is something called an Override.
There is something right now in my selection that does not match this setting right now. So obviously, my Normal Character Style was set to Myriad Pro 12 pt. Now that I have changed my text to be Chaparral Pro and 80 pt, it no longer matched the Normal Character Style. And remember that before we spoke about it in Illustrator, how everything has a character style, like it or not. Everything always points back to the top of the hierarchy, which is always going to be the Normal Character Style. So this means that my text right now has been styled differently than my normal character style.
Its settings now override the settings that were applied to the Normal Character Style. Now normally, I don't care about this. If I am not worried about styles at all, I am not working with styles, I can continue working. There is nothing inherently wrong with my document by having that plus sign that's there. Just because I have an override, it doesn't mean it's bad. However, if I am working with styles, I do want to make sure that the text matches the style correctly. So the plus sign might be a little red flag in my head, to know, hey, there is something in that text that does not conform to the style that I want.
So what I may do in some cases is I may want to clear the overrides. When you clear an override, you are basically resetting the text back to its state that matches the character style. So right now, if I were to take this style right now, with my text selected, and I were to click on this option again, so I had it clicked on it once, but now I am going to click on it again, Illustrator is now going to clear the override and reset the text setting back to the Normal Character Style. So you can see it has changed its font now back to Myriad Pro and it changed it back to 12 points in size.
So now it's conforming to the Normal Character Style setting, and that's why the plus sign went away. However, it changed my text. It made my text match that style. So when you are working inside of Illustrator, the first time you click on a style, it applies that style, but if there are some differences that are there, it leaves those differences. It allows you to have an override. But if you click again on the style, it will clear those overrides, and it will reset the text, or reformat the text, back to the settings that are applied inside of that character style and the same thing applies to the paragraph style level.
So if you do have a paragraph style applied, if I click over here, you can see that now by clicking on the paragraph style it made this text align left, because that's where the default setting was here inside of Illustrator. Notice over here there are no overrides, because now it conforms to that paragraph style. Now I'll be very straightforward with you. I've been a person who has been using both Illustrator and InDesign for many, many years. I find that InDesign's little plus sign, the override setting there, has much more value and meaning than it does here inside of Illustrator. Because in InDesign I can use the override to my advantage. Because even when overrides are actually applied to your document, you could still make changes to your styles and those ripple through the document.
However, I find that in Illustrator, if you have an override, it almost like disables the style. If you update the style definition, it doesn't always update inside of your document, which means that really in Illustrator, you find yourself wanting to clear the overrides more than you might inside of InDesign. Still, if you find that you're modifying styles inside of Illustrator and they're not updating inside of your document, you might just want to make sure that you clear all your overrides first and that should clear up your problem.
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