Applying local character formatting
Video: Applying local character formattingNow sometimes, you won't have a paragraph style or a character style available to you, but you need to change some of the formatting, and in those instances what you are going to be doing is going into the Character panel or the Paragraph panel. In this video we are going to talk about the Character panel about local formatting for individual characters. So I have checked out a bunch of stories in this document and I'm going to zoom into this story at the very top, with Command+Plus or Ctrl+Plus a few times, and let's say that we want to make the word "low" italic.
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In Collaborative Workflows with InDesign and InCopy Anne-Marie Concepción shows how Adobe InCopy and InDesign work together, helping editors and designers collaborate on publications, and save time and money, with no additional hardware, software, or expensive publication management systems. This course shows how to set up for the workflow, how to address cross-platform Mac and Windows issues when working in a mixed environment, how to work with remote writers and designers, and how to integrate with Microsoft Word. Exercise files are included with the course.
- Setting up projects and users on a local network
- Using e-mail-based assignments and Dropbox to manage remote users
- Copyfitting and formatting text
- Using advanced editing tools
- Working with paragraph, character, and table styles
- Tracking changes in InCopy and InDesign
- Creating cross-references and hyperlinks
- Creating InCopy templates
- Combining InCopy with Microsoft Word
- Inserting and formatting images
- Reviewing features specific to InDesign
Applying local character formatting
Now sometimes, you won't have a paragraph style or a character style available to you, but you need to change some of the formatting, and in those instances what you are going to be doing is going into the Character panel or the Paragraph panel. In this video we are going to talk about the Character panel about local formatting for individual characters. So I have checked out a bunch of stories in this document and I'm going to zoom into this story at the very top, with Command+Plus or Ctrl+Plus a few times, and let's say that we want to make the word "low" italic.
The first place you should look at is the Character Styles panel. Obviously, it can't be paragraph style because we don't want the entire paragraph italic; we just want a subset of characters in that paragraph italic. So we are looking Character Styles. Is there an italic? No, there is not, unfortunately. So we can yell at our designer or in the meantime, we can just go ahead and make it italic. There is no I up here, a big I button you can click to make italic. I'm sorry. Instead what you need to do is go to the Character panel and choose the italic face.
Now there are keyboard shortcuts for this. You can usually press Ctrl+Shift+I, or on a Mac, Command+Shift+I, and that will automatically change the typeface to the italic version of that typeface. It doesn't do a fake italic like Microsoft Word will sometimes do or even QuarkXPress used to do. If there is no italic face loaded on your system, it won't do anything; it won't change to italic. So that's good to know. But technically, what you're supposed to do is open up the Character panel and at the top part of the Character panel is a list of all the typefaces that you have.
This one is Chaparral Pro. Underneath that are all the styles available for that typeface and yay, there is an italic version. So we just choose Italic and that's how you make something italic. So I am going to detach this Character panel because I want to talk about it a bit more. It's actually quite rich, and I want you to be aware of all the different kinds of formats that you can apply from the Character panel, but still always with this proviso in mind, that really you shouldn't have to do that. You should not have to be going into here. You should ask your designers to create character styles for what it is that you need to do.
It's a lot faster, but still, let's talk about this for a bit. The first field is a list of all the typefaces that you have loaded on your system, and the little character appearing in front of the typefaces indicates the type of format for that typeface. All these Os mean that it's OpenYype, which is a good format. It's exactly the same on Mac and Window. It's a modern format. They often have many glyphs in them. It's better than TrueType and better than PostScript type 1 fonts, and then at the right you'll see a little sample of what that typeface looks like.
And then underneath, there are the styles available for that face. So some typefaces only have one style available, like say a Fingbat face might only have one style available. Let's find one here, like Webdings, okay. Under here, it just says Regular. It's all you have; you don't have bold or italic of Webdings. Whereas other faces, for example, Minion Pro has many styles available. This is one of the reasons why Adobe really doesn't even bother putting a big I and a big B at the very top in the toolbar in order to let you make something bold or italic because in the professional typesetting world, most professional typefaces have more than one kind of bold or italic, and it's likely that you're going to get the wrong one, just by pressing a B or an I.
So you can see Minion Pro has a Medium Italic, a Bold Condensed Italic, a Semibold Italic, so which one is it supposed to choose when you press the I? That's kind of like that's the philosophy there. All right, then the other fields that we have here are type size, line spacing, technically known as leading, the amount of space from one line to the next. Kerning and tracking. So, for example, if I wanted to get this O a little closer to the L, I could come here and make Kerning field and reduce it. I am just pressing the bottom triangle, and this is something that your designers will completely hate if you do this just to save space, because it looks kind of obvious.
So these are things that you work out with your designers that designers might say, "If you really need to fit a word on a line, and you just need a little bit of space, go ahead and track or kern it in by no more than," and then they will give you measure like -10 or +10. This is tracking which is as same as kerning; it only applies to more than a letter pair. So if I select this whole thing, I can track it in and you see what it's doing is it's removing the space in between the characters; it's not really changing the shape of the characters at all. Let's put this back to 0, which is the normal amount.
This is vertical scaling and horizontal scaling, two things you never want to do to type. This is baseline shift. This sort of moves a character up and down the baseline, like if you want a bullet to be a little higher or little lower, you can select the bullet and do that here. This is skew that skews the type, and language. InCopy and InDesign come with over 30 language dictionaries. Now, these language dictionaries don't actually translate - that will be kind of cool - but what they do is they associate the selected text to that language's spelling and hyphenation dictionary.
I'm going to be talking about that more when I talk about spell check in the spell check movie. But notice while I am here, I just can't resist showing you that it's got an entire legal dictionary and medical dictionary built in. So if you work in the pharma industry and you are constantly getting alerted that this word is misspelled, that word is misspelled, you can just switch to USA Medical and it has a lot of that information in it. I don't want you to miss also the formatting that you can apply from the Character panel menu. Click this and you'll see that this is where you can find things like All Caps, Small Caps, Superscript and Subscript, along with their keyboard shortcuts, and Underlining and Strikethrough different words.
Again, all these could be made into character styles and actually should be rather than you selecting them on your own. There are a few more commands hidden over here in the Type menu. I don't know why they don't just bring them all into one place, but under the Type menu, remember this first bit is our alternate ways to get to the panels related to type. But down here under Change Case, you might find this very useful. If you've ever brought in text that somebody typed with the Caps Lock key turned on, you could select it and change it all to title case or sentence case or lower case, maybe you do want an uppercase.
So this has saved me a lot of work in the past. At the top of the Type menu, you also have a dropdown list of all of your typefaces installed and then different sizes you can choose. I guess these are just, if you prefer to do it this way rather than opening up the Character panel. So if you do not have a character style available to you and there's a specific kind of formatting that you need to do, the answer is select that text and then apply the formatting locally with commands you can find in the Character panel, the Character panel menu, or the Type menu.
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