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In this series, David Blatner and Anne-Marie Concepción, co-hosts of the web's top resource for InDesign tips and tricks, InDesignSecrets.com, share some hidden and sometimes surprising workflow tips that will make working in InDesign more efficient and more fun. The course covers built-in timesaving features such as Quick Apply and auto-expanding text, but also little-known tricks, such as using the eyedropper to copy and paste character and paragraph text attributes and making accurate selections by selecting through or even into objects.
New techniques will be added to the collection every other week, so check back early and often. Find more tips and tricks at indesignsecrets.com.
David Blatner> You want to get more efficient in InDesign right? After all, that's why you're watching these videos. So I'm going to let you in on a secret feature that will help speed you up no matter what you do in InDesign. For example, let's say you want to apply a paragraph style to this paragraph here. I'll place my cursor in here so it's flashing. And I want to apply a paragraph style. So normally I would go to a panel or a menu or something like that. And I don't want to do that. I want to keep my hands on the keyboard. The best way to stay efficient in InDesign is to keep your hands on the keyboard.
So to do this, I'm going to bring up the Quick Apply menu. And you get that by pressing Command+ Return on the Mac or Control+Enter on Windows. And what you see is the Quick Apply menu appears. And you can place this any way you want. I'm going to move it up to the upper right corner here, so it's a little bit out of the way. And it'll remember that so the next time I bring it up it'll be in the same place. So it gives me a list. It gives me a list of all the character styles, the paragraph styles and more and more and more. These are all menu items. We will get to that in just a moment.
But the important thing is it starts off with a blank flashing field here. And I can type in the first few characters of my paragraph style name. This one's called section number. And you can see that as soon as I type SECT it guesses oh, you probably mean section blurb or section head. In this case it's section blurb. So because it's highlighted all I need to do is press Return or Enter and you can that immediately it applies that paragraph style to that text. Now let's try it with a character style.
I'll select some text here and to apply a character style to it, I'll bring up Quick Apply. Command+Return or Control+Enter. And I'll type BOL and you can see that there's a character style. This has already been created in my document. There is a character style called bold and I go ahead and press Enter or Return and it applies a character style. So very very easy and we keep our hands on the keyboards so we're not constantly going up to the panels or the menus or something like that, which is great, but it slows you down. Hands on the keyboard is fast.
Now I want to check my spelling and I would check my spelling using InDesign's dynamic spelling feature. And I'll bet you don't know the keyboard shortcut for turning on and off dynamic spelling. That's because by default there isn't one. So I'm when he is Quick Apply to do it for me. Keep my hands on the keyboard. Command+Return or Control+Enter. Then I'll just type DYN. Just need to type as much as it needs to guess what you're trying to get to. In this case there's dynamic spelling. So I press Enter and it is exactly the same thing as going up to the menu and choosing Dynamic Spelling from there.
You see it's turned on now. Now when you do that, you can see that any misspelled words get this little highlight under it. Let's go ahead and fix that. I'll right-click on it and choose the proper word for it. There we go and now that goes away. This one is probably spelled that it thinks it's wrong because it doesn't know what that word is. And now maybe I want to turn off Dynamic Spelling. I'll do the same thing, Command+Return or Control+Return. Brings up Quick Apply. You'll see that whatever you typed last is still typed up there. It's saved there, so I don't even need to do anything else other then hit Return or Enter.
And it turns that off. So if you're not the kind of person that can remember lots of keyboard shortcuts, Quick Apply is your friend, because you can get to any menu item even, if it's hidden in some random panel menu. Any menu item. All you need to do is use Quick Apply and type a few letters of the name and then hit Enter and it works perfectly. Let me show you a couple other tricks to Quick Apply that I find invaluable. First, I'll bring up the Quick Apply menu and I'm going to type blurb, And notice that you don't have to type SECT, like section blurb.
Just type some part of it and it does its best to match whatever you type to the paragraph style, character style menu item, or whatever that you have in this list. So it guessed right away that I meant section blurb. Now let' s say I want to edit this paragraph style. I don't have to go to the paragraph styles panel menu to edit. I can simply press Command+Return or Ctrl+Enter again once it's selected here, pressing the same keyboard shortcut that opened Quick Apply. Pressing it again opens up the Paragraph Style Options dialog box.
So this is kind of a fast way to edit a paragraph style or a character style without having to have my panels open. So I can come over here and let's say I'll change this to be 13 points instead. Hit OK and that now you see that it's updated. So that's one trick. Here is another track. I'm going to open Quick Apply and I'm going to type C:. C: means filter this down, only show me the character styles in the list. So that's a pretty fast way to get only the character styles.
Or p: shows me all the paragraph styles. So that's a nice fast way to filter those down. So where do you learn that code, the p: and so on? It's in this little pop-up menu. Inside the pop-up menu you can see that you can filter out exactly what you want Quick Apply to show you. Paragraph styles is p: and character styles is c:, and so on. If you don't want a Quick Apply to show you character styles at all, just select it and now it will not show you any character styles in the here.
Even if I type bold, you will see that it won't show up as a character style like it did before. Quick Apply might not seem that exciting at first, but if you force yourself to use it a few times you're going to find yourself absolutely hooked on it.
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