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Author David Blatner provides in-depth training on InDesign CS5, the print and interactive page layout application from Adobe, in InDesign CS5 Essential Training. The course shows how to create new documents with strong and flexible master pages, precisely position text and graphics, prepare documents for print, and export designs as interactive PDF or Flash SWF files. Exercise files are included with the course.
In the last movie we learned to how to add page numbers to our documents, but how do you start a document on something other than page 1? Let's say you want the first page to be page 47, how would you do that? Well, if I'm creating a brand-new document I can simply go to the File menu, choose New > Document and then start it on page whatever I want. In this case start on page 47. It's as simple as that and because this is an odd number page and this is going to be a Facing Pages document, I know that the first page is going to be a right-hand page.
A lot of people ask me how do I make a new document where the first page is a left-hand page? Well, it's as simple as this. Change this to an even number. Let's started on page 2 let's say. Any even number will work. An even number page in a Facing Pages document is always going to be a left-hand page, and if I make these two pages long and click OK, you'll see that I immediately have a left and right spread. If I open the Pages panel, you can see left and right with a spine down the center. So this is great if I'm creating a new document from scratch, but what about this other document, I'll go ahead and close that.
I don't need it right now. What about this other document? Here I have a cover at the top, we can scroll up here and I can see that I've got the cover-up here and then I've got this sort of front matter here, and that's page number 2 here, and then this starts on page 3 and I don't want that. I want this page to be the first page. I want that to be page 1 in my document. So how do I tell InDesign to do that? Well, I have to create a new page section. To do that I have to go to my Pages panel and select the page that I want to be my section start.
Unfortunately right now pages 2 and 3 are both selected. They're both highlighted. So I'm just going to click out here in this blank area to deselect them, and then come back and select just page 3. That's a little shortcut for choosing that one page of the spread. And now I'm going to make that a new section by going to the Pages panel menu and scrolling down to Numbering & Section Options, there we go. Here is our Numbering & Section Options. It's called the New Section dialog box and as soon as this dialog box opens it automatically turns on Start Section, and that's exactly what we want.
We want this to be a new section. Now we get to tell InDesign what page should this start on? Should it start on page 12? No, we want it to start on page 1, so I'm just going to type 1 in there and you can see that it updated the radio button for me automatically. This section will start on page 1, and when I click OK, it's going to warn me that, whoa! Watch out! There is already a page 1 in this document. You might get confused because you've got two page 1s. So I just say, yeah, yeah, yeah, I know, I know. I know what I'm doing, click OK, and you can see in the Pages panel that it starts with page 1, then page 2 and then it resets to page 1 again.
In fact if we zoom in here to the lower right corner, I can see that indeed it says page 1. Now I want to point out that in the Pages panel something else happened. This little black triangle showed up above the page, and that black triangle means this is a section start. That's a little indicator, but it's actually more than just an indicator. It's also a secret little button there, and if you double-click on that black triangle, up comes the Numbering & Section Options dialog box again. So now we can change this to something else. Let's say this is going to be page 47.
We will start this one on page 47. There we go. So now we've got page 1, 2 and then 47, and you can see that updated on the page number as well. So this is great, but I'm going to do one more thing to this document. I want pages 1 and 2 to be in Roman numerals, actually there is not even a page number on page 1, but I want page 2 in this document to be in Roman numerals. How do I do that? Well, look there's a little black triangle, the first page of a document always is a section start, sort of has to be technically. So I'm going to double-click on that little black triangle, up comes the dialog box here, and I'm going to say this one can start on page 1.
That's fine, but I don't want it to use regular Arabic numerals, I want it to use Roman numerals. You can see there is a number of different options here in the Style pop-up menu. I am going to choose Roman numerals, lowercase Roman numerals, click OK, and you can see that it updates here in the Pages panel, i and ii, and in fact let's go check it out on our page. I am going to use the power zoom feature by Option+Spacebar or Alt+Spacebar, click-and-hold, and then drag over to the new area. And let go with the mouse button, and here we are over in the lower left corner of the spread and you can see that it has updated to ii, page number 2 of our document.
Okay, so there's one more page numbering thing that I really need to tell you because you're bound to run into trouble if I don't tell you this, and that is sometimes you can't get to the page that you want. For example, I'll go to Layout menu and choose Go to Page, and let's say I'm going to go to page 6. I want to go to the sixth page of our document and I'll click OK and it says that doesn't really exist. There is no page 6 and you're thinking, well, come on, I know there's at least six pages in this document, what's wrong? Well, each page has its own name, right? The first page is page i and then ii, and then 47, 48 and so on, but there is no page 6.
There is no number 6 in these page names. So what do you do? What you do is you use absolute page numbering and you can type an absolute page numbering that is the sixth page of the document by putting a plus before it. +6 means the sixth page of the document. I'll click OK and it takes me right to the sixth page, which is page 50. This absolute numbering is very helpful in all kinds of instances, for example, if you wanted to export a PDF of just the seventh and eighth pages you could use that plus, you could say +7 and +8 and it would get you just those pages.
Now not all documents need multiple sections of course, but when you do need them the Section feature can really help you manage your longer documents.
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