Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member
Not surprisingly when you take one character and make it significantly larger than the characters that it's next to, this can sometimes create spacing problems. And here are three such problems. Here we have a character collision, or near collision, between the W and the H, in this particular instance, the I is not aligned to the left edge, and the third instance the descender of the J is colliding with the first letter of the fourth line, so these are all very easily fixed but you must watch out for them.
So I'm going to come to the Layers panel, where I'll turn off those red circles. And this one, you have already seen me do if you watched the kerning chapter, all I need to do is insert my cursor between those two letters and kern in some extra space. That's Option+Right Arrow, Alt+Right Arrow. When I kern looser, InDesign incorrectly interprets my intent as wanting to go tighter, so actually we have made the spacing a whole a lot worse but that is just something that happens in this context.
So we just need to now press Option or Alt and the right arrow several times, quite a few times. If I wanted to speed this up, I could also throw in the Command or Ctrl key, and that will shunt it over a little bit faster. We'll go with that. Now in this second instance, this is very easily fixed, what we need to do here is check the relevant check box, and that relevant check box is, if we're doing this locally Drop Caps and Nested Styles are right there, if we're doing it as a part of a Paragraph style, then we would edit it right there.
I'm going to do it locally because I fear that if I do it as part of it, that will also fix this one, and we don't want to fix that one just yet. So with my cursor in this paragraph Drop Caps and Nested Styles, I need to just check this option Align Left Edge, and you can see it makes the straight side of the I perfectly flush left with the left-hand edge of the text frame. Moving on down to the next instance, and you could probably, you already guess what I'm going to do here Drop Caps and Nested Styles in this case, Scale for Descenders is what we want.
Now that as you can see is going to do exactly what it says, it's going to make that letter smaller. So if you don't want that result, what you could do instead, would be to select the J and then shift it up using baseline Shift, that's Option+Shift+Up Arrow, Alt+Shift+Up Arrow, and that's going to give you a slightly different effect, but one that's just as good I think. Okay, so those are some common problems, other issues that you may run into are paragraphs where you begin with punctuation.
So firstly, the best cure is prevention if you are working with text that involves a lot of this sort of thing, then choose some other opening device, something different from a Drop Cap. But if you just need to make the odd exception, that's certainly possible, and that's what I'm going to do here. So I'm going to fix this version and make it look like the one we have here. So obviously, the problem here is that the Drop Cap is the punctuation, and that looks frankly rather daft, so I'm going to come to my Paragraph Formats where I need to specify that I want two characters made large, and then to finesse this, I might decide to kern the space between that punctuation and the Drop Cap and, like so.
How tight you go is a matter of your own personal taste, but then just one other thing, I think I'd like to make that quote mark a little bit smaller. So I'm going to select it, and I'm going to press Command+Shift+Lesser than, or Ctrl+Shift+Lesser that, and that will necessitate me shifting it up using baseline Shift, Option+Shift+Up Arrow, and I think we will call that one done. Another problem that you might run into is when you have chapter openers that begin with single-line paragraphs.
If your style calls for your Drop Caps or drop four lines into the paragraph, if there is only a single line, then that's going to be a problem. Thankfully, InDesign handles this very well indeed although as I mentioned before the best cure is prevention, so if you find you have lots of single-line paragraphs as chapter openers, don't use Drop Caps. But here, I'm going to set this to 4, like so. and again, we need two characters and again we need to make that a little bit smaller and shift it up.
And you'll see what InDesign does is it puts in the indent on the second line which is really rather clever of it. But if we don't want that because it does create a rather odd visual hall right there, what I'm going to do now is delete that so that the second paragraph actually begins flush on the second line, right after the Drop Cap. So those are some problems you may encounter with Drop Caps and the solutions for how to deal with them.
Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.Become a member
119 Video lessons · 47307 Viewers
117 Video lessons · 34258 Viewers
113 Video lessons · 80252 Viewers
116 Video lessons · 70179 Viewers