Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member
We're now going to look at four different text flow methods; manual, semi-automatic, autoflow and autoflow without adding pages. Let's begin with manual. So here I have a blank page. I am going to come to the File menu and choose Place, or Command+D or Control+D. I will use the same text file I used before: aliceinwonderland. There I have my loaded type cursor. Now when I click -- firstly, let's talk about where I click.
When I clicked there, you'll see that it did not snap to my top margin. The width of the text frame is determined by the column width as determined by your margin settings when you create the document. But I am now just starting at some random point from the top of the page, which I don't want to do, so I am going to undo that. And if I want to make sure that I snap to my top margin, then I move up to within proximity of it, and you'll see that my black arrow becomes white. When the arrow becomes white, I am snapping to that top margin.
So make sure you're doing that, first of all, but what we are here to talk about is manual text flow. And manual text flow means that you flow a single column, or a single page, and then you stop, and you then have overset text, as indicated by the red plus. So to continue this text flow, I now need to come and click on that red plus. I have a reloaded cursor. I now need to either move over to my pasteboard, or presumably to the next page.
Currently, I don't have a next page, so I am going to create a new page. I am going to do that using a keyboard shortcut, and the keyboard shortcut is Command+Shift+P or Control+Shift+P. So there I have a blank page and then click in the column. In this case, it's a single column page, and the text is flowed, when it reaches the end of that column, it stops. Click on the red plus, create a new page, repeat. That would become very tedious, very quickly if you are working with a lot of text.
So manual text flow is really only appropriate when you working with short bodies of text. Now let's look at semi-automatic text flow, and I have switched documents here. Here I have a three column document, I have a headline already inserted, I have this placeholder frame, which is going to contain a picture, and I need to be very directed about where my text content is going to go. I don't want my text to just autoflow, just go into whatever space is available; I need to direct it into that space.
So I am going to press Command+D or Control+D once again, and I'll use the same text file. And this time I am not starting at the very top; I am going to start at this guide. Once again, the black arrow becomes white. And I am going to hold down the Alt key. Now, holding down the Alt key changes the appearance of my text flow cursor. When I click, my flow is single column, as before; the key difference is that my cursor is automatically reloaded for me, so I don't need to go and click on that red plus, so I can just click wherever I want the text to go.
So that's semi-automatic text flow holding down the Alt key. Now, why would I not use autoflow, which is the next option? And the reason I would not use autoflow is that autoflow just runs rough shot over your text columns. Autoflow would have flowed the text over this placeholder picture right there. Let's see what happens when I use autoflow in this context. The keyboard shortcut for autoflow is Shift.
Now, autoflow does have the benefit of adding extra pages, but it also just goes wherever it can find space, which is not what we want in this case. I am going to switch to this document, which is a blank document. It has a page number already inserted; the page number inserted on the master page, so when I press Command+D or Control+D, I'll use the same text file again, and this time I will autoflow. Now, this is going to give us the same result as we saw in the previous movie.
In the previous movie, I was talking about the primary text frame, which is a new feature in InDesign CS6. If you are working with an earlier version of InDesign, you don't have that option, but you can get the same result using autoflow. So if I hold down the Shift key and click, it creates however many pages are necessary to accommodate that text, which in this case is 76 pages. Okay, so autoflow is very useful when you have, usually, a single column document, and you have a long text flow, and you want to get all of that text into your document.
A variant of autoflow is where you have a finite number of pages. So let's say in this context I only have a 16 page document; my budgetary limitations dictate that I cannot go over 16 pages. So it's no use in me adding 76 pages when I am limited 16. So this time, when I flow my text, I am going to hold down Alt+Shift, or Option+Shift, and once again, you will see the appearance of the cursor change, and now autoflow without adding pages, it's going to fill up as many pages as I have, and I started out with 16, but at the end of those 16 pages, we have overset text.
What we do with that overset text is up to us. Do we delete text? Do we make the text smaller? Those are essentially our options, but it's not going to add any extra pages for you. So those are four different types of text flow: manual, semi-automatic, autoflow, and then that variant of autoflow, autoflow without adding pages.
Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.Become a member
117 Video lessons · 42688 Viewers
119 Video lessons · 54049 Viewers
65 Video lessons · 14364 Viewers
113 Video lessons · 82839 Viewers
Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.
Search within course videos and transcripts, and jump right to the results.
Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.
Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.
Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.
Your file was successfully uploaded.