Join Paul F. Aubin for an in-depth discussion in this video Kinds of annotation families, part of Revit Architecture: The Family Editor.
Annotation Families can be any graphic or symbol that you use repeatedly in your projects. We can break this down into two basic classifications: Annotations that report data from the Model and those that don't. A North Arrow would be a good example of an Annotation Family that is static and does not report data from the Model. A door Tag would be good example of one that does report data from the Model. In this movie we'll look at a few examples of each. Let's start with what are Annotation Families. We've discussed this in the previous chapter a little bit, but an annotation is always a View-Specific element.
Here on screen I have a few examples. I have a door Tag, I have a window Tag right here, there is a centerline symbol, and so on. If I would have come down here to Level 1, right-click it and choose Duplicate with View, I can choose to Duplicate it with or without its Detailing; Detailing is another word for annotation, right, or View-Specific elements. So I'm going to choose Duplicate and what you're going to see is, the only items that are left behind are the items that are actually model elements. So all the stuff that disappeared that was the Annotation, and all of those are Families in one way or another.
They're just different kinds of Families. This, and this is a Tag Family, this and this are just Generic Annotation Families. This is another Tag Family. This is also a Generic Annotation Family. So they fall into these different classifications if you will. Let's start with Generic Annotation. In Generic Annotation, we actually have three examples on the screen; The Centerline symbol, the North Arrow and this little Align symbol are all considered Generic Annotations. Now everything I'm showing you on screen comes out of the box in the Installed Imperial Library from Autodesk.
So the Centerline and the North Arrow were already part of the project, but both of those could be found if I went to Load Family and looked under Annotations, you would see them in this folder here. North Arrow is here, there are two versions of it. And the Centerline symbol, further up right here, and the one that I have back here on the screen, this Align symbol right here, that's actually not an Align symbol, I wrote the word Align in there. It's actually a more generic symbol; it's just called Label Annotation.
And there are three variations of it; One that's set to 1/8" tall text, another 1/ 16" tall text and the third one 3-32" tall. I brought in the 3-32" for the example, you that you see on my screen. If I wanted to bring in the 1/8" tall. So, after I'm done downloading it, I can go to the Annotate tab and I can use the Symbol tool on the Annotate tab to actually place that thing. Now Generic Annotations, probably the most challenging aspect of working with them is the terminology. We load a Generic Annotation symbol, or we create a Generic Annotation Family, but we use the Place Symbol tool in order to actually place it in our projects.
So you can see here, here is Label Annotation and when I place it, initially all I get is a question mark. So I had gone in there and typed in the word Align. I could also type in a note here and this particular Family is set up with that label being a type-based Parameter. So it's going to ask me if it's okay to continue, because what I've actually done is created a type modification there. And then I could certainly click on it and Add the Leaders and it would behave much the same way as my Align symbol.
In other words, a Generic Annotation is really just a symbol that can either be static, graphical information like this North Arrow or like this Centerline. The CL in that case is static; it's not something that I could modify. Obviously, the North Arrow is graphic, so I can't modify that. There's no text to modify, and in this case it's got a label. So a Label is a piece of Annotation that I can actually manipulate directly within the symbol.
Now the Tags also use labels. Okay, but the labels and the Tags are a little different. Here the Tag was just a generic placeholder and I was able to type in anything I like, like the word Remove Finish or the word Align. Here the designation is actually part of the host object; in this case the Window or in this case the Door. So if I select my Door and I come over here and change this to another designation, the Tag responds immediately.
If you open both of these items in the Family Editor, so let me take the Tag here and do Edit Family, this piece of text is actually a label. You can see from the tooltip on screen or from the tooltip down here on the Status Bar, when I hover over it, it says the word Label. That is a piece of text that's actually linked to some property in the model. We call that a Label in the Family Editor. If I switch back to my Sample Floor Plan here and open this Family instead with Edit Family, this is still considered a Label, but here they've even left the word just generically Label, because they don't really know how we're going to use that label, it's really for any purpose we want.
It's more generic and it's not attached to anything in the model. Okay, so just some different kinds of annotation that we can create and work on. So a Tag is associated with a specific kind of object and a Generic Annotation is not. A Generic Annotation is just a basic symbol that we can really fill in any way that we like. The process of creating either kind of Annotation Family is pretty straightforward and that will be the focus of the next movie.
- Understanding family concepts
- Creating an annotation vs. a model family
- Adding geometry
- Working with reference planes and constraints
- Creating extrusions, blends, and sweeps
- Creating parametric relationships
- Editing element visibility
- Building complex families
- Adding conditional formulas
- Creating towers and arches