Los Angeles InDesign User Group

A Full Day of InDesign Coolness

Friday, May 19, 2017

Quality Inn, 4922 W. Century Blvd., Inglewood, California 90304

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By Alvin Takamori


On May 19th, at the Quality Inn near LAX, the Los Angeles InDesign User Group presented, "A Full Day of InDesign Coolness." It was an opportunity to glean knowledge from two very "cool" people, Erica Gamet and Jonathan Levit. If that wasn't enough incentive for you to attend, it also included a full breakfast, eggs, sausage, waffles and more.


With our hunger satisfied, we began the quest to satiate our thirst for all things about InDesign. Jonathan began the morning filling our cups with information regarding the correct ways to use Paragraph, Character and Object Styles. Methods that create a more efficient work flow. It takes a little planning and an awareness of any patterns that repeat in a layout or in the design process, but a little preparation can make things easier in the long run.


Jonathan showed us how powerful connecting Paragraph Styles to Object Styles was to improve the consistency and the speed of generating layouts in InDesign. He also pointed out the power of the Based On feature in Styles. Just be cautious because sweeping changes can be dangerous. Jonathan also demonstrated how to create a Table of Contents.


Next Erica explained how she uses Layers, Master Pages, Library Items and CC Libraries. The proper use of all these features can create a solid foundation to make working in InDesign easier.


After a lunch break, Erica and Jonathan went back and forth explaining different features of InDesign that they use to expedite their workflow.  Erica talked about some of the things she does to setup a file for printing. Setting up the Master Pages. using Layers, going through the Pages Menu, Numbering and Sections and Libraries were all part of the process.


Jonathan explained how to use Nested Styles to automate more complex layouts like a catalog with identity numbers, names, and page numbers in a list. Then Erica touched on the use of GREP. If there are any repetitive patterns in text using GREP automates finding and applying features to those patterns. For instance, search for the various ways people write phone numbers and automatically reformat them, so they all look alike.


Next Jonathan explained how he takes text from a Word document that was sent from an external source and, "Cleans it up." He removes extra spaces and returns and creates Character and Paragraph Styles free of overrides.


Returning to GREP, Erica showed us how she uses it to remove orphans and widows. She also made the point that even if you don't like to write scripts, you can still use GREP. Often, you can find scripts for free that are already written.


Jonathan then discussed combining Object and Paragraph Styles to arrange text under a photo. He also demonstrated how he arrange images in a grid layout and adjusts the arrangement and spacing.


There was also an introduction to using alternate layouts. Whether designs are printed or posted on the internet, they often need to be rearranged to fit different output sizes. You can make a choice to link the different layouts so that an edit in one will automatically make the same edit on the other versions. Liquid Layouts can setup rules on how the design looks based on different widths and heights. Liquid Page Rules are object based and adjust the scale and position of elements in the design.


If you want to know more about this and any of the other methods that Erica (learn@ericagamet.com) and Jonathan (jlevit@blendspacedesign.com) use, you send them an email.



Door Prize Winner


Adobe Creative Cloud. 12 month subscription—Danielle Parisi







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