Archive for March, 2011

Quickly rotate objects in Adobe InDesign without using the Rotate tool

A few quick shortcuts for rotating objects in your InDesign object

Rather than selecting your object and using the Rotate tool in the Tools panel, simply move your cursor to just outside the corner of your object with the Selection tool to reveal the hidden rotate icon – then just click and drag the mouse to rotate.

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Customizing Guide Colors

As a novice PageMaker instructor (a hundred years ago), I was startled the first time a student commented that they couldn’t distinguish between the pink (margin) and purple (column) guides. Even though my spouse is red/green colorblind, it never occurred to me that it anyone would struggle to follow my directions when it came to calling out colors. Sadly for that student, and for the numerous PageMaker students who followed him, there was nothing I could do, other than to modify my instructions to eliminate color references.

Luckily for those with color issues, or even just color preferences, this is simply not a problem in Adobe InDesign. You don’t like a guide color? So change it!

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Using Story Editor

If you are like a lot of my self-taught intermediate-level InDesign students, you’ve successfully avoided Story Editor. Not on purpose, of course, but if you ever opened it up, I bet you were first startled by the new view of your document, and then greatly relieved when you figured out how to close the window without disrupting your layout. Let’s take a few minutes to figure out why you might to open it, on purpose!

The idea behind Story Editor is to show you a “word processing” view of your text files. Back in PageMaker’s heyday, it was the only way to see the non-printing characters, and that alone made it worth opening. These days, Track Changes may force you to open it up, but personally I use it for other things as well. Here’s how to get started:

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