Let's begin to create our own publication and explore some new document specifications.
Beginning a New Document
When we begin creating a new document, InDesign does not automatically open a blank page. Instead, when we start a document, we are first required to specify some information about our publication such as the document's paper size, orientation, margins, and number of columns.
Step1. To begin creating a new document, on the Menu bar,
Click File, Click New, Click Document
Step2. To specify that we want our document to be measured in inches, in the Units section,
Click, Click Inches
NOTE: Changing the default units of measurement before opening a document will set the selected unit choices as the default for all InDesign documents on your computer. To do so, in InDesign with no document open, on the Menu bar, Click Edit, Click Preferences, Click Units and Increments. Change Horizontal and Vertical to Inches as preferred
NOTE for MacOS Users: (To set the default units for all InDesign documents, with no document open in InDesign, on the Menu bar Click InDesign, Click Preferences, Click Units and Increments. Change Horizontal and Vertical to Inches as preferred.)
Step3. To specify that we do not want facing pages,
Click the Facing Pages checkbox
NOTE: Make sure the box is unchecked.
Step4. To specify three columns, in the Columns field,
Press & Drag the number, type: 3 Tab key
Step5. To set the gutter width at.15 inch, in the Gutter field,
type: .15 Tab key
Step6. To check the setting of the margins,
Step7. To accept the new document settings,
Step8. To save the new document, on the Menu bar,
Click File, Click Save
Step9. Navigate to the InDesign Basic folder, if necessary.
Step10. To name the document, in the File name field, type:
Classroom Technology Enter
Planning the Document
We are now ready to begin designing the basic layout of our "Classroom Technology Today" newsletter. Before we lay out some more features of the document, we need to make sure we have a plan for our design.
When creating a complex document, layout and organization should be planned before adding text, graphics, or formatting. Before designing any publication, it is important to keep in mind some basic design principles such as consistency, legibility, clear choices regarding graphics, and general composition. We will explore each of these principles as we work through today's project. To learn more about designing a publication, please attend the workshop Page Design and Layout Basics. In addition, there are many useful books and Web sites that provide information about design principles.
NOTE: For a guided walkthrough of this section, watch this video.
Using the Grid
When we're working with any graphic design application, it helps to know exactly the point on the page where we are working. The Grid is a device we can use to place objects precisely where we want them. It works like traditional graph paper in that it contains evenly spaced horizontal and vertical lines.
We will use the grid lines to roughly size our text and graphic objects and place them in approximate locations. Since we want to start positioning objects, we will activate the grid.
Step1. To show the grid, on the Menu bar,
Click View, Point Grids & Guides, Click Show Document Grid
Step2. To change our grid sectors divisions to inches, on the Menu bar,
Click Edit, Point Preferences, Click Grids...
NOTE for MacOS Users: To change the grid sector divisions to inches, on the Menu bar, Click InDesign, Point Preferences, Click Grids...
Step3. To specify 4 subdivisions per inch along both axes, in the Horizontal Subdivisions field,
Click "Subdivisions:", type: 4 Tab keyTab key 4
NOTE: Make sure both subdivisions are set at 4.
Step4. To accept the settings,
Snapping to the Grid
Misaligned objects can adversely affect the look of a publication. Even though readers may not immediately notice that objects are slightly out of alignment, inaccurate positioning makes a publication look unprofessional overall. The grid in InDesign offers a feature that compels us to align shapes only along the grid lines, thus simplifying the task of perfectly positioning objects on a page. To help control our design, we can choose to snap our shapes to the grid.
Let's see how the Snap to Grid feature works.
Step1. To snap our objects to the document grid, on the Menu bar,
Click View, Point Grids & Guides, Click Snap to Document Grid