1 2 Previous Next 64 Replies Latest reply on Oct 25, 2016 9:59 AM by Obi-wan Kenobi

    Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?

    Eternal Warrior Adobe Community Professional

      I would like a way to simplify my life when making flyers and nesting styles.

       

      I have a series of bullet points that I want to be able to control through the minimum use of character and paragraph styles as possible so that I can make quick adjustments and add/remove bullet points to other documents I need to create. I know I can use more than one paragraph styles but that means a lot more work when i need to make changes to both text and formatting. My use of nested styles almost works but is flawed.

       

      What i need is a way to add spacing before/after and set a sort of line break between the main paragraph style and the character style. Is this something that can be added as a feature to character styles?

       

      Let me try and explain in this example - Imagine all this is a Nested Style in 1 text frame with 2 columns and say 6mm spacing between the columns.

       

      I hope you can understand

       

      Key:

      GREEN: Information on styling and description of intended function/how nested style works.

      RED: Issues

       

      ---- {Nested Style with random name} -----

       

      [Paragraph style defines space before each bullet and  from any other paragraph style] - Currently Space before after etc only controls distance from next bullet point

       

      {BULLET HEADER} Bullet point Header 1:  [Nested Character Style applied up to :]

      {BULLET EXPLANATION} Explanation of bullet point i.e. Just point and shoot. [Paragraph style controls this text]

       

      {BUT I want to add additional space after information here so that there is a 2mm space between header and explanation in nested style AND doesn't allow explanation text to fit if there is room next to the Character Style/Bullet header}

       

      [Paragraph style defines space after each bullet and any additional indentation]

       

      {BULLET HEADER} Bullet point Header 2: [Nested Character Style applied up to :]

      {BULLET EXPLANATION} Wider alloy coverage and lower limits of detection -- especially for light elements -- allow operators to scan a broader range of incoming or installed materials more quickly. [Paragraph style controls this text]

       

       

      Is this possible to do? - Help please?

       

      Many kind regards,

       

      James

        • 1. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
          Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

          I know I can't figure out what you are trying to do, s it's likely others can't either. Can you give us a screen shot of the effect you want to have when finished?

          • 2. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
            Chad Chelius Adobe Community Professional

            The thing is that nested styles only work within a paragraph style. The minute you hit return, the nested style starts over again. You could use a soft return and add the additional space by applying it with leading and a character style but IMHO this is going to get ugly quick. I'd simply use two different paragraph styles to achieve the result that you're looking for. I don't understand why you're trying to avoid this. It looks to me like you'd need two styles, bullet header and bullet explanation. If you need more space, use space before/after on one or more of the styles to achieve the desired result.

            • 3. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
              Eternal Warrior Adobe Community Professional

              Example.PNG

              I want a nested style that works to look like this (or better) with spacing after each bullet heading? but without messing up leading for every line or only altering the space after each bullet point...

              • 4. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                Chad Chelius Adobe Community Professional

                I'm sorry but I still don't understand the problem. To achieve this, I'd create two paragraph styles. Bullet heading and Bullet explanation. Adjust the leading for each style to control the spacing between lines within the paragraph and space before/after to control the spacing between the paragraphs. What am I missing?

                • 5. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                  Eternal Warrior Adobe Community Professional

                  I have been currently using two paragraph styles but not only does this get ugly quick when it decides a paragraph starts and ends at the wrong place or then forces a large gap between styles but it also makes it a much slower and more cumbersome editing process. Nested styles were created to make peoples life faster and easier. Kind of defeats the point to use two paragraph styles and is already proving irritating when i need to change the text in any way.

                   

                  I.e. just tried changing the text examples as above for another product and it decided for 10 minutes that regardless of the paragraph style i said that the entire text above was also needing to be the same style and not the one already given...

                  • 6. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                    Obi-wan Kenobi Adobe Community Professional

                    Before jumping by the window!

                    Capture d’écran 2016-10-25 à 14.10.32.png

                     

                    (^/)

                    • 7. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                      Eternal Warrior Adobe Community Professional

                      I appreciate your responses - I am trying to make my life faster and easier and having two different paragraph styles seems to make everything more complicated than it needs to be.

                       

                      BTW I am at work and being told I need to go for my lunch break so others can go? Can I respond again in 45 Minutes?

                      • 8. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                        Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                        Personally, I would do this with two styles and cycling paragraphs, but it should be possible to nest one character style through the colon to do the heading, then none though one forced line break, and then add a nested style though one character that increases the leading to push that line downward (be sure leading is not applied to the entire paragraph).

                        • 9. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                          Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                          Two paragraph styles set so they are each the Next Style for the other allows you to rapidly build this sort of list as the style will swap automatically when you press Enter.

                          • 10. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                            Obi-wan Kenobi Adobe Community Professional

                            One para style + one regex!

                             

                            Capture d’écran 2016-10-25 à 14.37.28.png

                            Capture d’écran 2016-10-25 à 14.37.45.png

                             

                             

                            (^/)  Just for fun!

                            • 11. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                              Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                              Way too complex. You don't need your light saber to do this:

                               

                              List formatting in one graph.png

                               

                              And it works with headers and explanations of any number of lines, as long as there's a forced line break between them. It even works if the colon is omitted, though I don't think it should.

                              • 12. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                Eternal Warrior Adobe Community Professional

                                Ok...This looks more like it might work as a work around for now.. Will try it in the next 10 minutes and get back to you.

                                 

                                Can i see a screenshot of the character style for the +24 leading?

                                 

                                Is there a reason why you can't have functionality like space before/after as a character style?

                                 

                                Also your first suggestion with the two styles cycling causes issues with having two manage two lots of indent styles etc. etc. where one nested style would make life easier.. Which is why i like the post above more as a temporary solution (if it works mind..) although really some development to functionality in character styles would surely make this require less advanced knowledge to do?

                                 

                                In addition could you kindly educate me in how I reformat/add forced line breaks to my explanations? I don't wish to sound foolish but its something that escapes me today.

                                • 13. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                  Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                                  Twenty-four Pt leading style.png

                                   

                                  Space before and after are paragraph attributes, so cannot be set with character styles.

                                   

                                  While I don't see a problem with two styles -- you define all the indents, etc., as part of the style, I kind of like this nested style approach for cases where a forced line break is used to separate parts of the list.

                                   

                                  A forced line break is commonly called a "soft return" and can be typed using Shift + Enter.

                                  • 14. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                    Obi-wan Kenobi Adobe Community Professional

                                    Peter,

                                     

                                    I said: just for fun! 

                                     

                                    Imho, the way I would use:

                                    Apply para style 2 to all the text and play: Find: :$ Replace by format: Para style 2

                                    Para style 2: auto bullet, all caps, space before and link with the 2 first lines of the para below.

                                     

                                    Using soft-returns could generate weird widows!

                                     

                                    (^/)

                                    • 15. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                      Eternal Warrior Adobe Community Professional

                                      So why can they not also be used as character attributes.. like a child class of a parent in HTML/CSS?

                                       

                                      And that would be my other concern following on from Obi-wan Kenobi:

                                      1. Soft returns could generate weird results
                                      2. Also that means you can't just make changes by typing away without thinking or importing new text into a document you would have to remember / manually go through and add forced line breaks to places where you wanted them
                                        1. Even if you could find and replace with the line breaks...

                                       

                                      All of which seems like a lot of extra work and frustration for something by which nested styles were supposed to make more intuitive for people?

                                      • 16. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                        BarbBinder Adobe Community Professional

                                        this get ugly quick when it decides a paragraph starts and ends at the wrong place

                                        InDesign doesn't get to decide where are paragraph starts or ends—you do, by pressing Enter/Return. I'm confused by that statement.

                                         

                                        Is your b/w screen shot typical? One bullet, one indented paragraph and repeat indefinitely? I prefer the simplicity of Peter's approach with cycling styles. Take it one step further and add an object style to the text frame that calls in the first bullet style and the whole thing will format itself when you assign the object style.

                                        Combining Paragraph Styles and Object Styles in InDesign | Highlander Website

                                        • 17. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                          BarbBinder Adobe Community Professional

                                          nested styles were supposed to make more intuitive for people?

                                          As a trainer who spends a large part of her time teaching nested styles, I wouldn't call them "intuitive". I would call them "efficient".

                                          • 18. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                            SJRiegel Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                            Jaguar1991 wrote:

                                            Is there a reason why you can't have functionality like space before/after as a character style?

                                             

                                             

                                            Space before paragraph / space after paragraph would be unworkable as part of a character style - in part because you can have many different character styles applied within a single paragraph (bold, italic, etc.), and if each had its own Space After Paragraph setting, how would InDesign determine which one to use?

                                            • 19. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                              Obi-wan Kenobi Adobe Community Professional

                                              Barb,

                                               

                                              As already written, it doesn't work with threaded text frames and only if cycles (A > B > A > B > A …).

                                               

                                              (^/)

                                              • 20. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                Chad Chelius Adobe Community Professional

                                                I'm just going to reiterate my original statement that using nested styles the way that you are trying to can get ugly quick. Paragraph and Character styles in InDesign don't work the same way that CSS works in HTML. Sometimes I wish it would! But the concept in InDesign is similar to HTML syntax. For what you're doing, you should be using two separate paragraph styles. You could add the Next Style attribute so that the styles automatically switch back and forth as you're typing (as Peter has already mentioned).

                                                • 21. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                  Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                                                  Soft returns can generate "weird results" when you use them to force a line break to make your paragraphs "look better" and subsequently edit the paragraph, resulting in text reflow, but this in not a good use of forced line breaks and can be accomplished better with non-breaking spaces or the judicious application of the No Break attribute. Soft returns used as intended, to separate specific parts of a single paragraph, as the heading from the explanation, where that break should always fall in the same position, are not a problem.

                                                   

                                                  InDesign is not CSS/HTML and is far from being an intuitive program. It takes some training, and practice, to learn the nuances and develop the mindset for using the program. It's a bit like learning a foreign language. You aren't there until you start thinking in the language instead of translating on the fly.

                                                   

                                                  If you are typing the list, either the nested style or the two styles approach will work equally well. Type the heading, then hit either Enter (two styles, explanation set as next style for heading), or Shift + Enter for the forced line break (one style).

                                                  • 22. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                    Eternal Warrior Adobe Community Professional

                                                    Ok, I hear what your saying and perhaps I'm not the best at explaining.

                                                    As best as I can explain this, the trouble with your solution(s) is this:

                                                     

                                                    BarbBinder wrote:

                                                     

                                                    Is your b/w screen shot typical? One bullet, one indented paragraph and repeat indefinitely? I prefer the simplicity of Peter's approach with cycling styles. Take it one step further and add an object style to the text frame that calls in the first bullet style and the whole thing will format itself when you assign the object style.

                                                    Combining Paragraph Styles and Object Styles in InDesign | Highlander Website

                                                    Using two styles in a cycling pattern is simple when you are first creating that document and you have no edits to make. However if you need to change anything:

                                                    • you have to not only edit both the styles for example to adjust the indentation for both to match
                                                    • but you have to create separate styles from say word when importing new text so you can replace these with styles already specified in InDesign
                                                    • It makes the whole process slower - what is the point of using nested styles at all then may i ask?
                                                    • If you aren't editing text without using the enter button this doesn't really work.
                                                    • Also existing formatting can mess with this even when you hit enter so it decides that instead of applying the next style it applies the same style...
                                                    • All of which seems like a lot of work and which would seem to be why Nested styles would be perfect for what I need if i could either test Peter's latest solution OR rather like you would when coding in HTML/CSS apply spacing before/after like a child class (i.e. a character style) whilst maintaining the formatting of the paragraph style.

                                                     

                                                    I hope this clarifies things?

                                                    • 23. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                      Obi-wan Kenobi Adobe Community Professional

                                                      Suzan,

                                                       

                                                      Independent leading char styles could be used in Grep/nested styles!

                                                       

                                                      (^/)

                                                      • 24. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                        BarbBinder Adobe Community Professional

                                                        As already written, it doesn't work with threaded text frames and only if cycles (A > B > A > B > A …).

                                                        I didn't see that the OP is using threaded frames, but there were a lot of posts to read through, so I guess I missed it. And yes, I thought I asked if the b/w screen shot was typical: one bullet, one indented paragraph and repeat indefinitely before reiterating the cycling styles approach. Not that I don't like your technique, Michel, I just prefer simplicity of styles over GREP when I can get away with it. As a teacher often tasked with not only providing a solution but also explaining the why behind it, I find that styles are initially more easily grasped than GREP for the average InDesign user.

                                                        • 25. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                          Eternal Warrior Adobe Community Professional

                                                          It would work rather like an if else statement surely...but as a nested style as Obi-Wan Kenobi says?

                                                           

                                                          Paragraph style is Master and controls everything

                                                          Character is the if else in that it controls only what it is applied to providing its not equal/breaks to the paragraph style

                                                          • 26. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                            Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                                                            Using leading this way is a bit of a kludge, and is far different from space before or after. There's some possibility to use leading in line styles, too, to fake paragraph spacing, but that will only work if the number of lines remains predictable.

                                                            • 27. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                              Eternal Warrior Adobe Community Professional

                                                              Please note my response to BarbBinder with the issues I am trying to explain with regards to using the two styles approach..

                                                              • 28. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                                Obi-wan Kenobi Adobe Community Professional

                                                                Peter,

                                                                 

                                                                You used it in your trick [post#11]! Me too (on the bullet [psot#10])!

                                                                 

                                                                (^/) 

                                                                • 29. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                                  Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                                                                  Peter Spier wrote:

                                                                   

                                                                  Way too complex. You don't need your light saber to do this:

                                                                   

                                                                  List formatting in one graph.png

                                                                   

                                                                  And it works with headers and explanations of any number of lines, as long as there's a forced line break between them. It even works if the colon is omitted, though I don't think it should.

                                                                  Actually, It doesn't work if you omit the colon, though it could be set up differently to work without one. It only seemed to work because I was testing on a single paragraph with no return at the end. To work with or without the colon, use Bold All Caps through 1 Forced Line Break and eliminate the nested None style from the list. That's a better solution than the first in general as it's simpler.

                                                                  • 30. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                                    Eternal Warrior Adobe Community Professional

                                                                    Simply because it would always use an available paragraph style first? Also not sure why it would matter that much? Surely it would give more control than having to play with a single characters leading as suggested as a "kludge" here.

                                                                    • 31. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                                      BarbBinder Adobe Community Professional

                                                                      Darn! My class is about to start, but I'll check back in at lunch to see if anyone has addressed your points—you have some awesome InDesign minds already on the thread. What I'd really like is to have you in class for an hour of nested styles training to clear up the confusion!

                                                                      • 32. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                                        Obi-wan Kenobi Adobe Community Professional

                                                                        ... And I'm not talking about what Javascript could do instead of Grep!

                                                                        However, without going to the dark side of The Force !!

                                                                         

                                                                        (^/)

                                                                        • 33. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                                          Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                                                                          Jaguar1991 wrote:

                                                                           

                                                                          Please note my response to BarbBinder with the issues I am trying to explain with regards to using the two styles approach..

                                                                          To be perfectly clear, Obi-wan has NOT suggested a method using nested styles directly. He used Find/Change, which is a separate step and not automatic.

                                                                          • 34. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                                            Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                                                                            This thread has a lot of cross-talk going on and it's getting hard to tell who is answering who...

                                                                             

                                                                            Obi-wan Kenobi wrote:

                                                                             

                                                                            Peter,

                                                                             

                                                                            You used it in your trick [post#11]! Me too (on the bullet [psot#10])!

                                                                             

                                                                            (^/)

                                                                            yes, I used leading to simulate paragraph spacing, because there is no other way I can think of to accomplish this in a single style, but that doesn't make it pretty.

                                                                            • 35. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                                              Eternal Warrior Adobe Community Professional

                                                                              BarbBinder wrote:

                                                                               

                                                                              Darn! My class is about to start, but I'll check back in at lunch to see if anyone has addressed your points—you have some awesome InDesign minds already on the thread. What I'd really like is to have you in class for an hour of nested styles training to clear up the confusion!

                                                                               

                                                                              To clarify my understanding of designing any feature for InDesign is to make it "efficient" (using your own words).

                                                                               

                                                                              Therefore may i ask why using two styles an efficient way of managing/editing/adding text?

                                                                               

                                                                              Given that it requires additional steps and is not a close to being automatic... or... even a one click to apply a style to new text (once everything is set up first time of course).

                                                                              • 36. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                                                Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                                                                                Jaguar1991 wrote:

                                                                                 

                                                                                It would work rather like an if else statement surely...but as a nested style as Obi-Wan Kenobi says?

                                                                                 

                                                                                Paragraph style is Master and controls everything

                                                                                Character is the if else in that it controls only what it is applied to providing its not equal/breaks to the paragraph style

                                                                                The paragraph style/character style relationship is neither parent/child nor if/else. Paragraph styles control the formatting for the entire paragraph. If there are character styles applied, those formats are applied on top of the paragraph style, changing the underlying formatting absolutely. Character styles should be applied only to isolated text within a larger paragraph that needs to be different from the underlying paragraph formatting.

                                                                                • 37. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                                                  Eternal Warrior Adobe Community Professional

                                                                                  Peter Spier wrote:

                                                                                   

                                                                                  This thread has a lot of cross-talk going on and it's getting hard to tell who is answering who...

                                                                                   

                                                                                  Sorry Peter, You are probably the closest to the mark as to what I am looking for... albeit as a "kludge" and temporary solution.

                                                                                  • 38. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                                                    Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                                                                                    Jaguar1991 wrote:

                                                                                     

                                                                                    Simply because it would always use an available paragraph style first? Also not sure why it would matter that much? Surely it would give more control than having to play with a single characters leading as suggested as a "kludge" here.

                                                                                    Using and understanding styles is one of the most powerful features of InDesign. For a simple business card you might not need them, but for a complex document they are essential, and you could need dozens in a long doc.

                                                                                     

                                                                                    ALL text has a paragraph style, whichever is set as the default (typically [Basic Paragraph]), unless you assign a different style. Working efficiently means defining styles for every type of paragraph that you will use -- predefine them for the types of paragraphs you know you will use -- and using the ability to base one style on another (this IS a parent/child relationship), changing only those attributes that need to be different, so that a change in the base style will cascade through all the based on styles except in those attributes specifically changed previously in the child style.

                                                                                     

                                                                                    It's also important to utilize the Next Style parameter to set up a situation where one type of paragraph is always followed by a particular second type of paragraph. This allows for easy keyboard input, and for use of the Apply <stylname> and Next Style commands from the Paragraph Styles panel context menu to a highlighted block of text, formatting it all in one click.

                                                                                    • 39. Re: Space before/after + Line break/end as a Character Style?
                                                                                      Eternal Warrior Adobe Community Professional

                                                                                      Yes - which brings me on to Nested Styles where I want to automatically format to the desired "kludge" outcome for a whole string of text where i am not using much or any keyboard input except to perhaps edit afterwards.

                                                                                       

                                                                                      Again aside from your solution as listed here:

                                                                                       

                                                                                      Peter Spier wrote:

                                                                                      Way too complex. You don't need your light saber to do this:

                                                                                      List formatting in one graph.png

                                                                                      And it works with headers and explanations of any number of lines, as long as there's a forced line break between them. It even works if the colon is omitted, though I don't think it should.

                                                                                      Actually, It doesn't work if you omit the colon, though it could be set up differently to work without one. It only seemed to work because I was testing on a single paragraph with no return at the end. To work with or without the colon, use Bold All Caps through 1 Forced Line Break and eliminate the nested None style from the list. That's a better solution than the first in general as it's simpler.

                                                                                       

                                                                                      I suppose I'm trying to understand why doing something like this has to be a "kludge" in the first place? Especially given all the reasons I have already tried to make about why cycling styles is not a good solution.

                                                                                      1 2 Previous Next