I think the problem is in the paths, not in the leading.
The paths should be sections of concentric circles, centered on the artwork. You can't do that by duplicating a single path. As you get further from the center each path should be slightly different. The paths closest to the center should be part of a smaller, tighter circle. The ones further away need to be larger and less tight.
Try making a series of concentric circles. Each one out should have an increasingly large radius, larger by a fixed increment. Then cut the circular paths to the width of the type (try the Scissors tool). Place the text on those segments.
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Can the texture on the background image really be described in concentric circles?
Somehow I doubt that… And that would make this task really difficult for InDesign.
I would hand that job over to Adobe Illustrator where you can do blending of open paths that are not concentric with a defined number of steps. And then you could convert the blend to individual paths and copy/paste them to InDesign for further editing.
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save the screenshot and place it.
You'll see that the concept of concentric circles will not work.
Screenshot placed in Illustrator, drawing the main paths and some delimiters that will later restrict the paths.
Converted the delimiters to guides, blended the two inner paths, blended the outer two paths, converted to individual paths and cut the paths along the delimiters:
Copied the paths to InDesign and used them with inDesign's Text Path tool:
I used several layers in InDesign to separate the background image from all pasted paths.
And another layer for duplicating candidates for text paths.
I think it would work best to use a combination of Illustrator and InDesign tools to do this job.
See the help page about Illustrator's Blend functionalities:
If you are not familiar with Illustrator search the Adobe Illustrator forum:
I use Ai since it's creation … a long time ago, in a galaxy far far away!
I thought so. :-)
Initially my remarks about the Illustrator help page were dedicated to the OP.
Then I decided to add them as edit to my post directed at you.
Thanks, Laubender and ALL of you for your helpful comments! I'm not familiar with AI's Blend functionality and delimiters. I'll check out the articles. Is this all doable in AI CS5? That's what I'm using.
Yes, AI's Blend function is also available with CS5.
What is your exact corresponding InDesign version?
That would fit perfectly.
Yes, I am using CS5 on Windows 7.
Forgive me for asking such naive questions, but what is a delimiter? I tried a search on the AI forum and nothing comes up.
So after placing the screenshot, the paths that you created were not text paths?
The point size is 16 and the leading is 19 and I want to keep it consistent throughout the book alongside the text boxes that contain the type that isn't on a path.
Would you mind clarifying what happened in between your 2nd and 3rd screenshot?
I wanted to restrict the length of the paths that I drew along the almost circular shapes.
So I drew some lines ( not straight lines ) in a somehow orthogonal direction to indicate the beginning and the end of the paths.
To make that realistic you'll perhaps need some attempts…
And then I converted the orthogonal paths to guides.
Hm. Have to look it up, if this was already possible with Illustrator CS5…
Anyway, you could use the orthogonal paths as a guide to cut the paths following the almost circular shapes.
Just stack them behind the other ones.
Then you are using Illustrator's Blend functionality.
Select two paths, determine the number of steps in the Blend Options and do the Blend command.
Experiment a bit with the amount of blends you need between the inner two paths vs the outer two paths.
The number will be different as you can see from my screenshots.
Automatically the number of blends will be done. To one selectable object.
You have to use the Convert command to convert the blends into ordinary path objects you could copy/paste to InDesign. Make sure that the paths you are drawing are not too thick, about .3 pt will do so that Convert would not do shapes instead of paths…
You'll need at least a stroke weight on the paths in Illustrator so that copy/paste would work.
Paths that have no fill and stroke cannot be pasted to InDesign. Best you are using no fill with the paths.
This all is a bit off-topic. Go to the Illustrator forum to ask detailed questions there.