8 Replies Latest reply on Jun 15, 2011 6:57 AM by bleu-lavande

    Creating a page layout (frame, columns)




      I downloaded a 30-day trial of InDesign in order to design the Grade Six yearbook for my daughter's class.  I've learned an awful lot in a very short time but am still having trouble with some things that I'm sure are simple to seasoned pros.


      Can you tell me the best way to create a page layout that will allow a page frame, columns, text and photos.  When I create my columns within page format, the outside margins of the margins extend to the outside margins of the page.  I know how to adjust the distance between columns but not how to inset them slightly within the page frame so that the edges of photos, text aren't just glued along the page frame.  They need a little breathing room.


      I tried to create my whole page as a text frame this morning then asked for columns and set the inset distance. That worked until I started to move photos around and the inset guide disappeared.


      Hope this makes sense.  Any help would be appreciated.




        • 1. Re: Creating a page layout (frame, columns)
          Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

          Page margins and regular cloumn guides are interconnected, that is the column guides should be dividing the space between the margins. It's also possible to have a multi-column frame of any size.


          It would help if you could take a screen capture of a page (with frame edges and guides showing) and post it. You can embed the image in a post using the camera icon on the web page:




          Also, which trial version did you download?

          • 2. Re: Creating a page layout (frame, columns)
            bleu-lavande Level 1

            Memory book.PNG

            I'm sorry. I'm not sure where the web/camera button is.  I feel like I'm trying to manoeuvre in a foreign country.


            Here is a snippet of one page I'm trying to design.


            The text frame shows the 1p0 space I would like to have around the outside perimetre of the page, but my margins are all right against the outside edges.  I would have to eyeball them to move them which I'm certain is not the way to go.


            Basically I would like to have the columns start 1p0 in from the main page frame.




            • 3. Re: Creating a page layout (frame, columns)
              bleu-lavande Level 1

              And the trial version is CS5.5

              • 4. Re: Creating a page layout (frame, columns)
                bleu-lavande Level 1

                Just to clarify, in the capture, the photos aren't right against the outside edge because I started to manually move them all in last night.

                • 5. Re: Creating a page layout (frame, columns)
                  Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                  You figured out the camera icon, I see, or your image wouldn't be here.


                  Margin and column guides ar only that, guides, and the only time they actually impact frame dimensions automatically is when you are auto-flowing text. I can't tell for sure how you've done what you've done because only one frame is selected, but I don't expect this is all one large text story with a bunch of anchored image frames.


                  If I were setting this up, I'd use at least two, and probably three layers. On the bottom layer I'd put a rectangle filled withthe background color. I would NOT make this a text frame, to avoid any confusion, and I would lock the layer.


                  The next layer up is for graphics and images. Place those individually, sized and positioned any way you like. In CS5 or 5.5 you have "gridified" frame tools, so if you want to make a grid of same-sized frames you could select the frame tool, click at the upper left corner of where you want to start, then while dragging press the right-arrow key to make columns or the up-arrow key to make rows (press the opposite arow to remove a column or row if you add too many). The gap between is the same as set in document setup for the gutter between columns. You don't have to do it this way, but it's convenient. You can then place the images into the frames. You can select the frames and pre-set fitting options if you like, and you can select a single row, press the Alt/Opt key and drag a copy to make a second row. Hold Shift while you drag to maintain the vertical alignment (or just trust the smart guides).


                  You can also make that grid by using the gridified feature to make a 3 x 3 frame grid, then delete one of the middle side frames, selct the other two in the row, drag to make the two frames fill the row (they will stretch together, but the gap will get wider, too), then use the gap tool if you like, (holding Ctrl or Cmd while dragging a frame edge at the gap) to adjust the gap to match the others (you should see a double-ended arrow appear in one of the other gaps when you've got things the same).


                  Top layer is for the text. Drag a new text frame where you want that to be and start typing. The reason I suggested locking the background layer was to prevent clicking the text tool in that empty frame from converting it to a text frame and putting an active cursor in the upper left corner, which is what would happen if you tried to draw a new text frame on top of it and it wasn't locked.


                  So, maybe the short answer to your question is that, yes, you need to position things where you want them by moving them and/or adjusting the sizes.


                  We haven't talked about printing and bleeds. Do yoiu expect the background to go all the way to the edge of the page? How is this going to be printed, if in fact it is going to be printed?

                  • 6. Re: Creating a page layout (frame, columns)
                    Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                    I should add that if you will have multiple pages with the same layout, you should addthe background and empty frames to the master page, then palce the content in the frames on the live pages. Putting the backgound on the master may be a good idea in any case since it is likely to be a repeating element.

                    • 7. Re: Creating a page layout (frame, columns)
                      bleu-lavande Level 1

                      I used the snipping tool to get my capture and saved it as a jpg. I don't think I'm doing things the easiest way.


                      Thank you for taking the time to answer me.  I haven't used layers.  I was sort of afraid of them.  That sounds like a good idea to put the basic page frame colour on a layer.  I will try it.  I find the smart guides to be very helpful.  Good to know that moving things around is part of the process--just need to trust my instincts a little more with the placement of photos etc.


                      The memory book is going to be printed in a very basic way with a cerlox binding.  That's why I've made the inside margin a little wider.


                      I will reread your response and get back to work on my document.  Thanks again.

                      • 8. Re: Creating a page layout (frame, columns)
                        Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                        The question about printing is really the process -- short-run digital (commercial or in-house on a desktop printer or office copier) vs. a press -- and has to do with bleed. Do you understand about bleed and having color to the edge of the page? Most devices are not capable of printing all the way to the edge of the sheet, so if you need to bleed, you'll probably be printing on an oversized sheet and trimming. This is an important consideration for your design, and something you need to account for from the start. You can't print on larger stack thanthe maximum that wil feed through the printer, so if you need to tim, your layout needs to be small enough to leave som trim area on that sheet.