You can specify any number of characters you like, as well as the number of lines to drop, in any dialog that allows you to set a drop cap, as well as in the control panel. If the drop cap is part of your style, either define a new style based on the first and change the number of characters to 2, then apply that style to paragraphs that start with quotes, or change the number for select paragraphs as a local overrride.
I don't want to drop cap the quote mark and the second character but just the second character. I have tried applying a character style to the quote mark having drop capped the first two characters to make it the same as the paragraph but this does not work.
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Sorry, misunderstood the question.
I'm not sure what you have against enalarging the quote mark to match, but I was able to do what you want by adding a nested style (and you could do this as local override formatting, too, but I'm sure you'll want to create a character style to do it, and doing it as a nested style will allow it to disappear when you change to a style that does not drop the caps) through one character that reduces the horizontal and vertical scale, and adds some baseline shift.
You'll need to establish the correct values through trial and error, but in my test I used Minion Pro regular, 12 pt on 14.4 autoleading, and scaling to 37% with a 14 pt baseline shift seems about right if you drop two lines.
It's a three line drop with one character so is quite ugly with just the quote mark as this character. It is out of style if I drop cap the second character as well.
I will try this out on the publication in question.
I'm confused now. In any document I can recall that used drop caps, I'm pretty sure that a leading quote would have been dropped along with the following character. I'm not quite sure what you mean that "It is out of style if I drop cap the second character as well." Are you saying you DON'T want the character after the quote mark dropped?
The style of the first paragraph in each article has a drop cap of one character to the depth of three lines.
Sometimes that first character is a quote mark (") rather than a letter.
I do not want to drop cap both the quote mark and the next letter character but just the second character (if it is a letter) if the first character is a quote mark.
Like this (a two line example I have to hand)
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OK. The scaling/baseline shift trick should do what you want, once you find the correct values. Change the drop to the first 2 characters and apply the nested character syle to only the first character.
Sometimes you can leave out an opening quote mark before a drop cap. A thread over on InDesign Secrets refers to the Chicago Manual, saying "the open quote is often dropped when the design calls for a drop cap" (not readily findable in my old 12th ed.). Meanwhile, a Typophile thread cites Bringhurst on how the opening quote mark should be sized and placed to fit the cap and design, i.e., for the good of the reader. So if you're going to use it, you are likely to have to play around to get it to look right, and settings that look right in front of a "L" might not work for an "A".
And, in this example, please apply kerning between the "L" and the "i" to move "iving" left, and insert an en-space before "marks." It means just a bit of extra work to do the appropriate (differing) spacing for each drop cap, but, now, doesn't that look better?
Thanks guys for your advice and help sorting this out.
I have split the alphabet into four main groups and made a paragraph style each with its own character style for the quote mark. They differ in the tracking amount for the quote mark.
The paragraph style has drop cap set to: 3 lines 2 characters
Nested style: Character style through 1 Character
Gives me a good start and just the final adjustments to make (Thanks Bradley)
Regards to all