Text frames, picture frames , graphic shapes , and lines are the building blocks with which you construct InDesign pages. Becoming familiar with creating and modifying individual objects, which is the focus of Chapters 10 and 11, is a key step in learning how to create publications with InDesign. The next step is to learn how to use several features that let you manipulate multiple objects at once and quickly adjust the relationships among the various objects that make up a page. A good InDesign user can handle individual objects one at a time with ease; a virtuoso user can simultaneously juggle several objects with equal ease.
Think of it this way: As an InDesign user, you're much like an architect. You begin with a blueprint ‚ perhaps a rough, felt-tip pen sketch; maybe just a picture in your mind's eye ‚ open a new document, and start construction. The settings you establish in the New Document dialog box (File ‚ New, or z +N or Ctrl+N) ‚ the page size , margin placement, column arrangement, and number of pages ‚ serve as the foundation as you begin adding objects to your pages. You must then construct your building ‚ or rather, your publication ‚ using four basic components: text frames, picture frames, shapes, and lines. Each of those components can be tweaked and twisted in a nearly endless variety of ways while retaining basic properties. After all, a sheared (skewed) and mirrored text frame with a purple dashed stroke, a gradient background, and magenta text outlined in cyan is still just a text frame.
As a publication evolves, plans invariably change: An advertiser pulls out and a magazine article needs to be stretched an extra half-page by enlarging an InDesign-created illustration. A client loves his company's newsletter but wants the front-page picture cropped differently. A new product is added to a catalog and half the pages reflow . If you build your documents soundly from the ground up and use the features covered in this chapter, you'll be prepared to handle even the most challenging page building ‚ and rebuilding ‚ tasks .