Documents - Pages
QuarkXPress is the industry standard page layout
program. Although it is a professional level application
with features that will handle virtually any pre-press
circumstance that may occur, it is has a user-friendly,
intuitive interface and is surprisingly easy to use.
QuarkXPress is designed for printed output. It is used
for brochures, ads, newsletters and anything else that
appears in print. Although Quark is not specifically
made for web pages, there are utilities available such
as Extensis® Beyond Press
which can convert Quark pages into web pages.
A page layout program is like a word processor in that
a document is built on a page. However, that is where
the similarity ends because page layout programs, unlike
word processors, allow the precise arrangement of text
and images on the page. The first step in making a new
document is the creation of the page itself. You determine
the page size and dimensions and, like a graphic artists
drawing board, Quark opens up a work area that looks
like a blank page with a pasteboard on either side.
Basic Objects - Boxes and Lines
Quark is box-oriented so layouts are built by placing
boxes on the page. They are drawn onto the page with the
mouse. The type of box is determined by its content. A
box can contain either text or an image, or it can contain
nothing at all. Thus a box is either a "text box",
a "picture box" or an empty box.
Boxes and line objects can be precisely positioned on
the page. There are 72 points to an inch and objects can
be positioned to within 1/1000th of a point. That's more
than enough precision required for any job. The user selects
the measurement system. Measurements can be set up in
inches (standard or decimal), picas, points, millimeters,
centimeters, Ciceros or Agates.
Object Shape, Outline and Color Properties
A box can be rectangular (or square), oval (or round),
or polygonal (any number of sides). Previous versions
of Quark limited the shapes of lines, boxes and polygons
to straight line segments but the latest version allows
curved line segments using Bezier curves more
on Bezier curves.
An assortment of dashed and solid lines and preset frames
are provided to vary the appearance an object's outline
(or frame). Thus, shadow boxes can be made as well as
a number of other effects. Anything that can't be done
along this line directly in Quark can be drawn using Adobe®
Illustrator® or another illustration
program, then imported into Quark in a box and placed
on the page.
Colors can be defined using any of the established color
models - RGB, CMYK, HSB and LAB. Swatches from standard
spot color systems are also supplied (PANTONE®,
TOYO, DIC, TRUMATCH and FOCOLTONE). Each document contains
is its own user-defined color palette. Colors can be created
from scratch or copied from other documents and the supplied
color swatches. Stroke (outline) and fill properties are
applied to objects just like in illustration programs
so the concepts learned in these applications apply here
Tools and Preferences
Like illustration and image editing programs, Quark has
a tool palette with tools for creating page objects and
for modifying their shape, position and content. There
also are other preferences you setup to tell Quark how
you want to make documents. These are the individual settings
or "environment" such as printer settings, units
of measurement, etc.
There is a simple but important concept to grasp regarding
tools and preferences. Tool and environmental settings
made with no documents open become application defaults
that go into effect when you create new documents. Settings
made with an open document are retained only by the document
when it is saved and are restored when the document is
reopened for editing. Once a document is opened the working
environment is replaced by the one saved with the document.
New documents created while other documents are open will
inherit the current working environment.
There is, however, a provision for making changes to application
defaults while documents are open. This is done through
the Edit > Preferences menu. Here one can make
changes to either the application preferences or document
It is important that the working environment be saved
with the document because documents are often sent to
a service bureau for output on a high resolution device.
The working environment can be restored when the document
is reopened ensuring that it will print as intended.
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