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How to Design a Page: Instructions for the beginning designer So, you’re now a designer for the Red & Black, congratulations! The experience you will get working for this publication will be extremely valuable, especially if you plan to pursue a career in publication layout and design after college. I’m sure you’re wondering what’s next, where do I begin? Don’t panic, this set of instructions is very informative, and it will be your bible each day you design for the Red & Black!

IMPORTANT NOTE: Before you begin this job, you must know you will probably be working very late hours (potentially from 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.). Be aware you have committed to staying until the page(s) you are designing are done. All the staff has tests and other school assignments too, so if you know you have a day you absolutely can’t work, be sure to ask another designer to sub for you.

Before you start on the instructions, you must learn about the Editorial Library (Fig. 1.1). It’s something you will used every time you design, and it’s great to work with because everything is already laid out for you. Because the paper is designed with Adobe InDesign, it’s very convenient to drag and drop things like columns, photos boxes (with credits and cutlines), mugshots and more.

Fig. 1.1: InDesign’s Sidebar & Editorial Library - This is usually located on the right side of the screen in InDesign and contains everything you could ever need to put the Red & Black together.


Many of the “newspaper terms” listed below are located in the Editorial Library, so before you begin reading the instructions, you should become familiar with the following: Bylines:

These are where the name of writer and the publication name (Red & Black) will go. They are always located at the top of the story, under the headline but before the actual story. When working in InDesign, the fonts for the “byline top” and “byline bottom” are already set for you in the “paragraph style” menu as “Byline Top” and “Byline Bottom (Fig. 1.2).”



Fig. 1.2 Also located in the paragraph style box shown above are four different headline options. However, Headline 1, 2 and Jump Head are the only ones used. Headline 1 is the generic headline used the most on each page. Headline 2 is used for the bigger stories located at the top of the page. The Jump Head is the headline used for stories that “jump” from page 1. You won’t always use all three of these headlines on each page, but there are times you will (Fig. 1.3).

Headline 1 Headline 2 JUMP Headline Fig. 1.3 Note: Each row in a headline is known as a “deck.”

Cutlines & Photo Credits:

These both go below all photos - the cutline says who or what is in the picture and what they’re doing, while the photo credit tells the reader who took or contributed the photo (Fig. 1.4). 2.

Fig. 1.4


This identification is last name only, ALL CAPS, flush left and uses the same style as cutlines do. Make every effort to place the mug to the left side of the column, with the top lining up with the first line of the second paragraph (Fig. 1.5).

Text Credits (Tags):

These are author’s names located at the end of stories such as the “Crime Notebooks” or the “Those were the Days...” sections. Instead of a byline at the top of the story, these “text credits” go at the very end, after the story and they are in the same font as the body text, just italicized (Fig. 1.6)

Editor’s Notes:

Fig. 1.5

Fig. 1.6

These appear before stories like “Those were the Days...” to signal something to the reader. It is set in regular Fig. 1.7 text style, just in italics with Franklin Gothic No. 2 lead-in before (Fig. 1.7).


Essentially, there are four ways to justify text in the Red & Black:

1. Ragged Right ( also flush left) Oborero odo ea feugiam

dolobore enis essed do conum dolortie magna adiametummy nit utpat iliquipissed eugiam,

Use Ragged Right font for all opinions text, except letter attributions, all Variety copy, News and Sports feature stories, News Variety and Sports, Notebook items, columns outside the Opinions page, and Editor’s Notes

3. Ragged Left (also flush right) Oborero odo ea feugiam dolobore enis essed do conum dolortie magna adiametummy nit utpat iliquipissed eugiam,

Use Ragged Left font for Tags to attribute short stories, notebook items, and“contributing” credits; Tags to identify columnists; Opinions letter attributions


2. Justified Oborero odo ea feugiam dolobore enis essed do conum dolortie magna adiametummy nit utpat iliquipissed eugiam,

Use Justified font for News stories, Sports news (including previews, game stories, personnel stories - essentially, everthing but features)

4. Centered Oborero odo ea feugiam dolobore enis essed do conum dolortie magna adiametummy nit utpat iliquipissed eugiam,

Centered font isn’t traditionally used that much, but when it seems necessary it is used.

Shortcuts and InDesign terms:

You will be so glad you have these shortcuts, and you know what these terms mean when you begin and get the hang of designing a page. I know it may seem like a lot of terms, but don’t worry, they’re easy to remember and they will be in your head forever! (The computers you will be using are Macs, so these shortcuts are in Mac format)

** Means you will use the shortcut a lot! 1. **Zoom in: command + plus sign (+) 2. **Zoom out: command + minus sign (-) 3. **To look at page without lines: w 4. **Copy: command + c 5. **Paste: command +v 6. **Cut: command + x 7. **Undo: command + z 8. **Redo: command + shift + z

9. **Place: command + d; you use this command when you are “placing” anything into a photo or text box. 10. **Export: command + e; this command can be confusing at first, but once you actually do it you will understand. You have to “export” each item on all pages you design - photo cutlines/ credits, headlines, boxes, and anything else that need to be typed into. Once an item exported it will go in the “assignments” section of the design sidebar (Fig. 1.8). (You will learn more about the “export” command later in the directions.) Fig. 1.8

11. **Group: command + g; this command is used when you are trying to group items on a page together. For example, if you added something on top of a picture for whatever reason and wanted it to permanently there, you would group them together. This way if you need to move the item later they won’t separate. 12. **Ungroup: command + shift + g; obviously this command does the opposite of the above command. An example for this command would be ungrouping a photobox that was drug from the editorial library, separating the actual photo from the credit and cutline. 13. Save: command + s; you’re going to want to use this command throughout the page designing process. 14. Print: command + p; you print pages when a hard copy needs to be looked at by a copy editor, section editor, managing editor, or the editor-in-chief. 15. Em dash: option + shift + -; this command is used before the author’s name at the end of things like an editor’s note or a Fig. 1.9 notebooks. (Fig. 1.9) 4.



I know that was a lot of information, but now when one of those terms is mentioned in the instructions you can go back and easily find what a term means! For purpose of this instruction set, say you’re designing a page in the Monday, Feb. 21, paper and you are assigned page 2. This page is almost always a “News” page and almost always contains the “Crime Notebook,” the “Corrections Box,” and 1-2 news stories.

STEP 1: Open a page

1. Log on to one of the Macs in the design area (design editor will give you the user name and password to use). 2. Open the “editorial” server, icon located on the desktop (Fig. 1.10).

Fig. 1.10

3. Then, open the “Monday” folder (Fig. 1.11).

Fig. 1.11

4. After “Monday” is opened, open the “Mon. Pages” folder (Fig. 1.12).

2. 3. Fig. 1.12

Fig. 1.13

5. After you open “Mon. Pages,” click on the InDesign document titled “2-21-pg-2” (Fig. 1.13) to open page 2. Note: Before anything is added by the designers, all pages are formatted the same, with the ads (ad stacks) and the picas (spaces between text/photos and ads) also already placed (Fig. 1.14) The format of each page usually changes daily. Fig. 1.14 5.



STEP 2: Lay out the page

Note: On this example page, there will be a “Crime Notebook,” a “Jump and a full story with a picture. 1. Pull three text boxes from the editorial library, and set them on the blank space to the right or left of the page (Fig. 1.15) Note: It doesn’t matter how many columns the boxes you pull out are, we’ll deal with these later on in the instructions.

Fig. 1.15 2. Ungroup all headers from the text and pull the main text box down until there is a little space between the header and the story (Fig. 1.16).

Fig. 1.16

3. Delete the header completely from the text box you put the Crime Notebook in, as it has a different head (Fig. 1.17).

4. Place each text box taking into account how many inches the budget says the story will be 5. Change the column number (on the text toolbar the top) accordingly between 1 and 6 (Ex: if text is lined up with 4 columns on a page, that’s the max number of columns the text box can have). Note: 1.) Sometimes stories and/or photos come in towards the end of the night, so you have to place photos and text boxes on the page assuming how much space it will fill up. If the space you save for a story is too small or too big IT’S OKAY, you can either change the page around OR the section editor will work with you to add more or delete from story. 6. Change all headlines to the correct formats (listed on pg. 2). 7. Pull out the “Crime Notebook” header and the “Online tease” box (Fig. 1.17) from the Editorial library to place above the Crime Notebook. 6.

Fig. 1.17



STEP 4: Place & Export

Note: It doesn’t matter if you place or export first. Sometimes you are unable to place any text or images because the story/photos aren’t in when you start designing. In this case, you would export all the headlines, cutlines, and any boxes and other special text boxes. Then, when the story does come in, you can place the text, and the section editor can type the needed information in these boxes. This way the page gets to copywriters and editors in a timely manner 1. Erase the placeholder text in the main parts of each of the text box, and place each of your stories into their seperate text boxes. To place a photo you would to the same thing, but in a photo box. 2. After the story is placed, you will highlight the top and bottom byline separately to change them to the correct font format. For the Crime Notebook, you would use the text credit format for the author’s name. 3. Let’s say you’re exporting the headline for the jump story. Select the headline box and hit ctrl + e. When a save box comes up, select the “Monday” folder, then select the “Monday Stories” folder (refer back to Figs. 1.11 and 1.12 if needed). The assignment will be named in the following format: “0221-JUMPstorynamehead”. Note: Because this is a jump, it has JUMP in front of it. Other exports are named the exact same way, just without JUMP and with a word telling the editor what the export is. 4. After being exported, items will go to “assignment” section of the design side bar, where they can be edited from other computers. Note: When ANYONE (including you) wants to edit or type something into an exported text box, they MUST “check out” the assignment (Fig. 1.18, right). When the assignment is changed it MUST be checked back in for the designer to “update” it (Fig. 1.18, left). There are different icons that pop up on the top left side of each exported box. If there is a globe icon by the assignment it isn’t being used so anyone can check it out (Fig. 1.19); If you, the designer, check an assignment out, a pencil appears next to it (Fig. 1.20); If someone else checks it out, a pencil with a red line appears next to the assignFig. 1.18: ment (Fig. 1.21); and if at any time there is a yellow triangle with an Assignment exclamation point inside next to a globe or a pencil with a red line Box through it, the assignment has been changed by someone and it needs to be updated (Fig. 1.22) 7.



Fig. 1.19

Fig. 1.20

Fig. 1.21

Fig. 1.22

STEP 5: The LAST step, Send to editors & copywriters

When you get to this step, you’re practically done, you’re just waiting around. 1. Your page goes to“first proof.” In this stage, the copyeditor is proofing all the text, looking for spelling and grammar mistakes, and the section editor is looking for the same thing plus design issues that need to be fixed. 2. Your page goes to “second proof.” During this stage, the managing editor and editor-in-chief are both looking very closely at the page, looking at all the small details to find ANYTHING that could be wrong before the page goes to print. 3. One of the editors tells the design editor for the night your page is “cleared.” 4. FINALLY you close your page and log off your computer. After that you are DONE, and you can look at all your hard work once you pick up a Red & Black on campus tomorrow! The final version of this example page is on page 9.



About the Author:

My name’s Charlee Russell. I am a journalism major, and I obviously design for the Red & Black. I started working there in July of 2010, and having instructions like these would have saved me a lot of time my first couple of weeks. I knew InDesign very well from previous design experience, but I had a lot to learn. Even though I do not have any desire to design for a newspaper after college, I am so glad I have experience like this. It not only helped me learn InDesign like the back of my hand, but it also made me realize layout and design is a field I love and hope to pursue a career in after college. I hope my instructions have been helpful!



Instructions for the beginning designer at the Red & Black

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