More InDesign Defaults: Keyboard Shortcuts

First of all, thanks everyone for reading and commenting on last week’s piece on InDesign Defaults. Before moving on, I think I should stress that I bring these things up (setting defaults) mainly so that if you haven’t considered them, you have a place to start. And though I recommend specific approaches because they work for me, if you’ve thought it through and what you’ve got better suits you or your process, do that. Typographer and friend André Mora commented on his method of taking time to experiment with size and leading values before locking things into a grid, rather than enabling alignment to baseline grid by default. Not only do I find this a totally valid approach, it’s also a great one. It’s one I often take. The reason why I prefer working the other way is because it forces me to think in context of a grid system.


Which I guess could veer us into today’s topic: Shortcuts. Adjusting one’s document-wide baseline grid settings can be cumbersome. Changing the increment by a half a point can mean hunting down the Preferences menu, then finding the appropriate dialog. For me, it makes more sense to just create a keyboard shortcut that takes me straight there. Since the default shortcut for Show/hide baseline grid is (alt/option + ’) which I already instinctively used, it seemed natural to make Open baseline grid settings relate somehow, so I set it to (shift + alt/option + ’).

Why working with standard keyboard defaults makes sense

Every designer selects and hones his or her own tools to some extent. The reasons why I choose to build off of standard keyboard shortcuts is because they’re the ones I learned first (so, out of comfort), and also because it helps keep my skills portable. For example, if I need to slip into someone else’s work environment for some reason, my hands won’t be tied. This also becomes a temporary consideration when an equipment failure requires one to wipe or reinstall a system.

Default InDesign shortcuts I use all the time

Beside the ones common to the OS/most programs, I most often find myself using these below. For Windows, substitute command with control.

Make selected text larger by 2 pt: shift + command + >

Make selected text smaller by 2 pt: shift + command + <

(2 pt is just the default increment by the way, set that in InDesign > Preferences > Units & Increments, Mac, or the same under the Edit menu in Windows.) Holding down alt/option with the above shortcuts changes size by 10 pt increments.

Toggle preview mode: W

Make me a new document, on the double!: alt + command + N

Bring forward / Bring to front: command + ] / shift + command + ]

Send backward / Send to back: command + [ / shift + command + [

Paste in place: alt + shift + command + V

Paste without formatting: shift + command + V

Toggle OpenType case feature: shift + command + K

In pro fonts, the case feature may do more than set the selected text in all caps, for example in MVB Verdigris, it also adjusts the spacing to a looser, all cap spacing. In JAF Bernini Sans, it substitutes in a set of mid-caps drawn just shorter than cap height, but taller than small caps, for use setting acronyms in running text.

Quick Apply: command + return

Screen Shot 2014-05-15 at 9.58.09 PM

This last one is really handy, particularly when applying things that don’t appear on the menus, such as custom styles you create. Also, things that do appear on the menus but are often quite buried, like OpenType features (all small caps or stylistic sets). By the way, if it’s accessible through the menus, you can make a shortcut for it.

I know I’m leaving plenty out for brievity’s sake; There are lots more. Consulting a good chart and familiarizing yourself with the unknowns is best.

Here’s how custom shortcuts are made

Screen Shot 2014-05-15 at 11.39.49 PM

Edit > Keyboard Shortcuts… opens the dialog. From here, pick your commands and assign a key sequence. The dialog will alert you to conflicts should you choose something that’s already taken. You can also save your set. This is handy because InDesign will every so often misplace all custom shortcuts. As I mentioned in the intro, it works best for me to make custom shortcuts that are intuitively similar to standard ones.

Consider adding these to your list of custom shortcuts

Screen Shot 2014-05-15 at 10.34.52 PM

It seems like I’m always using the Type > Change Case commands to capitalize a title or tone down some ALL CAPS. So for me, control + command + U / L / T / S gets me there.

Open baseline grid settings: shift + alt/option + ’

Here’s where I’m really looking for input: What’s missing from my list of suggestions—any shortcuts making your life better?

Mac-specific tip: This means Alt/Option.


Sometimes checking the menu because I’ve forgotten the shortcut doesn’t seem to clear up anything at all. Anyway, the above broken pair of salad tongs ⌥ refers to your alt/option key. The outlined up arrow ⇧ is shift, the chevron or up arrow resembling a caret or circumflex ^ is control, and the cloverleaf, clearly marked on the keyboard, is command.

Okay, that’s it. Thanks for reading and please leave your suggestions and ask your questions in the comments section below. This series, Using Type continues Thursday. Thanks to  Charles Bigelow & Kris Holmes’s Lucida Grande for setting the opening title, and quite a few of my menus.


Introducing Tryout on

reposted from The NextFontShop Team


Just in time for the TYPO Berlin 2014 conference, we’re releasing a first version of our upcoming Tryout feature on

At the moment, it’s a disarmingly simple-looking beta that works only with webfonts*, but the initial preview version already takes you well beyond the scope of traditional live font-rendering.

What’s the Difference?

Though it looks like a blank page at first glance, the initial Tryout feature is in fact a powerful design tool. It’s a functioning layout template where you can create, delete, change and combine your rendered font samples freely. With its useful range of tools, you can play with the rendered font samples, changing their point sizes, line spacing and text alignment, and you can also change the colors of the text and background. You can design anything you want, using any webfonts of your choice. And every designer knows that a blank page is not just an empty space, but a wide open universe, full of unlimited potential. To start creating your own rendered layouts, just select the family of your choice, then click on the “Tryout” button.


Sharing is Collaboration

Naturally, you can “share” your designs with as many people as you like. But here’s a refreshing new twist: in our Tryout feature, “sharing” also means “collaborating”. Once you’ve “shared” your design with a person or a group, they can also edit it and send you back their changed versions, allowing you to work jointly on any design. This is not only extremely practical for professional use, it’s also a great opportunity for users to bounce around ideas and inspire each other. To try this feature, just create a design in the Tryout page, then click the “Share” button—and let the fun begin!

More in the Works

In upcoming versions, you can look forward to more Tryout templates, tailored for practical use-cases such as blog designs, book texts or websites. Soon you’ll also be able to browse them for new families, work with your “favorited” items, upload images and test out the finer capabilities of the fonts, such as OpenType features and much more.


Essay Text and Carter Sans

Today we look at the nice, natural relationship between Ellmer Stefan’s Essay Text and Matthew Carter’s eponymous Carter Sans, which was co-produced by Dan Reynolds.

The thing I see most pronouncedly in Essay Text is a deliberate leaving in of the details—things that would be stripped or otherwise rationalized away. To make it clear that these small touches (such as its pointed curves or a seemingly misplaced heaviness in the tail of the y)  have a purpose, the same are emphasized to allow demonstration of the principle.

Essay-Text-and-Carter-Sans-2 Essay-Text-and-Carter-Sans-3
Together with Essay Text, I’ve paired Carter Sans. A sans it is, though its flared terminals land this also in the category of Glyphic, or Thorn Serif. (The term glyphic here makes reference to lapidary inscription.) Carter Sans has a nice, hearty and uncomplicated feel to it. Seeing the two together was enough to convince me of their compatibility.
Essay-Text-and-Carter-Sans-4 Essay-Text-and-Carter-Sans-5

Great Pairs continues here Wednesday.

New Fonts This Week

New Fonts
Sergio by FONTYOU
DSari by Latinotype
Secca Soft by Astype
Sperling FY by FONTYOU

Dylan Copperplate by Wiescher

Campan by Hoftype

Caboom by Wiescher

Brando by Bold Monday
Bodoni Classic Fleurs by Wiescher
VLNL Bleek by VetteLetters
Bodoni Classic Fleurs by Wiescher
VLNL Duct by VetteLetters
Bodoni Classic Fleurs by Wiescher
VLNL TpBarPaco by VetteLetters
Bodoni Classic Fleurs by Wiescher

Continuing Promotions

Business Penmanship by Sudtipos – 30% off until 22 May

Consuelo by Latinotype50% off until 28 May

Karol Sans by Type-Ø-Tones20% off until 31 May

Jugo Script by Sudtipos30% off until 6 Jun

DSari by Latinotype75% off until 12 Jun

Brando by Bold Monday30% off until 15 Aug

Want detailed showing of new fonts straight to your inbox? Make sure you’re receiving them in your inbox. They maybe getting lost in the promotions section. If you use Gmail then you can drag and drop the FontShop Newsletter from your Promotions Tab to your Primary Tab.

Buyer’s Guide: New Category Page

The Category page at FontShop has been rebooted! It is now easier than ever to explore our catalog and find new fonts to love.

Choose from one of eight common categories: Sans, Serif, Slab, Script, Display, Blackletter, Symbols, or Non-Western.

Narrow your results down further by clicking on a subcategory. Or, sort your results by Newest fonts or Bestsellers.

If you have additional questions you can always email FontShop’s Support Team for help.

FontShop Friday Five: Mother’s Day & New Fontlist


We know you’re busy and the Internet is a crowded place, so we’ll try to give you a little reminder on Fridays of what’s going on out there. Below please find five recent FontShop-related threads that you may have missed.

New Fontlist: TDC 2014 Award Winners

Check out a new Fontlist curated by David Sudweeks with the Type Directors Club of New York Award Winners for 2014. The TDC is a non-profit professional organization dedicated to educating its international membership and the graphic arts community about type. View the complete list of winners here.

Mother’s Day Inspiration

Still need to make your mom the best card in the universe?! We got a quick fix for that. Check out our Pinterest page with several boards that will get those design juices flowing and will surely make you her favorite this year.

Newsy Newsletter

Have you seen our most recent newsletter? It’s jam packed with great designs and promos! If you haven’t, make sure to either subscribe or check your “Promotions” tab if you’re a Gmail user.

New Fonts

We welcomed new foundry Stereotypes to FontShop this week! A total of twelve gorgeous new designs can now be found here.

Buyer’s Guide

Our sales and support team gives an update on the new filters and free fonts page in this week’s Buyer’s GuideNow you can filter for OpenType, TrueType, or Web.


Friday Five Fonts: Acta Symbols by DSType and Sweet Sans by Sweet

InDesign Defaults

When Matthew Butterick mentioned this series as a good online source for reading about typography, he also mentioned its general bias towards InDesign in the examples I give. That’s true. And while I deal with and have dealt with plenty of other tools, software and otherwise, for editing, writing, drawing, setting and composing what will ultimately become design that’s typographic in nature, InDesign, particularly the few-generations-old InDesign, is the one I regularly turn to when working with digital type.

Screen Shot 2014-05-08 at 10.13.05 PM

I have to a limited extent touched on the most popular typographic medium, hypertext, and its conveyance, your browser, but it’s still unnecessarily complicated to talk about a simple concept in a simple way, say, kerning, or small caps, when web standards aren’t there yet, and there’s no good way of ensuring that the results I’m getting are the ones you’ll get. Other stuff like columnar layout and text flow, H&J, baseline grids, and the ability to detect the size of final output, are altogether missing from browsers or in their infancy. All that, and the fact that a fixed medium  lends itself well to making a single set of arbitrary and finite adjustments here and there is one of the things that has always drawn me to print work, and for this specific purpose (demonstrating the principles of typography), caused me to remain with a tool made for print production. (That said, I do plan to focus more on typography in the new medium as part of Using Type, but I’ve had a good long run so far sticking to the basics in the old.)

Internal note

As a kind of wrap to what I’ve written in the series thus far I thought, ‘This writing isn’t really giving much of a glimpse into the typographer’s brain; more like the brain stem.’ These principles I’ve covered aren’t what typographers talk about, just as musicians rarely discuss fingerings, or emergency room doctors their stitching technique. These become built-in, and felt, and what happens beyond that point in the creative process becomes much harder to describe. That’s where I want to go though. At least get to something concrete that articulates a principle better than, ‘You’ve just got to feel it.’ There’s wisdom in following one’s instincts, but if the reader doesn’t see the reasoning that leads to the platform from which the typographer instinctively leaps—to the next decision, little good it does. Those benefited are almost exclusively the readers who already understand the concept, those who also ‘just feel it.’

Anyway, forget all this. I’ll get to it and either strike gold or retreat. Today, and over the next couple of weeks, I want to talk more about what happens inside that typographer’s brain stem. And this is shop talk, the painter reviewing his list of brushes and ladders, the photographer his lenses. Kind of as a last final rundown, I want to go specifically over the conscious decisions made working with InDesign before the first project file opens.

General note on setting defaults

When in InDesign, or any of the major CS or CC Adobe apps, the way to set a program-wide default is by setting something while no documents are open. To make document-wide defaults, (and I’m actually not sure this works everywhere) you specify something while nothing in the document is selected. There are other defaults, such as New Document and Print menu defaults, which are set within those menus using a Save Preset dialog.

The defaults

With no documents open, consider what to keep from what’s already chosen for you by default. In the Character palette, set the font family and size if you have one in mind. Here I set mine to Jordi Embodas’s Pona 9 pt and leave the leading set to auto. That’s what the parentheses mean.

Screen Shot 2014-05-08 at 8.58.25 PM

Now, this next part is important. Set the kerning value to Metrics. This, not optical, should be your default. See above.

Screen Shot 2014-05-08 at 9.21.00 PM

Also, through the top rightmost button on the Character palette, which looks like a tiny down arrow next to three horizontal lines, enable Ligatures and Contextual alternates. This last one allows for example complex connected scripts to work as intended.

Screen Shot 2014-05-08 at 9.10.04 PM

On to Paragraph. Select the Align to baseline grid option at the lower right. I also recommend hyphenation being on by default. Change if you disagree, or if the language you primarily work in doesn’t have a very good hyphenation dictionary or whatever.

Screen Shot 2014-05-08 at 9.36.11 PM

The place you set up the baseline grid is under (on the Mac) InDesign > Preferences > Grids, or the same under the Edit menu in Windows. Here I set my increment to 6 pt, and Start at the top, 0 in.

And of course I use points and inches because I’m an American, but if you’d prefer millimeters and centimeters, the same can be set one dialog up from Grids in Units and Increments.

Screen Shot 2014-05-08 at 9.47.47 PM

Unless you work primarily with Pro fonts, the following is ill-advised: Go to Advanced Type and set the Small Cap height to 25%. And while you’re at it, you may consider altering the superscript and subscript values. What will this do? Instead of InDesign surreptitiously inserting fake small caps, this setting will make all fake small caps terribly noticeable. You can then go and replace them with properly drawn and proportioned real small caps. The same goes with these settings for super- and subscripts.

Screen Shot 2014-05-08 at 10.07.44 PM

Screen Shot 2014-05-08 at 9.59.37 PM Screen Shot 2014-05-08 at 10.02.38 PM

Lastly, hyphenation and justification. Follow these settings, referring to my post on the subject to know when to deviate, for example, when exporting a PDF to be read primarily on-screen you should never scale glyphs. These are set from the top rightmost corner of the Paragraph palette. After looking at it, I think I’ll have to revisit my decisions on the hyphenation of certain words or words that lie in precarious places.

That’s it for now. What am I leaving out? Next week we’ll continue on the subject of defaults. Thanks again goes to Jordi Embodas’s Pona (my new default!) for setting the title.

Berling Nova and Neuzeit S

Today we take a brief look at Karl Erik Forsberg’s Berling Nova and Wilhelm Pischner’s Neuzeit S.

Berling-Nova-and-Neuzeit-S-1 Berling-Nova-and-Neuzeit-S-2
One thing quite evident in Berling Nova is its ability to set running text with confidence – the way it carries its weight, and how much it dares use in a text face. The complete set comes also with two display cuts, for larger work, above. Something about this face, its cleanness and lack of ornament led me to find a similarity with Neuzeit S, while looking through the Helvetica Alternatives FontList. Neuzeit S’s roundness, spareness, possession of eccentricity, and generous spacing is as much of a unifier as I required. Reading about our sans companion today, I found out that the S stands for Siemens, the original client for whom the face was made. Should you require more than two weights of Roman, Akira Kobayashi completed and re-released a set of optically corrected obliques in the Neuzeit Office set. A Rounded variant also exists.
Berling-Nova-and-Neuzeit-S-3 Berling-Nova-and-Neuzeit-S-4
Together the two slip tightly into dominant and subservient roles, or mesh as well-fit, well-oiled gears.

Great Pairs continues here Wednesday.

New Fonts This Week

New Foundry Stereotypes
Elsa by Stereotypes
Sergio by FONTYOU
Flenja by Stereotypes
Secca Soft by Astype
Florence by Stereotypes

Dylan Copperplate by Wiescher

Prism by Stereotypes

Caboom by Wiescher

Sarre by Stereotypes
Bodoni Classic Fleurs by Wiescher
St Atmos by Stereotypes
Bodoni Classic Fleurs by Wiescher
St Friska by Stereotypes
Bodoni Classic Fleurs by Wiescher
St Lorie by Stereotypes
Bodoni Classic Fleurs by Wiescher
St Marie by Stereotypes
Bodoni Classic Fleurs by Wiescher
St Mika by Stereotypes
Bodoni Classic Fleurs by Wiescher
St Ryde by Stereotypes
Bodoni Classic Fleurs by Wiescher
St Transmission by Stereotypes
Bodoni Classic Fleurs by Wiescher

Continuing Promotions

All Laski Slab in Web and OT by ReType – 30% off until 7 May

Business Penmanship by Sudtipos – 30% off until 22 May

Consuelo by Latinotype50% off until 28 May

Karol Sans by Type-Ø-Tones20% off until 31 May

Jugo Script by Sudtipos30% off until 6 Jun

Want detailed showing of new fonts straight to your inbox? Make sure you’re receiving them in your inbox. They maybe getting lost in the promotions section. If you use Gmail then you can drag and drop the FontShop Newsletter from your Promotions Tab to your Primary Tab.

Buyer’s Guide: New Filters on the Free Fonts Page

We’ve updated our Free Fonts page to include format filters. Now you can filter for OpenType, TrueType, or Web. Yes, we have free webfonts!

The filter buttons are located just above the sample text bar.


Excited to explore the free fonts FontShop has to offer? Stay tuned to the blog to hear about our new Category page in next week’s Buyer’s Guide.

Pinterested: Fonts a Mother Would Love


Pinterested: Mother's Day

It’s that time of year again where we show our appreciation for that special lady in our lives.

On May 11th, amaze your mom with a one-of-a-kind card! We’ve picked out a few perfect fonts for you and some fStop images on our Mother’s Day inspired Pinterest board. And don’t forget a box of chocolates or a bouquet of roses to for that added touch!

Happy Mother’s Day!

Laski Slab and Graphie

Today we look at a fun and casual relationship between Paula Mastrangelo’s Laski Slab (made with the production help of Ramiro Espinoza) and Ryoichi Tsunekawa’s Graphie.

Laski-Slab-and-Graphie-1 Laski-Slab-and-Graphie-1a

Laski Slab was initially created for an online children’s magazine. Though spare, its inviting qualities are evident in the carriage of its bowls, the interplay of round and square contours, and small details such as its terminal treatments. Graphie does well as a complement to Laski Slab with its strong, wide dominance, ultra low contrast, and subtle mischief. Note the terminal angles of characters such as lowercase e and s. Such sign-painterly cues seem to be coming back into style forcefully this year. Together, the two create the kind of tension that holds well the reader’s consideration.

Laski-Slab-and-Graphie-2 Laski-Slab-and-Graphie-3 Laski-Slab-and-Graphie-4

That’s it. Great Pairs continues here Wednesday.

New Fonts This Week

New Fonts

Consuelo by Latinotype
Consuelo by Latinotype

Jugo Script by Sudtipos
Jugo Script by Sudtipos

Rumpus Room Filled by Sideshow
Rumpus Room Filled by Sideshow

Continuing Promotions

Nitti Grotesk by Bold Monday – 30% off until 30 April

P22 Wedge by IHOF – 25% off until 30 April

Bodoni Classic Fleurs by Wiescher – 50% until May 1st

Caboom by Wiescher – 50% until May 1st

Dylan Copperplate by Wiescher – 50% until May 1st

Marianina FY by FONTYOU – 80% off until 4 May

Coco FY and Chelly FY by FONTYOU – 50% off until 4 May

Exquise FY, Kaili FY, Bruum FY by FONTYOU – 70% off until 4 May

All Laski Slab in Web and OT by ReType – 30% off until 7 May

Business Penmanship by Sudtipos – 30% off until 22 May

Consuelo by Latinotype – 50% off all products until May 28th

Jugo Script in OT and Web by Sudtipos – 30% off until June 6th.

Want detailed showing of new fonts straight to your inbox? Make sure you’re receiving them in your inbox. They maybe getting lost in the promotions section. If you use Gmail then you can drag and drop the FontShop Newsletter from your Promotions Tab to your Primary Tab.

Buyer’s Guide: Comicraft EULA


Founded by Richard Starkings and John Roshell in 1992, Comicraft is credited with pioneering digital lettering in the comic book industry. With studio clients that include Dark Horse Comics, DC Comics, Marvel Comics, Image Comics, Mad Magazine, Nickelodeon, Graphitti Designs, View Askew, Scholastic, Todd Mcfarlane Productions and NBC, and lettering and design work over the last 20 years they have won many awards including the coveted Eisner. So if you are looking for that authentic comic book look, then you’ve found your perfect foundry. Check out Flame On, Onomatopedia, and Destroyer on FontShop.

Basic EULA Rights

  • Desktop use supports up 5 CPUs and 1 output device.


  • You cannot share the font with users that do not have a license for the same font.
  • You cannot embed the font software into a Website or Application.

See Comicraft EULA

If you have additional questions you can always email FontShop’s Support Team for help.

EULA highlights will be posted every other Monday. Next up is Gestalten.

FontShop Friday Five: Defaults and Great Pairs



We know you’re busy and the Internet is a crowded place, so we’ll try to give you a little reminder on Fridays of what’s going on out there. Below please find five recent FontShop-related threads that you may have missed.

New Fonts

We have a great assortment of new fonts this week from FONTYOU, Wiescher and Astype. Also, a bunch of continuing promotions!

Buyers Guide

Theresa takes us through the rights and restrictions of the Red Rooster EULA.

Welcome back, Great Pairs!

We’ve all been eagerly waiting for it! David is back with a new installment of Great Pairs. This week he covers  William Addison Dwiggins’s New Caledonia (digitized by Alex Kaczun), and Nick Shinn’s Brown Gothic.


Yves discussed the arrival of typography at TEDtalks on the FontFeed earlier this week.  See Matthew Carter  speak on “My Life in Typefaces”.

Defaults in Design

A new issue of Using Type is here! David reflects on Sibylle Hagmann‘s talk at TYPO San Francisco and introduces defaults which will be covered in several future installments. Check back for the continuation next week!


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