Template Tips and Tricks

    Our templates are very versatile. Each one can be completely undone and redone. They are very customizable and flexible. The main problem with such versatility is that it is easy to mess them up! The following tips and tricks are designed to help you manage a template in such a way as to get the most out of it.

    #1 – Our Templates Are Substitute and Go Designs

    We built our templates so that you can just swap out the images and the text and print. We’ve tried hard to take away the need to figure out margins, spacing, alignment, where the images should go, what font sizes to use, what fonts to use, and where the text should go.

    This doesn’t mean that you can’t completely revamp one of our templates to suit your needs. It means that you may not need to. If you try to keep things within the parameters you see on the template, you should get a good design.

    #2 – Pay Attention to Alignment and Spacing

    One of the more important factors to good design is the alignment and spacing (create link) of the various elements on the page. It is easy to mess with this very delicate balance by inserting an image too large or too small, but putting more text in than the design calls for, by increasing or decreasing font sizes, and so forth.

    If you decide to change key elements on a template, we suggest you examine the alignment and spacing and try to fit your new changes within that scheme.

    #3 – Ordering of Template Elements

    The elements on a template all have their specific order relative to each other. Objects with a higher ordering number will be on top of objects with lower ordering number. You can’t see these numbers, but you can see what is on top of what.

    In our templates, there are usually four groups that require ordering: the background, images, shapes, masks, and text.

    Typically, you will find the ordering of elements in the following order (back to front):

    1. The background
    2. Images and shapes that are affected by the masks
    3. Masks (image frames, like windows, to change the shape of an image)
    4. Images and shapes
    5. Text

    Yes, images and shapes are on the list twice. Some images and shapes will be behind the mask to conform them to certain proportions, but others will be on top of the mask (such as a logo) to perform other functions.

    Use the ordering tools on the Designer to move objects behind or in front of other objects.

    #4 – Using Masks and Image Frames

    Masks are like a window that lets you see something behind it, but only to the aspect of the window. Many of our templates employ masks to give images a particular shape, such as a square image to look round. Templates can have multiple masks or even a large mask with several windows in it.

    Manipulating these masks are best done by sending the mask to the back (the far background) by using the ordering tools on the Designer. Once in the background, all the images behind it will suddenly be on top of them. Now it is simple to delete these images and place your own in the same locations. Then you can simply send the new images to the back (the far background), behind the mask, thus making your images conform to the window dimensions and shapes of the mask.

    #5 – You Can Create Your Own Templates

    By simply re-opening your past saved projects, you now have your own templates to start from. If you are doing a newsletter, for example, you can use your old saved files as the basis for your next issue. Simply load in the old issue and then click “Save As” to give it a new name and keep the original file.