Shortcuts to Success: Learn to Kern and Track

Shortcuts to Success: Learn to Kern and Track


Sure, there are huge lists of InDesign keyboard shortcuts out there, but are you going to sit down and memorize them all? We're here to help you learn some handy new ones, one by one, making it easier to add them to your mental list. Each week, we'll highlight a different shortcut to help you work faster, better and smarter.
 
SPD-U SHORTCUT OF THE WEEK
 
Adjust Kerning or Tracking
option left or right arrow

ShortCut_Kerning_Keyboard.jpg
The keys you need are the left and right arrows, not the greater than or less than arrows, which are above the comma and period.

Kerning is adjusting the space between a pair of typographic characters, and doing it right is a sure sign that you're a pro. Tracking is the same, but that term applies to the process when more than one pair is involved. 

KERNING: To tighten the space between two characters, click between them with the Type Tool to insert your cursor, hold down option and type the left arrow. To open the space, hold down option and type the right arrow.

TRACKING: To tighten the spaces between more than two characters, click hold and drag to select and highlight them with the Type Tool, hold down option and type the left arrow. To open the spaces, hold down option and type the right arrow.

Learn more, and watch a 1 minute video about kerning after the jump.

HOT TIPS: 

  • Add the command key to kern or track in larger increments. 

  • Change InDesign's Units & Increments preferences to 5/1000 em for more control. The default is 20/1000 em. Change the preferences with no documents open, and they'll be set for any new document you create. This works for any preference!







Got a favorite keyboard shortcut you'd like to share with everyone? Email it to us at spdstudentoutreach@gmail.com and we'll include it in our series, along with your own commentary if you'd like.

This week's shortcut brought to you by Joseph Caserto
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