• Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint
Share this Page URL

Lesson 4. Adding Text > Adding Text

Adding Text

You add text to a document by using the Text tool. This tool is similar to text tools in other graphics programs. When you select the tool, the Property inspector displays all the text formatting controls. You can make formatting changes before you even type your text or change the text once it is on the page.

Open the home_page.png file you created in Lesson 3.

If you no longer have the file, you can use the file home_page_L4.png in the Start folder within the Lesson04 folder. Choose File > Save As, leave off the L4 in the filename, and save this new file in your Projects folder.

Select the Specials layer on the Layers panel.

The text you are adding will be placed on the Specials layer.


Objects on a layer are selected when you select a layer. You can quickly deselect them by choosing Select > Deselect or by using the keyboard shortcut of Ctrl+D (PC) or Command+D (Mac).

Choose the Text tool on the Tools panel.

The pointer changes to the I-beam pointer, indicating that you are in text editing mode.

Click where you want the text to start, or click and drag to draw a text box of the desired size. Type Monthly Specials.

For this exercise, click (or click and drag) above the white square with the image of the girl. Make sure you are not within the white square.


If you click and drag with the Text tool, you can draw the text box the exact width you need. The text box indicates this with a hollow square handle at the top right of the text box. If you just click with the Text tool on the canvas, the text box expands horizontally based on the amount of text. The text box indicates this with a hollow circle handle at the top right of the text box. To switch from one type of text box to the other, double-click either the circle or square.


To resize the text box as you type, move the pointer over the bottom right handle. The cursor changes to an arrow pointer where you can drag the handle to resize the text box. Move the pointer back within the text box; it returns to the I-beam, and you can continue to type. Changing the size of an auto-sizing text box converts it to a fixed-width text box.

Switch to the Pointer tool.

With the Pointer tool, you can move the text block around on the canvas, and you can make formatting changes.


If you are formatting all the text the same, you can select the text with the Pointer tool and make your changes. If you want to selectively change the text, you need to highlight that range of characters with the Text tool and then make your changes, just as you would in a word processor.

Format the text using the controls in the Property inspector. Change the font to Verdana. Change the point size to 12. Change the color of the text to black.

Use the Font pop-up list to change the font. Use the Size slider (or type a number) to change the point size. Use the Fill color box pop-up window to change the color of the selected text.


Text is displayed better when your view magnification is set to 100 percent.

Drag the Horizontal Scale slider to change the text.

You can alter text by using a technique called horizontal scaling. This changes the width of the text without changing the height, as if you were stretching the text on a rubber band. Be careful not to overdo the stretching; you are electronically distorting the text without regard to its original design. The values are expressed as percentages. Values less than 100 percent condense the text; values greater than 100 percent expand the text.


You may need to adjust the width of the text box after you apply horizontal scaling.

Drag the Kerning slider to adjust the spacing between the letters.

Range kerning (also referred to as tracking in other programs) controls the amount of space between the selected letters. Negative values decrease the space; positive values increase the space. You can select all of the text (as you have in this exercise) or just portions of the text and then apply this formatting.


This formatting control can make smaller text sizes easier to read on the screen.

Kerning is the amount of space between two letters. The same slider controls this formatting. If the I-beam is between two letters, you are kerning; if you have two or more letters selected, you are applying range kerning. As with range kerning, negative values decrease the space; positive values increase the space.

Choose the Text tool and click to the left of the gray rectangle. Type the months of the year, pressing Enter (PC) or Return (Mac) after each month.

If you happen to misspell one of the months, don’t correct it yet. You’ll check your spelling in the next exercise.

Select all the text you just entered, either by dragging with the Text tool or selecting the text block with the Pointer tool. Drag the Leading slider to 200 percent.

When you have text with two or more lines, you may need to adjust the spacing between the lines: the leading. The term leading (pronounced “ledding”) comes from the days of manual typesetting, when lead bars were placed between the rows of metal type. The size of the bar controlled the spacing between the lines of type.

Numbers less than 100 percent tighten the spacing between the lines; numbers greater than 100 percent increase the spacing between the lines.

Experiment with the leading amount and make the month text block as tall as the gray rectangle to the right.


Leading defaults to a percentage amount, but you can use a pixel amount instead. Change the selection in the Leading Units pop-up menu to Pixels and then adjust the Leading slider.

If necessary, change the anti-aliasing setting to make your text easier to read.

Notice the soft edges around the text. That softness is caused by the anti-aliasing controls. Anti-aliasing is a method of blurring the edges around objects so they appear smooth on the screen. With large-sized text, the smoothness enhances the appearance of the text. On smaller text, the anti-aliasing sometimes causes the characters to blur together. You can control text anti-aliasing from the Anti-Alias level pop-up menu in the Property inspector.

Your choices here are No Anti-Alias, Crisp Anti-Alias, Strong Anti-Alias, and Smooth Anti-Alias. Experiment with each setting to determine the best choice. You can also choose System Anti-Alias or Custom Anti-Alias. System Anti-Alias uses the text smoothing method provided by Windows XP or Macintosh OS X. If you choose Custom, you can set the following anti-alias controls:

  • Oversampling determines the amount of detail between the text edges and the background.

  • Sharpness determines the smoothness between the text edges and the background.

  • Strength determines how much the text edges blend into the background.

  • Creative Edge
  • Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint