Learn the basics of using text in your Adobe InDesign documents, including adding text, creating columns of text, importing text, and flowing text from one frame to another.
What you'll need
Understand frames in InDesign
Explore the different types of frames you can use in InDesign.
What you learned: Working with frames
- The tools used to create frames — Type tool, Frame tools, and shape tools — are located in the toolbox.
- Frames can be created and used as placeholders (a frame without content).
- Text and images in InDesign reside within a frame. When you place images or text in InDesign, a frame is created automatically for that content.
- For text, the frame indicates the area where text is to be shown. Text frames have small boxes in the upper-left and lower-right corners which can be used to connect frames together so text can flow from one frame to another.
- For images, the frame can be used to crop or mask parts of the image.
Learn how to add text to your InDesign projects.
What you learned: Add text with the Type tool
- Select the Type tool in the toolbox.
- With the Type tool selected, drag in the Document window to add a text frame to the document, or click in an existing text frame to add text.
- Choose Type > Fill With Placeholder Text to fill the frame with placeholder text.
- With the text cursor in the text frame, type your text. Text will wrap once it reaches the right edge of the text frame. Dragging a corner of the text frame scales the text object and wraps the text within it. If the text frame is too small, a red plus appears in the lower-right corner of the frame, indicating overset text (the text doesn’t fit). Reposition the text object with the Selection tool in the toolbox.
- Format text with the options in the Properties panel.
Create columns of text
Explore dividing text frames into multiple columns.
What you learned: Create columns of text
- Select the Type tool in the toolbox.
- With the Type tool selected, drag in the Document window to add a text frame to the document.
- With the text cursor in the text frame, by default, type your text.
- With the Selection tool in the toolbox selected, double-click a bounding box point around the frame to fit the frame to the text.
- Choose Object > Text Frame Options. Set the number of columns to 2 and select Balance Columns to balance the paragraphs of text. Set other options as needed, and then click OK.
Bring text files into Adobe InDesign from Microsoft Word, and more.
What you learned: Import text
Text can be pasted, dragged, or placed into an InDesign document from an outside source, such as Microsoft Word. Text can be placed in an existing text frame or in a frame that InDesign created when placing the text.
- Choose File > Place to place a text file such as .DOC, .RTF, or .TXT. Depending on the file type, you may be able to set options, such as removing the formatting.
- Click to place the text in an existing text frame, or click (or click and drag) to have InDesign create a text frame.
- Click the Screen Mode button at the bottom of the toolbox to choose Preview and see the document without guides. Click the same button to choose Normal.
Flow text between frames
Discover how to flow text from one frame to another.
What you learned: Connect text frames
You can connect text frames so that text flows between them. This is called threading text. Text frames have an in port and out port that are used to connect text frames and also visualize any connections. A red plus in the out port indicates that text doesn’t fit in the frame. This is called overset text.
To thread text:
- With the Selection tool, click to select a text frame and then click the out port (or in port) to load a text cursor.
- Position the loaded text cursor within an existing text frame and click to thread the text or drag to create a new text frame.
- Choose View > Extras > Show Text Threads to see the threads between the frames.