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Text and Styles in DVD Studio Pro 4

A workaround for line spacing for menu text By Dave Nagel
I wouldn't count typography among the advanced features of DVD Studio Pro. It's assumed, after all, that the bulk of a DVD project's graphics will be created in an outside application and then brought into the DVD authoring environment. Nevertheless, there are times when you want to format your text within a project and keep it editable, especially when you're creating text fields in templates.

Within DVD Studio Pro's authoring environment, you can select between different typefaces, sizes, colors, some styles (bold, underline, italic, strikethrough), justification, shadow and rotation. But one glaring omission is in the area of leading. You simply can't define the space between two lines of text in DVD Studio Pro. Instead, you have to rely on the program's own automatic leading, which, to put it mildly, doesn't always work out so well.

However, there is a way around this limitation using text styles. We'll take a look at how to create these styles, how to apply them and then how to save them for recall later in the Styles palette.

Creating styles with custom line spacing
As I mentioned, it's impossible to customize line spacing directly within DVD Studio Pro. However, DVDSP does allow you to access preset text styles created in applications that support system-wide styles. One of these applications is TextEdit, a free text-editing program included with Mac OS X. We'll use it to create a custom style with our preferred line spacing, then apply this style to a text block (or button text) in DVD Studio Pro.

To begin, open up TextEdit (/Applications/TextEdit), and choose Format > Text > Show Ruler (Command-R). This will make the ruler and option bar for your documents visible.

Now type in some text, and apply any basic formatting you wish to apply--kerning, baseline shift, basic styles, etc. For my example, I'll be using Savoye LET (48 points).

Obviously this is not a font that lends itself well to automatic leading. With 48-point text, the leading is 57 points. This may look fine with some typefaces, but not with this one. So what I'd like to do is to take it down to about 36 points--in other words, reducing it by 21 points. In order to do this, I'll select my text; then, in the top options bar, I'll select the Spacing pull-down menu and choose "Other" from the list of available options.

This calls up a list of spacing options that can be applied to the text. I will set my line height to 36 points.

When you have your text formatted to your linking, click the "OK" button. Notice that you're text is now likely up above the visible portion of your document. TextEdit doesn't really know how to deal with this sort of thing very well, so it simply cuts off the text. DVD Studio Pro will do the same thing. But, as you're probably aware, you can overcome this in DVD Studio Pro by changing the Y offset for the text or simply by adding carriage returns to bring the text block lower.

Now, finally, I want to save this text as a style with my current line spacing settings. To do this, I'll go once again up to the top options bar in TextEdit, this time choosing the Styles pull-down menu. From the list of available options, I'll choose "Other."

This calls up a new dialog, and I can click on the "Add to Favorites" button to add this style to my collection.

Once I click this, I'll be asked to name it.

And then I'm done. I can now leave TextEdit and go into DVD Studio Pro, or stick around and create many more styles for my potential needs.

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Related Keywords:apple dvd studio pro, leading, line spacing, text


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