Today we were shown how to lay out and produce a type specification for a piece of editorial work. We were given a sample batch of text and image to put onto our layout, Charles Dickens’ ‘Christmas at Fezziwig’s Warehouse’ story.
My layout consisted of two columns (a gutter of 7mm) with a portrait of Dickens occupying the bottom right-hand corner of the page.
The challenge after creating your layout, was then to create a ‘Type Specification’; a document that maps out all paragraph styles, text box size and placement, image size and placement, and dimensions of the document.
After creating the Type Specification for our newly laid out document, the next challenge was to create someone else’s layout based solely on their Type Specification. In theory, and if the Type Specification had been done well, the document that someone else would produce would be identical to the original. However, as this was the first Type Specification that a lot of us had ever attempted, the finished transcriptions were not 100% the same.
Although it is nearly perfect, the attempt at recreating my work returned with several errors. Firstly, and most obviously, the line that encases the title strikes through the first line of body text - this was due to me not supplying leading values. A consequence of the lack of leading values was that the body text started a line previous to how I planned, thus being crossed out by my title line, and not finishing in the correct place.
Secondly, the picture does not line up with the original. This was because although I gave my external frame position and size, and the scale of the photo, I forgot to give the internal values of the photo’s position as well (when the image is selected by the Direct Selection Tool). This led to the text being wrapped in the wrong way, making space for orphans on the right side of Dickens’ head.
My Type Specification was not far off, but still was not perfect. I have learned several lessons, through mistakes that I will be sure not to make next time when I produce the Type Specification for my current project. It was a really worthwhile tutorial today, and I leaned some valuable lessons that will really further my work. Thanks Rich!