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What is the proper math of aligning body and footnotes on baseline grid ?

Enthusiast ,
Jun 13, 2024 Jun 13, 2024

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Hi,

I have a situation. In my document, Body text is 15pt on 22pt. Footnotes is 10pts on 14pts and Heading is 22pts on 30pts.

I want all of them to be aligned on baseline grid. I have done all the settings but the output is not as per my requirement. Leading between Body Matter is not appropriate. The space should be less between the body text lines.

Footnotes are not set on Baseline Grid. I have attached screenshots of the pages and also the baseline grid settings for the document, paragraph styles, font and document.

 

Font can be downloaded from here:
https://www.mediafire.com/file/gxxxlt79yc7291u/Jameel_Noori_Nastaleeq_v4_Rev270.ttf/file

 

What would be the proper calculation ?

Thanks

 

 

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Community Expert , Jun 13, 2024 Jun 13, 2024

You can adjust the footnote layout (mostly spacing above the set, and the separator line) but they're either going to have to fit 7 or 14pt leading. Neither will be very graceful.

 

I know something of Arabic calligraphy and typesetting, and perhaps understand that the client wants this to conform to traditional standards, but I think the only way it will happen will be to adjust the layout page by page, including some ability to edit and rearrange the content. That's the level I've had to go to

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Community Expert ,
Jun 13, 2024 Jun 13, 2024

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You almost never want all elements to fully align to a baseline grid.

 

All lines of body text should; that's fundamental.

 

All headings, including spacing, should align to some multiple of the baseline spacing so that they will not disrupt the spacing no matter what combination they are used in.

 

Footnotes etc., however, can only be aligned to a body-text baseline by giving them far too much line spacing. Best to exempt them entirely from the grid, or align them using first-line-only.

 

Laying out anything but the simplest pages for full baseline alignment is a complex art. There is no simple formula for it.


┋┊ InDesign to Kindle (& EPUB): A Professional Guide, v3.0 ┊ (Amazon) ┊┋

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Enthusiast ,
Jun 13, 2024 Jun 13, 2024

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@James Gifford—NitroPress True. I agree and that is the process I follow, however, my client insist on aligning Footnotes to Baseline and that is making me mad. I was thinking of some kind of formula which makes life easier.

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Community Expert ,
Jun 13, 2024 Jun 13, 2024

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There's an old story about a kid who throws a fit until his dad digs him a hole in the back yard, then throws a bigger fit when Dad won't bring it inside.

 

While it's possible to use some complex sub-multiple baseline grid settings (e..g. 7 points for 14pt body leading) and work things out in half-steps and so forth, that multiplies the complexity and needs endless style adjustment to make work.

 

You simply can't baseline-adjust type that is on both 22pt and 14pt leading. It isn't even an issue of math, just simple logic.

 

You can develop a layout that will align all body text across pages and have perfect page-bottoms, regardless of text composition and presence or absence of footnotes on any page, but you can't fully baseline-lock two different text spacings.


┋┊ InDesign to Kindle (& EPUB): A Professional Guide, v3.0 ┊ (Amazon) ┊┋

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Enthusiast ,
Jun 13, 2024 Jun 13, 2024

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@James Gifford—NitroPress Thanks for the reply. I have modified settings a bit. Leading for Heading and body and footnote is multiples of 7pt. My Baseline grid is on every 7pts. Heading and Body is ok but footnotes still is not on the grid. Screenshot attached.

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Community Expert ,
Jun 13, 2024 Jun 13, 2024

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You can adjust the footnote layout (mostly spacing above the set, and the separator line) but they're either going to have to fit 7 or 14pt leading. Neither will be very graceful.

 

I know something of Arabic calligraphy and typesetting, and perhaps understand that the client wants this to conform to traditional standards, but I think the only way it will happen will be to adjust the layout page by page, including some ability to edit and rearrange the content. That's the level I've had to go to for some very fussy (and mostly short) layouts that needed to be 100% aligned.


┋┊ InDesign to Kindle (& EPUB): A Professional Guide, v3.0 ┊ (Amazon) ┊┋

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Enthusiast ,
Jun 13, 2024 Jun 13, 2024

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@James Gifford—NitroPress Thanks for the reply. I will work on it as mentioned by you. Unfortunately, it seems that this project would be a difficult task for me until I find a better solution. Thanks for your valuable inputs, James.

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Community Expert ,
Jun 13, 2024 Jun 13, 2024

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You are asking the impossible. Footnotes do not have the same leading as your text. They don’t even share a common denominator. You cannot have text with 22 pt, 30 pt, and 14 pt leading align to a common baseline.

 

You must first round those numbers to something that will be more compatible, like 22.5 pt, 30 pt, and 15 pt. There is still no common factor to ensure all baselines align to the same grid, but they can align to the same subgrid of 7.5 pt.

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Community Expert ,
Jun 13, 2024 Jun 13, 2024

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What is the proper math of aligning...

 

Hi @shahidr100 , If you expect alignment across spreads, the leadings and above/below spacing of all of the paragraphs would have to be multiples of your baseline grid increment. See this thread:

 

https://community.adobe.com/t5/indesign-discussions/aligning-end-of-paragraphs-across-spreads/td-p/1...

 

 

 

 

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Enthusiast ,
Jun 13, 2024 Jun 13, 2024

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@rob day I generally follow this process mentioned in the post which you shared but currently my issues are with footnotes only. For the time being I have adjusted the baseline shift in the footnotes style to align it on the baseline. I have to deliver this project asap. 

I hate to use baseline grids. It has it own limitations.

Thanks 

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Community Expert ,
Jun 13, 2024 Jun 13, 2024

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I hate to use baseline grids. It has it own limitations.

 

By @shahidr100

 

I tend to agree, although I would not say I hate them. I like them as a visual guide, but I don’t like depending on them to align my text. You never know when the program might decide a text frame is a fraction of a point too low and, rather than your text being microscopically off the grid it’s a line too low.

 

I have the same attitude towards baseline grids and Kool Moe Dee has to guns.

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