Graphic Design / Interactive Design / Fine & Applied Arts / Parkland College

Graphic Design Exercises
InDesign: Flyer


To learn InDesign layout and production techniques by recreating the following band flyer:


Laying out the flyer

  1. download starter files
  2. launch InDesign
  3. file > new: letter, portrait; margins=0; save preset "blank portrait"
  4. file > place "weiss.doc" and "weiss.jpg" (click+drag)
  5. practice Adobe navigation keyboard shortcuts:
    • space=hand
    • space+cmd=zoom in
    • space+cmd+opt=zoom out
    • cmd+zero=fit in window
  6. practice InDesign preview shortcuts:
    • cmd+opt+I (show/hide hidden characters)
    • W (normal/preview mode)
  7. crop and scale image
  8. draw new frame, make fill black, send object to back
  9. spec fonts (ITC Franklin Gothic Demi Cond and Cochin Regular/Italic)
  10. split up text into logical frames
  11. adjust font size, leading, kerning, color
  12. adjust layout until it matches the reference PDF file
  13. print a proof for grading (with your name and exercise number)
  14. file graded proof in your Process Book for individual review

Helpful keyboard shortcuts

  • cmd+N: file > new
  • cmd+D: file > place
  • cmd+shift drag handle: resize frame & content (text or image)
  • cmd+shift+[ or ]: object > arrange > send to back or front
  • cmd+\: type > insert special character > indent to here
  • opt+shift+hyphen: type > insert special character > em dash
  • opt+8: bullet
  • shift+RETURN: forced line break
  • cmd+shift+< or >: change font size (2pts)
  • cmd+shift+C: center type
  • cmd+shift+I: italic/roman
  • cmd+shift+K: all caps/lowercase
  • opt+up or down: change leading
  • opt+left or right: change tracking
  • cmd+T: show/hide "character" palette

Tip: Google "indesign default hotkeys" or "indesign keys for working with type"

Last updated: 4/24/17 ■ Webmaster: Paul Young