H&Js, especially Js

alyce's picture

My new job requires that I sometimes use justified type -- usually just a couple of paragraphs of 9/12 or so, in a measure that can vary between 12 and 30 picas (OK, 2 to 5 inches, picas vs. inches can be a whole 'nother thread :-) ) and I've avoided justified type in the past so don't have a lot of experience with it.

I'm working in Quark 4.1. Any tips on the percentages used in the Edit Hyphenation & Justification dialog box will be much appreciated. Ditto comments on how kerning and tracking work with justified type, as well as pros and cons regarding squooshing and / or stretching the type by one or two percentage points.


Chris Rugen's picture

Yeah, the Cmnd+Backslash is a great, easy way to speed up bulleted and numbered lists.

Hmmm... Other tips... A lot of them are covered here, I must say. My biggest time savers are key commands, such as (at a PC now, have to do this from memory) Cmnd+Option+Shift+< or > and Cmnd+Shift+< or > to size type quickly. Can't think of any others off the top of my head.

For general usability, I change the color of my Quark guides to paler, subtler versions of the garish and distracting defaults. It's surprising how much nicer it is.

[EDIT] Oh, I just thought of another (which is probably more common): use the enter/ return key on the number keypad to insert the equivalent of a page break, that will kick the next text element to the next column/text box (depending on what the situation is). Shift + numeric keypad return forces it to the next box, overriding any columns, if I'm not mistaken.


I believe the 'flush zone' is an area that forces the last line in a justified paragraph to justify flush with the right side when it gets inside of a certain zone. I think. I've never used it. That would probably explain why setting it to zero doesn't seem to have much effect.</font>

kentlew's picture

Em --

The flush zone is exactly as Chris says. The value you enter for flush zone will determine when the H&J engine will stretch the last line of a justified paragraph. A setting of zero means that it will never force justify the last line.

Some typographers prefer that if a last line gets close to the full measure, it should go ahead and be set full justified.

If you want to see this effect, set your flush zone to something fairly large, like 25% of your column width. Then apply to some text. If you have a paragraph with a last line at least 75% of the measure, you'll see that it gets stretched out to full justify.

A more realistic range for an appropriate flush zone setting is on the order of a few points, if at all. I personally never use it.

-- K.

Bald Condensed's picture

I must say I never allow Break Capitalized Words
and do it manually only when it's really necessary.
I'd rather be doing it myself than noticing afterwards
the machine did it for me in an unacceptable place.

2-letter breaks make a tiny bit more sense in Dutch,
but the same goes here: only manually.

Furthermore I've always been very queasy about
allowing character space: it never fails to annoy me
even in as little as 1%. Or am I imagining things? :-)

Bald Condensed's picture

> I'm working in Quark 4.1.

BTW Use InDesign. Three words: Adobe Paragraph Composer. :-)

Stephen Coles's picture

I started to prepare an answer here, but I am so glad to see Kent
wrote one instead. I concur on all points, and add only that if
there is any way you can do the job in InDesign, do it. InD's
spacing engine is much more advanced and the options more
complete. Remember too that Hyphenation is as important as
Justification in that they are interrelated. One affects the results
of the other.

Also, highlight Kent's statements where he says that H&J settings
will vary depending on line measure, leading and typeface.
The only way to get optimum settings is by testing various
parameters and checking the results. Print lots of test pages
before you settle on a standard. Each typesetting scenario is unique.

Bald Condensed's picture

> don't use Quark's defaults

Smartest advice in this whole thread. :-) I've always
wondered: does anybody here ever use the "Flush Zone"
or -gasp- "Single Word Justify". I'd really like to know.
I'm utterly convinced they put that in there just to
scare the $h!t out of any self-respecting typographer/
graphic designer...

...or maybe that was a special request by David Carson?

Stephen Coles's picture

To me, Quark's defaults are proof, among other things, that the
company does not value typography as a priority.

Stephen Coles's picture

I brought some work home this weekend

I see you've taken Nick's guidelines to heart. Welcome to the type nerd club.

Stephen Coles's picture

The nerd club, hmmm. Do we have a secret handshake?

It hasn't been formally agreed upon, but I nominate a simple hug,
as prompted by Peter Bruhn.

Bald Condensed's picture

Heh, funny to read Erik's guidelines. Picked up the 80% wordspace
during my month at Meta. And the increased tracking at small sizes.

Bald Condensed's picture

C'mon Dan, we're talking realistic working situations here. :-)
This is an easy way out. If I did that for every magazine and
newsletter I had to design my output would be halved. A major
part of our job is finding solutions to specific problems, isn't it?

Miss Tiffany's picture

Oh that Jon Coltz! He tickles my funny bone!!

Bald Condensed's picture

Tho I aknowledge Mr. Slimbach's superior type design
skills I must admit most of his designs are just too
slick for my taste. Make no mistake: he's brilliant,
but it's not my cup of tea.

Stephen Coles's picture

Oops, James. You missed Kent's first post:

"The J settings will vary depending upon the line measure..."

Stephen Coles's picture

"(Heck, even among Carter's fonts, Miller and Galliard have it, but Fenway does not.)"

As far as I know, Font Bureau's in-house method checks every
possible lower-lowercase, upper-uppercase, and upper-lowercase
pair for kerning.

Bald Condensed's picture

Isn't an em-space the standard indent for a new paragraph in
"classic" typography?

Bald Condensed's picture

Chorus goes something like: "A town called Alice, ooh ooh yea-eah"
(with lots of guitars and a poppy beat).

Bald Condensed's picture

Allright allright, I misheard... If our lead singer knew
about this, he'd fire me on the spot! Misquoting The Jam...

Bald Condensed's picture

Nah, I'll stick to what I do best and provide the poppy beat
(and maybe some "oo-oo-oohs")

pattyfab's picture

I can't say I've read every word of this LOOOONNNNNNGGG thread (and I can't figure out how it jumped to the top of the forum when the last post was over 2 years old but I will add that I have three H&J settings in Quark, tight, normal and loose. I find that depending on the typeface and its own defaults this is useful. Also it's a good way to either pick up a straggling word at the end of a paragraph (often mistakenly called a widow) or conversely to spread the paragraph out to fill out the last line.

TIght: min 70%, Opt. 85%, Max 100%
Regular: Min 75% Opt 100% Max 120%
Loose: Min 85%, Opt 105%, Max 125%

In all cases smallest word 5, minimum before hyph 3, min after 3, 2 hyphens in a row.

Paul Cutler's picture

How about someone posting a screen shot or the settings that you use in InDesign?

I would love that…


pattyfab's picture

I'm still using their defaults as I'm relatively new to InDy. I'd also appreciate some guidance on this from people who are more familiar with the program. I also can't figure out kerning/tracking and why adobe does in increments of 10 what Quark more sensibly does in increments of 1.

timd's picture

>I can’t figure out how it jumped to the top of the forum when the last post was over 2 years old

Typophile got spammed and somebody has dragged the perpetrator out and killed him (or at least removed his posts)
Thank you anonymous moderator

>I also can’t figure out kerning/tracking and why adobe does in increments of 10 what Quark more sensibly does in increments of 1.

Illustrator (and presumably InD) uses 1/1000 em units while Quark uses 1/200 em and 1/20 em units


Bald Condensed's picture

> (...) and I can’t figure out how it jumped to the top of the forum when the last post was over 2 years old

Spammer hit us and revived a bunch of really old posts in the process.

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