Layout Automation

QuarkXPress® not only provides you with world-class layout tools — it provides you with automation tools that allow you to create top-end design quickly and efficiently.


Automatic Footnotes and Endnotes

With QuarkXPress it is possible to create footnotes and endnotes, manage them in a separate palette and design how you want them to look using footnote styles.

Footnotes are notes at the end of a page while endnotes are collected under a separate heading at the end of a chapter, volume or entire work. Both footnotes and endnotes are generally used to cite sources within a document or add a note in reference to the content. Footnotes make accessing citations easy for the reader, while endnotes have the advantage of not affecting the layout of the main text.

Content Variables

Content Variables allow you to work with dynamically changing content in all layout types – print, eBooks and App Studio. Content Variables allow you to set rules within QuarkXPress projects that automate layout requirements to ensure consistency and accuracy.

There are five different Content Variable types that will help you to automate and control your layout production:

  1. Predefined Variables – these text variables are predefined and available in every project opened/saved in QuarkXPress 2015, and you can insert these in text flow without defining the content source.

  2. Custom Variables – with this option you can combine a text string with other pre-defined variables to make a combination.

  3. Running Header – this variable type allows you to choose source data within the document by referring to a paragraph or character style sheet. This variable type can be applied in the master page so that the running headers are automatically updated. For example, the left side of a page can show a book title while the right side page shows chapter/section title.

  4. Page Reference – this variable is used to create a reference to an existing layout object using Anchors (which is an existing feature). It allows you to refer the object elsewhere in the document using the page number where the referred object is present. You can generate hyperlinks automatically for such page references. The hyperlinks are exported in PDF output too. The referred page number will automatically update if the Anchored object is moved or flowed to a different page due to layout or content changes.

  5. Static Text – with this you can create a simple static text variable that can be inserted throughout the document. This variable is useful when you refer to a company name, for example, throughout a document that needs to be consistent. With Static Text you can make all changes to the reference in one go.

Format Painter

With the Format Painter feature QuarkXPress allows you to quickly copy and apply (even multiple) local styles. Simply select the text with the appropriate formatting, select the new format painter tool and paste character styles and/or paragraph styles to other text areas. The text can be within the same text box or a different text box. This is a great time saver!

Synchronized Content

Synchronize Text, Pictures, and Formatting Automatically

With QuarkXPress®, you can use the same text or picture on multiple pages or in multiple layouts, and automatically synchronize it, with or without its formatting.

Whether it’s a tagline, a name, an address, or something else, you can make sure that if it changes on page 3 of the print layout, it also changes in the Web layout and the iPad® version. And you can choose to synchronize the formatting, or format the content differently in different places.

At a glance:

  • Prevent inconsistency errors
  • Streamline your workflow

With QuarkXPress, you can use the same text or picture on multiple pages or in multiple layouts, and automatically synchronize it, with our without its formatting.

Conditional Styles

Automatically Style Content Based on Powerful Styling Rules

Many layouts follow text styling rules —for example, "always make the first sentence in a story italic," or "always apply the Wingdings font to the first character in this type of paragraph." Understanding such rules is easy, but making sure they’re always followed correctly —especially in long documents — can be a time-consuming and error-prone process.

Conditional styles (sometimes referred to as "nested styles") take the tedium out of text styling rules. Through an intuitive, "plain English" user interface, you can create a set of rules that automatically applies paragraph and character style sheets to your text based on the content of that text and the rules you’ve defined. This eliminates text-styling inconsistencies and saves countless hours of manual work.

How it Works

  1. Find a repeatable styling pattern, such as "the first word is always green"
  2. Use the simple menu-based interface to translate that pattern into a conditional style
  3. Apply the conditional style to a paragraph or text story, and watch as QuarkXPress® instantly evaluates and applies style sheets based on content

At a glance:

  • Combine several rules in one conditional style
  • Create rules that search for specific text strings or characters; a specific number of characters, words, or sentences; the end of a sentence, paragraph, or story; the last word, sentence, paragraph; and more
  • Apply styles up to, through, or before specific points in the text
  • When you can’t base a rule on content, you can insert conditional style markers to indicate where formatting should stop and start
  • Repeat conditional styles automatically after specific text strings, specific characters, conditional style markers, or paragraph breaks
  • Use bi-directional formatting to format backwards from the end of a paragraph
  • Apply conditional styles at the paragraph level or the story level
  • Once applied, conditional styles continue to automatically style the text as you make edits

Additional Resources:

Find out more about the creation and application of Style Sheets in QuarkXPress


Boxes and Groups Move Automatically With Your Text

Imagine you’re creating a textbook with pictures in the sidebar, and you want the pictures to always appear on the same page as the text they illustrate. Or a guidebook where you want to put floating icons to the left of some paragraphs. Or a magazine where you want a column-spanning pull-quote box that always falls on the same page as the corresponding text. You can do all of these things manually — or you can do them automatically with the QuarkXPress® Callouts feature.

The Callouts feature lets you associate a box or group (a callout) with a specific point in the text flow called a callout anchor. When the text reflows and the callout anchor moves, the callout automatically moves with it — whether it’s to a different part of the page, or to a different page altogether.

For maximum flexibility, you can position a callout relative to the page or spread, or relative to the position of the callout anchor itself. You can create callout styles, which work like style sheets and make configuring a callout as easy as clicking a palette. An intuitive interface makes it all easy to learn and easy to use.

How it Works

  1. Just insert a callout anchor in the text, then click an item or group and associate it with that callout anchor
  2. You can modify each callout’s settings individually, or use callout styles to speed things up

At a glance:

  • Create callouts easily — no awkward manual cut-and-paste operations
  • Position callouts precisely with comprehensive horizontal and vertical alignment options
  • Configure callouts easily with a single, linear dialog box
  • Include callout styles in Job Jackets®
  • Use callouts with tables

Composition Zones

Let Several People Work on the Same Layout Simultaneously

Composition Zones® let you divide a layout into components, then send those components out so that multiple people can work on different aspects of the content (such as body text, graphs, sidebars, and photographs) simultaneously.

Imagine a layout artist in charge of the QuarkXPress® project files for a magazine. The layout artist can "draw out" an area for an ad using the Composition Zones tool, then export that Composition Zones item as a separate file and give that file to the ad creator.

The ad creator can then build the ad in that file with QuarkXPress, then return the file to the layout artist. The layout artist simply places the updated file in the proper folder, and the main layout is updated automatically to show the ad. And because the Composition Zones item works just like a QuarkXPress layout, the layout artist can open it and make changes.

Multiple Layouts

You can also use Composition Zones in situations where you have a block of information that needs to be included in multiple layouts. If you build such a block of information as a Composition Zones item, then share it with everyone who needs it, you only need to build it once. Other users can simply drag and drop it into their layouts. And if it needs to be updated, you only need to update it in one place, and it automatically updates everywhere it’s used.

At a glance:

  • Share parts of a page or whole pages as Composition Zones
  • Keeps content synchronized across layouts
  • Collaborate on content without a workflow system

Composition Zones let you divide a layout into components, then send those components out so that multiple people can work on different aspects of the content (such as body text, graphs, sidebars, and photographs) simultaneously.


Import and Automatically Build Grids of Images

Whether you’re a photographer who needs to assemble a catalog from a recent photo shoot, or a designer with a folder of images to review or lay out, the ImageGrid™ feature is a huge timesaver. ImageGrid can import a folder of images into QuarkXPress® and automatically build catalogs (contact sheets) of images with a variety of layout and labeling options. Each image can be captioned with its filename, resolution, dimensions, color model, and format.

How it Works

  1. Select a folder of images
  2. Choose how you want to size and arrange the images and what image information you want to include
  3. Watch as QuarkXPress automatically imports and lays out the images

At a glance:

  • Add new pages automatically as needed
  • Optionally import images in subfolders
  • Specify the box shape
  • Fit imported images proportionately to the box or stretch them to fit the box
  • Auto-size boxes to fit the number of rows and columns you specify, or auto-fill pages using a box size limit
  • Works with all QuarkXPress standard image file formats, including Adobe® Photoshop® and Illustrator®

"If you've ever needed to set up an array of images, you'll know how tedious that can be. This new tool…is undeniably useful and a clear time-saver. Again, it's catching up with a feature previously seen in InDesign and going several steps further.”

— Keith Martin, MacUser"

Job Jackets

Share and Synchronize Resources and Catch Errors
Before They Occur

Job Jackets® let you encapsulate the specifications for a QuarkXPress® project before the job begins, then automatically check the job against those specs before it goes to output.

A Job Jackets file contains a set of specifications for resources such as style sheets, colors, color management settings, and output setups. It can also contain layout specifications, including dimensions, margins, bleeds, and master pages.

Job Tickets and Rules

In addition, a Job Jackets file contains one or more Job Tickets. A Job Ticket specifies a subset of a Job Jackets file’s resources that is appropriate for creating a particular project. By setting up a Job Jackets file for a job beforehand, you can help to ensure that the layout artist uses the right resources for that job.

A Job Jackets file can also contain rules. You can use rules to check a layout (either before output, or periodically as you go along) for problems such as incorrect fonts, problem colors, bad picture file formats, and so forth.

In addition, you can use Job Jackets to share resources in a local workgroup. Multiple designers can connect to the same Job Jackets file and use the resources from that file.

At a glance:

  • Keep resources consistent across layouts
  • Check layouts against specifications at any time
  • Send Job Jackets files to clients and service providers for consistency
  • Export as JDF

Job Jackets let you encapsulate the specifications for a QuarkXPress project before the job begins, then automatically check the job against those specs before it goes to output.


Create Tables of Contents, Lists of Figures, and More

The QuarkXPress Lists palette lets you create automatic tables of contents, lists of figures, and more, using the style sheets you apply in a layout.

For example, if you use the “Heading 1” style sheet for main headings and the “Heading 2” style sheet for secondary headings, you can use the Lists palette to insert into your layout a multilevel list of all paragraphs that use these style sheets, complete with the page numbers on which each occurs, with or without a customizable leader.

You can also control how such lists are formatted. For example, you could create a table of contents where all first-level headings are formatted with a style sheet that specifies 14-point bold, and all subheadings are formatted with a style sheet that specifies 12-point italic. You can sort lists by page number or by paragraph text. And if you subsequently make edits to the layout, you can update the table of contents with two clicks.

In addition to allowing you to create tables of contents and lists of figures, the Lists palette provides a handy way of navigating around a layout. To jump to any heading or caption in the active layout, simply double-click that heading or caption in the Lists palette. You can even use a dedicated Find field to find a particular item in a list without searching the rest of the text.

The QuarkXPress Lists palette lets you create automatic tables of contents, lists of figures, and more, using the style sheets you apply in a layout.

Style Sheets

Speed Formatting with Style Sheets

A style sheet is a named package of text-formatting settings. With style sheets, you can format entire QuarkXPress® layouts in minutes, then change that formatting throughout in a single operation.

Paragraph style sheets define how a paragraph is formatted, including settings for line spacing, indents, space before and after, and so forth. Character style sheets define how text is formatted, including settings for font, size, color, typestyle, and so forth. All of the style sheets for a layout display in a palette for easy access.

One of the main advantages of style sheets is speed. To apply a style sheet to text, you just click its name in the Style Sheets palette. You can also create custom keyboard shortcuts for applying style sheets.

Style sheets are also indispensable when it comes to changes. If you decide to change the point size of all of the body text in a document, you can do it automatically by simply changing the point size in the style sheet.

Style sheets can also help you to maintain consistency, both within a layout and within a workgroup. To make sure everyone is using the same style sheet definitions, you can store a group’s style sheets in a Job Jackets file, and have everyone link to that file.

Do you use styles in Microsoft® Word? No problem — you can import and export them in QuarkXPress.

With style sheets, you can format entire QuarkXPress layouts in minutes, then change that formatting throughout in a single operation.

Item Find/Change

The Item Find/Change feature lets you find and replace a huge variety of item attributes, including box characteristics, box colors, frame characteristics, line attributes, picture attributes, text attributes, and drop-shadow attributes. You can even search for one attribute (such as box size), and then wherever it’s found, change a different attribute (such as the number of columns).

You can save time when you need to change attributes of multiple boxes in your layout. Use the Item Find/Change feature to find boxes or lines with specific characteristics, then easily apply changes to them.

Item Styles

Item styles are like style sheets for items. An item style is a named package of formatting options for items. For example, you can define an item style named “Sidebar” that describes a box of a particular size and color with a particular frame, text inset, vertical alignment, and runaround — then assign that item style to a box by clicking the item style in a palette or pressing a custom keyboard command.

Using Item Styles you can easily create and apply styles to elements of your layouts such as boxes and pictures. Any time you create an item for which you have defined a style, you can apply the style in a single click.

Speed Layout with Master Pages

The Master Pages feature lets you create a “template” for a page, then use that template throughout a layout. You can have multiple master pages per layout — for example, one for the cover, one for the TOC, and one for body pages. If you update a master page, all of the pages that use it get updated automatically. Combine shared content and you can even create hierarchical master pages.

Using Master Pages you can define elements that appear on every page of your layout. When you change your Master Pages, the updates are reflected throughout your layout.


AppleScript lets you control applications such as QuarkXPress with scripts. AppleScript is an intuitive, easy-to-learn scripting language that has been built into Mac OS® for more than 15 years.

Integration with QuarkCopyDesk

QuarkCopyDesk® lets content creators concentrate on design without worrying about layout.


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