Repeat After Me Supercharges Your Production with Single Step Action
Okay, so you’ve laid out your document? it’s beautiful, but you just realized you need to make all the text frames a half-inch shorter. Before you tear your hair out, remember that InDesign can sometimes repeat the last thing you’ve done!
For example, in the case of changing the size of an object, you could immediately select another object on the page and choose Object > Transform Again > Transform Again. That applies the same transformation to the newly selected object. Or, you could transform an object (“transform” means moving, rotating, scaling, or shearing) and then select more than one object on that spread or any other spread, and then choose Object > Transform Again > Transform Again Individually. The “individually” part means perform the same transformation to each of these selected objects, one at a time (rather than to the whole group, as though the group were a single object).
So let’s say you have a 300-page book and you’ve changed the height of the frame on the first page. Now you want to change the height on every other page. Does that mean using Transform Again hundreds of times? Well, it depends. If your text frames are all touching margin guides, then you could turn on Layout Adjustment, and the text frames would change when you change the margin guides. But if your text frames are not touching margin guides? In that case, yes, you’re going to be using Transform Again a lot?
Repeat After Me
The folks at Rorohiko have come up with an amazing little plug-in, called Repeat After Me. The concept is simple: You do something to one object, then right-click on it (or Control-click with a one-button mouse), and choose “Repeat After Me For Items With Similar” from the context menu:
As you can see above, you can choose from a list of similarities. For example, if you choose Height, then the plug-in will change every object that has the same height. (That is, the height the object was before you did something to it.)
With Repeat After Me, you could change all the text frames on every page of that 300-page document in the blink of an eye!
- Apply a background color to a frame and then use Repeat After Me to apply the same color to every other object on the same layer, throughout the document.
- Apply Fill Frame Proportionally to one image in a document and then use the plug-in to apply it to all your other image frames, too.
- Change the color of a frame’s stroke and then apply that same change to all the other text frames that have the same first paragraph style in them.
Repeat After Me is a pretty darn nifty, and it can certainly save you a lot of time. It’s only $19, which means it could pay for itself if you use it even just once on a big job.