Hyphenation Feature in Adobe CS5 Illustrator - dummies

By Jennifer Smith, Christopher Smith, Fred Gerantabee

Adobe Creative Suite 5 (Adobe CS5) Illustrator has a specialized text utility to customize your hyphenation settings. Nothing is worse than trying to read severely hyphenated copy. Most designers either use hyphenation as little as possible or avoid it altogether by turning off the Hyphenation feature.

Turning the Hyphenation feature on or off:

  • Activate or deactivate the feature in the Hyphenation dialog box, open this dialog box by choosing Window→Type→Paragraph.

  • Click the arrow in the upper right corner of the Paragraph panel to access the panel menu

  • Choose Hyphenation from the list of options that appears.

  • If you won’t use the Hyphenation feature, turn it off by deselecting the Hyphenation check box at the top of the Hyphenation dialog box.

    Customizing hyphenation settings.
    Customizing hyphenation settings.

    You can also simply click the Paragraph hyperlink in the Control panel to access the Paragraph panel.

The Hyphenation dialog box allows you to set specifications that determine the length of words to hyphenate, the number of hyphens to be used in a single document, whether to hyphenate capitalized words, and how words should be hyphenated.

  • The Before Last setting is useful, for example, if you don’t want to have a word, such as liquidated hyphenated as liquidated. Type 3 in the Before Last text field and Illustrator won’t hyphenate words if it leaves only two letters on the next line.

  • The Hyphenation Limit setting enables you to limit the number of hyphens in a row. For example, type 2 in the Hyphenation Limit text field so that you never see more than two hyphenated words in a row.

  • The Hyphenation Zone text field enables you to set up an area of hyphenation based on a measurement. For example, you can specify 1 inch to allow for only one hyphenation every inch.

  • You can also use the slider to determine whether you want better spacing or fewer hyphens. This slider works only with the Single-Line Composer (the default).