How to Create a New Document in Adobe InDesign CS6 - dummies

By Jennifer Smith, Christopher Smith, Fred Gerantabee

After you launch Adobe InDesign CS6, you can create a new InDesign document. Just follow these steps to create a new publication on your computer:

  1. Choose File→New→Document.

    The New Document dialog box opens.


  2. Select whether you’re designing a Print, web, or Digital Publishing (digital document) from the Intent drop-down menu.

  3. Enter a value in the Number of Pages text field for the number of pages in the document.

    This value can be between 1 and 9999. If you aren’t sure how many pages will be in your document, take a guess. You can easily add pages later using the Pages panel.

  4. For this example, select the Facing Pages check box to have the pages arranged as spreads with left and right pages.

    With this option selected, pages in your document are arranged in pairs, so you have spreads, which are facing or adjacent pages in a layout. For example, you select this option if you’re creating a publication that will be arranged like a book or magazine.

    If you deselect this option, pages are arranged individually, which is a good choice for a single-page flyer or a document with only a front and back side.

  5. Choose a page size for the document from the Page Size drop-down list.

    The page size should be set to the size of paper you intend to print on or the size at which the content will be displayed. The Width and Height values below this drop-down list change, depending on the size you choose.

    You can also enter your own settings to create a custom size. The Orientation setting changes from Portrait (tall) to Landscape (wide) based on the settings you enter in the Width and Height fields of the Page Size section.

    The Intent selection you make determines the choices in the Page Size drop-down list. If you select web for the Intent, you can choose from various screen resolutions, whereas if you select Digital Publishing, you can select from various popular tablet sizes, such as the iPad, NOOK, or Kindle.

    You can enter page sizes using most common forms of measurement or just use the appropriate abbreviation. You can use most forms of measurement in all InDesign dialog boxes and panels; just make sure to specify the form of measurement you want to use.

  6. Choose a number for the columns on the page.

    This step creates guides for columns that do not print or display in the completed project. These guides help you organize your pages as you create them. You can also enter a value in the Gutter field, which specifies the space between each of the columns.

  7. Choose values for the page margins.

    Notice the Make All Settings the Same button, which is a chain icon, in the middle of the four text fields where you enter margin values. Click this button to set all margins to the same value.

    If you see Top, Bottom, Inside, and Outside, you’re specifying margins for a page layout that has facing pages, which you specified earlier. If you see Top, Bottom, Left, and Right, you’re creating a page layout without facing pages.

    The inside margins refer to the margins at the middle of the spread, and the outside margins refer to the outer left and right margins of a book or magazine. You can set the Inside setting to accommodate the binding of a book, which may need wider margins than the outside.

    If you use the same settings repeatedly, saving those settings as a preset is a good idea. Get your settings the way you want them, and then click the Save Preset button in the New Document dialog box before you click OK.

    After you save your settings, you can select settings from the Document Preset drop-down list whenever you create a new document.

  8. When you’re finished, click OK.

    After you click OK in the New Document dialog box, the new document is created with the settings you just specified.