FR - "Master" frames

Hey !

One of the pet peeves of the Engraving section is its lack of modularity when it comes to handling frames, as if we don’t carefully plan ahead what we wanna write and how we wanna layout things with text & image frames (especially in a context of educational material) we basically have to redo everything if at some point we realize we want to add text/images in a section or make one shorter, etc…

So I was thinking, maybe we could have a sort of “Master” frame ?
In which text/images/music frames would be embedded so that if at some point we need to add more content on a specific page, everything would naturally be shifted rather than having to redo completely a layout.

I’m not sure what you feel you need here that Custom User Page Templates cannot already achieve. Could you explain further or give some sort of illustration?

I’m not looking for a template as I’m looking for modularity and adaptability.
Say you’re doing instructional material, you could start with an introductory paragraph for instance in a text frame, proceed to write a 1st section still in the same text frame, then give musical examples/exercises in a music frame, write your next section in a new text frame, etc… and so on (sometimes even add image frames).
If at any point you realize you want to elaborate on a topic in a former text section because you forgot to say some stuff (say in your introduction for instance), your text frames are not related to each other, there’s no continuity, so you basically can’t just write something new that would shift everything, you have to manually resize and move all your frames and redo your layout on all your pages because as everything would need to be shifted and it’s not done automatically, you have to redo all the work (not to mention that Dorico still doesn’t retain the last font/font size used so every time you create a new text frame you gotta re-set all this if you’re using custom fonts)

I’d like the possibility of having everything linked/connected to eachother so that I can at any point modify/lengthen/shorten text and it shifts all the other music/images frames accordingly.
Basically a normal behaviour from any text editor :wink:
(we could still have independent frames just like we have now, but having a master one that has a continuity would be a time saver, a lot of times I “improvise” as I’m writing when it comes to educational stuff and I realize I forgot to talk about something before or I want to give more examples, this is not manageable with the current workflow so whenever it happens we end up having to redo all the custom layout of every page)

Have you tried working with System Text? Shift+Alt+X

That way everything aligns automatically.
Try to add System Text to the first note in the system.

In Engrave>Text you can set the minimal vertical distance and the auto collision avoidance.

In Library>Paragraph Styles create a new Paragraph style with your liking and enable the checkbox “Align with systemic barline if at start of system”. This way your instructions always align left. Also in the Paragraph style you can set additional padding for when the collision avoidance doesn’t work perfectly.

Also don’t forget that you can Alt+Click in Vertical Spacing mode in Engrave mode to fine tune

Are you talking about dynamically sizable frames that adapt to the length of the text (as opposed to frames that spill text into a subsequent frame as music frames can)?
I ( and I think others) would love to see this capability in flow headers to be able to add text cues to musical theater or opera scores.

And then are you thinking that when a purely text frame expands vertically it will push subsequent (music or other text) frames down to reflow the pages?