Graphics frames keep propagating back from layouts to master pages?

Hi. This looks like a similar question to this thread, but I don’t see a solution there. I’m going to try to explain the situation clearly.

I want to have a custom master page with a graphics frame which I can then change on a layout-by-layout basis. I had hoped that I could put the most common graphic into the master page (as a “default” graphic) and then replace it on a case-by-case basis (local master page override). However, when I tried this, the moment I changed the graphic on a single page of a part layout, the master page changed to include this graphic. (I never expect a master page to change as a result of an action within a layout; this seems really surprising.) So, I went into the master page and deleted the graphics frame to start over; I left the graphics frame empty and tried again. But the same thing happened; within the Flute 1 layout, I changed the graphic, and the master page now contained that graphic. I must be misunderstanding some principle of this?

(The reason to use a master page as a starting point is to make sure things remain as consistent as possible whenever I want to use this little graphic. This idea was reinforced by Lillie’s recent advice in this thread: “it does sometimes involve making local adjustments (i.e. overrides) but can be very useful to use as a “base”, […snip…] you can get most of the way there with the master page, then tweak.”)

I know this is hard to explain. Here’s a low-res GIF where I try to show it (HQ version here until Dec 2019). On the left, the master page with the blank graphics frame. On the right, the part where I am editing it. I replace the frame with the graphic I want, and on the left you see the master page change at the last second. (Sorry it’s quick.) Does this mean I need to delete and replace the graphics frame every time I want to edit it? I think I’ve read everything in the manual and tried to watch all the videos about layouts, and I’m still confused.

(While I’m here, why does it sometimes take multiple tries to get the file chooser for a graphic? I double-click, I press return… sometimes it doesn’t work for a long time.)

I remember having this issue in the past as well. If I recall, I ended up adding the graphics frames locally rather than in the Master Page.

Yes, doing it locally would solve my problem, but isn’t this the whole point of master pages—to provide “templates” for page layouts, that can be overridden when necessary? It doesn’t make any sense to me that a master page would change because of a local page override. I’m hopeful it’s a bug. This isn’t the way music or text frames work; master pages remain invariable and allow local overrides. Graphics frames should do the same.

For the layouts where you want a different graphic - delete the graphics frame and add a new one for that layout. The other layouts should then be unaffected.

Right, right, thank you, I understand how to do this, but I’m saying I don’t think this should be how this works! The whole point is to avoid having to delete and add frames over and over again. If I use a blank frame on my master layout, I should be able to replace it in individual layouts without the master page changing.

It seems to me that if you want a different graphic on each part, it is unreasonable to expect the same master frame to hold them all; but what would happen if your master page contained a gap where you wanted your frame to be. Could you then add a layout frame in the each empty slot as you entered the custom graphic?

I don’t think it’s unreasonable at all - the same music frame in the master page handles different music on each page, in each layout…

Yes, I tried putting an empty graphics frame in the master page. That is the only way I can imagine including a “gap” of precisely the right size (14.2x10mm). What other way of including a rectangular gap do you have?

I don’t need a different graphic in each part. There are a bunch of possible graphics that could go into the same exact position in many different pages, in many different parts. In a given part, the graphic might be different from one page to the next, or it might be the same. The point of allowing a blank graphics frame in the master page should be to allow me to choose that graphic wherever it appears—the same way an empty text frame would allow me to put different text on every page, or an empty music frame would change on every page.

Yeah, I’ve also experienced unintuitive UI behavior with graphic frames in that you can’t revert changes within those frames by going back a step (Ctrl/Cmd-Z). So, I conclude that graphics within graphic frames are kind of treated as an independent thing that you can’t really influence from within Dorico, i. e. edits to the graphics aren’t part of the document history etc.

This would be my approach to the parts layout.

Dear high5ths,

One way to do this is to set up the Master Page of the Default Part with the default graphic frame and graphic that you will use for most of the parts.

Then, for each part that uses a particular different graphic “custom graphic 1” for some of the layouts, “custom graphic 2” for certain layouts, etc. you will create a custom part layout under Master Page Sets in Engraving Mode (see cg1, cg2, in masterpagesets.png). You create these by first clicking once on Default Part, press the plus sign, then rename to your liking.

Then, for all the layouts that use “custom graphic 1”, In Layout Options, Page Setup, Master page set, choose “cg1” for example (see trumpetcg1.png).

For all the layouts that use “custom graphic 2”, in Layout Options, Page Setup, Master page set, choose “cg2” for example (see cellocg2.png).

For all other layouts, they should already be automatically set to use the default part (see flutedefaultpart.png).

For each layout type, just double-click on the graphic frame and choose the graphic you want. You only have to set this once for each custom graphic. All layouts that are assigned to the custom part layouts will behave correctly and not change the default part master page.

(PLEASE IGNORE) Addtional attchments… (sorry just realized these attachments aren’t necessary) :slight_smile:

Additional attachments again

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Thanks for your suggestions, Derrek and musicmaven. Yes, are indeed methods of working around this. (Derrek’s solution, with its multiple music frames, is totally unsuited to my situation, though yes, it does make a hole of the correct size; the problem with musicmaven’s solution is that there are hundreds of possible graphics I might need to use for this, which would require hundreds of master pages. It’s not that each individual part has a specific graphic. It’s that every single page might have a slightly different graphic. Maybe I will use this for the 10 most common graphics, but that won’t cover every situation so I don’t know that it’s worth the trouble.)

I am still hopeful that this will be correctly logged as a bug in Dorico. This is not how graphics frames on master pages should work. It’s inconsistent not only with the general concept of a master page in page layout software (which should not change as a result of local overrides and with the way music and text frames work in Dorico specifically).

At the moment, the program is working as designed. Graphics frames do not currently have the additional level of abstraction that music and text frames do, namely that they refer to one or more text or music flows and can contain different instances when appearing in different layouts. However, we recognise that this would of course be useful and it’s something we will no doubt return to in a future version.

Okay, then I respectfully suggest this should be reflected in the documentation. I don’t find it at all obvious that graphics frames would behave in such a fundamentally different way from the other two types of frames, so the fact that this is working the way you intend is… surprising, to say the least.

I’ve made a note of this and will look to add some additional info somewhere sensible in the docs :slight_smile:

The use case we were designing for when adding graphics frames to master pages was (obviously) to show a consistent graphic on all pages using that master page, as is commonly needed for publisher/project logos etc., not to allow you to show a different graphic on every page but in the same position, which is not something that we anticipated.

Sure, this makes sense as one use case. But if this is the only possible behavior (at the moment), it seems that it shouldn’t be possible to change a graphic placed on a master page inside an individual page. For anybody with years of experience with Indesign/Quark/etc., I think it seems bonkers for a master page to change as a result of an action on an individual page. I hope some day graphics frames become equal to text and music frames, but in the meantime, their limited nature should be really obvious in limiting our editing ability. If a graphics frame is created on an individual page, it should only be editable there; if a graphics frame is created on a master page, it should only be editable there. (At least right now… I can’t help that I still remember your introduction to master pages in the Development Diary, which quoted Indesign’s help pages! :slight_smile: )

Thank your for explaining where you were coming from, though — it makes me feel a little less crazy. When graphics start changing around behind my back, I start to suspect I’ve been sleep-engraving.