Be a writer and a designer with PagesForMac

Daniel_Doherty
POSTED BY Daniel Doherty
ON Apr 3, 2016

Apple’s PagesForMac gives users the best of both worlds. Besides being easy to use, it is a streamlined word processor and versatile page layout tool. With this highly flexible tool, you can be a writer and a designer all at the same time.

When you open the program for the first time, a menu will pop up with a selection of at least 1800 templates for every possible situation. This Template Chooser’ allows users to find the best Apple-designed templates for their diverse and unique needs. Whether you are writing a CV, a book or a letter, PagesForMac has something for you to use. Once you find a template that you’d like to use, simply drop in photos from iPhoto, type in text, and the placeholders will be automatically replaced with the text content and pictures. You can also include charts and tables by simply copy-pasting them from Numbers (the equivalent of Excel on Windows). When you alter anything in the spreadsheet you only need one click to change the documents on your pages because the data is linked.

How does PagesForMac work?

1. Writing documents

The formatting bar shows all the current settings and you can format your text with just a single click. You can also see how each setting looks at a glance using the pop-out drawer. All the changes you make to the format are displayed in the pop-out drawer.

PagesForMac is equipped with numerous features that make the use of Word Processor highly flexible. These features include proofreading options, spelling and grammar checking and generating a table of contents which users can access with just one click. PagesForMac simply looks at the chapters and subheading you have used and generates the table of contents from them. It is also easy to add pages and section breaks and users can get all the details about their documents on the tab at the bottom of the page so they always know the number of pages, paragraphs and lines they have.

If you are writing a report or a book, you can plan out everything and organize your thoughts using the Outlining’ feature. You are always in control to expand and/or collapse the outline whenever you need to. Moreover, you can use the thumbnails to retain a clear overview of your entire document.

2. Desk Top Publishing

Besides being a superb word processor, it is also quite simple to use DTP (Desk Top Publishing) program on PagesForMac as well. Starting with a template or a black canvas, you can easily create your own spectacular page layouts. The Inspector will show you all the settings for default elements and you can customize them to fit your publication. Images, fonts, 3D charts, tables and graphics are also easy to add. The most interesting part is that Pages has a small learning curve. Therefore, users don’t have to learn how to use all the menus because they are well integrated with other Mac programs.

Benefits of using PagesForMac

1. Get rid of snap guides quickly

PagesForMac uses Snap Guides’ (they usually appear as yellow lines) to help users line up different parts and elements. You can override Snap Guides temporarily buy simply holding down the command button when moving an item.

2. Paste and match while still maintaining the style of your Pages

Copying and pasting content is usually a pain because it retains the web style automatically (It does not use the Pages style). PagesForMac allows users to paste and match the existing style of the document by simply pressing Shift+Option+Command+V when using content from the web.

3. Create your charts with functions

The charts you add to PagesForMac documents also have the vital power of numbers. Besides putting information in them, you can also use them to create various formulas. You can add tables by clicking Tables’ and then choose your preferred table style. Moreover, users can bring up the Functions’ sidebar by entering an equal (=) sign into any box.

4. Keep the theme intact by using styles

Learn to use the Styles’ menu instead of formatting your text manually. PagesForMac offers numerous formatting styles in a drop-down menu which can be revealed by clicking the Format’ tab. However, the theme you have picked will determine the range of styles available for you to use for that particular theme.

5. Create your own unique style in a PagesForMac document

You can create a new by simply clicking the Format” followed by the Text’ tab and format your text using Color, Font or other options. You can add the new style based on your selection by clicking the Paragraph Styles’ menu and select Add’ (+).

6. Password protection to keep all your documents safe

With PagesForMac, you can use a unique password to protect all your files. You can access the password settings via the File’ tab and then select Set Password’. This is a great feature for people who want to share confidential documents or users who simply want to keep their document private and safe.

7. Shrink the file size of your documents

When you gradually add videos and photos to a document, the file size must increase making it very difficult to share such documents via email. PagesForMac allows you to optimize images so they don’t take up extra space but still look great. Click on the File’ tab, and then select Reduce File Size’.

8. Create Instagram-style effects using Advanced Gradient Fill

Give your photos nice visual tricks using Advanced Gradient Fill. Simply click on Shapes’ and select Square’. This enables you to use drag handles to draw solid blocks of colour over your photographs.

After selecting the shape you want, click on Format’ then Styles’ and drag the slider down to about 25%. Now you simply have to change Fill’ to Advanced Gradient Fill’ and use the slider and colour boxes to change the colour.

With the recent updates by Apple on PagesForMac, the app now works and shares files seamlessly with both iOS and Mac versions of the app. Besides offering enhanced features, the new PagesForMac format is unique primarily because it doubles up as a page layout document and also offers traditional word processing. Moreover, it offers real-time collaboration on files and documents which is quite amazing!

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Daniel Doherty

Daniel Doherty is a web developer and content marketer since 2001. Specifically working with WordPress he loves to help others understand the magic of using tools to automate their learning, creating content and marketing their business - preferably on autopilot. That said, he's an avid reader and geeks out on the technology, thinking outside of the box. He's a bit of a foodie too and can cook when he manages to disconnect from the Matrix. Loves cupcakes. You can follow Daniel's content related posts on Twitter @ThriveContent, website related content @MerlinFX and cafe/restaurant content @BlendAll.