Here’s a recent feature you may have missed: In QuarkXPress 8 and above, corner styles are now a box attribute. You can change a rectangular box into a rounded-corner box — and control the radius of the corners — from a drop-down menu in the Measurements palette! Just select a box in your layout and click the first (Classic) tab:
In QuarkXPress 9, you can also use the new ShapeMaker feature (Utilities> ShapeMaker) to create a box where each corner is shaped differently:
In ShapeMaker’s Rectangles tab, you can separately configure each corner of the box by unchecking Same for all, or check Same for all and configure all four corners with a single set of controls. Whichever way you do it, you can use the drop-down menu to specify a corner type (Normal, Rounded, Beveled, Concave, Pointed, or Inset) and a diameter.
Curvature: Controls how curved the corners are.
Balance: For some options, lets you control whether the corners lean toward the sides of the box or toward the top.
Radial: For some options, lets you control whether the corners of the box are aligned with the center of the box or not.
Notice the checkbox labeled “Alter Current Box” — this lets you change the corners of the currently selected box, rather than letting Shapemaker create a new box.
If you create a shape you really like, you can save it as a Preset to apply to other boxes or to create new boxes. Just click the Presets tab and give it a name.
So… go forth and make rounded corners!
(Before QuarkXPress 9, ShapeMaker was a feature in Gluon’s ProPack set of XTensions. Quark acquired Gluon and included this feature in QuarkXPress 9. You can add the ShapeMaker feature to QuarkXPress 6, 7 or 8 by purchasing Gluon’s ProPack 6, ProPack 7, or ProPack 8, which include more than a dozen other powerful XTensions that I’ve previously called essential.)
Jay Nelson is the editorial director of PlanetQuark.com, and the editor and publisher of Design Tools Monthly. He’s also the author of the QuarkXPress 8 and QuarkXPress 7 training titles at Lynda.com, as well as the training videos Quark includes in the box with QuarkXPress 7 . In addition, Jay writes regularly for Macworld and Photoshop User magazines and speaks at industry events.