/ Id-Extras Forum / FormMagic not retaining styles
November 3, 2020 at 6:51 pm #6158Raven250
Hi, I’ve been using FormMagic since 2017, currently using version 1.8.0 Pro. It has always worked perfectly and solved the problems that Adobe won’t fix.
I am currently trying to run the script on a newly created form but the formatting (i.e. color, spacing, font) is not transferring to the form in Acrobat. When I run the script in Acrobat, the result is unstyled text.
I even tried downloading/installing the newer, free 2.0.0 FormMagic to see if that would work any better with CC 2021 but that didn’t work either.
I pulled up a previous InDesign doc (created in 2019) which had worked, exported the Interactive PDF again (within CC 2021), ran the script in Acrobat and everything appeared as it is supposed to.
Is there a step that I’m missing in InDesign somehow? I’m attaching a screenshot which shows the styled INDD file on the left and unstyled PDF on the right.
Thanks for any help.November 3, 2020 at 8:36 pm #6268~~Ariel~~Participant
Hard to say what the issue is. Could you send me the InDesign file? I’ll take a look.
Do you have form fields on master pages? In earlier versions that was not supported so perhaps that’s the issue.
ArielNovember 3, 2020 at 11:24 pm #6269Raven250
Sure, thanks. Sending to the email on your site Help page.
And no, no form fields on master pages…November 9, 2020 at 4:58 pm #6270~~Ariel~~Participant
I took a look at the file, thanks for sending it over.
So, first of all, the font is being preserved correctly as far as I can tell: In the InDesign file you’re using Arial font, and FormMagic is carrying that over to the form in Acrobat.
The color isn’t working. There are 2 issue here, as far as I can tell. First, you’re using a gradient swatch in InDesign to create the grey. As far as I know, Acrobat does not support gradient swatches for the colour of text in form fields. Instead, create a regular RGB swatch in InDesign, with 100% tint, (interactive PDFs only support RGB, FormMagic or not) for the grey colour you would like to apply to the text. That should carry over fine with FormMagic.
The other issue about the color is based on your screenshot: Acrobat Reader normally highlights form fields in a PDF with a blue background. This setting needs to be switched off by the user in Acrobat Reader. That’s why (in your screenshot) the grey looks black and the background a weird blue.
Finally, regarding the line spacing, unfortunately FormMagic cannot preserve line spacing. As a workaround, instead of creating a single large text frame for all 4 form fields, separate each one into its own text frame in InDesign. This will give you full control of the line spacing.
Hope that helps!
ArielNovember 9, 2020 at 5:25 pm #6271Raven250
Hmm, thanks Ariel. Unfortunately, that doesn’t quite help…
The Arial font I’m using is different that what’s appearing in the PDF (see new screenshot, you can tell from the R’s a’s in particular but the one in the form isn’t as compact as the one I’m using.
[ETA: I may have just figured this out… For some reason, my paragraph style wasn’t fully being applied. When selecting the text, it showed up as Arial, however, my paragraph style was also showing as being used but didn’t seem to be actively applied since the style used Arial MT Std. I selected all, reapplied the correct font and when I exported again, the fonts matched. Now, I just need the Color issue solved.]
Color: There is a gradient swatch in the document, however, the color assigned to the text is 20% Black. The Form PDF just shows 100% Black.
[ETA: I believe I just figured THIS out too. It seems FormMagic doesn’t agree with swatch percentages! I just created 20% and 75% Black swatches then went back to all of my styles and assigned the colors to be 100% of the new swatches, instead of 20% or 75% Black. Upon export, the colors appear as they’re supposed to.]
Blue box color: Not concerned about this as I need the client to be able to see where the editable fields are and I know this won’t print. This is how I supplied the files to them in the past and it worked well.
Line spacing: I guess I didn’t have to worry about that in my previous file. It would be great if line spacing was supported.. Having multiple text boxes will work and thanks for the work-around… that can just become problematic if the client has copy which runs longer that the box height I’ve created. Which was why I was leaving extra space at the bottom of the form box. But I will use your suggested work-around for this.
Will email you one other thing separately. Thanks for looking at this and let me know if you have any additional thoughts based on my input above!November 9, 2020 at 6:54 pm #6272~~Ariel~~Participant
I missed that the Arial font is different. The explanation is here (in Section 6.3 and 7), and you’ll need to use the FontList.txt feature to ensure that FormMagic uses exactly the same Arial font you’re using: https://www.id-extras.com/help/formmagic/
(The solution you posted above may work, but I suspect only if you’re using a rich text field. If you use a plain form field (not rich text), I think you’ll still need to use FontList.txt, as above.)
To make sure the colour carries over, don’t use tints – best to use a 100% swatch of the colour that you want.