Character Formatting from the Object Bar
Desktop Apps Training - Writer

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OpenOffice provides two ways to do almost everything you need to do. Formatting characters is no exception. Characters, individual text in your document, may be formatted using the Format option off the Menu Bar or by using icons from the Object Bar. If you are familiar with icons and what they mean you will find that it is probably quicker to use the icons.

The Object Bar starts with the Styles and Formatting option.

Character Fromatting 1

This option allows you to highlight text, then choose a style or format and allow the program to automatically format the text. In the example the plain text has been highlighted and emphasis was chosen for the style which automatically changed the font, and how the document reads the text.

Notice that in the Styles and Formatting window there are provisions for formatting paragraphs, characters (which is selected), frame styles, page styles and list styles. Character formatting must be done with the character styles option.

Character Formatting 2

Next, character formatting may be accomplished by highlighting text and choosing a font and font size. By default an example is provided for each font.

Simply highlight text. This is important to do first, and then select the arrow next to the Font and choose the font you would like, which immediately changes your font while the text is still highlighted. Font size is changed in the same way: highlight the text, select the font size and then when you get the size you want, click on the document outside the highlighted area to make the change occur.

Character Formatting 3

Highlight text, choose which format option you want and then click outside the highlighted area. This example shows all three formats in one line.

Justification of your text may be accomplished by highlighting the text and selecting which method of justification you want to use; left, middle, right or both. The default is left justified and all text documents will follow that pattern unless you change it.



The numbering is basically a toggle, on/off. If you select it the numbering will begin where your cursor is located.


If you selected the bullet button, the process is the same except you will see bullets where the cursor is located.

The indent feature is represented by the last two icons with arrows. If you look closely the two buttons have arrows that indicate to increasing or decreasing indentation.

Font color, highlighting and paragraph background color are the last three features on the Object bar.

Select the text you would like to change the color for and click on the font color and hold down until the color palette shows.



The result is a change of color for the selected text. Notice that the current font color is represented by the color of the font button.

The same process works for highlighting the background of text, select the text, hold down on the button and select the color. Again, the current highlight color is represented by the button.

The paragraph background can be changed by selecting text and clicking the paragraph background color. The paragraph background button shows the current color.