Quickly clean up your document’s layout: Use Lucid’s “align” and “distribute” shortcuts!

  • 9 November 2023
  • 12 replies
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When setting up the layout of a document with a lot of objects it can be challenging to get the objects exactly where you want them—whether you want to align them to a particular side or you want to distribute them evenly.

That’s where Lucid’s “align” and “distribute” shortcuts come in handy! 

First some definitions:

  • Align: This tool allows you to bring a selection of objects to the right left top bottom or center of one particular object on the document. The alignment is relative to whichever shape you right-click to access the “Align” menu.
  • Distribute: This tool allows you to evenly distribute objects either horizontally or vertically. The objects will be spread out evenly between the objects that are farthest away from each other in the selection.

Let’s check out some examples!

 

Align

In this example I am aligning five sticky notes to the left-hand side of the red sticky note (#1). Because I right-clicked the red sticky note all the shapes move to align with that shape specifically.

01HEV0HT2X43XM8BYJ1FX3WWS2.gif
 

Distribute

In this example I am distributing the five sticky notes vertically. In the selection the two objects that are furthest away from each other vertically are the green sticky note (#4) and the yellow sticky note (#2) so the shapes distribute themselves evenly between those two shapes.

01HEV0JHY4GF3MFBS64GB8647T.gif
 

How are you using the “align” and “distribute” shortcuts? Let us know in the comments!


Comments

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The distribute option is greyed out on my version. Is there a workaround?

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Thank you for the demo! This will definitely save me some time

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@kmarchbanks The distribute option will only work if 3 or more shapes are selected - can you confirm that you are selecting 3 or more?

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Yes, I am. I went back and tried it with 5 shapes and the distribute option is still greyed out.

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@kmarchbanks Would you mind trying it in an incognito window?

If that doesn’t work, would you mind sending a temporary Support PIN for the document as well as a screenshot of the shapes you are selecting? For information on generating a Support PIN, check out this Help Center article. (Just as an FYI, this Support PIN doesn’t allow anyone but Lucid Support to take a look at your document, so you are safe to post it here.)

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Okay, I tried it in an incognito window with the same results. Unfortunately, security will not allow me to use the support PIN. I opened a new document, created a quick flow chart and the distribution option worked. the document I’m having trouble with is an imported org chart. 

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@kmarchbanks Thank you for that additional context - to clarify, are the shapes you are attempting to distribute org chart shapes or flowchart shapes?

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Org chart shapes

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@kmarchbanks Thanks for clarifying! Unfortunately, that is expected behavior, as it is not possible to distribute org chart shapes. You can, however, change the spacing of your org chart using the “Layout Style” option in the left-hand contextual panel when your org chart is selected.

 

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Interesting. I did try that option, however, there is one outlier that still won’t budge. The line of shapes in perfectly spaced until you get to the last one. That last one or two are spaced further from the rest of the line. Even if I try to insert a new shape it spaces it apart from the rest. 

 

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@kmarchbanks In order to keep helping you, I'd like to take a closer look, so I've moved this conversation to a private ticket. I'll follow up there!

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Got it! Thank you

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