By default, frames in Scribus have a rectangular shape. This is what you want in most cases, and is well-adapted to creating a structured composition. Thus, one can easily place text and images side-by-side.
If you wish to increase the dynamism of the layout, frames can be made to overlap:
What you find in these cases, is that the new frame is on top of text content, and what you really want is for the text to flow around the frame, which may have an irregular shape.
Except for special cases, text flow is applied to the object, image, text, or geometric shape, which is overlying the text – on some level above the text.
Remember, this is applied to the object above the text which must flow around, so select that upper level object. Now, in the Properties palette, select the Shape tab.
Your four options:
Since it's important to apply text flow to a frame on a higher level, it's important to remember that as you add frames, they are placed on a level above the last frame created.
Here we see in this small part of the XYZ tab of Properties how to adjust the level of an object. The left up and down arrows shift by one level, the right arrows either all the way to the top or to the bottom. The number beside the arrows indicates the level of the selected object, 1 being the lowest level.
By default, text flow would be immediately against the edge of the image or text frame, but in most cases you will want some "breathing room", such as you see in the example page above.
If you are going to use a border for your frame as you see here, you will want to add some space above and to the left of the text inside the frame. Go to Properties > Text > Columns and Text Distances, and adjust the distances as needed.
Scribus doesn't yet support text flow around a group of objects. If you want text to flow around an image, then add a caption to the image, here are a couple of work around methods:
You may notice that when you attempt to change the size of the contour line that the desired effect doesn't take place. In this case, Undo your edits and make sure you have checked Edit Contour Line in the Edit dialog. Also check to make sure you have selected Use Contour Line for the text flow setting.
Should you wish to change the shape of frames, this is accomplished with the buttons in the upper part of the Edit Shape dialog. The functions here are complex and require some practice to master, but here is some information to get you started.
More information about editing shapes can be found in the online manual that comes with Scribus.
Whenever you narrow a column of text you run the risk of the various problems pointed out in the chapter on Typography. Refer to that chapter where the possible ways of adjusting your text are covered in detail.
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