7:45 am

Using Connection Lines In Pages

Connection lines allow you to visually connect two or more shapes or other objects in Pages and Keynote. You can use this to create organizational charts, flowcharts or other types of diagrams. You can set and create styles for these lines, put arrows at the ends and choose from straight, curved or lines with right angles.

Video Transcript (Click to Expand)
Hi, this is Gary with MacMost.com. On today's episode let's take a look at using Connection Lines in Pages and Keynote.

I'm using Pages version 5.5 here and I've created a blank document. I'm going to go in just to make things simpler, select Documents, and turn off the Document Body to convert it to a Layout document. So now we are not dealing with this big text field behind everything.

I'm going to create a bunch of shapes here. So I'm going to create a circle, I'm going to do a square, and a diamond. I can connect these using connection lines.

So the way it works is I'll select one and I'll Command click and select another. Now I'm going to go to Insert, Line. There is three types of connection lines here. Straight, Curved, and Right Angle. I'll be able to switch between the three of them.

So let's just select Straight for now. I get this line that is connecting the two items that I have selected. If I move one the line moves with it.

Now I can continue to add connections. So I can select this one here, Command click there and select two of them, Insert, Line and I can do a Curved connection line. Now you can see I've got this line and this line and I can move things around.

Notice also if I select the line, which is a little tricky to select that narrow line, I have a green dot here and I can use that to change the curve. With the straight one, you will see, that it really is just a curve that has no curve to it. So now I can curve it.

I can also select the line itself and drag it. You can see that it drags the two items that are connected together. This line goes along for the ride but this item does not.

When I select a line like this I have some formatting options. I click Format here. I go down and I can see Connection and I can change between Straight, Curve, and Right Angle Corner line like that. I can also set an Offset. So you can see that's the Offset there at the beginning and the end. I could Lock it so that I can't easily get rid of it here. If I lock it you can see there isn't anything that I can do. I actually can select it, you can see the x's there means it is selected, and I can Unlock and I'll get access to it again.

So there is a lot of different things I can do here. I also can go to Style and change the style of the line. So it gives me some options here. A lot of different things I can do here that you can do with other kinds of things. You can add it as a specific style if you want as you modify things. So if I change the stroke or the color I can add that as another option here and it will save it. I can also have end points with things like arrows or boxes. All sorts of things like that. There is a lot of versatility here in the Style section to be able to change these lines.

Then I can Apply them. Take this one and apply it there as well.

So here's how fast you can create an organization chart with this. I'm going to create a shape here and type some test into it. Make it into a rectangle. Maybe choose a better style. Then I'm going to Option Drag to duplicate it really fast here. You can see that the Alignment tool is allowing me to make a really nice looking chart right away. Let's do something like that.

I can select any two of these and Insert a connection line between them. So I can keep doing that until I have all the connections I want. There you go. It is pretty easy then to move multiple items. If I wanted to move these three here I could grab them all and move them like that. Maybe even make a corner line there. It makes a little more sense with these. I can probably drag this to another corner here. There I go. It has a better fit with what I want to do with the chart.

It is also easy to make flowcharts this way. Just create a shape here. Put some text in it. Duplicate that a bunch of times as well. Then get connection lines going between all of them. So you can do curved, you can do straight, or you can use the angle ones and easily switch between them. Then you can add arrows as well and increase the size. So there's that one. I don't want the arrow in that direction so I'll go to None here and I'll put the arrow in that direction. It is easy to change these on the fly. You can change the color and the style and then move things around as you need.

These also work in Keynote. The same way. Select the two items, insert a line, and there's the connection line options. You have the styles, you have the arrangements, the same way as you did before. As a matter of fact you can even copy and paste between. So there you go. You can easily bring them from one into the other.

Comments: 15 Responses to “Using Connection Lines In Pages”

    4/1/15 @ 10:04 am

    Nice tip. This works with Numbers too — just like Pages and Keynote.

    4/2/15 @ 9:12 am

    I very much appreciate your Macmost videos. Usually they are quite clear. On this one I did not understand when you said something about turning something off so you didn’t get all the text behind you …??

      4/2/15 @ 9:22 am

      Do you mean at 0:20 when I uncheck the Document Body option? That turns off the large text box that is on every page that you would normally have in a plain word processing document. See http://macmost.com/basic-document-layout-techniques-in-pages.html

        4/3/15 @ 11:32 am

        Although a user for some time, this small adjustment was a revelation to me and a great boost to image layout. Also brought into play the guide lines for super-accuracy. Thank you for that. Much appreciated.

          4/10/15 @ 6:36 am

          This also was a revelation to me! I can find this entire video adding precious seconds on to my workflow! Thank you, Gary. Another great video. I love watching your videos over my morning coffee.

    4/2/15 @ 12:30 pm

    Another very helpful video. Thanks, Gary.

    4/2/15 @ 2:13 pm

    Excellent, your tips/videos are the best. Great help!! Thanks Gary.

    4/2/15 @ 3:19 pm

    This was exactly what I needed. Thanks, Gary, for the great help and tips that you always give.

    Patrick Mc Namee
    4/3/15 @ 4:14 am

    This is perfect Gary- really great.

    Patrick Mc Namee
    4/3/15 @ 4:15 am

    A modle of clarity

    4/3/15 @ 5:36 am

    Very well timed post: I have a presentation next week and was wondering how to make an organizational chart for my project. MacMost FTW

    Wayne Machamer
    4/5/15 @ 4:35 am

    No matter what I do I can’t get the line to connect to any shape. For example I add two rectangles, I command selected the rectangle, went to the Insert, go to Line, go to Straight Connection Line, and I get a straight line that isn’t connected to anything. What am I missing?

      Wayne Machamer
      4/5/15 @ 4:35 am

      I should have mentioned I’m using the same version of Pages.

      4/5/15 @ 6:15 am

      Did you turn off Document Body first, like I did in the video?

    Wayne Machamer
    4/5/15 @ 6:34 am

    I watched the video first, set it to near the beginning, and must have missed that part. Thank you. Strange when you uncheck Document Body to convert to Document Layout you lose the text in the document.

Comments Closed.