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Step 2: Create a Mock-up Layout

Having gathered as much information as possible in terms of design, workflow, printing, and any other consideration that should be taken into account, you’re prepared to create a mock-up layout.

A mock-up layout is a preliminary design that accurately represents the size, arrangement, and formatting of every graphical and textual element to be included in a publication. It also clarifies the project requirements and serves as the model from which the template is constructed.

To create a mock-up layout, build a detailed sample document that contains the entire range of elements composing the publication’s design. At this point you should not be concerned with setting up the page framework, master pages, object libraries, color swatches, styles sheets, or other template elements. You’ll do that in the next step. It’s also not necessary to build a complete publication. Just be sure to include a sample of each page design and any possible layout variations. Do your best to make sure all elements are accounted for. While creating the mock-up, continually draw on the project’s objectives and use them to shape its construction.

The time and energy you spend at this stage of development is an investment that will repay you many times throughout the duration of the template construction process.

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