Composite frames work on a principle of best fit - they automatically fit the maximum number of portraits into the designated area based on your query.
If a new design element is added to the canvas, the portraits will automatically move away from the new element - this is called auto-knockouts. For instance, if you add a logo or a text frame on the canvas in an area also touched by the composite frame, the portraits will move out of the way, since you never want other design elements covering the portraits and their labels.
If there is sufficient room, the composite grid will simply rearrange itself to move away from the element, moving the portraits down or to the side.
In this example, a text frame is moved to cover part of the grid, resulting in three portraits moving to the last row.
If there is insufficient room to accommodate the required number of portraits, a warning will appear because the grid is occluded, meaning that it obstructs the portraits being displayed in that area. Learn how to fix an occlusion here.
Knockouts do not remove individual portraits from your grid - they simply shift the portrait placeholders to the bottom of the grid. To remove a portrait, use the Exclude feature in the Index.
A composite frame cannot auto-knockout another composite frame. If you need to nest one composite frame inside another, use manual knockouts to create a space (see below).
For certain layouts, you may want to manually knockout portraits to create a shape around the edges of the grid, or to make a defined space for other elements.
In the Editor's Layout tab, add composite frame and set its query - you can then turn on manual knockouts. Select composite frame, then expand the Knockouts option on the left side.
Click Add/Remove Knockouts. The selected grid will appear with green x marks over the portraits.
To turn off a portrait placeholder, click on one of the green x marks. It will turn to red and the portrait placeholder will vanish.
Note that an extra portrait has appeared at the end of the last row, to shift the offset portrait to a new location.
If more portraits are shifted to the bottom row than can be accommodated in the current grid settings, a warning message will be displayed.
To repair this, choose one of the following methods.
Turn some of the portraits back on. In the example, reducing the number of knockouts from six to two allowed all the portrait to accommodate the total number of portraits.
Click on the FIX button to auto-reset the grid within the available space. In the example, clicking FIX added an extra row to the grid so all the portraits fix again.
Manually adjust the Grid settings to increase the number of columns and/or rows. This will turn off knockout mode, and you can adjust the grid to accommodate.
When your arrangement is complete, click off the grid or choose another left-side menu option. The x marks will disappear, allowing you to continue to work on your layout.
Your generated composite set will follow the pattern of portrait frames, respecting the knockouts.
Note that you can nest one composite frame inside another using manual knockouts.
To reset the composite frame back to a standard grid, click on the composite frame, reopen Knockouts, then click on Clear Knockouts.