Worship Aids--Creating High Quality Graphic Files of Hymns in Finale
• Posts: 9
I make weekly worship aids for my parish. In the past I have used graphic files from onelicense and licensing. Due to the unpredictable quality of these files, I have began creating my own files in Finale (for Public Domain titles). Can someone please give advice on ways to create high quality graphic files using this method? I am able to create graphic files (JPG or TIF). The quality is still not too great, particularly for the hymn text and lines. I will attach a copy of one hymn I have created. Could someone also provide tips about creating uniform spacing between verses and the numbering solutions. (Right now I have to do both of these things manually). The attached file is a 2900 JPG. Thank you.
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Also, is there another program that would do a better job? I have seen mention of Lilypond. I downloaded it quite some time ago. I was never able to get it to work
(Windows 7 here).
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Yep, I can tell you at least what I do.
Send me an email,
ghmus7@hotmail.com
Gregory
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Use TIFF, jpeg is for photos and will make text and music look blurry.
Thanked by 1BruceL
• Posts: 4,370
I can help, too. Finale is just fine, but you aren't using all its features properly, and there are some tricks for hymn engraving that Finale doesn't adequately provide for.

I have quibbles with the lyrics font you are using (it looks like a flavor of ... Garamond? ... which seems to produce excellent text results but doesn't work well for lyrics underlay). I use Palatino Linotype almost exclusively with much better results, but there are some other fonts that work well, too.

Finale provides an automatic numbering feature(?) for hymns, but I find it unsatisfactory. You seem to have just typed the stanza numbers in by hand and tried to "eyeball" their placement, with limited success. There is a much better trick: (1) Insert a blank measure at the beginning (of each system if you want the numbers on every system); (2) change the time signature to something like 1/16 or 1/8 and select the alternate (regular) time signature (although for hymnals, time signatures were traditionally hidden globally); (3) Put a rest (16th or 8th) in the measure and hide it; (3) Use the Lyrics entry tool and simply put the stanza numbers in under the hidden rest; (4) with the measure tool, hide the right barline (to make it invisible) and change the measure width to something like 0.25in, and put a small negative amount of "additional space" (say -.25in) at the beginning of such measure to tuck it in under the key signature and/or clef (if you just added an eighth or sixteenth rest before a pickup note, you may want to add a tiny bit of negative space at the end of the pickup measure to counteract the negative shift at the beginning of that measure).

There are other fine points, but these are the two most obvious things to fix.

Thanked by 2JonathanKK BruceL
• Posts: 488
The simplest way to add numbers to the hymn-verses in Finale is this:

If your opening word is "The", then in the lyric editor, immediately before "The", type "1." followed by option-space. That is, "1. The". The option-space "glues" the number to the text syllable, and they act as a single unit.
• Posts: 4,370
In my experience, though putting in an unbreakable ("option") space (or two) still messes with the lyric positioning for that first syllable, which is why I don't use it. It also requires the lyric positioning options to be set so that the first syllable in the lyric (or in each system if using stanza numbers in all systems) is aligned left. In most classical hymnals (eg. The Hymnal 1940), all syllables, including the first, are center aligned.
Thanked by 1JonathanKK
• Posts: 488
Just move that first lyric a bit (with the lyric adjust tool) and it's all taken care of.
Thanked by 1BruceL
• Posts: 8,308

TIFF image file format is better than JPEG (because TIFF preserves the image quality intact without blurring it)

but (if you have the option) PNG is better than TIFF because PNG is just as accurate but saves space.

By the way, I want to visit your church! :-)

Thanked by 2ryand CHGiffen
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actually the best option is poscript as it retains the mathematical data in vector format, but it can be work intensive.
Thanked by 1CHGiffen
• Posts: 8,308
I just made this with Lilypond in a half-hour (see below).

Lilypond output is in PDF format, but if needed I can convert that to an image file with the image editor program Gimp (similar to Photoshop but free).

My first tips for high-quality output are:

1. Proofread all the text: that is, the title and the lyrics, against a known good copy. Check every word and every punctuation mark.

2. Check hyphenation: check that the correct words are hyphenated and only those, and also check that the break appears in the right place. Usually musical scores follow dictionary hyphenation even when it differs from the way words are treated in singing.

3. If you choose to follow the convention of capitalizing the first word in each poetical line, be consistent about it. If you capitalize "thee", "thou", "his", "he", etc., wherever they refer to God, be consistent.

4. Use inclined apostrophes and quotation marks instead of the vertical marks you may get by typing on a computer keyboard. To get the correct inclined characters, you may need to use the "special characters" utility on your computer. The location of that feature depends on whether you are running with Windows, a Mac, or something else.

5. If the last syllable in a word is treated melismatically, add an "extender" line to that syllable in the lyric. (I don't like these, but they are apparently the convention for vocal scores.) [This point doesn't come up in the example.]

6. When you make image files for a worship aid, 300 dots per inch is usually sufficient resolution. If I were producing them for a book, I might go to 600.

--
The font in the example below is Aldine 721.
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I agree with PNG. The last version Finale I used did not have that option.
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@orgel37, is there a reason your draft version above has staves of unequal length? Is that intended?
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1. Proofread all the text: that is, the title and the lyrics, against a known good copy. Check every word and every punctuation mark.

I learned this the hard way when our Christmas worship aid had a verse with "Kesus."
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A few weeks ago, we saw in one of the missalets that our parish purchases the following 'source' of a hymn: "m.: ??? ASK JOHN"
Fortunately it was in red lettertype, so the rubics-rule applied: 'Say the black, do the red!'
Nobody in our parish knows John; but luckily Jos, our choir director, knew the answer.
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Is there a name for the likelihood that at least one typo will escape the experienced and merciless proof-reader's eye only to glare one in the face with great insouciance as soon as the copies have been printed?

One typo that I have yet to escape concerns 'angels' - without fail I will type 'nagels', as in 'Nagels we have heard on high'.
Plus, I consistently, almost without fail, type 'chruch' for 'church'.
• Posts: 437
We only use vector output from Finale in our printed materials. Generally, to avoid issues with fonts caused by its troublesome EPS implementation, we "print" to the Adobe PDF driver that comes with Acrobat and insert that into the design file.
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Beats the heck out of 'Nagels we have heard when high'.
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Man you guys are killing me I really needed this laugh
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I think it's a universal law that you always find the typo after you've printed 1000 copies.
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We have so many worship aids at out place that we have developed a system: the worship aid needs to be proof read by at least three people. Trick: start reading form the end.
• Posts: 9
Thanks for all the helpful suggestions. I like to tell the choir that my secretary (me) needs to be fired lol. The shared image did not go in our worship aid. It was only a draft. What a terrible typo... This thread encouraged me to try Lilypond again.
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Trick: start reading form the end.

Haha.
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@chonak Thank you for posting your example.
With Lilypond, I am stumped with a few things:
*Verse numbers for stanza 2-6 don't match formatting for first stanza
*I was able to improve spacing between words, but hyphens are too close to its syllable
*I started a template with frescobaldi with "no bar numbers" selected. Then I pasted my code in and the bar numbers are still present. I'm trying to get this in the code, but it seems to not work with info already present.
* Is there a simple way to adjust spacing between systems?
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@ghmus7
Trick: start reading form the end.

This law also applies to posts... lol
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@orgel37,

The verse numbers for the second and later systems are probably produced by the command
 \set shortVocalName = "*1."
and so on.

It's normal that they don't line up with the initial stanza numbers, since they're produced by different methods. There's some discussion of trying to make them line up here:
http://lilypond.1069038.n5.nabble.com/Lyrics-verse-numbers-on-every-line-td45138.html

To get proper spacing of hyphens, enter the lyric text this way:

verse = \lyricmode { \set stanza = "1. " At the Lamb’s high feast we sing, Praise to our vic -- tor -- ious King, Who has washed us in the tide Flow -- ing from his pier -- ced side; Praise we him, whose love di -- vine Gives his sa -- cred Blood for wine, Gives his Bod -- y for the feast, Christ the vic -- tim, Christ the priest.}
To suppress bar numbers, the \layout block should contain this command:

\layout { \context { \Score \remove "Bar_number_engraver" }}
There are variables for controlling spacing between the systems; the syntax of how to do that depends on the Lilypond version you are running. I'm running v. 2.16 here. What version is yours?

Also, are you trying to increase the spacing between systems? Decrease it?

• Posts: 9
@chonak Thanks for the tips. I am working with version 2.18. I am trying to increase space between systems.
• Posts: 8,308

http://lilypond.org/doc/v2.18/Documentation/notation/flexible-vertical-spacing-paper-variables.en.html

There are several variables, each of which controls a different aspect of spacing. And to complicate things, some of the variables are four-part variables.

To adjust the spacing between systems, add this to the \paper section of the lilypond file, and increase the distance to see what results you get:

\paper { system-system-spacing #'basic-distance = #8}
• Posts: 30
This is a hymn insert created from a reusable template. Here is the Lilypond file for it.

Normally Lilypond will center each word or syllable on its note. This command will left justify only the first word:

\once \override LyricText.self-alignment-X = #LEFT

Lilypond's output is PDF. The person that does our service leaflets prefers to have EPS files, since they are resize-able without degradation. You can do that in Gimp.

dB
Thanked by 1orgel37
• Posts: 1,221
We have so many worship aids at out place that we have developed a system: the worship aid needs to be proof read by at least three people. Trick: start reading form the end.
• Posts: 1,221
Ok when.creating a graphic (jpg tiff etc) from a finale music file, use the graphics tool, select export selection (or file). MAKE SURE you are using the highest resolution, 1200..then you can save the image to your computer and paste it and size it the way any picture can be used.
As for the numbering, finale has a "automatic numbering" for verses when.using the text tool, it makes it really simple.
Spacing is accomplished by the edit menu ehich you can use to have any type of spacing evenly placed across your document.
Ghmus7@hotmail.com
• Posts: 9
@dboothe Thank you sending the template. This really helps. Here a few more things that came up. Ex. 1--The King of Love My Shepherd Is-- When setting up a hymn that has a pick-up how do you stop lilypond from adding blank measures as the end of lines. How do you stop lilypond from sometimes adding extra-hyphens. I checked my code here, and only put in what was necessary to properly space the syllables. When using the tuplet function, how do you get it to align in the middle of the tuplet? For titles, I made sure to change the font to match the text, but it is still using another font. Is there a way to fix this? Ex. 2-- Hail the Day That Sees Him Rise-- Is there a way to only have a repeated word in every verse (alleluia) centered in the measure? Should I just use the word alleluia only for verse 3 or 4? When Lilypond automatically sets notes in the wrong octave how do you override it ? I will post examples of both here. Thank you for all your help.
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Nice, orgel37. However, the "3" above the triplet is misplaced: it should be centered and not placed over the first note of the triplet.
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Brilliant!

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When Lilypond automatically sets notes in the wrong octave how do you override it ?
You tell it to move the errant note, in this case put the f down by writing "f,". Lilypond automatically uses the the closest to the previous note, i.e. up to three notes above or below.
• Posts: 1,983
the tuplet is also written explicitly
\tuplet 3/2 { g8 a b }
The flexibilty of Lilypond makes it immensly complex, the manuals are exhaustive, but very very long. Skim through the Learning manual, check out snippets, and use the search facility.
• Posts: 30
hymn that has a pick-up how do you stop lilypond from adding blank measures

At the beginning, if you wanted a quarter note C pickup (for example), you would use :

\partial 4 * 1 c4 [some 4/4 measures]

At the end of a line that corresponds to a phrase, use an explicit line break, and add an invisible bar line. Then the pickup will go in a partial measure at the beginning of the next line. For example:

[some 4/4 measures] f2. \bar "" \break c4 [some more 4/4 measures]

When rendering, Lilypond may give you bar check warnings because it thinks you don't know how to count to 4. Just ignore those.

You can also use
\bar "|"
If you want the staff closed with a bar line.

made sure to change the font to match the text, but it is still using another fond. Is there a way to fix this?

You can set it expicitly. Here is an example from one of my files:

title = \markup { \override #'(font-name . "Linux Libertine Capitals Bold") \magnify #2.0 "How oft, O Lord, thy face hath shone" }

Be sure to use the font name as the system knows it. Look at your system font browser to get it.

Should I just the word alleluia only for verse 3 or 4?

That's the way I have done it, but I don't always like the looks of it. Then I just type it out for every verse, as you have. Of course, the best way would be to construct a refrain, but that doesn't work internally in verses, as with these alleluias.

extra-hyphens

In the code below, the first line is how I suspect you did it. The second line is to allow Lilypond to automatically add hyphens, spaced as needed for the melisma (the normal way to set lyrics). The third line would be if you wanted to do it explicitily, but Lilypond will treat it like separate words.

con- -- quercon -- quercon- quer

Skim through the Learning manual, check out snippets, and use the search facility.

All good advice. The entire reference manual is also available as one big HTML file, so you can do a key word search if you want. I find I do a lot of trial and error. A lot. That's why I save templates and code snippets when I find what works and what I like. Frescobaldi is very handy about this.

Hope this helps.

dB

Edited for clarity.

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