Field Aligment in Forms

Good afternoon,

I have designed the attached form, the columns of which are obviously unaligned. I have arrived here by simple trial and error in placing and replacing the location of fields so that the print version of the form is properly aligned.

Is there a more formal way to align columns and one that will produce a version of the form that reflects the same position of the fields as they appear on the printed version?

Thank you.

You can select a bunch of the objects and align them using the Objects menu while in Graphics Mode. There are some objects you should group first. This can be complicated, and it takes a while.

It won’t help fix the form you already have made, but Panorama can automatically generate nice looking reports for you. You may not be able to automatically create exactly the form you want, but it will give you a good head start.

At a minimum, I would suggest that you want to left align all of the tiles that have data on them – the data tile, summary tiles, data header etc. That will make it a LOT easier to line things up. I usually start with the data tile, then create other tiles by holding down the Option key and dragging to make a duplicate. Once you start dragging, hold down the SHIFT key so that the new tile is perfectly aligned with the original tile.

Or better yet, start with the automatic report constructor I mentioned above.

The Help files can be your friend. Take a look at ‘Report Tile Object’. If you start with aligning the left edges of your Header, Data Header, Summary(s) and Footer, you will have a an easier time aligning your data.

If you have specific dimensions that you need for a form, a line rule, also called a pica pole, is useful. It is a ruler with measurements in units used in printing. Dimensions in Panorama are in points, and these have them. Pacific Arc makes them. I just used mine to adjust a form to fill out an IRS form that changed this year. Very handy!


The report constructor is a godsend. I have created all my forms using it. Building one without it would be self-punishment, as far as I am concerned.

The issue is that the forms do print with the fields properly aligned, no matter whether the left edges of the tiles are already pre-aligned or I align them, hence the trial and error to arrive where I need to get.

I had read the “Report Tile Object” help file more than once hoping to find some instruction that would allow me enter numeric measurements to control positioning but I could not find it. From your response now, I conclude that this is not possible.


I am familiar with the pica poles but I am creating new forms from scratch, not filling something that already contains set measurements.

That said, it would be helpful if you could provide a practical example of how you used them in the IRS form you adjusted.

The easiest way to arrange fields for a given form is to scan that form and put the scan in the background of your Panorama X form. Adjust your fields in the foreground. Once you have adjusted your fields, you can decide to keep or to delete the background picture.
You have full numeric position control over every placed object in Graphic Mode in the Measurements tab of the Object Properties panel.

There was change in the form, and checkboxes were moved. I measured how far in points it moved, and changed the dimensions properties for the box where I put the checkmark. Very simple!

Maybe I don’t understand your question.

When you say you want the fields to be aligned – aligned with what?

If you mean you want the fields to be aligned with each other from one tile to another, aligning the tiles themselves will help with that. Since you posted an image of tiles that were not aligned, that is why I suggested that.

If you mean you want the fields to be aligned with a pre-printed paper form, Kurt’s suggestion of scanning the paper form is a good one. But that doesn’t usually apply to reports, only to full page forms, which usually only have a data tile and no other tiles.


As I said, “I am creating new forms from scratch”, so you did understand my question correctly.

To summarize the entire issue, I am re-attaching the form I arrived at and the report that it produces.

All I am wondering is if there is any way to produce a form that mirrors the report in appearance.


Yes, I am aware of the measurements tab too but it moves only the text, not the text background, unless I am doing something incorrectly.

What you are wanting to achieve is easily accomplished by Panorama.
But you must start with aligning the left edges of each tile that contains data that you desire to align with other tiles.
The fact that you want the dates centered is interesting but not at all difficult. Start with aligning tiles. Then align objects above and below other like objects.