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There are many basic drawing tools available in Flash. Each isdetailed below. Also note that many of these tools have additional options ormodes that can be changed in the Options area of the Tools panel.
There are many basic drawing tools available in Flash. Each is detailed below. Also note that many of these tools have additional options or modes that can be changed in the Options area of the Tools panel.
The first important tool is the Selection tool. This tool is used to make selections on objects and graphics on the drawing area, or stage. You can either click on individual objects to select them, or click and drag to make a rectangular region and select all the objects in it. Once you make a selection, you may perform subsequent actions that affect your selection, such as moving it around the stage, deleting, or altering it in the Properties panel. Hold down the SHIFT key to select multiple individual objects.
The Subselection tool is used for selecting and modifying anchor points on curves and lines. Clicking once on a line or curve with the Subselection tool reveals the anchor points. Anchor points are represented either by a hollow square (a corner point), or a hollow circle (a curve point). Clicking on an anchor point with the Subselection tool will select that anchor point (then represented by a filled square or circle). You can then click and drag the anchor point to move it, ALT-click and drag on a corner point to convert it to a curve point (and thus reveal anchor point tangent handles), or ALT-click on a curve point to convert it to a corner point (and thus remove the tangent handles).
The Line tool is an important drawing tool. It functions like the line tool in other drawing programs. To use it, click on the stage, drag, and release to draw a straight line. Stroke width, style, and color can be changed in the Properties panel. Hold down the SHIFT key while dragging to constrain the line angle to increments of 45°.
The Lasso tool can be used to select objects on the stage. It allows yto create a freeform selection area by clicking and dragging around an area. When you release the mouse button, Flash automatically completes the loowith a straight line.
The Pen tool is used to create precise paths that are either straight lines or smooth curves. Stroke width, style, and color, and fill color (for closed paths) can be changed in the Properties panel. To use the Pen tool to create straight lines, click anywhere on the stage to define the first anchor point, click again where you want the first segment of the straight line to end (hold down the SHIFT key to constrain the line to increments of 45°), and continue clicking to create more straight line segments. Double click the last point to end the line segments (and create an open curve), or click on the first point you created to close the curve. To create curved lines, follow the same procedure, but instead of simply clicking to create each point, click and drag in the direction you want to curve to go.
The Text tool allows you to draw text on the stage. Position the cursor on the stage where you want to begin your text and then click and start typing. The text font, size, color and paragraph formatting can be changed in the Properties panel.
The Oval tool allows you to create ovals of any shape and size (including circles). Stroke width, style, and color, and fill color for ovals can be changed in the Properties panel. To create an oval, simply click and drag across the stage to create the oval as you want it. Hold down the SHIFT key while dragging to constrain the oval to a circle.
Rectangle and PolyStar tools:
The Rectangle and PolyStar tools allow you to create rectangles and polygons. To switch between the Rectangle and PolyStar tools, click and hold the tool icon on the Tools panel, then select the desired tool from the menu that appears. Stroke width, style, and color, and fill color for rectangles and polygons can be changed in the Properties panel. In addition, for the PolyStar tool, the number of sides of a polygon, or points on a star, can be changed by clicking on Options in the Properties panel. To create a rectangle or polygon/star, simply click and drag across the stage to create the shape as you want it. While using the Rectangle tool, hold down the SHIFT key while dragging to constrain the rectangle to a square. While using the PolyStar tool, hold down the SHIFT key to constrain the orientation of the polygon or star to increments of 45°.
The Pencil tool is used to create lines and shapes on the stage in much the same way you would use a real pencil. Stroke width, style, and color can be changed in the Properties panel. To use the Pencil tool, click and drag across the stage to create a line. Note that you can end your drawing at the same place you started, but the shape you create is not filled in. Hold the SHIFT key while dragging to constrain the line to a horizontal or vertical direction.
The Brush tool is used much like a paint brush. Click and drag across the stage to paint. The fill color can be changed in the Properties panel. Note that no stroke is produced when using the brush tool. Under the Options section of the Tools panel, you can change the brush size and shape.
Free Transform tool:
The Free Transform tool can be used to transform objects in a variety of ways. To use the tool, click on an object on the stage to reveal transform handles. Then, under the Options section of the Tools panel, choose the type of transformation you want to perform. Options include Rotate and Skew, Scale, Distort, and Envelope. Hold down the SHIFT key while rotating to constrain the angle to increments of 45°.
Fill Transform tool:
The Fill Transform tool allows you transform gradient and bitmap fills. To use it, click on an object that has a gradient or bitmap fill to reveal transform handles. Click and drag the circle handle in the center of the fill to move the gradient or bitmap. To change the width or height of a bitmap fill, or the scale of a gradient fill, click and drag the square handle along the edge of the fill bounding box. To rotate the fill, click and drag the circle handle on the corner of the bounding box. To change the radius of a circular gradient fill, click and drag the middle circle handle on the bounding circle of the fill.
Ink Bottle tool:
The Ink Bottle tool allows you to change the stroke color, width, and style of lines and shape outlines. To use it select the stoke width, style, and color you want to apply in the Properties panel, and click on one or more lines or shapes on the stage to apply the stroke properties to them.
Paint Bucket tool:
The Paint Bucket tool allows you to fill enclosed areas with color. To use it, select the solid color or gradient you want to apply in the Properties panel, and click on one or more enclosed shapes on the stage to fill them with color. Note that under the Options section of the Tools panel, you can choose how you want Flash to handle partially enclosed areas.
The Eyedropper tool allows you to copy stroke and fill properties from one object to another. To use it, click on a stroke or fill of the object whose properties you want to copy. If you click on the fill, the Eyedropper tool automatically changes to the Paint Bucket tool, with fill properties set the same as the object you clicked on. If you click on the stroke, the Eyedropper tool automatically changes to the Ink Bottle tool, with stroke properties set the same as the object you clicked on. Now click on one or more objects on the stage to apply the stroke or fill properties.
The Eraser tool allows you to erase objects on the stage. To quickly erase everything on the stage, double click the Eraser tool icon on the Tools panel. Note that you can change erasing options in the Options section of the Tools panel.
The Hand tool is used for moving the view of the stage. It is especially useful when you have used the Zoom tool to magnify the stage. To use it, simply click and drag the stage in the direction you want it to move. To temporarily switch between another tool and the Hand tool, hold down the spacebar and click the Hand tool in the Tools panel. When done dragging, Flash will return to the tool you were using.
The Zoom tool is used for magnifying or reducing the view of the stage. To use it, click anywhere on the stage to zoom in by a factor of two. Alternatively, you can click and drag to zoom into a region of the stage. Hold down the ALT key while clicking to zoom out by a factor of two.
Drawing and view tools:
In addition to the drawing and view tools, the Tools panel allows you to modify the colors that are used to draw strokes and fills. The Stroke color is applied to lines and shape outlines. The Line, Pen, Oval, Rectangle, PolyStar, and Pencil tools all produce a stroke. The Fill color is applied to the interiors of shapes. The Pen (for closed paths), Oval, Rectangle, PolyStar and Brush tools all produce fills.
Practice using the various drawing tools on the stage and note the behavior of each tool that you use. Remember, you can quickly delete everything on the screen by double clicking the Eraser tool.
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