DrawPlus X8 User Guide
1. Welcome ............................................................................... 1
Welcome to DrawPlus ............................................................................. 2
New features ............................................................................................... 3
Installation ................................................................................................... 6
2. Getting Started ................................................................... 9
Startup Assistant .................................................................................... 10
Starting with a new drawing ............................................................. 13
Opening a drawing ............................................................................... 15
Saving your work ................................................................................... 17
Setting measurement units and drawing scale ......................... 18
Viewing pages ......................................................................................... 21
Adding and deleting pages ............................................................... 22
3. Lines, Curves, and Shapes .............................................23
Selecting one or more objects .......................................................... 24
Drawing lines and shapes ................................................................... 27
Drawing B-Spline curves ..................................................................... 32
Using QuickShapes ................................................................................ 37
Flooding areas ......................................................................................... 38
Editing lines and shapes ...................................................................... 42
Converting a shape to editable curves .......................................... 48
Adding dimension lines and labels ................................................. 49
Using the Gallery .................................................................................... 52
4. Using Brushes and Text.................................................. 55
Applying brush strokes ........................................................................ 56
Pressure sensitivity ................................................................................ 58
Entering text ............................................................................................ 60
Editing text ............................................................................................... 62
Fitting text to a path ............................................................................. 63
5. Working with Objects ..................................................... 65
Copying, pasting, cutting, and deleting objects ....................... 66
Resizing objects ...................................................................................... 67
Replicating an object ............................................................................ 69
Rotating and shearing objects .......................................................... 73
Joining objects ........................................................................................ 75
Creating contours .................................................................................. 78
Grouping objects ................................................................................... 80
Aligning and distributing objects .................................................... 81
Ordering objects .................................................................................... 82
Working with layers .............................................................................. 83
Cutting up objects ................................................................................. 87
Erasing and adding to objects .......................................................... 89
6. Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency ..................... 91
Setting fill properties ............................................................................ 92
Setting line properties ......................................................................... 97
Sampling colours ................................................................................. 101
Working with gradient fills ............................................................... 102
Working with bitmap and plasma fills ......................................... 105
Working with vector fills ................................................................... 106
Setting opacity ...................................................................................... 107
Using transparency effects ............................................................... 110
7. Pictures ............................................................................. 113
Importing pictures ............................................................................... 114
Using Cutout Studio ........................................................................... 115
Applying PhotoLab filters ................................................................. 118
Autotracing ............................................................................................ 121
8. Effects ................................................................................ 125
Using graphic styles ............................................................................ 126
Applying 2D filter effects .................................................................. 128
Applying 3D filter effects .................................................................. 129
Adding drop shadows ........................................................................ 131
Creating blends .................................................................................... 133
Using stencils ......................................................................................... 136
9. Stopframe/ Keyframe Animation ............................. 141
Getting started with animation ...................................................... 142
Working with Stopframe animation ............................................. 143
Working with Keyframe animation ............................................... 147
Exporting animations and presentations ................................... 151
10. Print, Publish and Share .............................................. 155
Interactive Print/PDF Preview ......................................................... 156
Printing basics ....................................................................................... 159
Publishing as PDF................................................................................. 161
Exporting objects and drawings .................................................... 163
Presentations with the Rostrum Camera .................................... 168
11. Additional Information ............................................... 175
Contacting Serif .................................................................................... 176
Credits ...................................................................................................... 177
12. Index .................................................................................. 179
Welcome to DrawPlus
Welcome to DrawPlus X8—the design and illustration solution from
Serif, packed with all the features expected of award-winning design
software. From decorative page elements and logos to full-page
illustrations, scale drawings, multi-page folded publications, and
Stopframe or Keyframe animations—DrawPlus X8 does it all. With the
power of scalable vector graphics at your command, you'll see the
creative possibilities open up right before your eyes! Whether you're a
beginner or an expert, you'll find easy-to-use tools you can use right
If you've upgraded from a previous version, this new edition of
DrawPlus includes a host of exciting new features which complement
DrawPlus's existing key features. We hope you also enjoy the additional
power and performance edge.
Don’t forget to register your new copy, using the Registration Wizard
on the Help menu. That way, we can keep you informed of new
developments and future upgrades!
New features
DrawPlus X8 (in 32 and 64-bit versions) introduces increased ease of
use, a host of new and improved features and tools—including one for
animating presentations, as well as photo and effect improvements, and
also enhanced importing and exporting options.
High DPI support
Windows display scaling is supported with automatic selection of
suitably sized, sharp-looking buttons, controls and menus, so for
very high-resolution displays, displays at a distance, or for those
with impaired vision, DrawPlus X8 will look better than ever.
Presentations with Rostrum Camera (see p. 168)
Show off your presentation, slideshow, or storyboard slide-byslide in an innovative and creative way using cool Rostrum
Camera panning, supporting slide transitions and progressive or
layer-by-layer reveals. Create from preset page layouts or base each
slide on drawn objects equally. Finally, export easily to Flash or
video using a range of presets.
B-Spline curves (see p. 32)
As an alternative to drawing Bézier curves with the Pen Tool, try
the B-Spline Tool. Using a polygon framework, curve creation is
made simpler without the complexity of node and control handle
manipulation. Convert from B-spline curves to Bézier curves if
Contours for cool tiered effects (see p. 78)
Shapes and text take on a stylish look with a multi-contour effect.
Copies of the original object are placed in front or behind the
original object; they incrementally scale and show with
decreasing/increasing greyscale levels. Contours can be
customized to control the number of contour steps and be placed
inside the object rather than outside.
New and improved filter effects (see p. 128)
Add a new Trail effect, add ripple effects to reflections, apply a
cutoff setting for feathering, a directional/gradient feather, and an
outline and contoured line texture for variable-intensity drop
Replicate (see p. 70)
The new Replicate Tool creates copies of selected objects directly
on the page in repeating columns and rows, with controllable interobject spacing. At any time, return to the replicated objects to add
more or fewer objects.
Flooding areas (see p. 38)
The Flood Tool is perfect for creating and colouring areas between
intersecting curves in your design as opposed to colouring an
object's line or fill. With this level of selective colouring, otherwise
restricted to objects, areas created by overlapping drawn curves or
by QuickShapes converted to curves can be coloured freely. These
coloured areas become closed shapes in their own right.
Vector pattern fills (see p. 106)
The Swatch tab provides a new Vector pattern fill category which
hosts an impressive selection of brick, tile, dot, screen, line and
hatched patterns that output as vectors. Each fill can be customized
with respect to scaling, spacing, rotation and recolouring. You can
even create custom fills from drawn shapes or imported Serif
Ease of Use
Feed-based Startup Assistant (see p. 10)
The new-look starting point for new drawings provides a wealth of
constantly updating cross-product news and DrawPlus-specific
learning resources (video tutorials, written tutorials, help, and
Tips & Tricks). The assistant keeps track of unread articles so you
won't miss a thing! An Open option also gives you access to all
your existing publications, based on document history.
Restore Last Session (see p. 16)
On DrawPlus restart, optionally enable this feature to
automatically reopen previously opened drawings (view settings
and current page display are preserved too!) and start from where
you finished your last session.
Smart sizing and rotating (see p. 68)
Multiple objects can be scaled or rotated proportionally with a
transformed selected object in your selection; individual objects
always retain their relative position on the page—great for charts
and plans! Shearing operations are also supported.
New photo editing tools and effects (see p. 118)
Vibrance, Split Tone, Tilt Shift, and Clarity are new PhotoLab
filters that add fantastic effects to enhance pictures. Now control
vignette positioning and sizing. Blend effects smoothly across an
area using gradient masks, and remove unwanted blemishes,
clutter or imperfections with a clone brush.
New scanning power (see DrawPlus Help)
As manufacturers have been very slow to introduce 64-bit scanning
software, DrawPlus has been updated to support 32-bit and any
newer 64-bit drivers, for both WIA and TWAIN driver types. Also
scan and place multiple images in one operation if your scanner
allows, without lifting the lid each time to swap pictures.
Installing DrawPlus follows different procedures depending on whether
you are installing from disc or via download.
You can install your new version alongside previous versions and
use them independently.
32 or 64-bit DrawPlus X8 installs to respective 32 or 64-bit
Installation procedure (from disc)
Insert your purchased disc into your disc drive.
If AutoPlay is enabled on the drive, this automatically starts the
Setup Wizard. Follow the on-screen instructions for install.
If AutoPlay is not enabled (or doesn't start the install
automatically), navigate to your program disc and double-click
Installation procedure (from download)
From serif.com, when logged into your Serif account, follow the
on-screen instructions to download.
System Requirements
Windows-based PC* with mouse or equivalent input device
Operating systems:
Windows® 8 (32 or 64 bit)
Windows® 7 (32 or 64 bit)
Windows® Vista (32 or 64 bit)
Windows® XP SP3 (32 bit)
PC Memory:
512MB RAM (Windows® XP)
1GB RAM (Windows® Vista and 32-bit Windows 7® and 8)
2GB RAM (For 64-bit Windows® 7 and 8)
Hard Drive Space:
665MB free hard disk space for physical media install (and a DVD
1GB free hard disk space for download install (additional space
required during installation)
Screen Resolution:
1024 x 768 monitor resolution (at 100% scaling)
1280 x 960 monitor resolution (at 125% scaling)
1536 x 1152 monitor resolution (at 150% scaling)
2048 x 1536 monitor resolution (at 200% scaling)
Internet account and connection for accessing online resources.
* Main processor must support SSE2 instructions. To enjoy the full
benefit of brushes and their textures, you must be using a computer
whose processor supports SSE (most modern computers do). On brush
selection, an on-screen message will indicate if your computer is nonSSE.
Additional disk resources and memory are required when editing large
or complex documents.
As above but:
Dual-processor PC technology
Windows-compatible printer
TWAIN-compatible scanner and/or digital camera
Pressure-sensitive pen tablet
Getting Started
Getting Started
Startup Assistant
Once DrawPlus has been installed, you're ready to start.
For Windows Vista/7: Setup adds a Serif DrawPlus X8 item to the
All Programs submenu of the Windows Start menu. Use the
Windows Start button to pop up the Start menu, click on All
Programs and then click Serif DrawPlus X8.
For Windows 8: The Setup routine during install adds a Serif
DrawPlus X8 entry to the desktop and also to the Start screen.
Double-click the DrawPlus icon from the desktop, or click the
DrawPlus tile on the Start screen.
On program launch, the Startup Assistant is displayed which offers
different routes into DrawPlus:
Getting Started
The options are described as follows:
The default home page provides access to
Serif promotions and tutorial articles to get
you started with DrawPlus.
View the DrawPlus Overview or click Go to
see the Quick Start video.
Provide document history, such as files you
have recently worked on including Restore
the Last Session which opens the most recent
drawing you created.
Browse your computer to access DrawPlus
files and picture files or create a design from
an existing PDF file.
Online videos and written tutorials, help, tips
& tricks, and more via an updating learn feed
that can be filtered by article Type.
The Product Help and your electronic
DrawPlus X8 user guide are also provided.
Create a New Drawing from scratch using a
simple setup.
Create a New Keyframe Animation.
Create a New Stopframe Animation.
Create a Custom drawing.
Getting Started
Create an instant drawing from a predesigned sample.
For cross-product news, company news,
articles, and product announcements, using
Serif's news feed.
Use the keyword Search box to filter specific
file names, learn articles, samples, news or
Any time you access the Startup Assistant, the Learn or News buttons
indicate the number of new articles to be viewed (if available). This
number will decrease as you read each article in the Learn or News pane.
When new articles arrive, these will be indicated the next time you open
the Startup Assistant.
Any new unread article arriving in the Learn or News pane will
display a "new" indicator in its thumbnail.
Once you've clicked on a new article the "new" indicator
changes to a "read" indicator.
To access the Startup Assistant when DrawPlus is already running,
choose Startup Assistant from the File menu.
Getting Started
Starting with a new drawing
The first time you launch DrawPlus, you'll see the Startup Assistant,
with a menu of choices.
The New Drawing option offers an easy way to create your new
drawing and lets you choose the initial setup for the particular type
of document you'll be producing.
DrawPlus offers a wide range of preset document types from several
Document types
Portrait or landscape in all the commonly
encountered page sizes.
Greeting cards, menus, and tri- or Z-fold
Slide presentations with Rostrum Camera.
Banners, posters
Getting Started
Labels, business cards, tags
ISO and ANSI layouts
To start a new drawing from scratch using the Startup
1. Start DrawPlus (or choose File>Startup Assistant if it’s already
2. Select New Drawing from the Startup Assistant.
3. Review document categories in the right-hand pane (and subcategories if applicable). Categories contain preset document types
(see above) or if you select Regular, you can choose from standard
document sizes presented in Portrait or Landscape sub-categories.
4. Select a document type thumbnail from a category in the right-hand
Getting Started
The new document opens.
To start a new drawing during your DrawPlus session:
New Blank Drawing on the Standard toolbar.
You can always adjust the page settings later via File>Page Setup.
To start with a new keyframe or stopframe animation, see Getting
started with animation on p. 142.
Opening a drawing
You can open an existing DrawPlus drawing from the Startup
Assistant, Standard toolbar or the File menu.
To open an existing document from the Startup
1. From the Startup Assistant, click Open. Recently opened files are
shown, such as today, last 7 days and Last 30 days.
2. Select a file to open it.
Getting Started
To open an existing document via toolbar or menu:
1. Click
Open on the Standard toolbar, or select File>Open.
2. In the Open dialog, navigate to, then select the file name and click
the Open button.
You can also open a range of file types including images, PDF
documents, and Adobe Illustrator files.
Once a drawing is opened in its own document window, the window
(and drawing) can be made currently active from a Document tab
(below) or via the Window menu.
Restore last session
Instead of launching the Startup Assistant, DrawPlus can restore your
last session. This option opens the file you most recently saved. You can
do this on an ad hoc basis when you open DrawPlus, or choose to always
restore the last session by default.
To restore your last session:
1. From the Startup Assistant, click Open.
2. Select Restore Last Session. The file opens.
Getting Started
To always restore the last session:
1. From the drawing's context toolbar, select
2. From the Options>General menu option, select Restore Last
Session on the On start up drop-down list.
3. Click OK.
When using this feature, remember to close the DrawPlus program
at the end of your session (as opposed to closing individual
drawings). To do this, click
at the very top-right of your
For other options to customize DrawPlus, see Setting program
options in DrawPlus Help.
Saving your work
DrawPlus saves its documents as .dpp (Drawing), .dpx (Template) or
.dpa (Animation) files (for Stopframe and Keyframe animation modes).
To save your work:
Save on the Standard toolbar.
- or To save the document under its current name, choose Save from
the File menu.
- or To save under a different name, choose Save As from the File
Getting Started
Setting measurement units and drawing
For precision drawing, you need techniques that allow you to position
and draw accurately without effort, that will also be of use at any scaled
size. Such techniques make use of rulers and guides for actual-size or
scaled drawings.
The rulers that surround the page allow you to measure the exact
position of an object.
Ruler units used by DrawPlus determine the units displayed on the
rulers and the reported units shown when positioning and scaling
objects (either around the object or on the Hintline). You can change
the ruler units without altering the document's dimensions. Unit
settings are saved with your DrawPlus drawing; as a result loading
different drawings, templates, etc. may change your working
measurement units.
To change the measurement unit:
Right-click on a ruler and select an alternative measurement unit.
Getting Started
Ruler Units are equivalent to Page Units unless you're working on a
scale drawing. For example, one ruler centimetre equals one
centimetre on the printed page.
Creating guides
If you want to position objects repeatedly on the same horizontal or
vertical boundary then guides can be used. DrawPlus lets you set up
horizontal and vertical guides—non-printing, red lines you can use to
align one object with another.
Guides can be created (and positioned) either by dragging from a ruler
or via the Guides Manager (right-click any ruler). Both methods let you
add guides to the current page, or, if creating a folded document, guides
across a page spread.
To show/hide guides:
To show or hide guides, check or uncheck Layout Tools>Guides
from the View menu.
Getting Started
Drawing scale
You can create scale drawings (such as a home/garden design or model
diagram) by setting a ratio other than 1:1 between page units and ruler
units. For example, you might wish to set one page centimetre
equivalent to 0.5 metre, a good scaling ratio for designing gardens of a
typical size.
Use Dimension tools (see p. 49) in conjunction with scale drawings
for on-the-page measurements, which automatically update as you
move objects.
To change the drawing scale:
Drawing Scale Options from the context toolbar (shown
1. Choose
with the Pointer Tool selected). Choose
2. Check the Scale Drawing box.
3. Use the input boxes to set the drawing scale as a proportion between
the Page Distance (in page units that define the document's actual
printing dimensions) and the Ruler Distance (in on-screen ruler
units that represent the "real world" objects you're depicting).
Getting Started
Viewing pages
Once you've got a page in view, you can use the scrollbars at the right
and bottom of the main window to move the page and pasteboard with
respect to the main window. As you drag objects to the edge of the
screen the scroll bars adjust automatically as the object is kept in view.
The Hintline toolbar at the bottom
of the screen displays the current
page number and provides a
number of controls to let you
navigate around your pages.
As an alternative, the Pages tab shows your pages as thumbnails, which
when selected, will display that page in your workspace.
To navigate pages:
Previous page,
Next page,
Last page on the Hintline toolbar.
First page or
To go to a specific page:
1. Display the Pages tab (docked at the bottom of your DrawPlus
workspace) by clicking the
2. Click on a thumbnail to jump directly to that page.
Getting Started
The Hintline toolbar also allows the user to view and/or edit the page at
different levels of detail. You can use the Zoom Tool, Pan Tool,
Current Zoom, Zoom Out/In (with slider), and Fit Page options.
If you're using a wheel mouse, you can scroll the wheel forward or back
to move up or down the page. Try combining the Ctrl key and scrolling
up or down for immediate in/out zoom control.
Adding and deleting pages
DrawPlus lets you add a page after the last page in your drawing. You
can also add one or more pages before or after a currently selected page;
you can also copy objects from a chosen page.
To add a new page:
From the last page of the current drawing, click the
Page button on the Hintline toolbar.
To delete one or more pages:
On Page Manager's Delete Page tab, specify the number of
pages to delete and the page after which pages should be
The document format (as determined in File>Page Setup) will
determine whether or not you can add or delete pages. For
example, Folded documents have a fixed number of pages.
Lines, Curves,
and Shapes
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Selecting one or more objects
Before you can change any object, you need to select it using one of
several tools available from the top of the Drawing toolbar.
Pointer Tool
Click the Pointer Tool to select, move, copy, resize, or rotate
objects. You can select and rotate an object around a centre of
Node Tool
Click to use the Node Tool to manipulate the shape of objects, or
move or copy objects.
To select an object:
Click on the object using one of the tools shown above. For the
Pointer Tool, small "handles" appear around the object
indicating selection.
For the Node Tool, editable nodes are displayed for lines—
sliding handles are additionally shown for adjustment of
QuickShapes and text. If objects overlap, use the Alt key while
clicking repeatedly until the desired item is selected.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
If an object won't select, it may be on another layer. Try clicking
Edit All Layers on the Layers tab to allow selections to be made on
any layer.
Selecting multiple objects
It is also possible to select more than one object, making a multiple
selection that you can manipulate as if it were one object, or turn into a
grouped object (p. 80).
To select more than one object (multiple selection):
1. Choose the Pointer Tool.
2. Click in a blank area of the page and drag a "marquee" box around
the objects you want to select.
Release the mouse button. All of the objects within the marquee box
are selected and one selection box, with handles, appears around the
objects. To deselect, click in a blank area of the page.
- or 3. Click on the first object for selection.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
4. Press the Shift key down then click on a second object.
5. Continue selecting other objects to build up your multiple selection.
Handles (or a bounding box, depending on the tool) appear around
the multiple selection.
To select all objects on the page:
Choose Select All from the Edit menu (or use Ctrl+A).
To add or remove an object from a multiple selection:
Hold down the Shift key and click the object to be added or
If you have one or more objects selected, you can select all other
unselected page objects instead; the originally selected objects become
To invert a selection:
From the Edit menu, select Invert Selection.
For very precise object selection, you can draw a lasso around an
object to select it (press the Alt Key down with the selection tool
enabled, then drag around the object ).
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Drawing lines and shapes
Lines can be either straight or curved, and can have properties like
colour and width (thickness). They can also adopt specific line styles,
ends, and caps.
If you're using a pen tablet or using simulated pressure sensitivity (with
DrawPlus's Pressure tab), you'll be able to draw realistic lines of varying
width and opacity using pressure sensitivity—just like drawing with real
pencils and pens.
To draw a freeform line:
1. Choose the
Pencil Tool from the Drawing toolbar.
2. Click once, then drag across the page, drawing a line as you go. The
line appears immediately and follows your mouse movements.
3. To end the line, release the mouse button. The line will
automatically smooth out using a minimal number of nodes.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Note the little squares indicating its nodes—at the two ends, and at
each point where two line segments come together.
4. (Optional) To set the degree of smoothing to be applied to the line
(and subsequent lines), set the Smoothness value on the context
toolbar above your workspace.
To draw a straight line:
From the Drawing toolbar's Line Tools flyout, click
the Straight Line Tool.
2. Click where you want the line to start, and drag to another point
while holding down the mouse button, then release the mouse
button. The straight line appears immediately.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Any kind of open line (that is, one that hasn’t been closed to create a
shape) can be extended, and you can use any of the three line tools to do
To extend a line:
1. Move the cursor over either of the end nodes, a small cursor will
appear. Click at that location.
2. The line that you drag out will be a continuation of the existing line,
as a new line segment.
To draw a curved line:
1. Choose the
Pen Tool from the Drawing toolbar's Pen Tools
From the displayed context toolbar, choose to create your
drawn segments in Smooth, Smart, or Line Segments creation Mode.
Smooth Segments: draws Bézier curves smoothly segment-bysegment, with manual on-curve and off-curve adjustment via
nodes and control handles, respectively.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Smart Segments (default): automatically determines slope and
depth for a rounded, best-fitting curve. No control handle
adjustment is normally necessary.
Line Segments: creates a zigzag line without curving through
See DrawPlus Help for an in-depth look at drawing lines in each of these
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Drawing shapes
When a line (or series of line segments) forms a complete, enclosed
outline, it becomes a new closed object called a shape. Because shapes
have an interior region that can be filled (for example, with a solid
colour, vector or a bitmap), they have fill properties as well as line
You can make a shape by closing a curve—extending a freeform line or a
segmented straight line back to its starting point. Shapes have an interior
which is filled with the current default fill (see Setting fill properties on
p. 92) when the shape is closed.
To close an existing curve (with a straight line):
1. Select the curve with the Node Tool, Pencil or Pen Tool.
2. Click
Close Curve on the context toolbar. A Straight segment
appears, closing the curve.
To close a curve (without new segment):
1. Select the curve with the Node Tool.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
2. Using the
node cursor, click on an end node and drag the curve
onto the other end node and release the mouse button to create a
If you're trying to draw an outline made up
of many independent curves (e.g., a cartoon
ear, rose, etc.) and you want to retain the fill
colour, you can fill each curve without
closing them. This is made easy by using
the Fill-on-Create feature.
To fill an unclosed curve automatically:
1. Select the Pencil Tool, Pen Tool, or Brush Tool.
2. Enable
Fill-on-Create from the context toolbar, and select a
suitable fill from the Colour tab. You'll also need to ensure Selecton-Create is enabled on the context toolbar (Freehand and Brush
tools only).
3. Draw a freeform line, pen line, or brush stroke into a curve. The
resulting curve is filled with the current fill colour.
Drawing B-Spline curves
The B-Spline Tool draws smooth curves when you create open or closed
shapes. B-spline, also known as Basis spline, uses a mathematical
formula. It is this calculation that produces really nice elegant curves.
When you use the B-Spline Tool, control points are connected together
as you draw and a polygon is constructed. The polygon controls the
position and direction and calculates the smoothest possible curve
between two points on the page.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
A - control point, B - control polygon, C - B-spline curve
When you still want nice curves and your object may need some flat
sections, you can clamp control points to create sharp corners and
straight lines. You can also convert B-Splines to Beziers for flexible
editing as you prefer. The B-Spline Tool is especially useful for tracing
curved objects such as a musical note to make perfect duplicates, or the
tear example shown.
Creating curves with the B-Spline Tool
To create an open curve:
1. Click arrow next to the
Pen Tool on the Drawing toolbar to
display the Line Tools flyout.
2. From the flyout, select the
B-Spline Tool.
3. Position your cursor on the page where you want to start drawing.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
4. Click once to add the first control point.
5. On the page, position the cursor at the next point.
A polygon line extends from the current point.
6. Click once to add a second point.
A straight B-spline curve is added to the page and follows the
polygon line.
To draw a sharp corner or a straight line, press the Alt key.
7. Position the cursor at the next point.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
The polygon line extends from the current point. The B-spline
curve created by the polygon displays.
8. Click to add another point and repeat for as many more as you
The control polygon extends and the B-spline curve updates as you
do this.
9. When you are finished with the curve, press the Esc key to cancel
the selection.
To create a closed shape:
1. With the B-Spline Tool selected, position your cursor on the page
and click to add the first control point as before.
2. Position the cursor at the next point and click again.
3. Position the cursor again in a place and click for each subsequent
point required.
4. To close the shape, position the cursor over the first control point
and click once followed by Esc.
Creating sharp corners or straight lines
You can create sharp corners or straight lines by clamping control
points of your B-spline curve to the control polygon. If you clamp one
Lines, Curves and Shapes
control point, you will get a sharp corner but not a straight line or a
curve. If you clamp two adjacent control points, you'll get a perfect
straight line between them. You can hold the Shift key if you want to
select and clamp multiple control points concurrently.
To use clamping:
With the curve or shape selected, on the Drawing toolbar, select
the B-Spline Tool.
2. Select the control points you require.
Clamp Curve to clamp, or
3. On the context toolbar, click
Unclamp Curve to unclamp any control points.
Editing B-splines
You can edit your B-spline curve by manipulating its control points in a
similar way that you would when moving nodes around after having
drawn a line or a shape with the Pen or Pencil Tool.
To edit a B-spline:
With the curve or shape selected, on the Drawing toolbar, select
the B-Spline Tool.
2. Select a control point.
3. Drag the control point into a new position. The control polygon
gives you a preview of how the curve will change as you drag.
Other editing options available are creating sharp corners or straight
lines within your shape or curve, and also converting a B-spline to a
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Using QuickShapes
QuickShapes are pre-designed objects that you can instantly add to your
page, then adjust and morph into a variety of further QuickShapes.
QuickShapes are added from a flyout containing a wide variety of
commonly used shapes, including boxes, arrows, hearts, spirals and
other useful symbols.
Morphing to new shapes can be carried out after you add the
QuickShape to the page (or as you add by double-clicking on the page).
To create a QuickShape:
1. Click the down arrow on the
QuickShape button on the
Drawing toolbar, then select a shape from the flyout.
The button takes on the icon of the shape you selected.
2. At your chosen cursor position, click and drag on the page to draw
out your QuickShape to a chosen size (use the Shift key to lock the
aspect ratio; the Ctrl key to scale from its centre point; or both
New QuickShapes adopt the currently set line and fill in DrawPlus.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Ctrl-double-click to place a default-sized QuickShape on the page.
To adjust the appearance of a QuickShape:
1. With the
Node Tool (Drawing toolbar) selected, click on the
QuickShape to reveal sliding handles around the shape. These are
distinct from the "inner" selection handles. Different QuickShapes
have different handles.
2. Drag any handle to change the appearance of the QuickShape.
For example, by dragging the top sliding handle to the right of the shape
below will produce a different shape variant:
Flooding areas
The Flood Tool lets you quickly flood areas with colour. The Tool will
look for any edges that are visual boundaries in your drawing. It then
creates a shape which floods the area between the edges. This gives you
the option of easily flooding closed sections of an object's areas.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
The noughts and crosses example was flooded with colour using the
Flood Tool. The tool flooded the noughts, crosses, squares and border
objects even though they were separate items. You could also easily
flood any traces that you have done with the Pen Tool.
Areas are flooded by pixels and the shapes you create then become
editable like any other object you might want to transform.
Specifying flood settings
There are some settings that accompany the Flood Tool which can be
specified before or after you have flooded.
To specify flood settings:
1. On the Drawing toolbar, click the arrow next to the
Paint Tool.
This will display the Vector Edit Tools flyout.
2. From the flyout, select the
Flood Tool.
3. On the Context toolbar, specify the settings shown below.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
If you don't want to bother with these settings and you just want to
start flooding, see To flood an area on p. 40.
• Tolerance: This defines the difference from the starting pixel
where the boundary will be drawn. Any pixel which is less than
the tolerance in difference to the starting pixel, and is
connected to the starting pixel by other similar pixels will be
filled. Any connected pixel which is more different than the
tolerance will be considered a boundary and will not be filled.
• Feature Size: This controls the accuracy of the flood. A smaller
value ensures an accurately shaped flood.
• Inflate / Deflate: The created flood will be resized based on this
value. Inflate (positive values) can be used to ensure there are
no gaps. Deflate (negative values) can be used for artistic effect.
• Apply Line Style: Automatically apply the line style to the
created flood using the style currently set in the Line tab.
• Select-on-Create: Upon flooding, the flood object is
automatically selected for editing.
Flooding an area
Once you have applied the optional flood settings, you can start
flooding. Based on the settings, DrawPlus will flood the visual boundary
of an area with a colour or fill specified in the
Fill swatch.
To flood an area:
1. On the Drawing toolbar, click the arrow next to the
Paint Tool. This will display the Vector Edit Tools flyout.
2. From the flyout, select the
Flood Tool.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
3. On the Colour tab, pick a colour for the
Fill/Line Swatch.
You can also apply preset solid colours or transparency effects.
4. Select a visual area and left-click it.
5. Repeat as necessary for any additional colours you want. If you have
Select-on-Create enabled, you'll need to select the select the Flood
Tool again.
6. If Select-on-Create is enabled, once the flood has been created, use
the Clean Curves option on the Context toolbar to remove
unnecessary nodes and smoothen the edges of your shape.
Editing flood shapes
Once you have finished flooding, you can edit flood shapes by using the
Pointer Tool to select, move and resize them.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
To edit a flooded shape:
1. On the Drawing toolbar, select the
Pointer Tool.
2. Click and drag an individual flooded shape or the original object
away from other objects.
3. Apply any modifications as needed.
Editing lines and shapes
To edit lines or shapes, you can manipulate their segments, on-curve
nodes, and off-curve control handles allowing you to:
Redraw part of a line
Reshape a line
Simplify a line (remove nodes)
Enhance a line (add nodes)
Change the type of node or line segment
The procedures below relate to lines drawn with the Pencil Tool, but
also to curves drawn with the Pen Tool. For simplicity, we'll only use
the term line.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Redrawing part of a line
With the Pencil Tool, it's easy to redraw any portion of a line.
To redraw part of a selected line:
Pencil Tool. Hover the displayed
1. Select the line, then the
cursor on the line where you want to begin redrawing. The cursor
changes to indicate you can begin drawing.
2. Double-click on the line. A new node appears.
3. Keep the mouse button down and drag to draw a new line section,
connecting it back to another point on the original line. Again, the
cursor changes to include a curve when you’re close enough to the
line to make a connection. When you release the mouse button, the
original portion is replaced by the newly drawn portion.
Reshaping a line
The main tool for editing lines and shapes is the Node Tool. You can
drag segments or select one or more nodes on the object, then use the
buttons on the tool's supporting context toolbar to adjust.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
To reshape a curved line:
1. Click the
Node Tool on the Drawing toolbar.
2. Select any line on your page. The line’s on-curve nodes appear, and
the context toolbar also pops up.
3. Hover over a segment and drag the segment to form a new curve
-orSelect nodes and drag. Selection can be by one of the following
Hover over a single
node and click to
select the node.
Shift-click for
multiple nodes.
Drag out a
marquee to select
Drag out a lasso
(with Alt key pressed)
to select multiple
nodes otherwise
difficult to select via a
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Once a square end node or interior node is
selected, the node becomes highlighted and offcurve rounded control handles for all line
segment(s) will appear. A single control handle
shows on an end node; a pair of handles will show
on a selected interior node.
Remember that a segment is the line between two
nodes; each node provides two control handles,
with each handle controlling different adjoining
segments. One control handle in a segment works
in conjunction with the control handle on the
opposite end of the segment.
(A) Line Segment 1, (B) Line Segment 2
4. Drag any selected node to reshape adjacent segment(s).
5. Drag one or more control handles to produce very precise changes
in the curvature of the line on either side of a node. You can shorten
or lengthen the handles, which changes the depth of the curve (that
is, how far out the curve extends), or alter the handle angle, which
changes the curve’s slope.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Simplifying or enhancing a line
The more nodes there are on a line or shape, the more control over its
shape you have. The fewer nodes there are, the simpler (smoother) the
line or shape.
To adjust the smoothness of the most recent pencil line:
1. Choose the
Pencil Tool and draw a freeform line.
2. From the context toolbar, click the right arrow on the Smoothness
option and drag the displayed slider left to increase the number of
3. To make the curve less complex, i.e. smoother, drag the slider right
to decrease the number of nodes.
To add or delete a node:
To add a node, click along a line segment with the Node Tool
or Pen Tool to add a new node at that point. The new node will
be created and will be selected.
To delete a node, select the line with the Node Tool then
the node itself and click the Delete Node button on the context
toolbar (or press the Delete key). The node will be deleted, and
the line or shape will jump to its new shape. With the Pen Tool
selected, you can also delete a node by clicking on it.
You can also use the Node Tool to reposition the nodes, and reshape the
line or shape, by dragging on the new handles.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Changing nodes and line segments
Each segment in a line has a control handle at either end, so at each
interior or "corner" node (where two segments join) you'll see a pair of
handles. The behaviour of these handles—and thus the curvature of the
segments to either side—depends on whether the node is set to be sharp,
smooth, symmetric, or smart. You can quickly identify a node's type by
selecting it and seeing which button is selected in the displayed context
toolbar. Each type's control handles behave differently as described
To change one or more nodes to a different type:
1. Select the object with the Node Tool, followed by the node(s) you
want to change.
2. Click one of the node buttons on the displayed context toolbar.
A Sharp Corner means that the line segments to either
side of the node are completely independent so that the corner
can be quite pointed.
A Smooth Corner uses Bézier curves, which means that
the slope of the line is the same on both sides of the node, but
the depth of the two joined segments can be different.
At a Symmetric Corner, nodes join line segments with the
same slope and depth on both sides of the node.
Smart Corner nodes automatically determine slope and
depth for a rounded, best-fitting curve. If you attempt to adjust
a smart corner's handles, it becomes a smooth corner. You can
always reset the node to smart—but to maintain smart nodes,
be careful what you click on!
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Converting a shape to editable curves
The conversion of QuickShapes to curves provides you with a starting
point for your own shapes (below), whereas converting text to curves is
one way of incorporating editable letter-based shapes into designs.
Converting an object into curves cannot be reversed later on!
To convert an object into curves:
1. Select your QuickShape or text object.
2. Click
Convert to Curves on the Arrange tab.
Node Tool enabled (Drawing toolbar), edit the curve
With the
outline by dragging selected nodes.
The conversion process loses all of the special properties inherent in
QuickShapes and text.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Adding dimension lines and labels
DrawPlus lets you add dimension lines with text labels showing the
distance between two fixed points in a drawing, or the angle formed by
three points. For example, you can draw a dimension line along one side
of a box, measuring the distance between the two corner points. If you
resize the box, the line automatically follows suit, and its label text
updates to reflect the new measurement.
You’ll find dimension lines indispensable for planning garden designs
(e.g., a garden gazebo plan), technical diagrams, floor plans, or any
drawing where exact measurements and scale are important.
Although they can be drawn anywhere on the page, dimension lines are
at their most accurate when attached to connection points on objects or
when snapped to dynamic guides (see DrawPlus Help).
Lines, Curves and Shapes
To draw a dimension:
From the Drawing toolbar’s Connector Tool flyout, select
the Dimension Tool. (The flyout shows the icon of the most recently
selected tool.)
2. Either, for a linear dimension, click the respective tool from the
Dimension context toolbar:
Auto Dimension Line Tool.
Use to draw vertical, horizontal, or diagonal dimension lines in
any direction, with automatic placement of the editable
dimension label adjacent to the line.
Click where you want to start the dimension line (e.g., on a
connection point), then drag and release the mouse button
where you want to end the line (maybe on another connection
point). The illustrations below show the result of dragging
between connection points on two Quick Squares with the
Auto Dimension Line Tool enabled.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Vertical Dimension Line Tool.
Ideal for vertical dimension lines, the label information is
always presented vertically with the option to move the label by
dragging. Extension lines are used to present the dimension
line vertically and to allow for an optional offset.
Horizontal Dimension Line Tool.
As above but for horizontal dimension lines.
Slanted Dimension Line Tool.
Designed specifically for drawing diagonal dimension lines.
- or -
For an angular dimension, click the
Angular Dimension
Line Tool then click and drag from a corner node towards the
angle you want to measure (A). Release the mouse button over
the "target" angle, then move your mouse cursor to the next
corner node, then click on that node (B) to set the angle to be
To complete the dimension line, move the mouse again to
position the floating line and its label—note that they respond
independently—and click when they are where you want them
(C). (You can always change the positions later.) The dimension
line appears.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
We've used a triangle as an example above and made use of the
nodes that show by default. However, DrawPlus will allow you to
add dimension lines between separate objects, and define your
target angle from any point on the object or page.
Instead of displaying an inner angle, drag the dimension line and
label to the outer angle to display its obtuse equivalent.
Press the Esc key while drawing your dimension line to cancel the
Adjusting dimension lines
For all dimension tools, a pair of parallel blue extension lines with blue
end nodes appears on the dimension line, along with a node on the label
box. Between the two extension lines, the dimension line and its label
can "float" by moving the blue nodes.
Using the Gallery
The Studio's Gallery tab
contains pre-built design
objects and elements you'd like
to reuse in different drawings.
You can choose designs stored
under Clipart (like Animals),
Home, Office, School,
ShapeArt, and Web folders.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
The Gallery tab also lets you store your own designs in a My Designs
section if you would like to reuse them—the design is made available in
any DrawPlus drawing.
To view your Gallery:
Click the Studio's Gallery tab.
Select a folder or category from the drop-down list. The items
from the folder's first listed category are displayed by default.
To use a design from the Gallery:
Drag any preset design directly onto the page. You can modify,
then drag the design back into your own custom category.
To copy an object into the Gallery:
1. Display the Gallery tab's My Designs (or sub-category of that)
where you want to store the object.
2. Drag the object from the page and drop it onto the gallery.
3. You'll be prompted to type a name for the design. (You can name or
rename the design later, if you wish.) By default, designs are labelled
as "Untitled."
4. A thumbnail of the design appears in the gallery, labelled with its
To delete or rename a custom design:
Right-click its gallery thumbnail and choose Delete Design or
Rename Design from the submenu.
Lines, Curves and Shapes
Using Brushes
and Text
Using Brushes and Text
Applying brush strokes
Brush Tool is used exclusively to apply
brush strokes to the page. The tool is used in
conjunction with the Brushes tab, and a
supporting context toolbar.
To apply a brush stroke:
1. Select the
Brush Tool from the Drawing toolbar.
2. Display the Brushes tab and choose a category from the drop-down list,
then a brush.
Using Brushes and Text
3. Select a Line Colour, Width, or Opacity from the context toolbar.
4. With the
brush cursor, drag across your page to create a brush
Photo brushes, available from the Brushes tab (Photo category), can
be recoloured just as any other brush type.
You can also apply a brush stroke around an object's outline
(shape, artistic text, picture, etc.) via Brush Stroke on the Line tab.
See Setting line properties on p. 97.
Setting brush defaults
See Updating defaults in DrawPlus Help.
Editing brush strokes
It's possible to alter any previously drawn brush stroke with respect to its
properties, brush type, and shape. The Pointer Tool or Node Tool can
be used to select the brush stroke, which will then allow it to be edited.
To change brush stroke properties:
With the brush stroke selected, use the context toolbar to adjust the
properties of a brush stroke once it has been drawn on the page.
Using Brushes and Text
To change brush stroke type:
1. Select the brush stroke.
2. Go to the Brushes tab and select firstly a brush category, then a
brush type from the displayed gallery. The brush stroke adopts the
newly chosen brush.
Brush types currently applied to your brush strokes are handily
listed in the Document folder of the Brushes tab.
To change the shape of your brush stroke:
A brush stroke possesses very similar characteristics to a plain line.
Any brush stroke can therefore be edited, extended, or redrawn with the
Node Tool (Drawing toolbar) just as for a straight or curved line (see
Editing lines and shapes on p. 42). Use for fine-tuning your brush
strokes after application.
Pressure sensitivity
Via a Pen Tablet
Your pen tablet and DrawPlus work in perfect harmony for a truly
authentic drawing and painting experience, with in-built pressure
sensitivity as you draw and paint. See DrawPlus Help for more
Using Brushes and Text
Via the Pressure Tab
If a pen tablet is unavailable to you, DrawPlus can simulate pressure
sensitivity when using your mouse (along with DrawPlus’s Pressure tab).
This tab is used to set pressure sensitivity globally by using a pressure
To apply a pressure profile:
1. Expand the Pressure tab at the bottom right of your screen, and
choose a pressure profile from the drop-down list.
The pressure chart updates to reflect the chosen profile.
2. Apply a brush stroke or draw a line on the page. This will adopt the
chosen pressure profile.
The profile is maintained until you reset it or pick another profile from
the preset list. As well as using the preset profiles you can also create
your own custom profile. (See DrawPlus Help for more details.)
Using Brushes and Text
Entering text
You can create different types of text in DrawPlus, i.e. Artistic Text,
Frame Text, or Shape Text, all directly on the page.
Artistic Text
Frame Text
Shape Text
It's easy to edit the text once it's created, by retyping it or altering
properties like font, style, and point size.
In general, artistic text (as an independent object) is better suited to
decorative or fancy typographic design, frame text is intended for
presenting text passages in more traditional square or rectangular
shaped blocks; shape text lends itself so well to blocks of body text where
shape and flow contribute to the overall layout.
To enter new artistic text: :
1. Select
Artistic Text Tool on the Drawing toolbar's
2. To create artistic text at the current default point size, click where
you want to start the text.
- or -
For artistic text that will be automatically sized into an area, click
and drag out the area to the desired size.
Using Brushes and Text
3. To set text attributes (font, size, etc.) before you start typing, make
selections on the Text context toolbar. For colour, set the Line/Fill
swatches on the Studio's Colour or Swatch tab.
4. Start typing.
To create frame text: :
1. Select
Frame Text Tool on the Drawing toolbar's
2. From the positioned cursor, either:
Double-click on the page to create a new frame at a default size.
- or Drag out a frame to your desired frame dimension.
3. (Optional) Set text and colour attributes as for artistic text before
you start typing.
4. Start typing within the frame.
To enter new shape text:
1. Create a QuickShape either from the Drawing toolbar's QuickShape
flyout or by closing a drawn line.
2. With a shape still selected, select
and just start typing.
Artistic Text (Drawing toolbar)
For existing shapes without shape text, select the shape, then the Artistic
Text Tool, then begin typing.
Using Brushes and Text
Editing text
Once you've entered either artistic, frame or shape text (see Entering
text on p. 60), you can retype it and/or format its character attributes
(font, point size, bold/italic/underline, subscript/superscript, OpenType
font features, etc.), paragraph properties, and text flow.
For a gradient or bitmap fill, use the Studio's Swatch tab. See p. 102 or
p. 105, respectively.
Similarly, opacity is applied from the Colour tab (see p. 107); gradient
and bitmap transparency from the Transparency tab.
Retyping text
You can either retype artistic, frame or shape text directly on the page,
or use the Edit Text window—great for managing large amounts of text
(overflowed shape text or otherwise) in a simple word processing
To retype text on the page:
From the Drawing toolbar's Text flyout, select Artistic
Text, then click on the text.
2. Type new text at the selection point or drag to select text, then type
to replace it. To cut, copy, and paste, use the toolbar buttons or
standard Windows keyboard shortcuts.
Using Brushes and Text
To create a new line:
At the position you want to start a new line, press the Enter key.
Formatting text
You can change text formatting (character, paragraph,
bullets/numbering and text flow properties) directly on the page via the
Text context toolbar or via a Text Style dialog.
To format selected text on the page:
1. Use the
Pointer Tool to select the text you want to change.
Alternatively, drag select on any text with
Drawing toolbar's Text flyout).
Artistic Text (from the
2. Use the Text context toolbar to change text properties (font, point
size, bold/italic/underline, subscript/superscript, OpenType font
features, text alignment, bullets and numbering, levels, and text
For greater control over the shape of the artistic text characters, try
converting the artistic text to curves. For details, see Converting a
shape to editable curves on p. 48.
Fitting text to a path
DrawPlus allows you to make artistic text conform to a curved baseline
(such as a drawn freeform line or curve), custom shape or a preset shape
Using Brushes and Text
To fit text to a path:
1. Select the curve or shape.
2. Select
Artistic Text on the Drawing toolbar's Text flyout.
3. Hover over the curve or shape's outline until you see a
then click at the point on the line where your text is to begin.
4. Begin typing your text. The text will be placed along the curve or
To flow text along a preset path:
1. Select your artistic text.
From the context toolbar, click the down arrow on the Preset
Text Paths button and select a preset curve from the drop-down list
on which the text will flows.
Working with
66 Working with Objects
Copying, pasting, cutting, and deleting
To copy one or more objects to the Windows Clipboard:
1. Select the object(s).
2. Click the
Copy button on the Standard toolbar.
If you're using another Windows application, you can usually copy and
paste objects via the Clipboard.
To paste an object from the Clipboard:
Click the
Paste button on the Standard toolbar.
The standard Paste command inserts a clipboard object onto the page.
To select the type of object to be pasted from the Clipboard, choose
Paste Special from the Edit menu.
To cut one or more objects to the Clipboard:
1. Select the object(s).
2. Click the
Cut button on the Standard toolbar.
The object is deleted from the page and a copy is placed on the Windows
To delete one or more objects:
Select the object(s) with the Pointer or Node Tool and press the
Delete key.
Working with Objects
Resizing objects
DrawPlus offers a range of resizing options directly on the object. Most
objects in DrawPlus maintain their aspect ratio when being resized. One
exception is when resizing QuickShapes, as their versatility lend
themselves to being resized without constraint.
To resize an object to a fixed aspect ratio:
1. Select the object(s) with the
Pointer Tool.
2. Position the cursor over one of the object’s handles—you will notice
that the cursor changes to a double-headed Size cursor.
3. Drag from a corner handle (above) to resize in two dimensions (by
moving two edges), while maintaining the selection's aspect ratio
To resize to any aspect ratio, with the Shift key depressed, drag
from an object's corner handle. This resizes in two directions. If you
drag an object’s side handles, you’ll stretch or squash the object in
one direction.
68 Working with Objects
To resize QuickShapes:
As above but the object's aspect ratio is not maintained by
default on resize.
You can use the Shift key as you resize to maintain aspect ratio.
Smart Sizing
The Smart Sizing feature lets you resize multiple objects simultaneously
while their relative positions remain unchanged. This is really beneficial
when you're manipulating flow and organizational charts as well as
other kinds of diagrams, as chart components can be resized without
compromising your overall layout.
As an example, you could make all of the objects in your flowchart all
slightly bigger or smaller by the same amount whilst each component
maintains its current position relative to its own resizing. You can also
rotate or shear in smart sizing mode too.
Working with Objects
In smart sizing mode Scaling is performed in relation to a selected
object within a multiple selection. Objects are rotated together but
around their own individual centre points.
To use Smart Sizing on objects:
1. Select multiple objects for smart resizing. See Selecting one or more
objects on p. 24.
2. Choose
Smart Sizing from the context toolbar (or hold down
the Alt key). You'll notice DrawPlus will pick a particular object for
smart sizing, but you can change it.
3. Select another object in the bounding box as required.
4. Resize, rotate or shear using the selected object's nodes within your
bounding box to apply the changes to it. All objects will be changed
using the same proportions from the object you manipulated.
Use the Ctrl key to resize objects from their centre point.
Replicating an object
DrawPlus lets you replicate objects. The copy is displayed at the new
location and the original object is still kept at the same position—your
new copy also possesses the formatting of the original copied object.
Multiple copies of an individual object can be made by replication or
For best results, ensure you rotate your object before you duplicate
or replicate it using any of the techniques described below!
70 Working with Objects
Making a duplicate
You can easily duplicate an object to
make another copy using drag-anddrop.
To make a duplicate:
1. Select the object, then hold down the Ctrl key.
2. Drag the object via the
Move button to a new location on the
page, then release the mouse button.
Use duplication when rotating or shearing an object—the result is
a new copy at a new angle, possibly overlapping the original object.
Making multiple copies using The Replicate Tool
You can replicate a
single object and easily
control the amount of
copies you make.
A single star and a stripe were used to replicate the spacing and
design of this flag example.
When you select the Replicate tool, it is always started in Replicate
Working with Objects
The Replicate Tool works in two modes. Replicate mode copies an
object and reproduces it with the amount of columns and rows you
need. Spacing mode adjusts the vertical and horizontal distance between
the shapes you have replicated from your original object.
To replicate an object:
1. Select an object. Remember to size the object to be replicated and
place it in a convenient starting position—usually the top-left of the
2. On the Drawing toolbar, select the
Replicate Tool.
3. If you need to, rotate the boundary box to set the direction in which
duplicates of your selection will be made.
4. Drag a corner handle on the boundary box to start replicating
To space the replicated objects:
1. Ensure that the replicated objects are selected and grouped.
2. Select the Replicate Tool.
3. On the object toolbar of the replicated objects, select
4. The tool is switched from Replicate to Spacing mode.
5. To edit the spacing between replicated objects, drag one of the
group's bounding box corner handles.
To add or remove objects:
1. Select the Replicate Tool and click the group.
2. To switch to Replicate mode, on the object toolbar, select
72 Working with Objects
3. Drag one of the group's boundary box handles either making the
boundary area smaller to reduce the amount of replicated objects, or
larger to increase them.
You can also adjust the numbers of columns and rows using the
Context toolbar and apply accurate numerical settings to spacing.
To delete individual replicated objects:
1. On the Drawing toolbar, select the
Pointer Tool.
2. Click to select the replicated group.
3. On the object toolbar, select
4. Click to select individual objects and press Delete.
5. Select the objects you want to keep and, on the object toolbar, select
Applying a transform
The Transform feature lets
you make multiple copies of
one or more selected objects,
with a transformation
applied to each successive
copy in the series.
For example, a butterfly can
be made to fly with a
transform of 15° rotation,
113% scaling, 4 copies, and
an X offset of 1.5cm.
Working with Objects
To create a transform:
1. Select an object then choose Transform from the Tools menu.
2. From the dialog, specify the type of transformation (rotation and/or
scaling), the number of copies, and a positional offset between
Rotating and shearing objects
The Pointer Tool lets you both rotate and shear (slant) one or more
To rotate one or more objects around a centre point:
1. Click
Pointer Tool on the Drawing toolbar.
2. Click to select the object, then hover over the Rotation Handle
and when you see the cursor change, drag in the direction in which
you want to rotate the object then release the mouse. (Use Shift key
for rotating in 15 degree intervals.)
You can also use the corner handles
bounding box to rotate the object.
around the edges of the
74 Working with Objects
When rotating objects, dimensions will be temporarily displayed
during the operation.
To change the centre point of rotation:
1. Move the centre of rotation away from its original position to any
position on the page. The marker can also be moved to be outside
the object—ideal for rotating grouped objects around a central
2. Drag the rotate pointer to a new rotation angle—the object will
rotate about the new pivot.
To rotate selected object by set degrees:
Rotate Left 90° on the
For 90° anti-clockwise: click
Standard toolbar.
For 30°, 45°, 60°, and 90° options left and right, as well
as 180°: click the down arrow on the Arrange tab's Rotate
button and select a value. Once set, clicking the button will
rotate the object by the chosen value incrementally.
Besides being able to rotate an object, the Pointer Tool allows you to
skew or “shear” it.
To shear or copy shear an object: :
1. Select
Pointer Tool on the Drawing toolbar.
2. Click to select the object(s), hover over any side handle (not a
corner handle) until you see the Shear cursor.
3. Hold the mouse button down and drag the pointer in the direction in
which you want to shear the object, then release.
Working with Objects
To copy-shear, use the Ctrl key while dragging—this preserves the
original object, while shearing the new copied object as you drag.
To undo the rotation or shear (restore the original
Double-click the object with the Shear cursor active.
Joining objects
Objects you create on the page can be just the starting point in your
design. For drawn shapes and ready-to-go QuickShapes, it is possible to
treat these objects as "building blocks" in the creation of more complex
The Shape Builder Tool can be used to join together any collection of
shapes in a fun and intuitive way, without the need for prior selection of
76 Working with Objects
To add shapes together:
1. Select the
Shape Builder Tool on the Drawing toolbar.
2. Hover over a shape that overlaps another shape. You'll see a
cursor shown on hover over, above a shaded area (to indicate the
active region).
3. Drag to the neighbouring shape, using the drawn out dashed line as
a guide, then release the mouse button.
As well as adding objects together, DrawPlus lets you take away (or
subtract) intersecting areas of overlapping shapes.
To subtract intersecting areas:
1. Select the
Shape Builder Tool on the Drawing toolbar.
2. Hover over any intersecting area, then Alt-click to remove it. You'll
see a
cursor on hover over.
Working with Objects
To create new shapes from overlapped shapes: :
1. Select the
Shape Builder Tool on the Drawing toolbar.
2. Click once in the chosen area, then select with the
Tool (Drawing toolbar). You can then drag the new shape to a new
Using the Arrange tab
Instead of using the Shape Builder Tool, you have the
option of using the selection-based Combine tool or "Join" tools such as
Add, Subtract, and Intersect using the Arrange tab. See DrawPlus Help
for more information.
78 Working with Objects
Creating contours
Create Contour lets you reproduce an object with border or perspective
effects by creating outlines around text, or by creating a second object to
blend with the first. Copies of the original object are 'tiered' that increase
or decrease in size with increasing or decreasing levels of greyscale.
These are progressively placed behind or in front of the object, outside
and inside respectively.
For an example contour, please see DrawPlus Help.
To create a contour:
1. Select an object and from the Tools menu, select Create Contour. The
dialog appears.
2. From Difference, select one of the following:
• Small, Medium or Large.
• Percentage.
• Exact measure.
Working with Objects
3. Select the Number of steps to control the amount of concentric
contour objects reproduced. The steps will be evenly spread
between the original object and the outermost or innermost contour
as specified.
4. From Alignment, select Outside or Inside to create a contour
outside the original object or inside it.
5. Select a Join setting to determine the corner style used where two
lines intersect:
• Bevelled to set flat corners on the reproduced contours.
• Round to set rounded corners on the reproduced contours.
• Sharp to set sharp or flat corners on the reproduced contours,
depending on the Mitre Limit setting (below).
6. Set a Mitre Limit to indicate how far (number of line widths)
DrawPlus extends each line at the junction. If the two outer edges
meet within that limit, the result is a sharp corner. if not, you'll get a
flat corner!
7. Click OK.
Now you can individually select the resulting objects or the original
one using the Pointer tool and perform standard DrawPlus tasks,
such as moving and colouring. Or can you select all or some objects
for grouping.
80 Working with Objects
Grouping objects
The advantage of
converting a set of objects
into a group is that it is
easier to select and edit the
objects all at the same time.
The only requirement for
grouping is that multiple
objects are selected in
advance (see p. 24).
To create a group from a multiple selection:
Click Group
below the selection.
To ungroup (turn a group back into a multiple
Click Ungroup
below the selection.
Objects within groups can be selected with Ctrl-click and edited
without having to ungroup your grouped objects.
Working with Objects
Aligning and distributing objects
Alignment involves taking a group of selected objects and aligning or
distributing them, or both—the operation is applied to all of the objects
To align two or more objects:
1. Using the Pointer Tool, Shift-click on all the objects you want to
align, or draw a marquee box around them (or use Edit>Select All),
to create a multiple selection.
2. From the context toolbar, Align tab, or Arrange>Align Objects,
select an option for vertical alignment (Align Top, Centre
Vertically, or Align Bottom) or horizontal alignment (Align Left,
Centre Horizontally, Align Right) of an object. Object means the
last selected object for a Shift-click multiple selection or the
topmost object in Z-order for a marquee multiple selection.
To distribute objects:
1. Using the Pointer Tool, Shift-click on all the objects you want to
distribute, or draw a marquee box around them, to create a multiple
2. Display the Align tab.
82 Working with Objects
3. From the tab, check the Spaced option and enter a value in the
input box to set distribute objects between a fixed distance.
- or Check Include Page to distribute objects relative to the page edges,
instead of between endmost objects.
- or Check both Spaced and Include Page to distribute objects between
a fixed distance relative to the page edges.
4. Select
Distribute Horizontally or
Distribute Vertically to
distribute objects vertically or horizontally, respectively.
Ordering objects
Think of the objects on a page as being stacked or piled on top of each
other. The front-most object is the one on top of the stack. Each time
you create a new object, it goes in front of the objects already there. But
you can move any object to any depth in the ordering sequence, and
obtain sophisticated drawing effects by learning how to manipulate the
front/back relationship of objects.
As an example, we've used a camera lens to illustrate ordering.
Notice how the lens possesses a
"realistic" look by blending overlapped
composite objects.
Gradient and solid fills combine to
simulate three-dimensional objects
(with reflections, highlights and
Working with Objects
To change the selected object's order (dynamically via
From the Arrange tab, drag the Depth slider left to place the object
further down the object order (within its layer); drag right to place
object further up the order. Ordering occurs as you drag.
To change the selected object's order (via ordering
To shift the selected object's position to the front of other
objects (on top), choose Bring to Front on the Standard toolbar
(or Arrange tab).
To shift the selected object's position behind other objects (on
the bottom), choose Send to Back on the Standard toolbar (or
Arrange tab).
To shift the object's position one step toward the front, choose
Forward One on the Arrange tab.
To shift the object's position one step toward the back, choose
Back One on the Arrange tab.
Working with layers
If you are drawing something simple, you don’t really need to make use
of layers—you can do all your work on the single layer that every new
drawing has. However, if you’re creating something a little more tricky
then layers can be a vital aid in separating objects into independent sets.
84 Working with Objects
You can think of layers as transparent sheets of paper upon which you
can draw your objects.
Each layer is situated along with
other layers (if present) within a
stack on the Layers tab—the
uppermost layer is applied over
any lower layer on the page. You
can also expand each layer entry
for a tree view of objects
associated with that layer (see
the Stalk layer opposite). Each
object entry can be clicked to
select the object in your
In order to create a new object on a particular layer, you'll first need to
"activate" (select) that layer.
To select a particular layer:
Click a layer name in the Layers tab.
Working with Objects
To add a new layer:
Add Layer button to add a new
In the Layers tab, click the
layer above the currently selected layer.
To rename a layer:
To rename a layer to something more meaningful, click on the
selected layer's name and type to add your new name (you can also
make an insertion point to edit the existing text).
To delete a layer:
In the Layers tab, select the layer’s name and click the
Layer button.
If you delete a layer, all of the objects on it are lost! So if you want to
keep any of them, move them to another layer first.
You can move layers up or down in the stacking order to place their
objects in front or behind those on other layers, move objects to specific
layers, and even merge layers.
To move a layer in the stacking order:
Drag the selected layer to a new position in the layer stack.
Remember that objects on layers are drawn in the order in which the
layers were initially added to the Layers tab. Put another way: the
bottom layer in the Layers tab stack is drawn first then the second
bottom, third bottom etc. A background layer should be the bottom
layer in the Layers tab stack.
86 Working with Objects
Layer Properties
Layer properties allow you to assign paper textures, make layers
invisible/visible, and/or locked/unlocked.
See Studio: Layers tab in DrawPlus Help for more details.
Managing objects on layers
A useful feature of the Layers tab is that you can see objects or even
groups of objects, under the layer on which they were created. This gives
you the option of selecting an object or group from the tab as opposed to
from the page itself. Groups and individual objects can be named,
allowing you to more easily locate them in the Layers tab, which in turn
locates them in the workspace for you.
To add objects to a particular layer:
When drawn, objects are added to the selected layer
automatically. This is why it is a good idea to check which layer
you are currently working on!
To select an object on a layer:
1. On the Layers tab, click the Expand icon on the chosen layer entry to
reveal all associated objects.
Working with Objects
This tree view greatly improves the ability to select and manage nested
objects in more complex drawings. It's also great for visualizing your
object order.
2. Click the object entry in the tab. It will become highlighted and
selected on your page.
Trouble locating your named object or group? Search for it by using
Find Object on the Edit menu.
To move an object to another layer:
Right-click the object in the workspace, and choose Move Object
to Layer. From the Move To Layer dialog, select the specific
destination layer, and click OK.
To hide/show an object on a layer:
Right-click the object in the Layers tab (or multiple objects via
Ctrl-click), and select Visible. To show again, click the
displayed on the object entry.
Cutting up objects
It is possible to cut any object (or picture for that matter) by using
the Knife Tool. You can cut along a freeform or straight line drawn
across your object(s), leaving you with separate fragments of the
88 Working with Objects
freeform cut
(using Bump profile)
straight line cut
To cut selected objects (freeform or straight line):
1. Select the
Knife Tool on the Drawing toolbar's
Vector Edit
2. (Optional) Use Smoothness on the tool's context toolbar to set how
regular the freeform cutting line is—click the right arrow and drag
the slider right for increasing smoothness.
3. (Optional) By default, you'll get a straight cutting profile, but for
regular-shaped cuts, pick a Cutting Profile from the context toolbar.
Working with Objects
4. Using the cursor, drag a freeform line across any object(s) you
would like to split (unselected objects on which the line traverses
will not be split). Instead, press the Shift key as you drag for a
straight line.
5. Hover over, then click to remove the unwanted cut area(s).
- or With the Pointer Tool, drag the newly split fragments apart instead.
Erasing and adding to objects
DrawPlus lets you take a "virtual"
eraser to your drawing, letting you
remove portions of your selected
object(s) on an individual layer or
across multiple layers.
The flip side of erasing is "adding to"
(i.e., augmenting), a technique to add
or "grow" a vector objects'
boundaries—great for reshaping an
existing object.
90 Working with Objects
To erase portions of a selected object:
1. Select the
Erase Tool on the Drawing toolbar's
Vector Edit
2. (Optional) From the context toolbar, choose a Nib style (circle,
square, or diamond) and/or set a Width to define the erase width
that will be cut.
3. Position the
cursor, and drag over an object boundary (or
within an object). You'll see the area to be erased being drawn
temporarily (use the Ctrl key to redefine the erase area while
4. Release the mouse button to erase the area drawn.
To add to a selected object:
Freeform Paint Tool on the Drawing toolbar's
1. Select the
Vector Edit flyout.
2. (Optional) From the context toolbar, choose a Nib style (circle,
square, or diamond) and/or set a Width which will be drawn.
cursor over the object and drag over an object
3. Position the
boundary (or within the object). You'll see shading which represents
the area to be added. (You can use the Ctrl key to redefine the
painted area while holding down the mouse button).
4. Release the mouse button to reshape the object to include the newly
drawn area.
Fills, Lines,
Colours, and
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
Setting fill properties
Any closed shape, such as a closed curve or QuickShape, or text has an
interior region that can be filled. The fill type can be solid, gradient,
bitmap or plasma or vector.
Fill types fall into several basic categories, illustrated above:
Solid fills, as their name implies, use a single colour.
Gradient fills provide a gradation or spectrum of colours between
two or more "key" colours. Mesh fills work like gradient fills but
with a more complex fill path.
Bitmap and Plasma fills apply bitmapped images or patterns to
the object, each with unique properties. Think of bitmap fills as
named “pictures” that fill shapes. Plasma (or “fractal”) fills use
randomized patterns, useful for simulating cloud or shadow effects.
Vector fills are similar to bitmaps but apply repeating patterns,
shapes or images such as shading or hatching to the object. Like
bitmaps, vectors are also named "images" but the fill is based on coordinates which define where lines are placed.
Solid colours
Applying a fill is easy, whether you’re selecting a colour from the Colour
tab or the Swatch tab.
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
The Colour tab has several models available from a drop-down list—
HSL Colour Wheel (shown), HSL Colour Box, HSL Sliders, RGB Sliders,
RGB Sliders (Hex), CMYK Sliders and Tinting.
(A) Line/Fill swatches, (B) Colour Picker, (C) Colour Model, (D) Hue wheel,
(E) Saturation/Lightness triangle.
On the HSL Colour Wheel, the small circles shown in the wheel and
triangle indicate the current setting for hue and saturation/lightness,
respectively. Drag either circle around to adjust the values.
The Line/Fill swatches on the tab govern whether the selected colour is
applied as a line colour, solid fill, or both simultaneously.
By comparison, the Swatch tab hosts a vast array of preset colour
swatches for solid, gradient, plasma, vector and bitmap fills. Swatches
are stored in palettes which can be managed from within the tab. You
can even create your own palettes and palette categories.
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
(A) Line/Fill swatches, (B) Document Palette, (C) Standard and themed
palettes, (D) Gradient palettes, (E) Bitmap palettes, (F) Vector palettes, (G)
Current palette.
CMYK operation
If you intend to create professional CMYK output to PDF or image, you
can optionally create a CMYK drawing from scratch (see p. 13). Your
drawing, in a CMYK colour space, can be designed using CMYK colours
(instead of RGB colours) either using:
CMYK Sliders. (Click the colour model drop-down list on the
Colour tab.)
- or -
Standard CMYK Palette. (Click the Palettes button on the Swatch
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
Applying colour
To apply a solid fill colour via the Colour tab:
1. Select the object(s) and display the Studio's Colour tab.
2. Click the Line/Fill Swatch at the top-left of the tab so the Fill Swatch
appears in front of the Line swatch.
This defines where the colour will be applied. Alternatively, apply
colour to both line and fill simultaneously by clicking Link on
the swatch.
3. (Optional) Choose a colour model from the drop-down list.
4. Select a colour from the display.
To apply a solid fill colour via the Swatch tab:
1. Select the object(s) and display the Studio's Swatch tab.
Set the Line/Fill Swatch at the top-left of the tab so the Fill
Swatch appears in front of the Line Swatch.
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
Pick a thumbnail from either the Document Palette or from
another palette shown in the Palettes drop-down list (drag from the
thumbnail onto the object as an alternative).
A Tinting option in the Colour tab’s drop-down list allows a percentage
of shade/tint to be applied to your colour.
To apply a gradient, Vector, bitmap, or plasma fill to
one or more objects:
As for applying a solid colour fill with the Swatch tab but:
Instead of using a solid colour palette, pick a relevant category
Vector or
from the
galleries, and pick your required thumbnail from the displayed
presets (drag from the thumbnail onto the deselected object as an
For solid, gradient or plasma fills, you can then edit colour(s) and
shade/tint (lightness). For gradient and plasma fills, the fill path
(coverage) can also be edited (see Working with gradient fills on p. 102).
To apply no fill:
Set an empty interior for objects by using the:
Colour tab: Click None in the bottom-left corner of the
Line/Fill Swatch, which represents either None (an empty interior
for objects with line/fill properties) or Original (for pictures only,
to reset the object to its original colours).
- or -
Swatch tab: Choose the first swatch,
None, from any gallery.
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
Blend modes
The Colour tab hosts a Blend Mode drop-down list for blending
overlapping object colours together in various ways. You'll find blend
modes described in Understanding blend modes in DrawPlus Help.
Setting line properties
All lines, including those that
enclose shapes, have numerous
properties, including colour,
style, line ends, width, join
(corner), and cap (end).
Using the Studio's Line tab, you can adjust plain line properties for any
freeform, straight, or curved line, as well as for the edge of a shape,
image or artistic text.
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
To change line colour, see Setting fill properties (p 92).
Changing line style
A series of buttons arranged along the top of the Line tab set the line
No line, Solid, Dash,
Double, and Calligraphic
styles can be applied to
freeform lines, and outlines
of shapes, images and
artistic text alike.
The additional two line
Brush Stroke
Edge Effect, let
you apply a brush (stroke,
spray or edge) effect to the
outlines of artistic text,
images or objects.
A brush stroke can be recoloured. However, applying a brush as an
edge takes on the colour of the edge of the image which cannot be
You can see your current brush in the Line tab and select a new brush
from the Brushes tab. Brush Stroke styles can also be added to freeform
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
To change line style:
Click a button to set the line style. Only one style can be set at any
one time. Pick another button to jump to that style.
Once a style is selected you can choose line ends for most styles (except
Brush Stroke and Edge Effect). For some styles, variations are also
available. For example, for a Dash or Double line style, additional dash
patterns (below) and double line options can be selected.
To select a line end:
From the
drop-down lists, pick a line start and end.
Other styles such as Dash and Calligraphic offer further customization
of the chosen style.
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
Changing line width
On a selected line, curve, or
shape (opposite), drag the
Width slider in the Line
tab. To turn off the line, set
the box to 0pt.
If you want to set
the line width to
that of a hairline
size, see below!
Hairline widths
Use Hairlines when you need to output the thinnest possible line width
for special printing cases, such as when producing artwork for laser
cutting. The hairline width for vector output is configurable.
To set a hairline width on your line:
On the Line tab, set the Width box to ‘Hairline’. Your hairline
shows as a 1 pixel-wide line.
To set a line width for vector output:
1. From Tools>Options, select Drawing Quality>Hairline Options.
2. Set the Hairline width on vector device value, choosing to always
express the value in inches with the supporting check box.
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
Sampling colours
Use the Colour Picker Tool to sample (and then reuse) a colour from
anywhere on your page. The picked colour can then be made the current
line or fill colour in DrawPlus.
Various sampling methods can be used depending on the type of object
fill or screen area to be sampled.
To sample colours:
1. On the Drawing toolbar, click
Colour Picker.
2. From the context toolbar, choose a Colour Picker Type (e.g., Point
3. (Optional) If you use the Square or Circle Sampler, set a Colour
Picker Size appropriate to the area you want to sample.
Gradient Sampler offers a Gradient Picker Sensitivity option, for
controlling the level or detail to which the gradient is sampled.
4. Hold the mouse button down, and drag to the target area then
release. For gradient sampling, rather than clicking, you sample by
dragging a line across your chosen colour gradient.
The sampled colour(s) is picked up in the Colour tab's Picked
Colour swatch.
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
5. Click the Colour tab's Line or Fill swatch, then the Picked Colour
swatch to transfer the colour to the chosen swatch. You can then
apply the colour to any object (this will then be stored automatically
in the Swatch tab's Document Palette for further use).
Use the Colour tab's
Colour Picker (point sampler only) to
sample colours anywhere on your computer screen—click, hold the
mouse button down, drag to the target area, and then release.
Working with gradient fills
Gradient fills are those that use small "spectrums" with colours
spreading between at least two defined key values. Specifically, gradient
fills can be linear, radial, elliptical, conical, square, three colour, and
four colour types.
Applying a gradient fill
There are several ways to apply a gradient fill as a line colour or object
fill: using the Fill Tool or via the Swatch tab. Using the Fill Tool, you can
vary the fill's path on an object for different effects.
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
To apply a gradient fill (Fill Tool):
1. Select an object.
2. Click the
Fill Tool on the Drawing toolbar.
3. Click and drag on the object to define the fill path (a solid line). The
object takes a simple linear fill, grading from the current colour of
the object, ending in white (objects filled with white will grade from
white to black, to show contrast).
(A) Start Handle colour, (B) End Handle colour, and (C) Fill Path
4. To alter the gradient fill colours, change the Start Colour and/or
End Colour on the Fill context toolbar.
From the Swatch tab, automatic fills let you apply a gradient fill (Linear,
Radial, Elliptical, or Conical) which dynamically change depending on
the colour of a selected object's solid fill or Start/End handles.
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
To apply a gradient fill (Swatch tab):
1. Select an object.
2. Click the Swatch tab and choose a line or fill colour. Ensure the
Line or
Fill swatch is set accordingly.
3. From the Swatch tab, click the
Automatic palette appears.
Gradient button. The
4. From the Automatic category, click the thumbnail for the fill you want
to apply.
Other gradient fills are available by clicking the drop-down
arrow on the Gradient button.
Editing the fill path
You can use the Fill Tool to edit the object's fill path, defining the
placement of the spectrum across the object.
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
If an object using a gradient fill is selected, you'll see the fill path
displayed as one or more lines, with circular handles marking where the
spectrum between each key colour begins and ends. Adjusting the
handle positions determines the actual spread of colours between
handles. You can also edit the fill by adding, deleting, or changing key
For details of how to edit and manage gradient fills, see DrawPlus Help.
The editing of gradient fills is a complex operation and is covered in
greater detail in the DrawPlus Help.
Working with bitmap and plasma fills
A bitmap fill uses a named bitmap—
often a material, pattern, or background
image. DrawPlus supplies an impressive
selection of preset bitmap fills on the
Swatch tab, and you can also import your
A plasma fill, sometimes called a fractal
fill, is a bitmapped pattern with dark and
light regions, useful for simulating cloud
or shadow effects. Again, the Swatch tab
hosts a selection of these fills.
Once you've applied either type of fill to an object using the Swatch tab
(see Setting fill properties on p. 92), you can adjust the fill's tint with the
Shade/Tint slider in the Colour tab (use Colour mode drop-down list),
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
and use the Fill Tool to edit the object's fill path, defining the placement
of the fill across the object.
For details of how to edit and manage bitmap and plasma fills, see
DrawPlus Help.
Working with vector fills
Vector fills are named vectors and are tiled similar to bitmaps. You can
use vector fills to hatch in areas of shade on objects, or as a background
pattern. DrawPlus provides a host of preset vector fills on the Swatch
tab. These are bricks and tiles, dots and screens, and lines and hatches.
As with bitmaps you can create and import your own vector fills.
After applying a vector fill to an object using the Swatch tab (see Setting
fill properties on p. 92), alter the fill's tint with the Shade/Tint slider in
the Colour tab (use Colour mode drop-down list). Use the Fill Tool for
editing the fill.
For details of how to manipulate vector fills, including scaling, spacing
and saving them, see DrawPlus Help.
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
Setting opacity
Key point! In DrawPlus, opacity is a property of colour, and can be
set directly from the Colour tab. Transparency refers to objectbased gradient or bitmap transparency effects, set via the
Transparency tab or Transparency Tool.
Opacity is great for highlights, shading and shadows, and simulating
"rendered" realism. It can make the difference between flat, ordinary
visuals and sparkling realism!
Opacity is the inverse of transparency—fully opaque (100%) is no
transparency (0%), and vice versa. It works rather like fills that use
"disappearing ink" instead of colour. The less opacity in a particular spot,
the more "disappearing" takes place there, and the more the object(s)
underneath show through.
Butterflies showing 100% opacity, 50% opacity, and 25% opacity (from
left to right).
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
The Opacity slider (Colour
tab) can be used to alter the
opacity of a specific colour,
whether that colour is a solid
fill (in an object or on a line),
or a handle's colour on a
gradient fill path. Opacity can
be applied locally to each
object; the default is 100%
opacity, i.e. the object is fully
For solid fills, the opacity change will be made uniformly across the
object's interior (as above). However, for gradient fill paths, different
opacity levels can be assigned with colour to handles along the fill path.
The combination of different colours and semi-transparency allow
interesting colour blends to be made.
Gradient fill paths are explained in detail in Working with gradient
fills on p 102.
To apply solid opacity:
1. Select the object.
2. From the Studio's Colour tab, drag the slider to the left for a
reduced Opacity setting (e.g., 20%); drag right to increase opacity.
This makes objects appear semi-transparent, or if set to 0%, fully
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
To apply solid opacity (to a fill path):
1. Select the object with a gradient fill and display the Studio's Colour tab.
2. Click the
Fill Tool on the Drawing toolbar's
The fill path is displayed.
Fill flyout.
Click on any displayed handle along the fill path (the handle with a
double outline is selected. Use Shift-select for selecting multiple handles.
3. From the Colour tab, drag the slider to the left for a reduced opacity
setting. You'll notice the new opacity setting influencing the fill's
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
Using transparency effects
While uniform opacity can be applied along with colour via the Colour
tab (see Setting opacity on p. 107), it's possible to apply gradient
transparency via the Transparency tab or Transparency Tool
independent of colour. Bitmap transparency can also be applied
exclusively via the Transparency tab.
(A) Linear Transparency, (B) Transparency path, (C) Effect on graphic
Transparency can also be applied along a custom drawn transparency
path using the Transparency Tool, in the same way as the equivalent fill
path (see DrawPlus Help). Transparency paths are easily editable.
Let’s check out the
Transparency tab.
As with the Swatch
tab, there are
galleries for both
gradient and bitmap
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
To apply gradient or bitmap transparency effects:
1. With your object selected, go to the Transparency tab.
2. For gradient or bitmap transparency, click the drop down arrow on the
Gradient or
Bitmap button, respectively. Select a
category from the flyout, then click a thumbnail in that category.
- or Drag the desired thumbnail from the gallery to an object.
3. The transparency is applied to the object(s).
To apply gradient transparency with Transparency Tool:
1. Select an object.
2. Click the
Transparency Tool on the Drawing toolbar.
3. Click and drag on the object to define the transparency path. The
object takes a simple linear transparency, grading from 0%
transparency (100% opaque) to 100% transparency (0% opaque) in
the direction you drag.
Fills, Lines, Colours, and Transparency
You've got control over where the path starts and ends, and the
direction in which the path will be drawn. You can even click again
to redraw the path.
Editing gradient transparency
Once you've applied a transparency, you can adjust its path on the
object, and the level of transparency along the path. You can even create
more complex transparency effects by adding extra handles to the path
and assigning different levels to each handle. For details of how to edit
and manage gradient transparency, see DrawPlus Help.
You cannot alter the values in a bitmap transparency.
Importing pictures
A wide range of picture formats
can be imported directly into
DrawPlus, including vector
graphics and metafiles.
Any imported picture ends up as
an object you can select, move,
scale, shear, rotate—and even
cut or crop using the Knife or
Crop Tool on the Drawing
toolbar. The Cutout Studio lets
you cut the subject of your
picture out from its background
(and vice versa).
To import a picture from a file:
1. Click
Insert Picture on the Drawing toolbar.
2. From the dialog, locate and select the file to import, then click
The dialog disappears and the mouse pointer changes to the
Picture Size cursor. What you do next determines the initial size,
placement, and aspect ratio (proportions) of the picture.
3. Insert the picture at a default size by simply clicking the mouse.
- or Set the size of the inserted picture by dragging out a region and
releasing the mouse button.
If you want to import multiple pictures simultaneously, you can select a
range of pictures from within the same dialog. Each image can then be
added to the page selectively from a Picture List flyout.
Using Cutout Studio
Cutout Studio offers a powerful integrated solution for cutting objects
out from their backgrounds. Depending on the make-up of your images
you can separate subject of interests from their backgrounds, either by
retaining the subject of interest (usually people, objects, etc) or removing
a simple uniform background (e.g. sky, studio backdrop). In both
instances, the resulting "cutout" image creates an eye-catching look for
your design.
An initial image on a
Cutout Studio
"paints" transparency
on the background.
The tint indicates
areas to be
Once cut out, a
different image can
be used as a more
To launch Cutout Studio:
1. Select an image to be cut out.
Cutout Studio from the context toolbar. Cutout Studio is
2. Select
Choose an output
You can choose an output type prior to selecting areas for
keeping/discarding; either an alpha-edged or vector-cropped bitmap
from the Output Type drop-down list. Choose the latter for more welldefined edges.
Selecting areas to keep or discard
A pair of brushes for keeping and discarding is used to enable parts of
the image to be selected. The tools are called Keep Brush and Discard
Brush, and are either used independently or, more typically, in
combination with each other.
To select image areas for keeping/discarding:
Keep brush or
1. In Cutout Studio, click either
brush from the left of the Studio workspace.
2. (Optional) Pick a Brush Size suitable for the area to be worked on.
3. (Optional) Set a Grow Tolerance value to automatically expand the
selected area under the cursor (by detecting colours similar to those
within the current selection). The greater the value the more the
selected area will grow.
4. Using the circular cursor, click and drag across the area to be
retained. It's OK to repeatedly click and drag until your selection
area is made—you can't lose your selection unless you click the
Reset button. The Undo button reverts to the last made selection.
5. If you're outputting an alpha-edged bitmap, you can refine the area
to be kept/discarded within Cutout Studio (only after previewing)
with Erase and Restore touch-up tools. Vector-cropped images can
be cropped using standard DrawPlus crop tools outside of the
6. Click
OK to create your cutout, or
Cancel to abort the
You'll see your image on the page in its original location, but with the
selected areas cut away (made transparent).
Applying PhotoLab filters
PhotoLab is a dedicated studio environment that lets you apply
adjustment and effect filters to photos, individually or in combination.
Photos present in your drawing display in the Images tab, which is
hidden by default. To display this tab, as illustrated below, simply click
button at the bottom of the dialog.
(A) filter tabs, (B) Main toolbar, (C) Main workspace, (D) filter
stack, (E) Images tab
Filters are stored in the
Favourites, Adjustments,
and Effects filter tabs, and are
grouped into categories.
For example, the
Adjustments tab provides the
Quick Fix and Pro Edit
categories, while the Effects
tab offers a wide range of
creative effect categories.
You can add your own custom filters to the Favourites tab. (See
DrawPlus Help.)
Applying filters
1. Select the photo you want to work on. (If the photo is framed, select it
and click
2. Click
Select Cropped Object.)
PhotoLab on the context toolbar.
3. For ease of use, when you open PhotoLab, the Filters stack on the
right contains some commonly-used filters (such as White Balance
and Lighting). These filters are disabled by default.
To apply one of the default filters, click its Enable/Disable
control to enable it, and then adjust the filter settings by dragging
the sliders.
To disable, reset, and delete a filter, see DrawPlus Help.
To add a new filter:
1. Browse the filter thumbnails displayed on the Favourites,
Adjustments, and Effects tabs, and click the one you want to apply.
The selected filter is added to the Trial Zone, and the main window
shows a preview of your photo with the filter applied.
2. Experiment with the filter settings in the Trial Zone—you can drag
the sliders, or enter values directly—to suit your requirements.
3. (Optional) To replace the trial filter, click a different thumbnail.
Selecting a new filter always replaces the current filter.
4. To apply the filter, click
Commit to add it to the Filters stack.
Repeat to apply additional filters.
5. To apply all filters in the Filters stack and close PhotoLab, click OK.
PhotoLab's main toolbar provides some useful retouching tools. These
are commonly used to correct photos before applying colour correction
and effects.
Red-eye tool, to remove red eye from a human subject.
Spot-repair tool, to remove blemishes from human skin and
material surfaces.
Clone Selection Tool. To erase objects from a photo or to
repair damage like scratches, marks and tears.
For instructions on using the retouching tools, see DrawPlus Help.
Instead of manually tracing a design, it's possible to automatically
convert bitmaps into vector objects by using autotracing. Its main
function is for speedily reworking bitmapped logos (for further design
modification), but its use is not confined to this. In fact, both greyscale
and colour photos can equally be autotraced for eye-catching artistic
For each of these uses, DrawPlus offers a studio environment and a
specific preset profile which will produce optimum results while
autotracing artwork of your chosen type.
B/W Image Trace. For black and white tracings of photos,
scanned images, and line drawings.
Logo Image Trace. For tracing pictures such as logos,
signatures, or other designs with antialiasing.
Photo Image Trace. For colour tracing of photos.
To autotrace a selected image:
AutoTrace button (on context
1. Click the drop-down arrow on the
toolbar) and select a profile from the menu.
- or Click
AutoTrace and choose a profile from the profile selection
2. The AutoTrace studio appears with the original artwork displayed,
along with adjustable sliders, a colour palette (logo profile only), or
a collapsible preview window (photo profiles only) showing how
your output will look once traced.
3. (Optional) Adjust the sliders at the right of the workspace (each
unique to the profile used); your profile settings will be modified.
4. Click
Trace to trace your logo, photo, or other bitmapped
artwork. It's best to keep clicking this button to update your main
window after any adjustment. If you want to abort the autotracing
process, you can click the Cancel button on the progress bar.
5. (Optional) For fine-tuning your traced output, several options are
• Click
Adjust to access Merge, Fill, and Node tools for
fine-tuning your vector output.
• For removing colours in traced logo output, right-click on the
palette colour you want to remove.
You can add a new colour or replace an existing colour by leftclicking on an empty or occupied colour swatch and dragging
Colour Selector to any colour on your computer screen.
Remember to click Trace to refresh the view.
6. When you're happy with your traced output, click
All slider settings are described in full in the Help pane which
accompanies the AutoTrace studio. Also covered are procedures for
tracing greyscale and colour photos.
The autotracing procedure above differs slightly when applied to
greyscale or colour photos, i.e. instead of comprehensive palette control
you have a photo preview.
Using graphic styles
The Styles tab contains
multiple galleries of predesigned styles that you can
apply to any object, or
customize to suit your own
taste! Galleries exist in effect
categories such as 3D, Bevels,
Blurs, Edges, Shadows, and
other 2D and 3D filter effects,
with each category having
further subcategories.
The Styles tab also lets you store your own graphic styles in a My Styles
section if you would like to reuse them—the style is made available in
any DrawPlus drawing. You can add and delete your items within each
category, with the option of naming elements to facilitate rapid retrieval.
You can create your own categories and subcategories from the
Style tab's Tab Menu by selecting Graphic Style Manager from
the menu.
To apply a graphic style to one or more objects:
1. Display the Styles tab.
2. Expand the drop-down menu to select a named style category (e.g.,
Shadows), then pick a subcategory by scrolling the lower window.
3. Preview available styles as thumbnails (cog shapes are shown by
default) in the window.
4. Click a style thumbnail to apply it to the selected object(s).
Applying 2D filter effects
Applying bevels and embossing effects
You can apply some
depth to your objects by
applying an embossing
From the Styles tab, adjust the Bevel & Emboss setting on your
selected object. The greater the value, the greater the embossed
Applying feathered edges
Feathering applies a
softer edge to your
objects, such as
embellishments or cut
materials. The effect is
especially useful for
presenting a photo on
the page.
From the Styles tab, pick a Feather Edge setting. This is the
distance inside the object's outline within which feathering will be
Advanced 2D filter effects
For more advanced control of filter effects, a Filter Effects dialog
can be used to apply filter effects to an object.
To apply 2D filter effects:
1. With an object selected, click
Filter Effects on the Drawing
toolbar. The Filter Effects dialog appears.
2. To apply a particular effect, check its box in the list at left.
3. To adjust the properties of a specific effect, select its name and vary
the dialog controls. Adjust the sliders or enter specific values to vary
the combined effect. (You can also select a slider and use the
keyboard arrows.) Options differ from one effect to another.
4. Click OK to apply the effect or Cancel to abandon changes.
Applying 3D filter effects
3D filter effects go beyond 2D filter effects (shadows, bevel, emboss, etc.)
to create the impression of a textured surface on the object itself. Keep in
mind that none of these 3D effects will "do" anything to an unfilled
object—you’ll need to have a fill there to see the difference they make!
The Studio’s Styles tab is a good place to begin experimenting with 3D
filter effects. Its multiple categories each offer a gallery full of predefined
effects, using various settings.
You’ll see a variety of
remarkable 3D
surface (Glass,
Metallic, Wood, etc.)
and texture presets
in the Instant Effects
and Textures
respectively. Click
any thumbnail to
apply it to the
selected object.
Assuming the object
has some colour on
it to start with, you’ll
see an instant result!
Alternatively, you can customize a preset, or apply one or more specific
Filter Effects from the Drawing
effects from scratch, by choosing
toolbar. If you want to keep the effect for future, you can save it.
To apply 3D Effects:
1. With an object selected, choose
Filter Effects from the Drawing
2. Check 3D Effects in the Filter Effects dialog.
3. Adjust the "master control" sliders here to vary the overall
properties of any individual 3D effects you select.
Blur specifies the amount of smoothing applied (in point size).
Larger blur sizes give the impression of broader, more gradual
changes in height.
Depth specifies how steep the changes in depth appear (in
point size).
button is normally down, which links the two sliders so
that sharp changes in Depth are smoothed out by the Blur
parameter. To adjust the sliders independently, click the button
so it's up.
4. Check a 3D effect in the 3D Effects list which reflects the 3D effect
you can achieve.
Adding drop shadows
You can apply simple drop shadows by using the
Shadow Tool. When applied, the selected object
is given a sense of depth.
Shadow Tool offers freeform control of the
drop shadow effect. With its on-the-page control
nodes and supporting Shadow context toolbar, the
tool offers various adjustments such as Opacity, Blur,
and X and Y Shear. Nodes appear on the object for
fine control.
Simple shadow
(drag from object
Node controls:
(A) Shear X/Scale Y, (B) Shear Y/Scale X,
(C) Reposition shadow, (D) Opacity,
(E) Lock Point, (F) Blur.
(showing control nodes)
With subtle Shear and Scale adjustments you
can produce skewed shadows for realistic 2D
lighting effects. The example opposite has had
adjustments to Shear X and Shear Y, with
blurring and reduced opacity.
Applying drop shadows with Shadow Tool
1. With an object selected, click the
Shadow Tool on the
Drawing toolbar. You'll notice control nodes appear which allow
adjustment as described in the annotated illustration above.
2. Drag across the object to create a drop shadow (note additional
nodes being created).
3. Change blur, opacity, shear, or scale accordingly by node
adjustment (or via the displayed context toolbar).
If you want to create simple shadows without additional control of
the above properties, disable Advanced on the context toolbar,
then drag the shadow to a new position.
To change a shadow's colour:
Select a colour from the Studio's Colour tab.
To remove the shadow from an object:
Double-click the object while the Shadow Tool is selected.
Creating blends
Blends enable you to create shapes between two separate shapes on the
page. These could be identical in shape but have different line/fill
properties or be differently shaped. For the latter, the blending process
“morphs” one shape into the other shape.
Each step creates an intermediate shape, where the colour, transparency,
and line properties may all change, along with the object shape, during
the blend process.
For identical shapes:
For different shapes (e.g. a blend between a Quick Ellipse and a Quick
To create a blend with the Blend Tool:
1. On the Drawing toolbar, click the arrow next to the
2. From the flyout, select the
Blend Tool.
3. (Optional) From the displayed Context toolbar, choose:
• The number of “morph” Blend Steps to be taken between both
points (to increase/decrease the smoothness of the blend).
• A Position Profile or Attribute Profile for non-uniform
blends—use for rate or transform and blend, respectively.
• A Colour Blend Type which defines how colour distribution
occurs between the originating and destination object.
4. Hover over the object to display the Blend cursor.
5. Click and drag the cursor, drawing a dashed line as you go, to your
destination point (this must be on an object) and release.
Blending on a path
DrawPlus allows you to make your blended objects conform to a drawn
freeform line or curve.
To fit a blend to a line or curve:
1. Select the line or curve and the previously blended object.
2. From the Tools menu, select Fit Blend to Curve.
Using stencils
The Stencils tab provides a
selection of ready-to-go, fun
stencils that will add impact to
any page. Whether you paint
over them with the Brush Tool,
or use them to cut out a design
from a picture, stencils provide
endless opportunities for
If you're feeling really creative, you can create your own stencils by
dragging objects to the Stencils tab.
To add a stencil to your page:
1. On the Stencils tab, click the drop-down list to select a category.
The lower gallery displays thumbnails of the stencils available in the
selected category.
2. Click and drag a thumbnail from the gallery onto your page.
To paint over stencils:
1. Add a stencil to your page.
2. From the Drawing toolbar, click the
Brush Tool.
3. Choose a brush type from the Brushes tab and set your brush colour
on the Colour tab. (See Applying brush strokes on p. 56.)
Brushes in the Effects, Paint and Spray categories are particularly
suited to stencil work.
4. Paint over the stencil with your chosen brush.
Swap to different brush colours or brush types using respective Colour
and Brushes tabs.
5. From the Drawing toolbar, select the
6. Click the stencil, then select
Pointer Tool.
Lift Stencil below the stencil.
The stencil is removed, revealing the painted design beneath it.
Any brush strokes applied outside of the white and blue
sections will show when you lift the stencil. To avoid this, hold down
the Ctrl key on your keyboard when you click Lift Stencil.
To create multiple stencils:
1. Add stencils to your page and position them as required.
2. Paint over your stencils.
From the Drawing toolbar, select the Pointer Tool and then
click each stencil in turn. Click Lift Stencil below each stencil to remove
Take care when painting over your stencil, because any paint
applied outside of the blue area will show when you lift the stencils.
Stopframe/Keyframe Animation
Getting started with animation
A clear distinction has to be made between two types of animation
techniques, both possible from within DrawPlus:
Stopframe animation: also known as Stop motion animation,
involves the animation of static objects frame-by-frame. In the film
industry, Stopframe animation is used within widely known
productions based on figures made of clay or other bendable
Keyframe animation: performs movement of computer-generated
objects from basic shapes to cartoon characters (used traditionally
in Stopframe animation). Using the power of computing, smooth
playback of animated objects is easily achieved between key
moments in your animation, defined by the user as Keyframes.
DrawPlus lets you export Stopframe or Keyframe animations to a variety
of different formats. For more details, review Exporting animations (see
p. 151).
For now we'll look at how to set up both Stopframe and Keyframe
animations within DrawPlus.
To begin a new Stopframe or Keyframe animation:
1. Start DrawPlus (or choose File>Startup Assistant if it’s already
2. Select New Drawing>New Keyframe Animation or New
Drawing>New Stopframe Animation from the Startup Assistant.
3. In the right-hand pane, review the document types available.
4. Select a document type thumbnail from a category in the right-hand
Stopframe/Keyframe Animation
To customize document settings, see Animation Custom Settings
in DrawPlus Help.
To begin a new Stopframe or Keyframe animation from
• Select New>New Stopframe Animation from the File menu.
- or • Select New>New Keyframe Animation from the File menu.
A new document window opens in the respective Animation mode.
You can convert any drawing into either animation type from the
File Menu.
Modify Page Setup such as page size and orientation from the Pages
context toolbar.
To save an animation:
Choose File>Save. DrawPlus saves animation documents in the
proprietary .dpa format.
Working with Stopframe animation
In Stopframe animation mode you'll be working predominantly with the
Frames tab. It is ideally suited for animation because of its width and
easy control of individual frames (stopframes are spread along the tab
for easier management).
Stopframe/Keyframe Animation
To view the Frames tab:
Unless the tab is already displayed, click the
bottom of your workspace to reveal the tab.
handle at the
To clone the current frame to a new frame:
Select a frame in the Frames tab, and choose
Clone Frame.
The frame is added after the selected frame.
To generate a new blank frame:
Insert Frame from the Frames tab.
To navigate between frames:
Click on any visible frame to display its objects on screen (objects
can then be edited).
To rename a frame:
Right-click a frame and choose Properties. In the Name field, type
in a new frame name. The new name is shown on the Hintline
Stopframe/Keyframe Animation
To change frame sequence:
Drag the selected frame to a new position in the frame order.
When the dragged frame's thumbnail creates a slightly wider space
between two frames than usual, release the mouse button to place
the frame to be moved.
To delete a selected frame:
Delete Frame from the Frames tab.
Onion Skinning
Onion skinning is a standard animation technique derived from cel
animation, where transparent sheets enable the artist to see through to
the preceding frame(s). It's useful for enabling precise registration and
controlling object movement from frame to frame.
To turn onion skinning on or off:
1. From the Frames tab, click the
onion skinning on or off.
Onion Skinning button to turn
2. (Optional) To set more than one previous frame to be visible, click
Properties, then set the number of frames in the Onion
Skinning input box.
The preceding frame's objects will show behind those of the currently
selected frame.
Stopframe/Keyframe Animation
Previewing Stopframe animations
You can preview your animation prior to export at any time either
directly from your Frames tab (shown in a Preview window) or from
within your default web browser.
To preview in the Preview window:
Preview on the Frames tab.
The animation loads into the Preview window and begins playing at its
actual size and speed. You can use the control buttons (Play, Stop, etc.)
to review individual frames.
To preview in a web browser:
Select Preview in Browser from the File menu. The animation
loads your default web browser and begins playing.
Stopframe/Keyframe Animation
Working with Keyframe animation
We'll assume that you've
entered Keyframe
animation mode either
from scratch (via
File>New>New Keyframe
Animation) or have
converted your existing
drawing to Keyframe
animation mode (using
File>Convert to
Stopframe Animation).
Essentially, the technique lets you create only user-defined keyframes
through which objects animate, with each keyframe containing Key
objects which can be assigned a position, rotation, attributes, etc.
Intermediate steps between Key objects are created automatically and
produce a smooth professional-looking inter-object transition (this is
called Tweening); Tweened objects are created as a result.
The Storyboard tab is the workspace for laying out your animation
"story" in a chronological keyframe-by-keyframe sequence (from left to
Stopframe/Keyframe Animation
Supporting tabs
Keyframe animation mode also presents other tabs that support the
Storyboard tab. These are exclusively used within keyframe animation
(and do not show in normal or stopframe animation mode), i.e.
The Easing tab is used for applying linear or non-linear changes
between key objects with use of editable envelopes (e.g., to change
object position, morph, scale, rotation, skew, colour, and
The Actions tab allows objects and keyframes to be attributed
actions which will run (e.g., go to a URL or designated marker)
when an event is triggered (e.g., MouseOver, Rollovers, etc.).
A keyframe camera, masking, and sound/movies can also be used in
keyframe animation.
See DrawPlus Help for more information.
Getting started
To learn how to create a new Keyframe animation, or convert an
existing drawing, see Getting Started With Animation on p. 142.
To view the Storyboard tab:
Unless the tab is already displayed, click the
bottom of your workspace to reveal the tab.
handle at the
We'll assume that you've drawn objects on the first keyframe. You can
run forward these automatically throughout your animation by creation
of additional keyframes—this builds up your animation "story" quickly.
Other methods exist to run objects forward (and backwards) but let's
concentrate on the insertion of keyframes to do this.
Stopframe/Keyframe Animation
To insert keyframes:
1. From the Storyboard tab, select a keyframe and choose
2. From the dialog, choose the Number of keyframes to add to the
Storyboard tab. Set a default Keyframe duration for each created
3. Choose to add keyframe(s) at a Location before or after the
currently selected keyframe or before/after the first or last keyframe.
4. (Optional) Check Insert blank keyframes if you don't want to
include run forward objects in your keyframes. Blank frames are
useful "filler" frames that add breaks in your animation for
messages, logos, etc.
5. Click OK.
To view or edit a particular keyframe:
Select a keyframe in the Storyboard tab.
To delete a keyframe:
Select the keyframe and choose
Keyframe duration
Keyframe duration represents the amount of
time in between each individual keyframe.
Stopframe/Keyframe Animation
To set the duration of an individual keyframe:
Click the keyframe's duration (e.g., 1500ms) under its
thumbnail, and, when selected, type a new value then click
The total duration of your animation is shown on your last keyframe,
e.g. (5.0s).
Previewing keyframe animations
From the Storyboard tab, you can preview your animation at any
time either in a web browser or in Flash Player (This is a DrawPlus
install option). This is a quick way of checking it prior to export.
Stopframe/Keyframe Animation
Exporting animations and
Exporting your stopframe animation, keyframe animation or rostrum
presentation outputs it to a media file that can be shared or viewed,
either standalone or when included as part of a web page.
DrawPlus lets you export to a variety of formats as indicated below:
Flash SWF
Flash Lite/i-Mode
Animated GIF
To export your animation as a Flash file:
1. Choose Export>Export as Flash SWF from the File menu.
2. From the dialog, provide a ShockWave Flash file name and folder
location, and click the Save button. You'll see an export progress
dialog appear until the Flash file is created.
To export to Flash Lite/i-Mode:
1. Choose Export>Export as Flash Lite/i-Mode from the File menu.
2. From the dialog, provide a ShockWave Flash file name and folder
location, and click the Save button. You'll see an export progress
dialog appear until the file is created.
Stopframe/Keyframe Animation
To export animation as video:
1. Choose Export>Export As Video from the File menu.
2. From the displayed dialog's Basic tab, select your chosen export type
from the File type and Template drop-down list according to the
type of output video format you require. The presets offered are
designed to provide excellent quality output, from small resolutions
(360p) to high definition resolutions (1080p) as well as for DVD
3. (Optional) For Keyframe and Stopframe animations, click Match
project settings to set an approximate video frame size based on
your animation project's Page size (set in Page Setup).
4. Specify a name for file in the Filename box, clicking Browse and
selecting a new location if you first wish to choose an alternate drive
or folder to store your file.
5. (Optional) Set an export Quality.
6. Click the Export button. Your project will then be composed and
converted into the specified format and you will be shown a
progress bar during this process.
Keyframe animations exported as video do not support audio.
Rostrum camera presentations do not support audio export.
Within Stopframe animation, this option lets you create an animated
GIF by default, which we'll focus on here. For keyframe animation, you
can export a single keyframe as any type of image format.
Stopframe/Keyframe Animation
To export as an animated GIF:
1. Choose
Export from the Frames tab.
2. Click the Export button (or Close to simply record the settings if
you plan to preview in a browser first).
3. Provide a file name and folder location, and click Save. Don't worry
if you have extra white space around your image. Any unused
border area will be cropped automatically, just as you saw in the
Preview window.
Stopframe/Keyframe Animation
Print, Publish
and Share
Print, Publish and Share
Interactive Print/PDF Preview
The Print/PDF Preview mode changes the screen view to display your
layout without frames, guides, rulers, and other screen items. Supporting
toolbars allow for a comprehensive and interactive preview of your
pages before printing or publishing as PDF.
Print Preview is interactive because a main feature is to provide printtime imposition. Put simply, this allows you to create folded books,
booklets, and more, at the printing stage from unfolded basic page
setups. Other interactive features are also available while in Preview
Select installed printers, and choose which pages to print and how
they print (to printer, file or separation).
Add and adjust printer margins.
Switch on/off page marks when generating professional output.
Print, Publish and Share
To preview the printed page:
1. From the File menu, select Print/PDF Preview.
In Print/PDF Preview, your first printer sheet is displayed according
to your printer's setup.
2. (Optional) Choose an installed printer from the Printer toolbar's
drop-down list.
3. (Optional) Adjust printer margins from the Margins toolbar.
4. Review your design using the page navigation controls at the
bottom of your workspace.
To print:
From the Printer toolbar, select
- or -
From the File menu, select Print.
The standard Print dialog is then displayed, where settings are carried
over from Preview mode.
To publish as PDF:
From the Printer toolbar, select Publish PDF.
- or From the File menu, select Publish PDF.
The standard Publish PDF dialog is then displayed.
Print, Publish and Share
To cancel Print Preview mode:
Close Preview from the top of your workspace (or click
the window's
Close button).
Print-time imposition
During preview, you can enable imposition of your drawing, choosing a
mode suited to your intended final drawing (book, booklet, etc.). Each
mode displays different toolbar options on the context-sensitive
Imposition toolbar. Document imposition is not limited to desktop
printing—it can also be used when creating a press-ready PDF for
professional printing.
To choose an imposition mode:
From the Imposition toolbar, select an option from the
Imposition Mode drop-down list.
Print, Publish and Share
Printing basics
DrawPlus supports printing directly to a physical desktop printer (e.g.,
All-in-ones, Inkjet and Laser printers) or to an electronic file such as
Adobe Acrobat PDF (see p. 161). Printing your document to a desktop
printer is one of the more likely operations you'll be performing in
DrawPlus. The easy-to-use Print dialog presents the most commonly
used options to you, with a navigable "live" Preview window to check
your print output.
The dialog also supports additional printing options via the More
Options button including Double-sided Printing, Manual Duplex, and
many other useful printing options. One particular option, called
Layout, allows for print-time imposition of your document—simply
create a booklet or other folded document at the print stage.
For a detailed description of each option, see Interactive Print/PDF
Preview in DrawPlus Help.
Print, Publish and Share
If you're working with a service bureau or commercial printer and
need to provide PDF output, see Publishing as PDF on p. 161.
To set up your printer or begin printing:
1. Click
Print on the Standard toolbar. The Print dialog appears.
2. Select a currently installed printer from the Printer drop-down list.
If necessary, click the Properties button to set up the printer for the
correct page size, etc.
3. Select a print profile from the Profile drop-down list. You can just
use Current Settings or choose a previously saved custom profile
(.ppr) based on a combination of dialog settings; Browse lets you
navigate to any .ppr file on your computer. To save current settings,
click the Save As button, and provide a unique profile name. The
profile is added to the drop-down list.
Note: If you modify profile settings, an asterisk appears next to the
profile name.
4. Select the number of copies to print, and optionally instruct the
printer to Collate them.
5. Select the print Range to be printed, e.g. the Entire Drawing,
Current Page, or range of pages. For specific pages or a range of
pages, enter "1,3,5" or "2-5", or enter any combination of the two.
To print selected text or objects, make your selection first, then
choose Current Selection appearing in the Range drop-down list
after selection.
Whichever option you've chosen, the Include drop-down list lets
you export all sheets in the range, or just odd or even sheets, with
the option of printing in Reverse order.
Print, Publish and Share
6. Set a percentage Scale which will enlarge or shrink your print
output (both page and contents). A 100% scale factor creates a full
size print output. Alternatively, from the adjacent drop-down list,
choose Shrink to Fit to reduce your document's page size to the
printer sheet size or Scale to Fit to enlarge or reduce the document
page size as required.
7. Keep Auto Rotate checked if you want your document page to
automatically rotate your printer's currently set sheet orientation.
When you access the Print dialog, if page and sheet sizes do not
match, you'll be prompted to adjust your printer sheet orientation
automatically (or you can just ignore auto-rotation).
8. Click Print.
Publishing as PDF
DrawPlus can output your drawings to Adobe PDF, ideal for both
screen-ready distribution and professional printing. In DrawPlus,
ready-to-go PDF profiles are available for both uses, making PDF setup
less complicated.
DrawPlus lets you operate in a CMYK colour space from document
setup to professional PDF output. This involves starting with a new
drawing (p. 13) using a CMYK Primary colour space (p. 94),
designing using CMYK colours, and publishing a PDF-X1a-compliant
PDF file (using the PDF/X-1a printer profile).
To export your document as a PDF file (using a profile):
1. Choose Publish as PDF from the File menu.
2. Select a profile for screen-ready or professional output from the
Profile drop-down list.
Print, Publish and Share
The dialog updates with the selected profile's new settings. The
Compatibility is set according to the profile and doesn't need to be
3. Select the Range to be published, e.g. the Entire Drawing, Current
Page, or range of pages. For specific pages or a range of pages, enter
"1,3,5" or "2-5", or enter any combination of the two.
Whichever option you've chosen, the Include drop-down list lets
you export all sheets in the range, or just odd or even sheets.
4. Set a percentage Scale which will enlarge or shrink your published
output (both page and contents). A 100% scale factor creates a full
size print output.
5. (Optional) Click
as required.
6. Click OK.
More Options and make any additional settings
Print, Publish and Share
Exporting objects and drawings
You can export at any time by using Export as Picture or Dynamic
Preview; the former lets you compare export settings, the latter allows
editing during preview—great for pixel-accurate editing of your
intended output!
Exporting as picture
Especially if you're exporting graphics for the web, you can take
advantage of the Export as Picture dialog, which will greatly help you in
reducing file sizes and download times as far as possible while
maintaining image quality. The dialog lets you export the individual
page, all pages, just a selected object(s), or a user-defined region. You
can also see how your picture will look (and how much space it will take
up) before you save it! For visual comparison, its multi-window display
provides side-by-side WYSIWYG previews to compare different
formats, or the same format at differing bit depths.
Print, Publish and Share
To export as a picture:
1. Choose Export>Export as Picture from the File menu.
2. (Optional) From the Export Area section, you can scale the picture
to a new size if desired (change Width and Height), or adjust the
dpi (dots per inch) setting. For graphics to be used on-screen, it's
best to leave these values intact.
3. From the drop-down list, choose if the export can be based on the
whole Page, All Pages, Selected Area, or Selected Objects.
4. From the Properties section, select the intended graphics file format
from the Format drop-down list. The remaining box area will
display different options depending on your chosen graphics
format. Change settings as appropriate to the file format selected.
5. (Optional) From the Web Options section, you can control web
elements in your picture, i.e. you can check Image Slices or
Hotspots if you've create these elements and want them exported.
Print, Publish and Share
6. Click Export. If you click Close, DrawPlus remembers your
preferred format and settings.
7. From the Export dialog, navigate to a folder of your choice, enter a
File name, then click Save.
When exporting Stopframe animations, an Animation tab is
shown in the dialog for frame export control.
For converting DrawPlus objects into pictures on the page, use
Tools>Convert to Picture.
Defining a region for export
DrawPlus lets you
export a specific
region in your
design. The region,
shown as a bounding
box, is actually a layer
overlay which can be
resized, repositioned
over the export area
and shown/hidden.
The Export as Picture
dialog is used for the
actual export process.
To define an export region:
1. From the Standard toolbar, click
Overlays and select Export
Overlay from the drop-down list. A bounding box is overlaid over
your page.
Print, Publish and Share
2. Drag a corner (or edge) handle to resize the box; reposition the box
over the export area.
3. (Optional) Name the Export Overlay layer in the Export Name box
on the context toolbar (this labels the export overlay in the Layers
tab and provides the default file name at export).
4. Click Export
shown under the box. The Export as Picture
dialog is displayed, from which you can modify and choose an
export file format (described previously).
You can also create a Bitmap Fill
or a Vector Fill
either the bounding box or the context toolbar), which will add your
selection as a swatch under the relevant category (My Bitmaps or
My Vector Fills).
When the overlay is applied, the bounding box is automatically selected
(it shows the selection colour of the overlay layer). Clicking away from
the box will deselect it (showing the box Colour), but it can be reselected
at any time (e.g., for repositioning).
To select the box:
From the Standard toolbar, select
Overlays and then Export
Exporting multiple pages
If you have multiple pages in your drawing, you can export any
currently viewed page or all pages.
To export the current page:
From the Pages tab, select a page you wish to export. When you
export, the Export as Picture dialog will default to export the page,
Print, Publish and Share
unless objects on the page are selected.
To export all pages:
From the dialog, select All Pages in the drop-down list.
For example, exporting a four-page project called mydesign.dpp
will create four files called mydesign00.png, mydesign01.png,
mydesign02.png, and mydesign03.png.
Exporting as CMYK TIFF or JPEG
For professional printing, you can create a drawing in a CMYK colour
space (see DrawPlus Help), which offers colour predictability during
design, processing, and output. You can either publish your design as a
PDF document (p. 161) or export as picture, with both options
maintaining a CMYK colour space.
To export as a CMYK TIFF or JPEG picture:
In the Export as Picture dialog, enable CMYK.
Print, Publish and Share
Presentations with the Rostrum
A rostrum camera in television
production and filmmaking uses
slides to animate a still picture or
object. The Rostrum Camera
feature in DrawPlus uses slides to
transform the content in your
document into an animated
presentation, cartoon, slideshow
or storyboard. Each slide you
create for the content is in effect a
rostrum camera position. The
camera positions are panned over
the content slide-by-slide.
You can configure the transition
time when moving from one slide
to another, and control fading,
panning and zooming. Layers can
determine if slides are
revealed progressively or layerby-layer.
A presentation can be previewed
as it is created, or shared with
others when it's finished by
exporting it as a Flash file or
video. In the example we've used
here, the presentation starts at the
first slide at the top and pans
down through each slide to finish
at the final slide at the bottom.
Print, Publish and Share
Starting a new presentation
New presentations can be created in two ways:
Using a preset page layout, i.e. a page array of already created
but empty slides that can have objects added to them.
By creating your objects first, you can insert a slide over the
existing content using the Rostrum Camera. You repeat the
process for other slides, linking slides together.
Taking either approach results in a set of connected slides, each 'filled'
with slide content.
To create a presentation from a preset page layout:
1. From the Startup Assistant, select New Drawing, then Create>New
Drawing from the middle pane.
2. From the Presentations category in the main pane, navigate the
available sub-categories. Layouts are presented in sub-categories for
either 16:9 or 4:3 aspect ratio slides.
3. Select a thumbnail. The new presentation opens as a new document.
4. Inside each greyed out slide, design your slide content, starting with
the slide labelled as '1'.
Print, Publish and Share
To create a presentation from scratch:
1. Add objects on the page intended for each slide.
2. From the Drawing toolbar, select
Rostrum Camera.
3. Position the shaded slide over the first set of objects to enclose
The first slide you add is always number one in your sequence as
indicated on the slide.
icon next to the slide to the next set of objects (i.e.
4. Drag the
proposed Slide 2) and release the mouse button. This is the next
camera position.
5. Repeat for each new set of objects.
You can insert additional slides in the sequence by dragging out
from any slide's
icon. The slide sequence order is updated
The circle icon next to your slide indicates if the slide is either
selected ( ) or deselected (
the layer's identifying colour.
). The colour changes according to
Print, Publish and Share
You can use the Rostrum Camera over multiple pages. When the
presentation gets to the last slide on your first page, you can jump
to the next page and start a new slide sequence.
Slide positioning
The position of slides in relation to each other dictates the camera
position, i.e. the extent and direction of panning. Slides and content
rotated by 90° also produce camera rotations.
Rostrum camera ratio
The rostrum camera aspect ratio can be 16:9 or 4:3.
To set the rostrum camera ratio:
With your rostrum camera selected, on the Context toolbar,
click the Rostrum Ratio drop-down list and set the ratio.
Editing slides
The Slides tab stores in sequence the individual slides that comprise
your presentation. The properties of each slide can be edited. You can
change transitions between slides, configure transition times and set
hold times between each slide. You can also determine how layers are
Print, Publish and Share
To view the Slides tab:
Unless the Slides tab is already displayed, click the
handle at the bottom of your workspace.
To edit a rostrum camera slide:
Rostrum Camera and select a
1. On the Drawing toolbar, click
slide on the page. The Slides tab shows all camera positions in your
2. Click the
icon on the slide you want to edit. The Edit Rostrum
Camera dialog appears.
3. Select hold, transition, and layer handling options from the dialog.
4. Click OK.
To delete a slide:
Select a slide in the Slides tab and press the Delete key.
Print, Publish and Share
Previewing rostrum camera presentations
As a quick way of checking prior to export, you can preview your
presentation at any time and view it in either a web browser or in Flash
Exporting rostrum camera presentations
You can export your presentations to Flash and video formats. For more
information, see Exporting animations and presentations on p. 151.
Print, Publish and Share
Additional Information
Contacting Serif
Help with your Product
On the web
Get answers and ask questions in the Serif
Additional Serif information
On the web
Serif website
Main office
The Software Centre, PO Box 2000
Nottingham, NG11 7GW, UK
(0115) 914 2000
Phone (Registration)
(0800) 376 1989
+44 800 376 1989
800-794-6876 (US, Canada)
Phone (Sales)
(0800) 376 7070
+44 800 376 7070
800-489-6703 (US, Canada)
Customer Service
0845 345 6770
800-489-6720 (US, Canada)
(0115) 914 2020
Additional Information
This User Guide, and the software described in it, is furnished under an end user License
Agreement, which is included with the product. The agreement specifies the permitted and
prohibited uses.
Serif is a registered trademark of Serif (Europe) Ltd.
DrawPlus is a registered trademark of Serif (Europe) Ltd.
All Serif product names are trademarks of Serif (Europe) Ltd.
Microsoft, Windows, and the Windows logo are registered trademarks of Microsoft
Corporation. All other trademarks acknowledged.
Windows Vista and the Windows Vista Start button are trademarks or registered
trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries.
Adobe Flash is a registered trademark of Adobe Systems Incorporated in the United States
and/or other countries.
Wacom, the logo and Intuos are trademarks or registered trademarks of the Wacom
Company, Ltd.
Digital Images © 2008 Hemera Technologies Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Bitstream Font content © 1981-2005 Bitstream Inc. All rights reserved.
This application was developed using LEADTOOLS, copyright © 1991-2007 LEAD
Technologies, Inc. ALL Rights Reserved.
Panose Typeface Matching System © 1991, 1992, 1995-1997 Hewlett-Packard Corporation.
The Sentry Spelling-Checker Engine © 2000 Wintertree Software Inc.
ICC Colour Profiles © 2006 Adobe Systems Incorporated. All rights reserved.
PANTONE® Colors displayed in the software application or in the user documentation may
not match PANTONE-identified standards. Consult current PANTONE Color Publications
for accurate color. PANTONE® and other Pantone trademarks are the property of Pantone
LLC. ©Pantone LLC, 2014.
Additional Information
Pantone LLC is the copyright owner of color data and/or software which are licensed to Serif
(Europe) Ltd. to distribute for use only in combination with DrawPlus. PANTONE Color
Data and/or Software shall not be copied onto another disk or into memory unless as part of
the execution of DrawPlus.
FontForge © 2000,2001,2002,2003,2004,2005,2006,2007,2008 by George Williams.
Portions of this software are copyright © 2008 The FreeType Project (www.freetype.org). All
rights reserved.
ODF Translator © 2006-2008, Clever Age, DIaLOGIKa, Sonata Software Ltd. All rights
Anti-Grain Geometry - Version 2.4 © 2002-2005 Maxim Shemanarev (McSeem)
TrueType font samples from Serif FontPacks © Serif (Europe) Ltd.
© 2015 Serif (Europe) Ltd. All rights reserved. No part of this User Guide may be reproduced
in any form without the express written permission of Serif (Europe) Ltd.
Serif DrawPlus X8 © 1991-2015 Serif (Europe) Ltd. All rights reserved.
Companies and names used in samples are fictitious.
2D filter effects, 128
3D filter effects, 129
Actions tab, 148
Add (Join), 76
Add/Delete Pages, 22
adjustment (of pictures), 119
Adobe Acrobat (PDF files), 161
Align tab, 81
of objects, 81
animation, 142
exporting, 151
Keyframe, 147, 151
Keyframe, previewing, 150
onion skinning in, 145
previewing, 146
Stopframe, 143, 151
Artistic Text Tool, 60
augmenting, 89
AutoTrace Studio, 123
Back One, 83
banners (setup), 13
Bevel & Emboss, 128
Bevel effects, 128
Bézier curves, 29
Bitmap fills, 96, 105
blend modes, 97
Blend Tool, 133
blending, 133
objects, 133
on a path, 135
booklets (folded) (setup), 13
Bring to Front, 83
brush strokes
applying, 56
editing, 57
Brush Tool, 56
B-Spline curves, 32
business cards (setup), 14
Clipboard operations, 66
Clone Frame, 144
closed lines (shapes), 31
colours, 94
JPEG export, 167
TIFF export, 167
Colour Picker, 101
colour sampling, 101
Colour tab, 93
combining objects, 75
conical fills, 102
contours, 78
Convert to Curves, 48
credits, 177
curved text, 63
B-Spline, 32
drawing, 29
editing, 42
filling unclosed, 32
flow text on, 63
node editing, 47
cutout, 115
Cutout Studio, 115
cutting objects, 66, 87
deleting pages, 22
dimension lines, 49
Dimension Tool, 50
setting units and scale, 18
of objects, 81
opening saved, 15
saving, 17
starting new, 13
DPA format, 17
DPP format, 17
DPX format, 17
scale, 20
scale, 18
exporting, 163
opening saved, 15
saving, 17
starting new, 13
drop shadows, 131
duplicating, 69
Easing tab, 148
brush strokes, 57
curves, 42
dimension lines, 52
lines and shapes, 42, 48
nodes, 47
text, 62
effects, 133
blends, 133
curved text, 63
drop shadow, 131
filters, 129
effects (images), 119
PhotoLab, 118
ellipse fills, 102
Emboss effect, 128
EPS, 114
Erase Tool, 90
animations, 151
drawings, 163
multiple pages, 166
objects, 163
overlays, 165
PDF files, 161
Rostrum Camera, 168
feather edges, 128
features, new, 3
Fill Tool, 103, 106
Fill-on-Create, 32
bitmap and plasma, 105
changing, 104
flooding, 38
gradient, 96, 102
solid, 95
vector, 106
filter effects
2D, 129
3D, 129
filters, 118
applying, 119
Flood Tool, 38
folded documents (setup), 13
formatting text, 63
Forward One, 83
four colour fills, 102
frame text, 61
frames (Stopframe animation), 144
Frames tab, 144
Freeform Paint Tool, 90
gallery, 52
Gallery tab, 52
GIF, for animation, 153
gradient fills, 96, 102, 104
graphic styles, 126
greetings cards (setup), 13
guides, 19
hairlines, 100
Hintline toolbar, 21
importing pictures, 114
imposition in printing, 158
Insert Frame, 144
installation, 6
changing views, 21
guides, 19
rulers, 18
Intersect (Join), 77
Invert Selection, 26
JPG (CMYK), 167
key objects (Keyframe animation),
Keyframe Animation, 142
keyframes, 147
changing duration of, 149
inserting, 149
Knife Tool, 87
labels (setup), 14
large documents (setup), 13
layers, 83
adding, 85
deleting, 85
locking, 86
managing objects on, 86
paper textures on, 86
properties of, 86
renaming, 85
selecting, 84
Layers tab, 84
layout tools
guides, 19
rulers, 18
Line tab, 97
linear fills, 102
applying settings, 97
closed (shapes), 31
contours, 78
curved, 29
dimension lines, 49
drawing, 27
editing, 42
extending, 29
filling unclosed, 32
hairline widths, 100
redrawing, 43
reshaping, 43
setting defaults, 97
smoothing, 28
styles for, 98
width of, 100
measurement units, 18
menus (folded), 13
metafiles, 114
morphing (blends), 133
multiple pages
exporting, 166
printing, 159
multiple selections, 25
New Drawing, 13, 14
new features, 3
New Keyframe Animation, 142
New Stopframe Animation, 142
node editing, 42
Node Tool, 24, 38
adding to, 89
aligning with each other, 81
augmenting, 89
combining, 75
converting shapes to editable
curves, 48
copying, cutting, and pasting, 66
cutting, 87
deleting, 66
distributing, 81
duplicating, 69
editing bitmap and plasma fills
on, 106
editing gradient fills on, 103
editing lines, 42
editing shapes, 42
erasing, 89
exporting, 163
fills, 92
group/ungroup, 80
joining, 75
key (Keyframe animation), 147
line settings, 97
hairlines, 100
measuring, 18, 49
on layers, 86
ordering, 82
outlines, 98
QuickShapes, 37
replicating, 69
resizing, 67
rotating and shearing, 73
scale, 18
selecting one or more, 24, 80
selecting, in groups, 80
splitting, 87
storing in Gallery, 53
tracing, 121
greyscale, 121
logos, 122
transparency, 110
tweened (Keyframe animation),
onion skinning (Stopframe
animation), 145
opacity, 107
Open (document), 15
restore last session, 16
ordering objects, 82
2D, 128
brushes as, 98
edge effects for, 98
page numbers and navigation, 21
Page Setup, 15
page units, 19
adding, 22
deleting, 22
exporting multiple, 166
viewing, 21
paper textures, 86
blending on, 135
fitting text to, 63
PDF files
previewing, 156
publishing, 161
Pen Tool, 29
Pencil Tool, 27
PhotoLab, 118
adjusting, 118
adjustments for, 119
converting to vector format, 123
cutting out, 115
in PhotoLab, 118
effects for, 119
importing, 114
importing multiple, 115
plasma fills, 96, 105
Pointer Tool, 24, 73
posters (setup), 13
presentations, 168
presentations (setup), 13
pressure sensitivity, 58
Pressure tab, 59
Keyframe animations, 150
PDF files, 156
Stopframe animations, 146
previewing (for print/PDF), 157
printing, 159
profiles, 133
blend, 133
pressure, 59
printing, 159
Publish as PDF, 161
QuickShapes, 37
adjusting, 38
converting to editable curves, 48
creating, 37
radial fills, 102
raster (bitmap) images, 114
changing raster to vector, 123
registration, 2
Replicate Tool, 70
replicating objects, 69
resizing, 67
Smart Sizing, 68
Rostrum Camera, 168
Rotate Tool, 24
rotating objects, 73
rulers, 18
sampling (colours), 101
animations, 143
documents, 17
Scalable Vector Graphics, 114
of drawings, 20
of drawings, 18
of line width, 100
selecting objects, 24
invert selection for, 26
multiply, 25
Send to Back, 83
Serif Metafile Format, 114
setup, animations, 142
Shadow Tool, 131
Shape Builder Tool, 75
shape text, 61
shapes, 31
combining, 75
drawing, 27
editing, 42
joining, 75
using QuickShapes, 37
shearing, 74
Size Objects, 67
slides, 168
Slides tab, 171
small documents (setup), 14
Smart Sizing, 68
SMF, 114
solid fills, 95
square fills, 102
stacking (ordering) objects, 82
Startup Assistant, 10, 13, 15
restore last session, 16
stencils, 136
Stencils tab, 136
Stopframe Animation, 142
stopframes, 143
cloning, 144
inserting, 144
onion skinning, 145
reordering, 145
Storyboard tab, 147
Straight Line Tool, 28
styles (graphic), 126
Styles tab, 130
Subtract (Join), 76
support, 176
Swatch tab, 94, 104, 105
system requirements, 7
Actions, 148
Align, 81
Colour, 93
Easing, 148
Frames, 144
Gallery, 52
Layers, 84
Line, 97
Pressure, 59
Slides, 171
Storyboard, 147
Styles, 130
Swatch, 94, 104, 105
Transparency, 111
tags (gift) (setup), 14
technical drawings (setup), 14
technical support, 176
artistic, 60
blending, 133
editing, 62
entering, 60
flow on a curve, 63
formatting, 63
frame, 61
retyping, 62
shape, 61
three colour fills, 102
tint, 96
adjusting, 96
Artistic Text, 60
Blend, 133
Brush, 56
Dimension, 50
Erase, 90
Fill, 103, 106
Flood, 38
Frame Text, 61
Freeform Paint, 90
Knife, 87
Node, 24
Pen, 29
Pencil, 27
Pointer, 24, 73
QuickShape, 37
Replicate, 70
Shadow, 131
Shape Builder, 75
Straight Line, 28
Transparency, 111
logos, 122
photos, 122
profiles, 121
transparency, 110
Transparency tab, 111
Transparency Tool, 111
tweened objects, 147
ungrouping objects, 80
fills, 106
vector graphics, 114
Weight of line (width), 100
zooming, 22
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