• Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint

Task: Use the Pen Tool

In this task you use the Pen tool to draw controlled shapes. Follow these steps:

To begin, you'll draw a diamond. Select the Pen tool. Toward the bottom of the Stage, click and let go (this will be the bottom of the diamond). Then, up and to the left, click once for the left corner of the diamond. Click and release for the top and right corners as well. Finally, move your cursor near the first point you created. You should see the cursor change to include a little circle, as in Figure 2.12. You'll learn how the cursor frequently changes to provide you information later this hour. For now, it's enough to know that the little circle on the Pen tool indicates that if you click, you'll enclose the shape you started. Click to enclose the shape. It should automatically fill with the current fill color.

Figure 2.12. The Pen tool changes to include an extra circle, indicating that a click will enclose the shape you're drawing.

You can also draw a “V” shape. Click once for the top-left point of the V, click once for the bottom point, and then double-click for the third and final point (the top-right point). Double-clicking finishes the shape, even if it's not enclosed; if you click again elsewhere on the Stage, you'll be starting a new shape or line. Therefore, two ways to “finish” what you've started with the Pen tool include double-clicking and enclosing the shape (as you did in Step 1). A third way is to simply select another tool from the drawing tools.

Now you'll try creating a curved line. Click the Pen tool (to make sure you're starting a new line) and then click once, drag, and let go toward the left side of the screen.

Now you're about to lay down an anchor point on the curve you want to create. Therefore, click and drag before letting go. Above and to the right of the first point, click and hold the mouse down. While holding down the mouse button, if you move the mouse to the right, you'll see that your horizontal tangent causes a curve to appear that levels off, as shown in Figure 2.13.

Figure 2.13. When clicking to make an anchor point, if you drag (to the right in this case) you will establish a tangent for the curve that's created.

If you continue to hold down the mouse button while moving the mouse straight above the second point, you'll see that the shape of the curve is totally different because the tangent you're creating is different (see Figure 2.14).

Figure 2.14. Depending on the direction of the tangent (in this case, upward), the curve changes.

Finally, while still holding down the mouse button, you can increase or decrease the distance you're dragging (from the point you clicked). This affects the degree of the curve's arc. Before your hand gets tired, move the mouse to the right. Then double-click down to the right at about the same height as the first point to make an arc. Even though this curve has three points, only the middle one needs a curve to it—that is, when creating the first and last points, you didn't click and drag.



Not a subscriber?

Start A Free Trial

  • Creative Edge
  • Create BookmarkCreate Bookmark
  • Create Note or TagCreate Note or Tag
  • PrintPrint