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Hour 5. Using the Library for Productivi... > Task: Transform the Location, Scale,...

Task: Transform the Location, Scale, and Rotation of Instances

In a new file, draw a rectangle and then use the Text tool to type your name. Try to position the text and resize the rectangle so they're about the same size. Change the text color so it's legible on top of the rectangle.

Select everything you just drew and then choose Insert, Convert to Symbol. Name this symbol “My Name.” Leave the default Movie Clip behavior and then click OK.

Onscreen you now have an instance of the My Name symbol you just created. Create more instances of this symbol however you want—either copy and paste the one onscreen or drag instances from the Library.

For each instance onstage, make a change in its position by simply moving the instance to a different location. With some of the instances, select the Transform tool and change their scale (remember from Hour 2, “Drawing and Painting Original Art in Flash,” you can scale width or height or both at the same time). With other instances, change their rotation (remember that rotation includes “skew” when the Transform tool's rotation option is selected and you drag the non-corner handles). You can go wild here like in Figure 5.8, yet your file will only be as “big” as the master symbol. Do notice, however, that only the Transform tool's scale and rotate options are available (you can't distort and envelop symbol instances—only shapes).

Figure 5.8. Many instances of the same symbol each scaled, skewed, rotated, and positioned differently.

Instance Color Styles

You may think varying each instance's position, scale, and rotation provides for a lot of combinations—and it does. However, there's more. Each instance onstage can have a color style applied to it. Styles include tinting the color of an instance and changing an instance's alpha property (that is, its opacity). Similar to how each instance can have a different location, each instance can have different color effects. To move an instance, though, you just pick it up and move it. To apply a style you'll use the Properties panel.



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