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Hour 4. Using the Library for Productivity > Using Symbols from the Library

Using Symbols from the Library

So far, the concept of dragging a symbol from the Library to create as many instances as you want has been pretty straightforward. It's powerful but easy to use. For a simple example, imagine that you made one symbol of a cloud. You could create many instances of the cloud symbol to make a cloudy sky. But you could do much more than that. Each instance on the Stage could be different from the next. One could be large and another one could be stretched out and darkened. In the upcoming task, for example, you'll see how multiple instances of one symbol can vary in size, scale, and rotation. And later this hour you'll make a symbol that contains instances of another symbol. Such nesting means not only that you can have many instances on the Stage but that you can recycle symbols to be used in the creation of other symbols. You'll learn about this one step at a time.

Placing Instances of Symbols on the Stage

This discussion might seem like repeated material, but the concept and process are very specific. One master symbol in the Library can be dragged on the Stage as many times as you like. Each one on the Stage is called an instance. You'll see how each instance can vary in a minute, but first let's review a couple points. If you copy and paste an instance that is already on the Stage, you are simply creating another instance. Not only is this okay, but it's sometimes preferable to the alternative—simply dragging an instance from the Library—because all the properties of the instance being copied will be in the new instance. Remember that the “copy” is just another instance.


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