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Learning to Draw in Macromedia Flash MX  : Page 2

Flash is the most ubiquitous drawing and animation tool ever created. Learn to create and edit images using the versatile drawing tools featured in Flash MX.


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Drawing Simple Objects and Mixing Colors
Figure 3: The Color Mixer panel and its selection of swatches.
The key to creating graphic objects efficiently in Flash is organization, which you accomplish primarily by properly using and naming layers. You can think of layers as virtual sheets of clear plastic upon which you create individual elements. When you "stack" the layers on top of one another, you see a finished product, yet you can still individually access and edit each layer, which simplifies the process of modifying and programming the elements.In the Timeline panel, double click the text that reads "Layer 1", which is the default layer name, and rename the layer "Background." This layer will hold the background colors and objects. You'll create the title and coffee cup illustration in a layer above the background layer. Next, go to the Tools panel and click on the Rectangle tool. Finally, move to the Color Mixer Panel and click on the Stroke Color option. Click on the pull-down swatch beside it and select the No Color option in the swatch picker that appears (see Figure 3). Selecting the No Color option means the shapes you draw won't have a visible border.
Figure 4: Choosing a color for the background rectangle in the Color Mixer
Next, click on the Fill Color (paint bucket) option in the Color Mixer panel. In the large color swatch that appears, select a color to use for the background. (You may refer to the sidebar Some Suggested Color Values for a list of the colors that I used to create this project.)

Select the Rectangle tool from the Toolbox panel, and draw a rectangle that covers the entire document, creating a background for the graphic. Next, you'll draw a rounded and outlined rectangle that serves as a contrast and anchor for the coffee cup and site title. Click on the Rectangle tool in the Tools panel again. In the "Options" section of the Tools panel there's a button that lets you set the radius of the rounded corners in a rectangle (see Figure 5).

Figure 5: The Round Rectangle option for the Rectangle tool
Click on that button, and in the dialog box that appears, set the corner radius to 10 points and click OK. Go back to the Color Mixer and select new fill and stroke colors. Now that you've set the colors for the rounded rectangle, you need to tell Flash how thick the stroke outline should be. At the bottom of the work area, you'll find the Properties panel. In the Stroke Height field, enter a value of 5 (see Figure 6).
Figure 6: Setting the Stroke Height in the Properties panel
After setting the stroke height, draw another rectangle about 2/3 the height of the document. Refer back to Figure 1 for the size and placement of this new object. Save your file.






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