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In Fireworks CS5 Essential Training, author Jim Babbage gives a detailed overview of Fireworks CS5, Adobe's software for creating and optimizing web graphics and interactive prototypes. This course includes a detailed tour of the interface, the enhanced PNG format, and the image editing toolset in Fireworks. Critical concepts, such as prototyping for HTML applications and working with symbols, the heart of an efficient workflow in Fireworks, are covered in detail. Exercise files are included with this course.
You're not limited to running text in a straight line in Fireworks, no sir. While working with a path, you can have text travel in any direction and at any angle, even on a curve. Let's give this a try. We're going to go down to our Footer section. So I'm going to select my footer layer, and scroll down, and there's all our information in our footer. What I want to do is I want to add the words Explore California, and I want them to basically run along the angles that we see here with the graphic of the state. So I'm going to go and choose my Pen tool, and I'm going to click once to start my vector path.
I'm going to click again where the angle changes, and I'm going to click again about somewhere around there. Okay, so I've got my path drawn. Now remember with the Pen tool, it keeps thinking you want to draw more unless you double-click to close off that path segment. So there's my path drawn. I'm going to grab my Text tool, and I'm going to type just some words here. I'm going to go and choose Chaparral as my font choice, and we'll start off with the default settings here, but I have a feeling we'll be changing those.
So I'll type the words Explore California. And it is a bit on the small side. So I'll just select the text. And beef it up. Let's go up to about 24, 26, in that range there. That looks pretty good, and we'll make it Bold as well, and we'll also adjust the actual size of the text box just sort of it runs in one straight line.
And I think even then, it's probably not quite big enough. I want this to be really obvious. So I'm going to continue, and I'm going to go until it's about 36 point, and I'll just resize things, like so. There we are. I'll just reposition this a little bit. So there's my text. Now if I move my mouse a little higher up, and you'll see that my path gets highlighted. So what I want to do is hold down my Shift key and select the path and have the text selected as well. And then I'll go up to my Text menu again, and this time I'm going to choose Attach to Path, and this will force the text to follow the existing path.
So I've got it basically following the actual outline of the state. The two elements are grouped together. So I can reposition them. If I want to realign things a little bit, not a problem to do. And let's see, I get tidy that up a little bit, and I'll zoom in a little to make it a little really easier for you to see what I'm doing here. Now not only can I reposition this group, I can also make changes. I can still edit the text. For example, I can click inside, and I can go ahead and change, maybe add a bit more space between Explore and California. And I can also grab my Subselection tool.
And I can reposition the path itself. So I'm not limited by my first sketch of that path. I can make changes to this pretty much as often as I like. Now one thing I will point out when you're working with text in the path. If you make the path too short, you'll notice that the text disappears and what you end up with is a little symbol that indicates that there's more text than is available to display. This is a pretty typical visual indicator. You'll see the same kind of thing in Illustrator. So just basically stretch out the path until you get to the point where your text shows up again, and you're good to go.
Now as well as being able to run text along a path, I can also play with the distortion of the text a little bit as it follows an angle. So if I go up to my Text commands, you'll see I can choose Orientation, and the default is Rotate Around the Path. But I can also choose Vertical, Skew Vertical or Skew Horizontal. So I'm going to choose Skew Vertical. And you'll see that I get more of a three-dimensional kind of look to my text, and that might be a little more suitable for what I'm aiming for. So I'll go back out to 100% and yeah, actually that doesn't look too bad.
If you've decide at some point that you don't want to have your text running along a path, just go up to your Text menu and choose Detach from Path, and that'll basically break apart the two elements, and now they're just their own separate pieces. I'll just press Ctrl+Z or Command+ Z on the Mac to undo the detaching. So there you have another technique for working with text, and the great thing is everything remains editable. The text is still editable, the path is still editable, and you even got the option if you no longer want to have the text run along the path, to detach the elements from each other.
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