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In Flash Catalyst CS5 Essential Training, author Mordy Golding demonstrates how to create and publish fully interactive Flash (SWF) micro sites, widgets, portfolios, and applications from static Photoshop, Illustrator, and Fireworks artwork—all without writing code. The course covers planning a project, importing and organizing assets, creating interactive components, defining repeating data lists, and publishing final projects. Exercise files are included with the course.
Now so far throughout this training we've been creating new Flash Catalyst files based on either an existing Illustrator, Photoshop or FXG file that was exported from Fireworks. However, it's entirely possible that you may want to just get started creating something inside of Flash Catalyst by itself. To do so, from the Welcome screen simply click over here where it says Create New Project: a new Adobe Flash Catalyst project. A dialog box will come up asking what size of the artboard you want to work with. The default setting is 800x600 and you can also choose what color you want the background of your page to be.
Choosing a background color could be helpful, because it does not require you to create a new shape just to change the color. Once you've specified your settings you can click OK and you'll be inside of your Flash Catalyst project. Now there are some basic drawing tools here inside of Flash Catalyst. You'll find them up over here and we'll cover these in detail later on in the training. There are also some Wireframe Components. These are pre-built components that you can just drag out onto your artboard and start working with. However, I find that actually creating artwork and working as a designer inside of Flash Catalyst is incredibly difficult.
A lot of the things that we take for granted in a more mature design application like Photoshop, Illustrator, or Fireworks, may not be present or as fine-tuned here inside of Flash Catalyst. After all Flash Catalyst still is a version 1.0 product. That being the case you still might find it helpful to jump into Flash Catalyst, throw a few components together just to show it to a client. However, there's no easy way to get artwork out of Flash Catalyst and bring those into other applications, for example like Illustrator or Photoshop. It's pretty much a one-way street.
That's why it's easier to first create your artwork inside of other design applications and then bring them into Flash Catalyst.
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