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In Flash Professional CS5 Essential Training, author Todd Perkins explains the fundamentals of Flash Professional CS5, the industry standard for creating animations and interactive applications for the web, desktop, and mobile devices. This course starts with the basics, such as using the drawing tools to create simple animations, and progresses to automating animation with tweens and adding interactivity with ActionScript. This course also covers how to add sound and video to projects, enhance realism with effects like easing, and publish a project to a variety of platforms. Exercise files are included.
In this chapter we are going to be working with layers and the timeline. Layers allow you to organize a document from front to back, so you can place objects in front of or behind other objects. The most efficient way to organize a group of objects into layers is a command called Distribute to Layers. So for example, I have a lot of artwork on Stage here and if I wanted to just select the waves, I have to select them one at a time. So there are several wave elements and I have to Shift+Click them all in order to get them all selected and to move them around.
It will be more efficient to have these objects all on one layer. So I can show or hide them or move them around all at the same time. That way they don't even have to be grouped, but they are still organized together. So let's look at this Distribute to Layers command. Select all the artwork on the Stage, the easiest way to do that is to just press Command+A or Ctrl+A on your keyboard, the standard Select All command, then right-click somewhere in your selection and choose Distribute to Layers. Flash then automatically creates layers for each object that you have selected.
Some layers are automatically named those are the ones that just have shapes on them. So I have layer 2, 3, 4 and all the way through 10. Then some layers with text are actually named for you based on the text in each text field. So we have Sea, FROM, TO, and Desert, which are all individual text fields and they get their individual layers and they are also named automatically by Flash. So using this command you can easily convert a group of objects that are on one layer into multiple layers that are sometimes named automatically by Flash.
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