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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.
Now that you understand how to draw basic shapes in Flash, you're ready to start looking at how to select lines and fills. So I'm going to select a PolyStar tool in the toolbar I'm going to use Merge Drawing for this example. I'll have a Yellow fill, a Black stroke and a stroke height of 10. I'm going to choose in the Options area to create a star with 5 Sides and a 0.50 Star point size. So I click Ok. Then I'll click and drag to draw a star on the Stage.
Now I'll use the Selection tool to select it. Remember that the keyboard shortcut for the Selection tool is V. So on the Stage here, I have a star. In Merge Drawing, selecting shapes works very different from Object Drawing. Single Clicking on a fill selects only a fill. So if I select the fill and I release my mouse button, the cursor updates to show four directional arrows. So if I click and drag, I'll only move the fill. Now I'll undo that change.
If you double-click a fill, Flash will select the stroke and the fill. Then when you release your mouse button and click and drag again, you will have the whole shape selected. I'll deselect everything by clicking in the pasteboard. To select a line segment, click anywhere on the stroke. So see here that I have a line segment selected. If you double-click a line segment, then all connected line segments are selected. For this shape, line segments go all around the shape.
So I select the whole stroke when I double-click it. With Merge Drawing, you can also select part of a shape. So if I click and drag a selection area around the top half of the star, and then I click and drag the top half of the star, it disconnects from the other half of the star. So there is how to select lines and fills using Merge Drawing. Now let's take a look at Object Drawing. I'm going to draw the same shape, but with Object Drawing on this time. Note the rectangle around the star.
You can adjust the color of that rectangle in Flash > Preferences under the General category. So with a Merge Drawing shape, you don't have the same options, because when you single-click the shape, the whole shape is selected. You can't isolate the fill from the stroke. You also cannot select a portion of the shape by clicking and dragging. However, this is very important. If you double-click a Drawing Object, Flash actually takes you inside of the Drawing Object.
Inside of that Drawing Object is a raw shape. Think of this as somewhat like entering inside of a group. When you're in regular mode, you're viewing the group. When you double-click the Drawing Object, you're inside of the group and you can edit the individual parts of the group. So you can tell that you're inside of a Drawing Object at the top left of the screen. Notice that it says Scene 1. To the right of Scene 1, it says Drawing Object. Flash is tellingly me now that I'm editing a Drawing Object inside of Scene 1, which is the main Stage of my application.
So this Drawing Object is actually a merge shape. So I can click and drag and edit it, just like a merge shape. Now if I go back to the main Stage or main Timeline by clicking the Scene 1, my Drawing Object, as you can see in the Properties panel is a Drawing Object. But I was able to edit it using Merge Drawing mode. Also note again that it says Scene 1 with no Drawing Object to the right of it. So you really want to take note of this. If you're ever going to use Object Drawing, because when you double-click, you're going to go into Merge Drawing mode.
You can tell, because it says Drawing Object to the top left of the Stage.
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