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Drawing lines

From: Photoshop for Designers: Shape Layers

Video: Drawing lines

Drawing lines is very straightforward, but there are three things to consider: the line weight or thickness, the angle of constrain, and whether or not you want to add arrowheads to your lines. Firstly the line weight, currently 1 pixel. If I draw myself a 1 pixel weight line, it's going to look like that and I cannot change the weight of that line after I've drawn it. Unless I were to come to my Layers Effects and add an additional stroke weight to that line. That would do it, but it's better to get the line weight correct to begin with.

Drawing lines

Drawing lines is very straightforward, but there are three things to consider: the line weight or thickness, the angle of constrain, and whether or not you want to add arrowheads to your lines. Firstly the line weight, currently 1 pixel. If I draw myself a 1 pixel weight line, it's going to look like that and I cannot change the weight of that line after I've drawn it. Unless I were to come to my Layers Effects and add an additional stroke weight to that line. That would do it, but it's better to get the line weight correct to begin with.

So I'm going to undo that by pressing Command+Z or Ctrl+Z and now I'm going to increase the line weight by pressing my right bracket to increase the line weight. In addition, if I wanted to draw my lines constrain to increments of 45 degrees, either straight or diagonal, I would hold down my Shift key. Now here is something to watch out for, because if I hold down my Shift key and draw another line and I start with my Shift key held down, Photoshop is going to interpret that as me wanting to add the second line to this existing shape layer.

You can now see we have two lines, if you look at the vector mask thumbnail. If that's not what I want, and actually it's not what I want, then start drawing the line, then hold down the Shift key, and that's going to create you a new shape layer. The third point I want to make about drawing lines is the ability to add arrowheads to them. Unfortunately you cannot add arrowheads after the effects, you need to get this right to begin with, and you do this through the star fish looking like tool up here, and I'm going to add arrowheads at the start.

I find this a little bit counterintuitive, because you if I add arrowheads at the start, that doesn't mean it's going to add an arrowhead in the direction that I'm dragging. Quite the opposite. So if you want to add an arrowhead in the direction that you're dragging, which seems more likely, then you actually want arrowheads at the end. If you want to make the arrowhead curved, then you want some concavity. I'm going to change the Concavity to 50%, and if I only want the-- in this case, the arrowhead as long as it is wide, I'm going to make that percentage the same, 500%.

So now I can drag an arrowhead in the direction that I'm dragging and it would look like that. So, some simple things to consider, but not to be overlooked when working with lines. The line weight or thickness, the angle of constrain, and whether or not you want to add arrowheads.

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This video is part of

Image for Photoshop for Designers: Shape Layers
Photoshop for Designers: Shape Layers

42 video lessons · 13978 viewers

Nigel French
Author

 
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  1. 1m 31s
    1. Welcome
      59s
    2. Using the exercise files
      32s
  2. 30m 57s
    1. Three ways to use the shape tools
      6m 49s
    2. Converting shapes to paths and vice versa
      1m 24s
    3. Moving, deleting, copying, and rasterizing shape layers
      5m 28s
    4. Drawing rectangles, rounded rectangles, and ellipses
      2m 59s
    5. Drawing lines
      2m 40s
    6. Drawing polygons and stars
      1m 48s
    7. Drawing pen paths by adding, deleting, and converting anchor points
      5m 51s
    8. Drawing pen paths with hybrid anchor points
      2m 58s
    9. Inverting paths
      1m 0s
  3. 28m 19s
    1. Adding, subtracting, intersecting, excluding, and combining shapes
      3m 50s
    2. Aligning and distributing shapes
      2m 19s
    3. Coloring shape layers
      2m 1s
    4. Creating a poster by combining simple shapes, part 1
      11m 32s
    5. Creating a poster by combining simple shapes, part 2
      8m 37s
  4. 52m 55s
    1. Creating a logo with shape layers
      10m 47s
    2. Applying blend modes to shape layers
      3m 36s
    3. Applying layer effects and styles to shape layers
      2m 53s
    4. Adding strokes to shape layers
      5m 14s
    5. Applying Smart Filters to shape layers
      4m 0s
    6. Combining shape layers with layer effects, blending modes, and Smart Objects
      5m 31s
    7. Creating shape layers from type
      3m 32s
    8. Creating web buttons using shape layers
      2m 33s
    9. Using shape layers to mask multiple layers
      3m 6s
    10. Adding shape layers to a photo illustration
      7m 38s
    11. Using shape layers to apply custom gradients to type
      4m 5s
  5. 28m 52s
    1. Finding and loading custom shapes
      3m 13s
    2. Creating your own custom shape
      5m 2s
    3. Creating a custom shape from an Illustrator symbol
      5m 1s
    4. Creating a custom shape from an Illustrator Live Trace object
      9m 40s
    5. Creating seamless patterns from shape layers
      4m 18s
    6. Saving and loading shapes with the Preset Manager
      1m 38s
  6. 30m 10s
    1. What is a vector mask?
      6m 39s
    2. Converting to a selection, vector mask, or layer mask
      5m 17s
    3. Linking and unlinking vector masks
      4m 47s
    4. Using shape layers to create a photo grid
      1m 42s
    5. Feathering a vector mask edge
      2m 54s
    6. Adjusting vector mask density
      3m 16s
    7. Combining vector masks with layer masks
      3m 34s
    8. Working with paths and clipping paths
      2m 1s
  7. 19s
    1. Goodbye
      19s

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