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3.1 Path Creation

Gravit brings its own collection of path creation tools, offering some functionality uncommon in other applications. In this video we’ll go over the options you have available to you and how to use each one.

3.1 Path Creation

Hey, welcome back too Gravit Designer Quick Start. In this video we gonna be checking out the path creation tools that come with Gravit. We're gonna be looking these separate tool to the shape creation tools, so tools that are designed to let you lay down rectangles, and ellipsis, and fixed shapes. Rather, we're gonna be looking in this section here, at these three path creation tools. We have the Pen tool, the Bazigon tool, and the Freehand tool. All right, so let's just start with the basics. We're gonna grab the pen tool and activate it from here. You can also activate the pen tool with the P shortcut. Now, we'll just look at how you can go about creating a basic shape with this tool. If you used any other vector design software, this is gonna be fairly familiar. So you just click wherever you wanna lay down a point or a node. And then when you wanna close the shape, you hover over an existing point, and you'll get this little cross shape that you see on the screen right now. Click here, and then that's gonna connect those two nodes together and close off your shape. And if you look over on the right here, you can see that we have a few different settings available. And these will just control the behavior of each one of our nodes, or points, on our shape here. If you want to directly select an individual node on a path, then what you want is the Subselect tool up here, which you can also activate by pressing D. With this tool active, you'll notice that the cursor is white in the center. So that's how you tell the difference between the two. So you have a black cursor or a white cursor. With the Subselect tool active, now you can select different nodes and modify them. You can select multiple nodes at once by dragging a selection box around nodes. And you can also hold down Shift and click to select multiple nodes directly. So I'm just going to click outside the shape to deselect them. Click the shape once again with the Subselect tool. And I'm just gonna select this node here so I can check out some of these settings. And probably the setting that you're gonna go to most often will be the joint type setting here. So by default, you just get this basic straight joint. And when all of your joints are straight like this, then you're just gonna get direct straight lines following the shortest path from point to point. If I start to use one of these different types of joints here, then we can start to change the way that the lines connect the nodes together. So, let's go with the first one, Mirror, here. Now you can see that this is smoothed out the lines in between the nodes. Let's move this down a little. And if we have our node selected here, you can see these handles coming off the node, and you can also see that they're inline with each other. And if I click and drag on this little circle at the end of the handle here, I can change the length of these handles, and I can change the rotation. And that modifies how our curve looks in between our nodes. Now, these different joint types here, these affect the way that these handles modify the type of curve that you have in between each of your nodes. So we'll change it to disconnected. Now, if I grab this handle here, you can see that I can change it independently of the other handle. So I can do anything I want with these two, and they're gonna work separately. Now, if I change it to symmetric, now we're back to having an even curve, and these two are connected again. But what you'll notice here, is that even though, when I rotate around that node by dragging this handle, the handle on the other side moves corresponding with that. So we keep a straight line across either of these handles. But when I move in and out, this handle can move in and out and change it's length by itself, while the other one has it's length also being set independently. And that's different from the mirror setting, because with this, you can see that the other handle will change both it's length and it's rotation to mirror the handle opposite it. So you cab change these joint types by either hitting either of the icons here, or you can go to this drop down list here. You can also Change the type of nodes all at the same time. So, for example, if I wanna turn this into a smoothly rounded shape, then I might wanna change them all to mirror type nodes. Okay, so I'm just gonna delete that path for now, go back to regular pointer, hit Delete. And I'm just gonna show you another couple of things about laying down points with the pen tool. Now, by default, if you just click, you're gonna get that straight node like I mentioned before. But if when you click you also drag, then you're going to get a symmetric type node instead. If you hold down Alt and then drag, now instead, you're gonna get a disconnected node type. And if you hold down Shift, then you're gonna be able to place your node on a direct line at 45 degree increments from the previous node. So by utilizing those modify keys as you're placing your nodes down, it can speed up the process of creating the kind of shape that you're wanting to generate. You saw before that one way to complete a shape is to go to the first node in the line and click to close it. But what you can also do is just hit Enter to leave a path where it is, and that will leave the path just as a line. But now, if you select that path, you also have the option to check this box here marked Closed. And then that's gonna automatically fill in that line for you. And then if you wish, you can come back, and you can unclose that shape again later. So that's a really handy way to work with those open paths. And then there's one more setting that I wanna show you before we move on to the next tool. And that is, if you select, actually first, I'm going to just draw a simpler shape. Just draw out a basic rectangleish type of a shape. You'll also see that we have this setting here, Corner. Now, this is really, really helpful, because if you want to round off corners in a really controlled way, all you need to do is drag up this slider, and it's gonna round out those corners for you. And this is super, super helpful because sometimes when you round out a corner, you find that later on you wanna come back, and you wanna change how rounded off that corner is. And if you want that corner to be perfectly smooth and perfectly round, it can be a lot faster working with a function like this than it might be trying to drag handles around to smooth out a curve just the way you want it. And we also have this little button here, which gives us access to multiple types of corners. So we've got a rounded corner that gives us an inset. And you can go through and check these out for yourself, but we have bevels, insets, and fancy corners. So these are really cool, quick, and easy ways to give yourself some ornate patterns in your corner areas. All right, so next up, I'm just gonna delete that shape. We're gonna check out this second tool here, the Bezegon tool. And this is still, a fair bit like the pen tool. So you can still just draw out shapes just like you would with the pen tool. But the the cool thing is, when you're using the Bezegon tool, if you hold down Alt, then it is going to automatically smooth out the corners of your shape as you go along. And this could be really, really great for creating sort of organic looking fluid shapes that you don't have to spend a lot of time manipulating handles on to get that kind of smoothness that you wanted. It auto calculates it for you. And then finally, I also wanna show you the Freehand tool. Most vector drawing applications will have a freehand drawing tool. But a common thing that you'll find is that as you draw your freehand lines, you get a lot of jitter in the line, and you get an excess number of nodes being added down. With some programs, a solution is present, in that, you can draw out a shape. Then you can select that shape, and you can have the program simplify the shape by removing nodes for you after the fact.. Some applications don't even have that functionality. You pretty much, you just get what you can manage to draw with the freehand. But Gravit is really good for freehand drawing, because what it will do is actually simplify for you as you go along. So if I just start drawing out of shape, You can see that it's making sure that I only have the minimum number of nodes here. So this makes this a really great application for sketching. All right, so that covers the essentials of path creation. We've gone through the Pen tool, Bezigon tool, the Freehand tool, as well as some of the settings that you have to control the joints on your shapes, as well as the corners and the types of corners that you might like to use. In the next video, we're gonna take a look at some of the premade shape tools here, the tools that will help you lay down predefined shapes really quickly, rather than drawing out all of your shapes manually. So we're gonna check out these shape tools in the next lesson. I'll see you there.

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