Home > Articles > Graphics & Web Design > Dreamweaver & Flash

Creating Graphics in Adobe Flash CS4

  • Print
  • + Share This
Here are all the basics of creating graphics in Flash CS4.
This chapter is from the book

What You’ll Do

  • Work with Object Drawing
  • Draw Lines and Shapes
  • Use the Selection Tools
  • Zoom In and Out
  • Move Around with the Hand Tool
  • Use Rulers, Grids, and Guides
  • Modify Grid and Guide Settings
  • Use Snap Align
  • Change Stroke and Fill Colors
  • Create Custom Colors
  • Add Colors Using the Kuler Panel
  • Edit Strokes with the Ink Bottle
  • Edit Fills with the Paint Bucket
  • Use the Spray Brush and Deco Tools
  • Edit Strokes and Fills with the Eyedropper
  • Create Gradients
  • Use the Fill Lock
  • Use Paint Brush Modes
  • Draw with the Pen Tool
  • Modify Shapes
  • Use the Free Transform Tool
  • Use Transform Options for Shapes
  • Change Drawing Settings


Flash offers a full suite of tools for creating and editing graphics. When you draw in Flash, you create vector art. Vectors are mathematical descriptions of lines and points that, when connected, form shapes and objects. Vector-defined art is not limited by resolution like bitmaps are, so they can be scaled to any size without a loss in quality or increase in file size. This is the basis of Flash; and the main reason Flash files are so small and why they can be deployed on so many platforms. Vector graphics are also fully editable after they are created so you can continue to adjust their properties. Included in Flash are many of the drawing tools and procedures familiar to the seasoned user of vector drawing programs. It is also a good place for the beginner to learn. Sketch naturally with the Pencil and Brush tools or use vector-based objects, such as the Rectangle or Oval tools or the Polystar tool. Use the Pen tool to create lines and shapes with Bézier curves. Whatever is drawn can be edited and modified with a variety of tools and palettes. When you select an object or graphic on the Stage, the Property Inspector displays the attributes of that object that are modifiable, such as fill and stroke color, position, and scale.

You can draw shapes in Flash using two drawing models: Merge Drawing and Object Drawing. The Merge Drawing model, the default (like previous versions of Flash), automatically merges shapes that you draw when you overlap them. If you select a shape that has been merged with another, and move it, the shape below it is moved too. The Object Drawing model allows you to draw shapes as separate objects that do not automatically merge together when you overlap them. You can now extend the Object Drawing mode by creating primitive rectangles and ovals in Primitive mode, which allows you to edit properties in the Property Inspector and specify the corner radius of rectangles and inner radius of ovals. This makes it easy to create pie wedges, round off corners, and other curved shapes.

  • + Share This
  • 🔖 Save To Your Account