Corel Draw Tips


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How to Use CorelDraw

You can use Corel Draw and Illustrator to draw and make outdoor signs, setup files for industrial drawing applications that use machinery, example laser cutting and many more features.

Drawing logos: When drawing a logo, you should create 'base artwork' using vector lines and curves, this means drawing your logo in simple forms before you apply any colours.
TIPS: Use CorelDraw to weld your images together, Use the weld - trim - intersect tools. Combining two or more objects creates a single object with common fill and outline attributes. You can combine rectangles, ellipses, polygons, stars, spirals, graphs, or text. CorelDraw converts these objects to a single curve object. If you need to modify the attributes of an object that is combined, you can break the combined object apart. You can extract a sub path from a combined object to create two separate objects. You can also weld two or more objects to create a single object.

To combine objects

Select the objects to 'join together'.
Click Arrange } Combine

You can close open lines in a combined object by clicking Arrange } Close path, and clicking a command.
To break apart a combined object
Select a combined object.
Click Arrange } Break curve apart

Working with curve objects

CorelDraw lets you shape objects by manipulating their nodes and segments. An objectís nodes are the tiny squares that display along the objectís outline. The line between two nodes is called a segment. Moving an objectís segments lets you make coarse adjustments to the objectís shape, while changing the position of its nodes lets you fine-tune the shape of the object.

Most objects that are added to a drawing are not curve objects, with the exception of spirals and freehand and Bezier lines. Therefore, if you want to customize the shape of an object, it is recommended that you convert that object to a curve object. By converting objects to curves, you can shape them by adding, removing, positioning, as well as aligning and transforming their nodes.

Before you can manipulate an objectís nodes, you must select them. When working with curve objects you can select individual, multiple, or all of the objectís nodes. Selecting multiple nodes lets you shape different parts of an object simultaneously.

When you add nodes, you increase the number of segments, and therefore the amount of control you have over the shape of the object. You can also remove nodes to simplify an objectís shape.
When you create an object, it is made up of one or multiple paths. If you are working on an open object, such as a freehand line, you can join its start and end nodes. When you join the start and end nodes, the two nodes are pulled together to create a closed object. You can add color to the inside of closed paths that you create. For information on applying fills, see "Filling objects." If the paths consist of multiple sub paths, you can break paths apart to extract sub paths. For information on breaking paths apart see "Splitting and erasing portions of objects."

After you create a curve object, you can align its nodes horizontally or vertically.

You can change the nodes on a curve object to one of four types: cusp, smooth, symmetrical, or line. Cusp nodes make the nodeís intersecting line take on the shape of a corner or point when you adjust the position of the nodeís control points. Smooth nodes make the nodeís intersecting line take on the shape of a curve. Each control point can be shortened or lengthened independently, giving you smaller or larger angles to work with. Symmetrical nodes make the nodeís intersecting line take on the shape of a curve as well as intersect the node at exactly the same angle. Line nodes let you shape objects by changing the shape of their segments. You can make a curve segment straight or a straight segment curved.

The components of a curve

You can also change the direction of a segment by reversing the position of its start and end nodes. The effect is transparent only when the ends of a segment are different. We complete this function typically when setting files for laser cutting and .DXF files used in sign engraving etc.

You can also shape objects by stretching, scaling, rotating, and skewing their nodes. For example, you can scale the corner nodes of a curve object to enlarge the curve object proportionally. Stretching, on the other hand, elongates a curve object so that its shape is distorted. All or parts of a curve object can be rotated in a counter clockwise or clockwise direction. You can also skew nodes to shape a curve object.

Tools you should learn to use often.

  • The Pick tool lets you select and size, skew, and rotate objects.
  • The Shape tool lets you edit the shape of objects.
  • The Freehand tool lets you draw single line segments and curves.
  • The Bezier tool lets you draw curves one segment at a time.
  • The Dimension tool lets you draw vertical, horizontal, slanted, or angular dimension lines.
  • The Rectangle tool lets you draw rectangles and squares.
  • The Ellipse tool lets you draw ellipses and circles.
  • The Text tool lets you type words directly on the screen as artistic or paragraph text.
  • The Fill tool lets you set the fill properties.
  • The Outline tool lets you set the outline properties.
  • The Contour Outline Tool lets you create key lines in vector formats. This is the most useful tool in CorelDraw for making 'scalable' logos, fonts and drawings with a Key Line. Learn to use this tool, it is very handy and will allow you 'scalable' drawings and files.
  • The Page Up Page Down Buttons on your Keyboard. Select your object, then use the Page up or Page down buttons, this will make the object layer above or below the other items on your screen. In this manner you can draw without requiring individual layers as used in Photoshop etc. You can also use Ctrl/Page Up, Ctrl Page Down, to move above or below one item at a time. Very handy.

Things to avoid when drawing on your computer.

Avoid using outlines, instead use the Contour tool, choose the visual weight of stroke you like, then apply contour. From there, break apart the contour outline and fill the colours. Use Ctrl/Page Up or Ctrl Page Down to put your key line in the correct position.
Now you weld, cut, trim, or perform any drawing function with the Key line. This is very handy and makes your drawing fully 'Scalable'

Avoid placing the same colour object over another same colour object. It is better to weld the two colour objects together. This will create less nodes and more speed, less objects and lower file size.

Avoid placing objects over and over, better to weld or combine

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