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  Macromedia Freehand

Quick Defaults
You can set an object's default settings, such as stroke, fill, or type settings by simply modifying one object of that type. First, you have to enable this from File > Preferences > Object. Check the box labeled chancing object changes defaults. Henceforth, any property modified for objects becomes the default for that object. you can enable this option at the beginning of a session, set defaults for all objects you intend to use and then disable it.

Rounded Polygon Corners
To provide rounded corners to polygons, select the shape and click on Modify > After Path > Insert Path. Enter the amount of corner radius you want in the Insert field. Keep the Steps value at 1 and the Join option to Squared. On clicking OK, the polygon will shrink in size. Keeping the shape selected, again click on Modify > After Path > Inset Path. Use the negative value of the Inset value used above. Change the Join option to Rounded. On clicking OK, the polygon will have rounded coroners.

Pasting Behind Objects
You can paste an object behind another object, even if it is in a Group, without ungrouping it. Move the object in the position you want to paste it and cut it. Now select an object within the group, hold down the Alt key while clicking it. Click on Edit > Paste Behind to paste the contents from the clipboard behind the selected objects.

Bitmaps to vectors
The trace tool is extremely powerful for creating editable vector art from bitmap images. When you double-click on the tool, you will get a dialog box where you can choose the Color mode, the resolution, the amount of detail, etc. That the final traced image should have. Once you set these values to suit your needs, you can trace the bitmap by clicking and dragging over the part of the bitmap you want.

Creating a Line Grid
Draw a horizontal line to about the width of your grid. Clone the line and drag it down to about the height of the grid. Select both the lines and click on Modify > Combine > Blend. you can adjust the spacing of the lines by changing the number of Steps on the Object Inspector palette. Close this blend and click on Modify > Transform > Rotate. Rotate the close by 90. Align the corners to match those of the horizontal lines and the grid is ready.

Finding a Rotation Angle
If you want to find out by what angle an object has been rotated, turn on Snap To Point from the View menu. Select the Line tool and draw a line from the upper left point of the object to the upper right point. The angle is shown on the stats bar. For ellipses draw the line from one edge across the center to the other edge. For precise drawing, you can change the Snap distance from File > Preferences > General.

Save RAM!
The Undo information takes up RAM and slows down overall performance. You can configure the numbers of Undos FreeHand should store. Open File > Preferences > General and enter the number in the Undo's field. The lower the number , the lesser RAM will be used, but you will be able to track back only that many steps.

Quick Refresh
The preview mode displays images at full resolution, as well as each step of a blend object. The Fast Preview mode displays images at a faster speed, but at reduced resolution and lesser number of blend steps. this is useful for working in Preview mode with complex images, which would otherwise easily slow down your work process with every edit. To change the preview mode, click on View > Preview for the standard (slower) mode and View > Fast Mode for faster refresh.

Cluttered Toolbars
If your toolbars are getting too cluttered, you can organize them better, Click on File > Customize > Toolbars. To remove an icon from the toolbar, drag it outside the toolbar. To add an icon, drag it from the Toolbars dialog box onto the toolbar.


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