Drawing straight paths with multiple segments

So far, you've worked with two-point paths. You can draw complex straight-segment paths with the pen tool simply by continuing to add points. These segments and anchor points can be moved later, either individually or as a group.

1 Using the pen tool Q), click point E to begin the next path. Then hold down Shift and click points F, G, H, and I. Holding down Shift as you click restricts the positions along 45° angles.

/\

V /\

/ E

^ \ _

Note: If you make a mistake while you're drawing, choose Edit > Undo to undo the last-placed anchor point. Then try again.

2 End the path using one of the methods you've learned.

When a path contains more than one segment, you can drag individual anchor points to adjust individual segments of the path. You can also select all of the anchor points in a path to edit the entire path.

3 Select the direct selection tool (>).

4 Click a segment of the zigzag path and drag to move the whole segment. As you drag, both the anchor points for that segment move and the connecting segments adjust accordingly. The length and slope of the selected segment and the positions of the other anchor points do not change.

5 Select one of the individual anchor points on the path and drag it to a new position. Notice how this changes the adjacent segment or segments of the path.

6 Alt-click (Windows) or Option-click (Mac OS) to select the entire path. When an entire path is selected, all the anchor points are solid.

F

F

I

E

G

I

G

i

Dragging individual points Alt/Option-clicking to select entire path

Dragging individual points Alt/Option-clicking to select entire path

7 Drag the path to move the entire path without changing its shape. Creating closed paths

Next you'll draw a closed path. Creating a closed path differs from creating an open path in the way that you end the path.

2 Click point J to begin the path; then click point K and point L.

3 To close the path, position the pointer over the starting point (point J), and click.

When you position the pointer over the starting point of a path (J), a small circle appears with the pen tool to indicate that the path will be closed when you click.

Closing a path automatically ends the path. After the path closes, the pen tool pointer again appears with a small x, indicating that your next click would start a new path.

4 For more practice, draw another closed path, using the star-shape template.

5 Examine the thumbnail in the Paths palette.

At this point, all of the paths you've drawn appear in the Straight Lines work path in the Paths palette. Each individual path on the Straight Lines path is called a subpath.

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