Drawing

Draw a Path with the Pen Tool

The Pen tool Pen tool icon lets you draw both straight and curved lines. To draw a path, you should add one segment after another. If any of added anchor points or segments require adjustments, you can edit the path after it is created.

Controls of the Pen Tool

The Pen tool displays several options in the Control panel. They let you choose different modes of the tool. The use of those modes is discussed farther in this section and also in Edit a Path.

Control panel of the Pen tool

1 - Draw a path. In this mode, you add anchor points to create a new path.

2 - Add an anchor point to an existing path. Click on the path with this tool.

3 - Delete an anchor point. Click on the anchor point with the tool.

4 - Change the type of an anchor point form smooth to corner, and vice versa. This tool lets you manipulate the direction points in order to adjust the curvature of path segments. In this mode, you can simply select anchor points in order to delete or edit them using other tools.

5 - Convert a selected anchor point to the corner point type.

6 - Convert a selected anchor point to the smooth point type.

Draw a Straight Line

  1. Activate the Pen tool.
  2. Click at the point where the line should start.
  3. Click at the point where the line should end.
  4. Hit the Escape key to deactivate the tool.

Draw a Polygon

  1. Activate the Pen tool.
  2. Click at the point where one of polygon's corners should be located.
  3. Click several times at points where other corners should appear.
  4. Click on the first point to close the outline of the polygon. A circle near the cursor indicates that the program will close the shape if you click.
  5. Hit the Escape key to deactivate the tool.

Draw Curved Line

In order to draw a curved line, you should press the left mouse button and drag the cursor off the click point. The direction line will follow the cursor. The direction line bends the segment you are drawing near the corresponding anchor point. Using this method, you can set the initial direction of the curve near each anchor point. Later, you can adjust direction lines to make the shape of the curve more precise.

Draw Curved Path

  1. Activate the Pen tool.
  2. Place the cursor at the point where the line should start.
  3. Press and hold the left mouse button.
  4. Move the cursor aside to see the direction line. One of its shoulders links the cursor and anchor point. Both the length and angle of the direction line will affect the curvature of the line you draw. Release the button.
    Adjust the direction line
  5. Move the cursor to the next point.
    Adjust the direction line
  6. Repeat the three preceding steps.
  7. Click on the first point if you want to close the shape.
  8. Hit the Escape key to deactivate the tool.

Notice that you can combine curved and straight segments.

As an alternative technique of drawing a curved path, you can create it out of straight segments. Then make them curved as explained on the Edit a Path section.

Stroke Width and Color

To change the stroke width and color, use the Appearance panel. To change the stroke width, you can also use these keys: [ to decrease, and ] to increase.