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Different Parts Of Drawing Toolbar Assignments

Some tools in the toolbox are for selecting, editing, and creating page elements. Other tools are for choosing type, shapes, lines, and gradients. You can change the overall layout of the toolbox to fit your preferred window and panel layout. By default, the toolbox appears as a single vertical column of tools. You can also set it up as a double vertical column or as one horizontal row. However, you can’t rearrange the positions of individual tools in the toolbox. You can drag the top of the toolbox to move it.

Select a tool from the default toolbox by clicking it. The toolbox also contains several hidden tools related to the visible tools. Hidden tools are indicated by arrows to the right of the tool icons. Select a hidden tool by clicking and holding the current tool in the toolbox and then selecting the tool that you want.

The name of the tool and its keyboard shortcut appear when you hold the pointer over the tool—this text is called the tool tip. You can turn off tool tips by choosing None from the Tool Tips menu in Interface preferences.

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The Drawing toolbar collects the majority of the tools normally used to create graphic objects. If this toolbar is not showing, select View > Toolbars > Drawing from the main menu bar.


First section of Drawing toolbar with drawing objects tools.

The toolbar can be divided into two parts. The first part (shown above) contains drawing objects. The tools in this part of the Drawing toolbar are:

  • Select: selects objects. To select multiple objects click on the top leftmost object and while keeping the mouse button pressed, drag the mouse to the bottom rightmost object of the intended selection. A marching ants rectangle identifying the selection area is displayed. It is also possible to select several objects by pressing the Control button while selecting the individual objects.
  • Line: draws a straight line.
  • Arrow: draws a straight line ending with an arrowhead. The arrowhead will be placed where you release the mouse button.
  • Rectangle: draws a rectangle. Press the Shift button to draw a square.
  • Ellipse: draws an ellipse. Press the Shift button to draw a circle.
  • Text: creates a text box with text aligned horizontally.
  • Vertical text: creates a text box with text aligned vertically. This tool is available only when Asian language support has been enabled in Tools > Options > Language Settings > Languages.
  • Curve: draws a curve. Click the black triangle for more options, shown below. Note that the title of the submenu when undocked is Lines.

Available curve options.
  • Connectors: draws a connector line between two figures. Click the black triangle for additional connectors, shown below. The use of connectors is described in Working with connectors.

Connectors options.
  • Basic Shapes, Symbol Shapes, Block Arrows, Flowcharts, Callouts, Stars: click the black triangle to open a toolbar showing the available shapes in that category. The default shapes are shown below. Select the desired shape, then draw as normal. Keep the Shift key pressed to obtain a shape where the height and width are equal.

Available shapes for Impress.

The second part of the Drawing toolbar, shown below, contains more generic tools.


The second section of the Drawing toolbar with utility tools.

Those tools are:

  • Edit points: select this tool, then select a shape or a line, to edit the individual points that form the shape or line.
  • Glue points: select this tool to edit the glue points of a graphic object. Glue points are the positions where connector lines terminate or start. See Managing glue points for instructions.
  • Fontwork: opens the Fontworks gallery. See Using Fontwork for further information.
  • From file: equivalent to Insert > Picture > From file on the main menu. See Chapter 4 for details.
  • Gallery: opens the gallery. Equivalent to Tools > Gallery on the main menu. See Chapter 4 for details.
  • Rotate: select this tool to rotate an object. As rotation is considered a formatting attribute, this is discussed in Chapter 6.
  • Align object: see Aligning shapes.
  • Arrange object: see Arranging shapes.
  • Extrusion On/Off: switches 3D effects on or off for the selected object. Clicking this button also opens the 3D settings toolbar. See Working with 3D shapes for details.
  • Interaction: opens a dialog where you can specify the interaction between the user and the object. See Setting up interaction with a shape or image.
  • Visible buttons: use the black triangle to open a menu that allows to add or subtract buttons to the toolbar. The step by step procedure is given in Chapter 4 of the Getting Started guide.

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