Flash Homework 1

I used 7 layers to create this stop sign

I created my stop sign in what was likely a roundabout way. Having some experience with Photoshop my instinct was to use layers. I set the original image as my first layer, used the the alpha levels to fade the picture and then created a new layer for each piece of the image: octagons, screws, pole, text and sky. I used the eyedropper tool to grab colors from the original and a gradient as an attempt at a metallic pole. Layers may not have been the easiest way to go about it, but the process allowed be to draw shapes (with the polygon and rectangle tool) which were traced from the original image.

 

I had trouble matching the curves of Lisa's outline.

I like Lisa Simpson, but tracing her was a bit of a nightmare. The pen tool was new to me, and it turned out to be a real struggle. I noticed that after placing an anchor point at the end of a curved line the trajectory of the next line was difficult to control. Additionally it seemed challenging to connect two independent lines. This exercise took me a while and I found myself getting frustrating when I could not accurately match Lisa’s outline.

Aligning items was a much more intuitive process.

The align tool was easy to follow. I placed each of the corner items at an arbitrary 10 pixels away from the edges of the stage. Then I aligned them to each side of the page and used the ‘space’ option to place them at even intervals from one another. I was able to use this tool for the next step of the homework as well.

 

 

This image shows the difference in object drawing and merge drawing.

Merge drawing and object drawing are new concepts for me, however, I’m beginning to see the distinctions. As the example indicates, object drawing allows you to create two separate shapes. I think of them as existing on their own individual layers; they can be moved or placed independently of each other. Further, they are layered one on top of the other in order of their creation (newest on top). In merge drawing, as the shapes are created they fuse together. They exist on a single layer, and in the case of shapes which overlap,  the hidden material is disgarded. In merge drawing however, the fill and stroke are separate entities and can me moved independently.

Bitmap graphics are what I have the most experience with. Bitmap images are comprised of individual pixels. There are only so may pixels within that image; in the case of  HD video, 1920 by 1080. This means that at some point, when scaling up an image, the individual colored pixels become visible: there is a finite set of information. In vector graphics however, the image is comprised of mathematical descriptions. You may continue to zero in on a component of that image, but you will not loose information. Vector graphics prevent degradation of the image quality.

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