Lines Made Quick and Easy

Lines Made Quick and Easy

You know you can’t draw a straight line with the Pencil tool, and you’ve seen how tedious the Pen tool can be. So, you’re probably thinking that drawing a line would be easier with that gloppy rapidograph pen and a metal ruler. Don’t fret! The powers at Adobe have bestowed yet another tool for pen-phobic users: the Line Segment tool. With the Line Segment tool, you can make lines quickly and easily.

Working with the Line Segment tool

?To create a line with the Line Segment tool, simply click at your desired starting point, drag, and release at your desired ending point. You can also click your Artboard with the Line Segment tool selected, enter a desired angle and length in the Line Segment Tool Options dialog box and click OK. Like most things that are super easy, the Line Segment tool has its drawbacks. For example, you’re limited to creating a single line, as shown in Figure 8-6. You can’t create connecting lines like you can with the Pen or Pencil tools. You can, however, create lines that are perfectly vertical, horizontal, or at 45? angles. Just press the Shift key as you draw. You’ll discover that as you drag your cursor, your line constrains to a 45? angle. After you create your line, you can edit it by selecting and moving either endpoint with the Direct Selection tool.

Click To expand
Figure 8-6: Line Segment tool lines are easy, but limited to single strokes.

Setting the tool options

Double-clicking the Line Segment tool in the Toolbox brings up the Line Segment Tool Options dialog box, in which you find only a few options: Length, Angle, and Fill Line. By deselecting the Fill Line option, the line appears with only a stroke, regardless of whether you have a fill selected in the Toolbox or Color palette. After you complete the drawing of your line, the Fill swatch in both the Toolbox and Color palette automatically reverts to None.