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I wanted to draw a simple cross...


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I wanted to draw a simple cross, something like the one on the Swiss flag or a pharmacy sign and went to the shape tool. It has all sorts of wonderful options such as donuts (dunked and undunked) but could I find this simple, widely used shape? Nope.

It could be that I have once again parked some brain cells inappropriately, I suppose...

Anyway, it wasn't difficult to improvise. Create two rectangles, rotate one at 90 degrees, join.

But why leave the cross out of the tool's basic shapes?

Paul

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The Square Star tool, set for 4 Sides and with the Cutout adjusted will give you this:

image.png.bf55a448f8166d5397fd90549f4e973b.png

There are also Preset for that tool:

image.png.6cc5bd915347d2f533518ce1655fd5c5.png

Then all you need to do is rotate it.

Unfortunately, it's skewed if you try that, not a true cross. But I think it's the closest that Affinity provides. I've no idea why a true cross isn't available in the shape tools.

-- Walt

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Yes, it would be better if the shape tools could provide it directly.

 

-- Walt

   Desktop: new:  Windows 11 Home, version 21H2 (22000.613) 64GB memory, AMD Ryzen 9 5900 12-Core @ 3.00 GHz, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090  (old: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970 )
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Thanks, Alfred. I had forgotten that option, which makes it simple.

-- Walt

   Desktop: new:  Windows 11 Home, version 21H2 (22000.613) 64GB memory, AMD Ryzen 9 5900 12-Core @ 3.00 GHz, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090  (old: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970 )
   Laptop:  Windows 10 Home, version 21H2 (19044.1706) 32GB memory, Intel Core i7-10750H @ 2.60GHz, Intel UHD Graphics Comet Lake GT2 and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070 Laptop GPU.
    Affinity Photo 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1342 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1342 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.10.5 (.1342) and 1.10.5.1282 Beta
 iPad Pro M1, 12.9", iPadOS 15.4.1, Apple Pencil 2, Magic Keyboard

  Affinity Photo 1.10.5 (.280) and 1.10.2 (.266) Beta / Affinity Designer 1.10.5 (.21) and 1.10.3 (.19) Beta 

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2 hours ago, walt.farrell said:

The Square Star tool, set for 4 Sides and with the Cutout adjusted will give you this:

image.png.bf55a448f8166d5397fd90549f4e973b.png

There are also Preset for that tool:

image.png.6cc5bd915347d2f533518ce1655fd5c5.png

Then all you need to do is rotate it.

Unfortunately, it's skewed if you try that, not a true cross. But I think it's the closest that Affinity provides. I've no idea why a true cross isn't available in the shape tools.

Thank you, Walt.

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Good question! I don't think I'd heard of "cut-outs" until Alfred mentioned them.

The simple answer is that I expected a cross tool to work the way Serif Drawplus's version does, even though I know there is virtually no overlap in approach between the two programmes.

I am completely flummoxed at the idea that anyone would think of using a "square star" tool, though Walt has kindly shown how it is possible.

I will almost certainly use the modified rectangle approach as it's easier to remember, but it would be nice if somewhere in the help/tutorial there was a hint.

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1 hour ago, Paul Martin said:

I am completely flummoxed at the idea that anyone would think of using a "square star" tool, though Walt has kindly shown how it is possible.

There are several built-in presets for these shapes, two of which produce 4 lobed square stars. To access them, click on the gear icon in the context toolbar with the Square Star Tool selected.

YThis works similarly for the other shapes.

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4 hours ago, Paul Martin said:

The simple answer is that I expected a cross tool to work the way Serif Drawplus's version does, even though I know there is virtually no overlap in approach between the two programmes.

I’d forgotten that DrawPlus has a ‘Quick Cross’! Generally speaking the Shape Tools in the Affinity apps are like QuickShapes on steroids but there are a few occasions where the legacy applications did it better, and I think this is one of those.

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20 minutes ago, Alfred said:

I’d forgotten that DrawPlus has a ‘Quick Cross’! Generally speaking the Shape Tools in the Affinity apps are like QuickShapes on steroids but there are a few occasions where the legacy applications did it better, and I think this is one of those.

For those of us with no knowledge of DrawPlus, what is it about that app's 'quick cross' that is significantly better than using one of the already mentioned alternatives in Affinity?

Aside from that, I think creating a set of cross Assets, say with some of the basic Christian crosses, would be the way to go for those who have more than the occasional need for such shapes.

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26 minutes ago, R C-R said:

For those of us with no knowledge of DrawPlus, what is it about that app's 'quick cross' that is significantly better than using one of the already mentioned alternatives in Affinity?

Aside from that, I think creating a set of cross Assets, say with some of the basic Christian crosses, would be the way to go for those who have more than the occasional need for such shapes.

I've been a slow convert to the Affinity range but, aided by lockdown, I have put in the hours to become (almost) profocient enough to see the technically excellent power made available by a newer technology. But ease-of-use is not the strongest point so for those of us who didn't get the college course or in-company training, it's pretty hard work at times. But I am getting there and it has become fun.

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26 minutes ago, R C-R said:

For those of us with no knowledge of DrawPlus, what is it about that app's 'quick cross' that is significantly better than using one of the already mentioned alternatives in Affinity?

Unlike the ‘Cutout’ corner style for the Affinity apps’ Rectangle Tool, which cuts out a square from each corner, the ‘Quick Cross’ in DrawPlus allows you to adjust the height and vertical position of the horizontal bar.  I’m not suggesting that it’s hugely better, but it does seem a bit more flexible.

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I don't quite understand the fixation in this thread about drawing a cross. It is surely one of the easiest things to draw with two rectangles, or am I wrong here?

I could understand if it was some weird shape being discussed that requires a lot of manipulating. But a cross? Even if there was a 'cross shape' in DrawPlus, it's still such a trivial thing to draw. Or do I have completely the wrong end of the stick?

Thanks.

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5 hours ago, Alfred said:

Unlike the ‘Cutout’ corner style for the Affinity apps’ Rectangle Tool, which cuts out a square from each corner, the ‘Quick Cross’ in DrawPlus allows you to adjust the height and vertical position of the horizontal bar.  I’m not suggesting that it’s hugely better, but it does seem a bit more flexible.

OK, but it is not hard to convert a 'cutout corner' or 4 sided square star to curves so it becomes very easy to adjust the heights & positions of the bars, to add more bars to create other types of crosses, & to save all these variations to the Assets panel for future use.

EDIT: nothing exciting but crosses.afassets includes a few examples.

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6 hours ago, R C-R said:

OK, but it is not hard to convert a 'cutout corner' or 4 sided square star to curves so it becomes very easy to adjust the heights & positions of the bars, to add more bars to create other types of crosses, & to save all these variations to the Assets panel for future use.

Agreed, but it’s always useful to be able to avoid converting parametric shapes to curves. This is especially true for DrawPlus, where there’s a Context toolbar option to swap one QuickShape for another.

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4 hours ago, Alfred said:

Agreed, but it’s always useful to be able to avoid converting parametric shapes to curves. This is especially true for DrawPlus, where there’s a Context toolbar option to swap one QuickShape for another.

We all know ways to achieve the objective, it's just a matter of convenience and "productivity" (eeugh), but a cross is surely one of the simplest, commonest shapes...

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I think there needs to be a distinction between what many people would call a cross, for obvious reasons, a plus sign and an X 

Personally I think you are talking about a plus sign, what Walt initially drew was an X and crosses can have a multitude of forms from very simple to very complex.

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1 hour ago, firstdefence said:

I think there needs to be a distinction between what many people would call a cross, for obvious reasons, a plus sign and an X 

Personally I think you are talking about a plus sign, what Walt initially drew was an X and crosses can have a multitude of forms from very simple to very complex.

You're making a very good case for a dedicated tool...

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