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Artboards should not be mixed with layers, and there should always be one artboard

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See XY positioning should be relative to currently active artboard.

This is just one of the many problems with having artboards mixed with layers. Once that situation is fixed, what would happen here?
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We have an item outside the artboards, so what positioning would it follow? The closest artboard? That’s bad, as values could jump around wildly as that reference changes, and could lead to issues when between two equidistant artboards.

A good, clear option would be to have its positioning be relative to the currently selected artboard. That would require some changes to the current implementation, though (and I do believe they are very much needed). Having artboards mixed with layers is just plain confusing. And we can even move them with the same tool we use to move other objects? Mistakes and disasters just around the corner.

Freehand and Illustrator have pretty much the right idea, here. There should be a separate tool to move/scale artboards, and more importantly, they should have their own separate panel and behaviour. Illustrator took a long time to get there, and even though it feels a bit more constrained than Freehand’s behaviour, its paradigm works. Emulating their behaviour in this area would be a win; keeping them bundled with layers is a very bad idea.

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Illustrator took a long time to get there, and even though it feels a bit more constrained than Freehand’s behaviour, its paradigm works. Emulating their behaviour in this area would be a win; keeping them bundled with layers is a very bad idea.

 

As explained in another thread will add my point of view here too.

 

Even if I could agree about the dedicated tool (Artboard Select/Add and not an hybrid Arrow Tool ) I do not agree about the separate panel.

Illustrator follows its paradigm, but it is limited: you have layers, but you will never know their belonging...

This thing makes me crazy any time I open a file including something like 10/15 artboards... And is the reason why I switched to Sketch years ago which deals with artboards in the very same way as AD does.

 

AD approach is even sharper than Sketch's one (AD artboards are "objects"), and shared layers are an opportunity in terms of design strategies.

These are my 2 cents... Or better... My two pennies worth  :P


The white dog, making tools for artists, illustrators and doodlers

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I don’t mind artboards as special layers... but they shouldn’t be moved freely as layers. It’s so annoying currently to select all and artboard moves around...

 

If I lock the artboard obviously I can’t select what’s inside it even if I need to.


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As explained in another thread will add my point of view here too.

 

Could you link me to it?

 

you have layers, but you will never know their belonging...

 

Layers do not belong to artboards, they are (should be) separate things. Layers separate components, while artboards separate states and pages. If you have three layers: background (what stays in the back), content (what matters most, be it text or illustrated characters), foreground additions (like logos), these are separate concerns. It is perfectly reasonable to at once want to hide all characters, or all backgrounds, or all text, or all logos, from every artboard.

 

Having a layer be in the same space as an Artboard breaks that capability. Currently, artboards do not deserve the name. They are nothing more than a glorified layer. Heck, why have artboards anyway, then? As they currently stand (without even a special tool to manipulate them), just give me an infinite canvas and I’ll draw the rectangles myself. Apart from artboards exporting as different pages when doing a pdf, in practice they are nothing more than a layer.

 

Illustrator’s model may not be perfect, but it allows something more, something that deserves a different name.

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What if each art board contains a different version of your project? Shouldn't the layers for each version be associated with the art board for that version? Seems there could be instances where art boards and layers could be connected.

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What if each art board contains a different version of your project? Shouldn't the layers for each version be associated with the art board for that version? Seems there could be instances where art boards and layers could be connected.

 

Nothing is stopping you from making that system work under the paradigm Illustrator uses. However, the reverse is not true. Having artboards mixed with layers makes some things impossible while the other system doesn’t. Mixing them is the worse of both options.

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Interesting thoughts here. But perhaps that’s where “pages” (a feature that is yet to be implemented) come into play? Pages can hold different versions of a project, pages can be in a separate panel, and a single object can only belong to one page at a time, and they are mutually exclusive. Personally, being a web designer/developer, I have no real use for artboards right now since that would mean I have to copy common objects (like website header) to every artboard. Fireworks had a “master page” that was always visible, for exactly this purpose.

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I too think the paradigm that an artboard is another kind of layer is mixing up two different entities.

 

My two Pennies here:

The layers Panel would show only items in the chosen artboard. Then there is a new button in the Layers panel listing the artboards (just like the viewpoints in the new Navigator panel).

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Layers do not belong to artboards, they are (should be) separate things. Layers separate components, while artboards separate states and pages.

 

 

It is all about our personal design strategies... There is no truth here... I know lots of designers that use AI artboards as slices... because don't know that Illustrator has slices too... :)

 

From my point of view Artboards are abstract containers (as groups) that have a name and size.

I do prefer to have the possibility to spot quickly an element in a particular artboard.

 

 

 

 If you have three layers: background (what stays in the back), content (what matters most, be it text or illustrated characters), foreground additions (like logos), these are separate concerns. It is perfectly reasonable to at once want to hide all characters, or all backgrounds, or all text, or all logos, from every artboard.

 

But you can do it right now in AD...

For sure it needs to be improved but I think it is very flexible.

 

In any case it is up to Serif...  :)

 

 

 

Interesting thoughts here. But perhaps that’s where “pages” (a feature that is yet to be implemented) come into play? Pages can hold different versions of a project, pages can be in a separate panel, and a single object can only belong to one page at a time, and they are mutually exclusive. Personally, being a web designer/developer, I have no real use for artboards right now since that would mean I have to copy common objects (like website header) to every artboard. Fireworks had a “master page” that was always visible, for exactly this purpose.

 

 

 

I'm curious about that too...

Today I use Sketch for two main reasons: pages and hierarchical arboards (as AD ones).

 

Pages are my user stories and collect all the views (artboards) involved in the user story.

Moreover not all views share the same layout.

 

I don't know if this is the correct way to deal with all projects, but I noticed that developers find it easy to be followed


The white dog, making tools for artists, illustrators and doodlers

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… perhaps that’s where “pages” (a feature that is yet to be implemented) come into play?

 

So eventually there will be ”pages” too? Next to “artboards”?

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So eventually there will be ”pages” too? Next to “artboards”?

 

Well, I seem to remember having read that in the roadmap. But artboards as you described them in post #9 are very much like pages as I described them in #8. So, it’s perhaps more a matter of naming convention. But still, with my workflow, coming from Fireworks, I have no use for artboards as they currently are (for professional illustrators or technical designers it might be different), although one could use them as pages. But until shared objects (i. e. objects that are shared across pages/artboards and where editing one instance updates all other instances) are implemented I’m going to stick to layers as pages with a locked “master layer” for global/shared objects.

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Gave it some more thought and how about this:

 

Presuming that there will be both pages and artboards, how about separate panels dedicated to each. When you select a page in the pages panel, all artboards associated with it are highlighted in the artboards panel. Then you select one of the artboards and all layers associated with it are highlighted in the layers panel. It's a little lengthier process but it keeps things both separated and associated. If you wanted the process to be a bit more aggressive, you could set up a kind of isolation where selecting a page isolates all artboards in the artboards panel and selecting an artboard isolates all associated layers in the layers panel.

 

How's that?

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