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Live mirroring of objects around a point or plane


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This is slightly less of a feature request and more a way for me to get an idea out of my head and out there where others might be able to find it. I think it would make a great feature for Designer, and to be honest I’m quite surprised no other app has something like this yet.

 

Yesterday I was putting together the artwork for a logo (in Illustrator CS3, so not entirely analogous to AD), and part of the design consisted of a series of leaf shapes arranged around a central point of rotation. What I had to do to achieve this was draw my original leaf shape, and then use the rotate tool and duplicate that leaf shape the number of times I needed. If this arrangement then didn’t look right, I have to undo/delete all of the duplicated leaves until I only had the original drawing, then edit that drawing and re-duplicate it to test my changes. It was a clunky way to go about the process, but to my knowledge there still isn’t a better way to do this.

 

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What I’m proposing is a feature that allows you to take an object/group/layer in the document, and apply a live mirroring or instancing feature based on a defined plane(s) or point of rotation.

 

The workflow would be something like:

 

1. Select the object that you wish to mirror/instance

2. Add a mirror/instance effect/adjustment to the object

3. You would then have the ability to customise the mirroring/instancing effect based on:

- Type of mirroring (plane or point)

- Whether the object is “reflected” when mirrored or retains its original appearance

- Number of planes to mirror on (if using a plane mirror)

- Position of the point or plane(s)

- Angle of the plane(s) (if using a plane mirror)

- How many instances to create around the point (if using a point mirror)

- What angle distance should separate instances (if using a point mirror)

 

When editing the original object while the mirroring effect is active, all mirrored instances of the object would update live based on the mirror effect’s settings. The parameters of the mirror effect could be updated live in a similar way to adjustment layers.

 

Finally, there would be an option to commit the mirroring and convert all instances to editable shapes.

 

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I would see this as a powerful companion to the new symbols and assets feature, as it would allow for even more flexibility when working with reusable objects. In particular, this would be very helpful when creating patterns and other designs requiring symmetry and repetition.

 

EDIT: I should also mention that this idea is inspired in part by 3D apps such as Blender, Maya etc, which make use of mirroring when creating meshes.

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1. Select the object that you wish to mirror/instance

2. Add a mirror/instance effect/adjustment to the object

3. You would then have the ability to customise the mirroring/instancing effect

...

I should also mention that this idea is inspired in part by 3D apps such as Blender, Maya etc

 

You nailed my same idea about tools/ shape modifiers in AD, i think it's a better way compared to the current corner tool or non destructive booleans.

Maybe will be less immediate to learn/ use them but in a future with more tools everything should be more organized, powerful and non destructive.

 

Now you'll have to start other threads with the other Blender equivalent modifiers as: array( instead of ctrl+j), bevel, boolean, smooth, decimate, lattice, displace, curve, etc... , almost every modifier can have an "eqivalent" in 2d, also particles and fluids ;)

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You nailed my same idea about tools/ shape modifiers in AD, i think it's a better way compared to the current corner tool or non destructive booleans.

Maybe will be less immediate to learn/ use them but in a future with more tools everything should be more organized, powerful and non destructive.

 

Now you'll have to start other threads with the other Blender equivalent modifiers as: array( instead of ctrl+j), bevel, boolean, smooth, decimate, lattice, displace, curve, etc... , almost every modifier can have an "eqivalent" in 2d, also particles and fluids ;)

Well I don’t know much about Blender’s other modifiers, but you’ve made me realise that vector apps could really use a subdivide feature for nodes!

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