Jump to content

Recommended Posts

In adobe illustrator, their equivalent version of the 'node' tool allows me to select nodes of multiple elements and move them together. In Affinity Designer, I can select multiple elements and try to use the 'node' tools to move a point, but only one of the points (probably the last selected one) moves. Since everything in AD is a layer (what is the logic behind this, btw?), is this operation only allowed on one object at a time?

 

post-394-0-00903400-1407423126_thumb.png

 
Am I missing something?
 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It should work exactly as you'd expect... Select multiple objects, go to the Node Tool (if you weren't in it already) and select a node, then hold shift and click another node to add it to the selection - that node can be on the same curve or on a totally different one - they will all select and all will move when you drag them around.

 

You can marquee select the nodes across all selected shapes by just dragging a rectangle in the node tool over the nodes you're interested in. There is currently no polygonal lasso selection yet - but there will be.

 

Hope this helps :)

Matt

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi adirondackmoose, I just tried to do what I think you are asking and I'm able to move multiple nodes at the same time with the node tool.  I created a shape with the pen tool, switched to the node tool and outside of the shape started to draw a rectangle (marquee select) over the nodes I wanted to move, then once they are selected I moved them.  If you are trying to do this to a shape that hasn't been converted to curves it won't work because there aren't any nodes yet. The one caveat here it seems is that you need to select the shape first to make it active, then select the nodes... which is different behaviour to illustrator.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Somewhat related to this is something I asked in another area of the forum... the ability to transform these nodes once selected i.e.: scale, rotate or align. This is definitely something we'll need to be able to do. Correct me if I'm wrong but I think this is currently limited to whole shapes or objects.(?)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You are right, currently you can only transform whole objects.

 

We will have a look at adding alignment options to the node tool. I am currently improving snapping for this tool, so may be able to fit it in with that.


SerifLabs team - Affinity Developer
  • Software engineer  -  Photographer  -  Guitarist  -  Philosopher
  • iMac 27" Retina 5K (Late 2015), 4.0GHz i7, AMD Radeon R9 M395
  • MacBook (Early 2015), 1.3GHz Core M, Intel HD 5300
  • iPad Pro 10.5", 256GB

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi adirondackmoose, I just tried to do what I think you are asking and I'm able to move multiple nodes at the same time with the node tool.  I created a shape with the pen tool, switched to the node tool and outside of the shape started to draw a rectangle (marquee select) over the nodes I wanted to move, then once they are selected I moved them.  If you are trying to do this to a shape that hasn't been converted to curves it won't work because there aren't any nodes yet. The one caveat here it seems is that you need to select the shape first to make it active, then select the nodes... which is different behaviour to illustrator.

 

Thanks everyone for the help. This was the step I was missing, selecting the shapes FIRST, then the nodes. Wasn't intuitive, as illustrator does the node selection with a marquee select only, the shapes (or curves) don't have to be selected first. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello y'all!

 

I have a major (though it may seem minor) gripe with the Node Tool's usability… I really like how it works in general, mostly *because* it's very different from and much more cohesive than Illustrator's hodgepodge of tools (the ridiculous convert anchor point tool and the extraneous direct selection tool).

 

However, there are two behaviours from AI's tools that you should absolutely replicate, namely:

 

Switching back and forth from the Move tool and the Node tool should be (temporarily) attainable by using a modifier (unless, say, you already ran out of modifiers, in which case, pressing V successively achieves nearly the same effect; but why not, redundant as it may be, also alternate both tools by pressing A, for the sake of coherence?) and, most importantly, when switching to the node tool whilst having an object *already selected* with the move tool, *all nodes from all selected objects* should become selected by default (much like what happens in Ai when you switch to the direct selection tool when having one or multiple objects selected).

 

Otherwise, expecting users to manually select all nodes in a curve (especially a very complex one) just to be able to snap one of its nodes to a guideline or to another node from a different object seems to be a bad UX decision, IMHO.

 

It should be pointed that this proposed behaviour in no way hinders the use of the node tool. You could still select nodes cumulatively by using the node tool to directly select the curve and then proceed to select only the desired nodes. Inversely, it would also allow you to do the reverse, i. e. deselect any undesired nodes (from an otherwise large object which you might want to move).

 

Unless… Unless you are also willing to copy the Smart Guides feature even further and have the move tool show some cursor overlays with “node” and “curve” (instead of, you know, the standard Adobe's “anchor” and “path”), and allow you to directly select objects and curves from specific nodes or points along them, as to properly snap them into the desired place. Now *that* would be swell, and a workable alternative. Suffice to say, as in Ai, both options don't have to be mutually exclusive, either.

 

You know, Adobe may be evil (and bumbly idiotic at times) and all, but they can still be a source of nice UX insights. ;)

 

Oh, and by the way, this is my first post. Huge kudos for what you've managed to show so far… Can't wait to get my hands on the two remaining modules of the suite! :)

 

JG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi JG,

 

If you came from the Move Tool to the Node Tool by pressing A, then A will go back to the Move Tool again :)

 

Also, as soon as snapping is working properly (hopefully next week) the Move Tool will move your object and snap its nodes to other objects, guides and curve nodes (depending on what you've selected in the snapping preferences) so you won't need your nodes to be selected in the Node Tool to be moving them around :) 

 

I think Ben is probably better suited to provide a more considered response as he's currently rewriting snapping, I just wanted to reassure you that (fingers-crossed) both of the things you mention will not cause you issues for much longer, but without the need for all nodes to be selected automatically when you enter the Node Tool: I have to confess that this single thing is the one that I always think of when I think about Illustrator - I find it so frustrating - I literally shout at the screen pretty much every time! :(

 

Thanks,

Matt

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just to clarify - the key behaviour Matt describes is new in todays beta - so you should check you have the latest (just run the app up again - it will tell you if there is a newer version to download).

 

The behaviour is quite general - if you use a tool shortcut key to change tool, hitting the same key again will put you back where you were.. e.g.:

 

In Move Tool.. hit "A" to get to Node Tool.. hit "A" again - back to Move Tool!

 

In Node Tool.. hit "Z" to get to Zoom Tool.. hit "Z" again - back in Node Tool!

 

Hope this helps :)

 

AndyS

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So nice to see the node tool and the node behavior improving. Still I’d like to reiterate two suggestions:

 

1) When alt-clicking and dragging a cusp node it would be helpful to drag one bezier handle out of it. Another alt-click and drag: second handle. Something similar can already be done by done by dragging the path between two nodes. The difference is that this alters the handles of both neighboring nodes which I often don’t want when I do precision work. At the moment clicking and dragging a cusp node does the same thing with or without alt key so this handle generating method would be possible UI-wise.

 

2) In the task bar I can image two more little buttons joining the Convert buttons (with two arrows pointing at each other). Their job would be to remove either the right or the left handle of a given node.

 

And the third thought (about a feature which I think is already in your pipeline): It is important to see the coordinates of a given node in the transform panel (which itself could be redundantly replicated in the horizontal context tool bar).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Matthias,

 

Request 2) sounds like a good idea and can go in soon, also request 3) is already on the list of things to do. The only reason request 1) isn't in there already is just that you don't know which handle to start dragging out the first time - the one before the node, or the one after it? I'll have a think about it - I think there might be an answer and I'm just pondering on it...

 

Thanks,

Matt

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, for suggestion 2 to be effective (and I think that it is a great suggestion), there should be a way to clearly identify what is the "incoming" handle and the "outcoming" handle. I know that can be inferred by the direction of the curve (signaled by the red colored node). However, sometimes, at some zoom levels, we can't see the red node.

 

About the problem of what handle to stick out, it could be solved like this:

 

Alt+Drag - Outcoming handle sticks out

Ctrl+Alt or Command+Alt + Drag - Incoming handle sticks out

 

I didn't suggested the Shift+Alt combination because Shift should be kept for constraining.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The only reason request 1) isn't in there already is just that you don't know which handle to start dragging out the first time - the one before the node, or the one after it?

 

 

About the problem of what handle to stick out, it could be solved like this:

 

Alt+Drag - Outcoming handle sticks out

Ctrl+Alt or Command+Alt + Drag - Incoming handle sticks out

 

Maybe it simply depends on the direction of my dragging?

No modifier keys, simple learning curve …

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Which one... the modifier solution or the drag direction solution? ;-)

From a programming point of view, the modifier solution is soooo much simpler.

The other one requires lots more calculations and checks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey Rui,

looking at the posting times I assume Matt refers to the dragging direction – hence my little comment. But I’d be happy with either solution as long as I can pull handles out of nodes.  :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry, I should've been clear - yes, I meant the notion of drag direction inferring which handle you meant to drag. I think we could do it without too much hassle - we're always more concerned with user experience than with how tricky it is too implement :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This topic is quite old now, has anything happened to this behaviour?

 

I kno I can either click on a line to convert the anchor or control-drag to introduce a handle, but that last one I find quite confusing and also moves the anchor whilst I would expect the anchor to stay in place and the handle to move which would be fine.

 

 

 

Bert

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×