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JET_Affinity

Simple Rotation

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Hi, Jet

 

If you are talking about snapping through rotation (as opposed to translation), we don't currently do that.  But, you can pick up the top middle handle, and drag with Ctrl.  That will rotate about the opposite point and allow snapping to the line - it works by translating the point (so snapping is possible), but it does resize the item.  Add Shift to maintain aspect ratio.

You can also rotate about the rotation point by using Ctrl+Cmd.

 

This is definitely an area that needs more work.  I'd rather do it based on use cases though.


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This is definitely an area that needs more work.  I'd rather do it based on use cases though.

Hi, Ben.

It certainly does need work, and I was sure hoping to see it addressed before the release of 1.7. This is something that mainstream drawing programs do.

One obvious and very common use case is the one I depicted: The need to align the minor diameter of any ellipse (i.e., any foreshortened circle) to its thrust line (i.e., its axis; the perpendicular line about which it "orbits"). This is a fundamental principle of any kind of realistic illustration, and not just in axonometric, but in converging perspective as well.

And it's not just about aligning ellipses with their thrust lines. The need to rotate with reliable snaps when dragging by a node is very commonly needed in countless general drawing and design situations. Having rotation with reliable and accurate snapping based only on bounding boxes is sub-standard.

Couple of quick screenshots from Illustrator and CorelDRAW:

 

RotateCompare.png

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I'l see what can be done for first release of 1.7.

 

Do you see this as transform tools for the Node tool (working on curve points), or for the move tool (working on selection boxes)?

 


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Thanks for the interest, Ben. Tactile transformations (with the mouse) really are deal-breakingly important. It makes all the difference between drawing accurately as opposed to having to merely "eyeball" things.

Some programs (those without dedicated Transform Tools in the toolbox) do it when the bounding box is visible (as in the Corel screenshot in my previous post), but they don't require you to mousedown on the rotate handles of the bounding; they let you mousedown on any node or edge with full snapping ability for all candidates.

When doing serious illustration, the object(s) you are rotating (including groups, symbols, sub-selections of nodes of single or multiple paths) are all kinds of shapes, and the detail you are interested in snapping into rotation alignment with other objects edges (and not necessarily straight edges) or guides have nothing at all to do with the locations of any of the bounding box handles. So in most situations, the bounding box is immaterial and just makes for annoying visual clutter.

Other programs (Illustrator, FreeHand) do provide dedicated Transform Tools. This is far cleaner, more consistent, and more intuitive to use, because they work the same regardless of the selection; whole objects, sub-selected partial paths, or combinations of both, and show no unnecessary bounding box that is totally unrelated to what one is trying to do. That's the huge advantage to having actual Transform Tools in the toolbox as opposed to merely having transform handles on a bounding box.

There are multiple important subtleties involved. For example, In Illustrator, when you mousedown on the node to be dragged, that node becomes the snapping object of interest, even if while dragging, the cursor moves off that node. That enables you to, for example, snap that node into rotational alignment with object edges which are shorter or longer than the radius of the node's rotation.

A simpler, but just as important behavior detail intimately related is the mere matter of what happens when you switch tools. In Affinity, when you move a path with the Move Tool, and then simply switch to the Node tool, or doubleClick the path to invoke the Node Tool, all the nodes are indicated, but none are selected. This is maddeningly annoying when your purpose for switching to the Node Tool  in the first place is to drag the whole path by one of its nodes so as to snap it somewhere, even for mere translations, let alone rotations or other transformations. When you select something with the Move Tool, the selection is selected as a whole. Therefore, while it is still selected and you switch to the Node tool, it should still be selected as a whole (all of its nodes selected). There is no justification for changing the selection just because you switched to the other selection tool.

And by what rationale should the transform anchor disappear when the Node Tool is selected; even when in it's "transform mode"?

One would expect to at least be able to perform the accurate rotation numerically as a tedious workaround. But that's frustrated by the matter of not being able to know or measure the angle of a straight segment that was originally drawn diagonally, as opposed to being first drawn horizontally or vertically and then rotated. There's no measure tool, and that omnipresent bounding box doesn't know didly about the angle at which the line was drawn. (This problem, of course, pertains to angles between any two coordinates; not just straight single-segment paths.)

And really,  it's not  just about rotation. Skewing and reflecting should also be possible to do with the mouse while snapping along other guides, pathGuides, or unselected objects at any arbitrary angle (as could Freehand), but rotation is the real deal breaker here.

JET

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