(Last Updated On: February 23, 2024)

Apart from built-in shapes, ActivePresenter 9 allows you to create your own ones from scratch. The app comes with 4 line drawing tools: Line, Curve, Freeform Shape, and Freeform Scribble. Let’s learn how to draw and edit freeform shapes in this article. 

Table of contents:

Draw Freeform Shapes

To explore line drawing tools, open the Home/Insert tab > Shape > Line and Arrows section. 

Draw freeform shapes

There are 4 types of line drawing: Line (1), Curve (2), Freeform Shape (3), and Freeform Scribble (4). They let you draw straight lines, curves or freestyle. 

  • Line (1): Draw simple straight, point-to-point lines.
  • Curve (2): Draw curved lines or shapes.
  • Freeform Shape (3): Draw lines/shapes that include both straight and freeform segments (dual capability).
  • Freeform Scribble (4): Draw lines/shapes as if you were using a pencil on paper.

As soon as you select a drawing tool, the cursor changes into a crosshair. The following parts show you what to do next.

Draw Lines

To draw a line, follow these steps:

Step 1: Click anywhere on the Canvas to set the start point. Keep holding the left-click and move to another position where you want to set it as the end point. 

Note: While moving the mouse, hold the SHIFT key on your keyboard to make a truly horizontal, vertical, or diagonal straight line. You can draw a 0, 30, 45, 60, 90, 120, 135, 150, and 180-degree line.

Draw lines

Step 2: Release the mouse button to finish.

Draw Curves

To draw a curve, do the following:

Step 1: Click anywhere on the Canvas to set the start point. Move the mouse to a different position, then click to add a new turn. The line is curved at the position of that click. If you move the mouse, the curve will change correspondingly. Each click adds a new turn to the curve.

Draw curves

Step 2: A curve can be either open or closed. Do one of the following to finish your drawing:

  • Double-click at any position to create an open curve. 
  • Move the mouse toward the start point until it forms a filled shape, then click to create a closed curve. 
Draw a closed curve

Draw Freeform Shapes

This drawing tool has a dual capability that allows you to draw both straight and freeform lines. Perform the following steps:

Step 1: Click anywhere on the Canvas to set the start point. Now you can:

  • Release the mouse button and move to another position, then click to draw a straight line.
  • Hold down the mouse button and draw freeform lines like using a pencil.
Draw a freeform shape

Step 2: A freeform shape can be either open or closed. Do one of the following to finish your drawing:

  • Double-click at any position to create an open freeform. 
  • Move the mouse cursor to the start point and click to create a closed freeform shape.
Draw a closed freeform shape

Draw Freeform Scribbles

Drawing using the Freeform Scribble tool shares some similarities with those of the Freeform Shape. This tool lets you draw freestyle as if you were drawing on paper with a pencil. To do that, you have to keep holding the mouse button while drawing. When you want to finish, just release the mouse button. 

Draw freeform scribbles

If the end point meets the start point, you create a closed scribble. Otherwise, you create an open one. 

Draw closed freeform scribble

Edit Freeform Drawing

After finishing drawing, sometimes you may want to edit it. Right-click the drawing > Edit Points to open the edit mode. Then, you will see the shape is outlined by a red dashed line containing multiple black squares. They are anchor points that indicate the start and end of each line segment. When you select an anchor point, two blue handles appear with control points (white squares) at their ends.

Edit freeform drawing

Click and drag an anchor point (1) to sharpen or smooth a corner or curve. Alternatively, drag a control point (2) to change the degree of the curve or line. A red dashed line appears indicating changes. 

Edit freeform drawing

Once you finish editing, click any elsewhere outside to exit the edit mode. Alternatively, right-click a shape no matter its outline, anchor points, or control points, and select Exit Edit Point.

Add and Remove Anchor Points

Right-click a freeform shape > Edit Points to enter the edit mode:

  • To add an anchor point, click anywhere on the outline of the shape.
  • To delete an anchor point, hold down CTRL and click it, or right-click it > Delete Point. The selected anchor point will disappear, and the shape will be changed accordingly.
Delete points

Open and Close Paths

In the edit mode of a closed shape, right-click an anchor point > Open Path to open the shape right at the selected point. 

Open a closed freeform shape

Otherwise, select Close Path to close an open shape. The app will add a new path to connect the start and end points together.

Close a path

Change the Point Types

To change the type of an anchor point, right-click it and select an option: 

  • Smooth Point: The two handles point in exactly the opposite direction (180 degrees) from each other. A similar distance separates them from the anchor.
Smooth points
  • Straight Point: The two handles point in exactly the opposite direction (180 degrees) from each other.
Straight points
  • Corner Point: The two handles go off in different directions. This is the default mode.
Corner points

Make Straight Segments

ActivePresenter 9 allows you to straighten a curve segment easily. In the edit mode, right-click the curve segment > Straight Segment.

That’s all about drawing and editing freeform shapes in ActivePresenter 9. Besides, you can apply these techniques to draw and edit motion paths for objects. Let’s download the latest version of ActivePresenter and unleash your creativity right now! 

Download ActivePresenter

Don’t forget to visit our Tutorials page and YouTube channel to get more helpful tutorials and videos. 

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