July '21

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2 2 G R A P H I C S P R O J U L Y 2 0 2 1 G R A P H I C S - P R O. C O M A W A R D S & C U S T O M I Z AT I O N A feature that exists in CorelDRAW that can easily expedite work- flow is the Step and Repeat abil- ity. Accessed by Edit>Step and Repeat (Ctrl + Shift + D), it is a quick tool to duplicate objects when a precise distance is required. Figure 1 shows the initial docker with its several choices. In my example, I have chosen only the horizontal dimensions, but the vertical choices are the same. CREATING PATTERNS To start, I wanted to create a checkerboard pattern, so, with the Rectangle tool, while holding down my Ctrl key, I drew a 1/2- inch square and filled it with red. With it selected, in my Step and Repeat dialog, I chose the Spacing Between Objects option and typed ".5"" in the Distance field and Direction to the Right. In the Number of Copies field, I typed "8" (Figure 2) then clicked Apply. I had nine squares, equally spaced apart (see Figure 3). At this point, I opened the Align and Distribute docker: Object>A lign and Distribute (Ctrl + Shift + A). Figure 4 shows the docker with its multiple options. Most of the Align features are easily accomplished using the C, E, T, L, B, R, and P keystrokes without the docker; however, there are other options here to specify how things are aligned. Usually, the first choice — Align objects to: Active objects — is a good choice, but can be changed as neces- sary. Once this is chosen, it is active in all documents, giving a faint align- ment grid related to the objects. I selected eight of the nine squares and duplicated them, grouped them, and moved that group below and cen- ter of my original nine. This group automatically centered and aligned since I had previously chosen Align objects to: Active objects. I then Figure 1. (All images courtesy Doug Zender) Figure 1. (All images courtesy Doug Zender) Figure 2. One, Two, Step ABILITIES OF THE STEP AND REPEAT TOOL B Y D O U G Z E N D E R

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