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bodazx
Currently Being Moderated

"sticky" anchors

Jan 30, 2013 10:28 AM

Tags: #anchor #path #join #intersection

Hi,

 

I've done my due diligence in researching this question before asking, so if the answer is common, please forgive me.

 

I've made a callout box (as shown) that I would like to be able to repeat throughout my document without

too much fuss. Optimally I would like to be able to copypasta this group of objects (or save them as a symbol, or whatever suggestions you have that may be better) around the document and modify the position of the circle and the box easily, with the line stretching between the two like a rubber band. You could also think of what I am trying to create as an upside-down pendulum.

callout box.png

 

Is there a way that I can make the anchors at the intersections of these objects "sticky", so that I don't have to direct select anchors and objects individually every time I want to create and modify a callout box?

 

Thanks for the help.

 

-boda

 
Replies
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 30, 2013 10:49 AM   in reply to bodazx

    Nope. There's no method to have objects dynamically "linked" in that manner.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 30, 2013 11:03 AM   in reply to bodazx

    If you don't need to scale the box, you could try symbols and use 9-slice scaling. This will give you at least some sort of flexibility regarding the length of the line.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 30, 2013 12:49 PM   in reply to [scott w]

    You can do it using an opacity mask but the movement of the ring has to be done in 2 steps; once with the ring and the end of the line direct selected and then again (Cmd+D) with the mask selected. (The mask makes the hole in the ring.)

     

    I’m not sure if there’s a way of linking an opacity mask to an object so that it can be direct selected and moved simultaneously with the object. I think not.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 30, 2013 1:24 PM   in reply to Steve Fairbairn

    Here’s another (probably simpler) way:

    Picture 1.png

    Draw a circle (just an ordinary one with no hole in it).

    Draw a line from the circle’s centre to a fixed point on your callout box (that you can mark with a stray point or invisible object). In this example I used the corner of the photo.

    Group line and circle

    Draw a circle for the hole and make an opacity mask of it. This makes the hole and hides the end of the line in the middle of the circle.

    Select the whole thing and move it to its new position.

    Direct select the bottom end of the line and snap it back to the fixed point on the callout box.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 31, 2013 2:35 AM   in reply to bodazx

    bodazx,

     

    So what, then, is the difference between using a circle w/ no fill and a circle with an opacity mask?

     

    That with the former you will have the attachment between arm and circle stay at the bottom so the arm fails to point at the centre. Unless you swing it another way (I hope no one is going to swing for this):

     

    You could use a stroked circle and a line from it, but then you would have to use another set of 2 steps (in either order you may need to repeat at least one to get it right), Smart Guides are your friends:

     

    One step is to rotate the whole thing round the Anchor Point where the arm sticks to the box (click that Anchor Point before rotating),

     

    The other step is to stretch the arm by DirectSelecting the circle (with the far Anchor Point of the arm) and moving along the direction of the arm.

     

    This may be too silly, unless you plan on using so low angles that the end cap at the lower end of the arm becoming visible above the box. In that case you may extend the arm a bit downwards past the Anchor Point that is sticking to the box. You should still rotate round the latter, of course.

     

    You could get round that by giving the box a stroke with a weight (at least) equal to that of the arm (so the cap will always be hidden), but that also applies to the more subtle way shown by Steve, in which case the swing way may indeed be too silly.

     

    Steve, is that the present delight in all its gloomy snowlessness?

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 31, 2013 6:34 AM   in reply to bodazx

    As Jacob points out, the object of my exercise was to keep the top end of the line at the CENTRE of the circle.

    That’s why I used the mask – to hide the end of the line while still leaving a hole in the circle.

     

    Jacob: Lovely sunny weather just now with a slight frost. :-)

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jan 31, 2013 5:45 PM   in reply to Steve Fairbairn

    ...the object of my exercise was to keep the top end of the line at the CENTRE of the circle...

    You could simply do that with an Arrowhead, a Pattern Brush, or an ArtBrush.

     

    But none of this really addresses the issue. None of these methods will replicate the "rubber band" behavior of a connector lines tool.

     

    JET

     
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