5 Replies Latest reply on Dec 31, 2014 1:07 AM by nulcul

    Starting out with a Cintiq in Adobe Flash - A series of frustratingly unfindable simple questions!

    nulcul

      I'm completely new to the Flash IDE, but I have used my Cintiq 13HD with Photoshop in the past. Despite the tablet working well and drawing correctly, so far Flash feels very weird and almost unusable. I've spent hours looking online for answers to these simple questions, and I've found nothing. Please help answer any if you can!

       

      1. Eraser brush size: I have the wacom pen set to brush, and the eraser set to eraser (fairly standard). I can adjust the pen's brush size in the toolbar, but the eraser is stuck at the smallest size! I have set the eraser tool to the max brush size, and when the pen is set to the eraser tool directly it is larger. How do I set the other side of the wacom pen to a larger brush size? And aren't there any keyboard shortcuts to increase/decrease brush size in Flash? (like [ and ] in Photoshop)

       

      2. Brush zoom: The brush size changes when you zoom. People online say the brush size is constant, but this is just wrong. When you zoom to 200%, the brush should be twice as big as it is in 100% zoom. Is there any way to make Flash have this (normal) behavior?

       

      3. Timeline wrapping: Can you make the "step forward one frame" and "step backward one frame" keys (comma and period) wrap the entire timeline, so stepping forward on the last frame goes to frame 1, and stepping backward on frame 1 goes to the last frame? This is crucial for me to animate loops well, and I can't find anything about it online or in preferences. Shift+comma and shift+period are okay workarounds, but they are not ideal, because I have comma and period mapped to buttons on the Cintiq. I need them to wrap!

       

      4. Numerical Brush Thickness: Is there any way to specify a brush thickness with a number? Do I have to use the pen tool to get stroke thickness properties? At the very least, can I use a keyboard shortcut to specify size, instead of clicking on toolbars?

       

      Honestly, I'm at the end of my rope here. I'm almost ready to drop Flash entirely and do this in Illustrator, then animate in Flash when I have everything drawn properly. Why is everything so different, and why can't I find any of these simple questions online?

        • 1. Re: Starting out with a Cintiq in Adobe Flash - A series of frustratingly unfindable simple questions!
          Asymetrical Adobe Community Professional

          The long and short of it is no you can't do most of the things you're looking to do as far as the brush is concerned. Flash has ALWAYS increased the brush size as you zoom in and decreased it when it's zoomed out. Why? No clue but it's always been so.  You CAN increase the brush size by number though using the Properties box. The eraser is weird in Flash. so much so that I use the Lasso tool and select what I don't want and delete it. Since you're used to Illustrator you might not realize that selecting areas of a brush stroke will NOT select the entire stroke like in Illustrator. you can select only parts. You can also sort of allow for what you're calling timeline wrapping by installing a Command and mapping it to a custom key command. Just make sure there's a key frame at the end of the cycle.

          Dropbox - Flash_Select_Next_and_Previous_Keyframes.zip

           

          Also this might do sort of what you want too:

          http://www.toonmonkey.com/frameJumper.fla

           

          Finally, Flash is no different than it has ever been and you have to take into consideration that while Illustrator was developed by Adobe, Flash was developed by Macromedia and was then acquired by Adobe years later so you' can't really expect it to work the same. Personally I HATE Illustrator's interface and hate the way it works so I'd hate it if Flash worked like Illustrator!

          Anyway, I hope this helps.

          • 2. Re: Starting out with a Cintiq in Adobe Flash - A series of frustratingly unfindable simple questions!
            nulcul Level 1

            Thanks so much for the calm, informative answer. I know I was flipping out a bit when I posted this, so I appreciate that you didn't go there.

             

            I know Flash started out as a Macromedia product but I kind of hoped Adobe would add some similar features in the years since acquiring it. Flash is a lot messier in the way it intersects paths and fills (and erasing all visible layers), but I'm getting used to that as I practice and animation is definitely way easier than in Illustrator. The major problem I have is the lack of existing keyboard shortcuts and shortcut-able functions: I don't want to click in the properties box and type a number, I want to press a key and have the brush go up or down one size.

             

            I'll definitely look into the JSFL stuff for custom keyboard shortcuts, I'm an AS3 programmer and it looks like I can code the functionality I need in. Thank you so much for pointing me in the right direction! I think I could make zoom functions that auto-increase brush size at the same time, and frame functions that wrap the timeline via flash.getDocumentDOM().getTimeline().frameCount.

             

            Oh, and when I restarted Flash the eraser on the wacom pen was a larger brush size, go figure.

            • 3. Re: Starting out with a Cintiq in Adobe Flash - A series of frustratingly unfindable simple questions!
              nulcul Level 1

              And done.

              Here's the JSFL code for previous frame with wrapping (overwrite the default comma key):

              var tl = flash.getDocumentDOM().getTimeline();

              var f = tl.currentFrame;

              var n = tl.frameCount;

              if (f > 0) f--;

              else f = n-1;

              tl.currentFrame = f;

              document.selectNone(); //tl.setSelectedFrames(f,f+1,true);

               

              And the JSFL code for next frame with wrapping (overwrite the default period key):

              var tl = flash.getDocumentDOM().getTimeline();

              var f = tl.currentFrame;

              var n = tl.frameCount;

              if (f < n-1) f++;

              else f = 0;

              tl.currentFrame = f;

              document.selectNone(); //tl.setSelectedFrames(f,f+1,true);

               

              Install the two JSFL text files in your Flash/Configuration/Commands folder and set them to keys in Edit > Keyboard Shortcuts... > Drawing Menu Commands > Commands > name of JSFL file. It also works in movieclip timelines, which is the reason I need it personally.

               

              This is easy enough for me to do that I'm not even mad anymore. Thanks again for the tip!

              • 4. Re: Starting out with a Cintiq in Adobe Flash - A series of frustratingly unfindable simple questions!
                Asymetrical Adobe Community Professional

                Whoah DUDe! That's awesome! And you're quite welcome about the response. I totally get opening Flash and having it not do what's the norm. So as I am NOT a JFSL guy... what do I do with this script? I mean I know where it goes but do I just rename the text file with a .jfsl suffix and does it matter what each file is called? Also since I animate all the time with the , and . keys for flipping animation and don't want to overwrite that, could the keys be changed to the bracket keys [ and ] like in Photoshop?

                • 5. Re: Starting out with a Cintiq in Adobe Flash - A series of frustratingly unfindable simple questions!
                  nulcul Level 1

                  Yeah, save the text in a text file and rename it to WhateverYouWantTheCommandToBeCalledInFlash.jsfl. I'm just leaving it here in case anyone else wants that functionality, I've found it very helpful so far! You can bind it to any keys (nothing in the script forces it to , and .) and you don't have to use it unless you're interested, but since I wanted those keys to work this way it's helping me a lot.