This section of the tutorial will cover nodes, or those little knobby things along a line that you can manipulate to suit your drawing. We will select, move, add, and subtract nodes, join two nodes into one or connect them with a new segment, split one node into two or delete a segment that connects them. In Part 2 we will make nodes corner, smooth, or symmetric, and make selected segments into lines or curves (very cool!).
Begin by pressing F2 or selecting the Nodes tool from the toolbar. The Nodes tool is second in line, right beneath the select tool (plain arrow).
Now click on any object to select.
Large and small square nodes appear. Click on a node to select it, or the segment between two nodes to select both nodes. Shift+Click selects several nodes in succession. Tab selects the next node; Shift+Tab selects the previous node. Click anywhere outside the line to deselect all nodes.
Make a schematic similar to the one above, with a square neckline. Click on one of the small nodes and drag it diagonally downward.
The blue line with a circle at the end is called a handle. You can select and drag it, too.
See what happens when you do.
Ctrl+Drag restricts a node's movement to horizontal or vertical, and Ctrl+Alt+Drag takes it along the direction of the node's handles. You can also use your keyboard's Arrow keys to move nodes.
Across the top of your Inkscape window (in Node mode) there should be a row of icons. If you hover your mouse over each one you can read a description of its function. Select the node or segment first, then click on the icon to implement.
If you're as bad with a mouse as I am, you may prefer keystroke commands. Double-click or Shift+Alt+Click anywhere on a selected path to add a new node at that point without changing the shape of the path. Ctrl+Alt+Click to delete.
Now I'm going to show you a few tricks that may or may not be useful to you in drawing schematics. First up is Join Nodes.
Select two end nodes. In this case, the one at the top corner of the collar and one on the sleeve. First I selected the sleeve line with Shift+Click, then the nodes one at a time using Shift+Click for the second one I chose. The lower nodes of the collar won't work for this because they are along the path of the neckline, but you can choose either sleeve node.
Then choose the third icon which shows two nodes being made into one. Nifty, huh?
Undo all that (Edit -- Undo or Ctrl+Z) and choose the two nodes at the top of the collar. Choose the sixth icon, the one that shows two nodes connected by a segment becoming open (unconnected). Whee! Now connect them by clicking the fifth icon.
What about the fourth icon? This one's pretty neat. It splits the node into two nodes in order to move them separately.
I found the Inkscape manual very helpful in preparing this tutorial. A great resource!
Next up: Nodes Part 2 including some really wonderful features.
Hi! I'm Kangath---
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