Reshaping and Manipulating Text Characters Flash

In addition to all of the powerful text handling capabilities previously discussed, Flash also gives you the ability to reshape and distort standard text to suit your taste(or lack thereof). To manipulate text, the text must first be converted to its component lines and fills. Then it can be reshaped, erased, manipulated, and distorted. Converted text characters can be grouped or changed to symbols. These items can also be animated. However, after text characters have been converted to lines and fills, they can no longer be edited as text. Even if you regroup the text characters and/or convert the text into a symbol, you can no longer apply font, kerning, or paragraph options. But just to get you started, here are a few tips and guidelines for manipulating text in Flash:

  • To convert text characters to component lines and fills: First, the text characters that you want to convert must be selected, or highlighted. Then choose Modify➪Break Apart from the Menu Bar. To undo, choose Edit➪Undo from the Menu Bar.
  • Rotation and Break Apart can only be applied to outline fonts such as TrueType fonts.
  • On Macs, PostScript fonts can only be broken apart if ATM (Adobe Type Manager) is installed.
  • Bitmap fonts disappear from the screen if you attempt to break them apart.
  • Test whether a font is a bitmapped font by choosing View➪Antialias from the Menu Bar. If the text still appears with ragged edges, it is a bitmapped font and will disappear when broken apart.

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