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How do I punch out an open path? - Macromedia Freehand

I am trying to "carve" paths out of a vector image. My goal can be described as cutting a vector image into jigsaw puzzle peices, leaving between the pieces contours of uniform width. Ideally I would achieve this by drawing over the image an open path of specified stroke width (with a pen tool for example) in the shape of countours that I want carved from the underlying vector. I would then "punch out" the desired pattern by combining the paths into a composite path. However, by default both Fireworks and Freehand punch out the closed path or the "fill" ...

  1. #1

    Default How do I punch out an open path?

    I am trying to "carve" paths out of a vector image. My goal can be described as
    cutting a vector image into jigsaw puzzle peices, leaving between the pieces
    contours of uniform width.

    Ideally I would achieve this by drawing over the image an open path of
    specified stroke width (with a pen tool for example) in the shape of countours
    that I want carved from the underlying vector. I would then "punch out" the
    desired pattern by combining the paths into a composite path. However, by
    default both Fireworks and Freehand punch out the closed path or the "fill" of
    the path. Instead I need to punch out a path corresponding to the width or
    stroke of the open path.

    I created a small illustration to describe my problem more clearly:

    http://www.martinsirk.net/punch_open_path.gif

    Is this possible in Freehand? If not, is there an alternative or prefferred
    way to accomplish the same thing? (I also have Fireworks, Illustrator, and
    Photoshop if any of these applications provide additional options.)

    Thanks,

    Snelephant

    snelephant Guest

  2. #2

    Default Re: How do I punch out an open path?

    A couple of ideas for doing this in Freehand come to mind.
    1) Once you've drawn your desired stroke, use the "Expand Stroke" command to
    turn it into an outlined object the same dimensions as the drawn stroke. You
    can then use the "Punch" command to punch the new object out of the
    background object.
    2) Double-click the knife tool and play with the settings. Make it as wide
    as the stroke you want to draw and set for "close cut paths". Now you can
    use it to cut into closed vector shapes, leaving behind a gap the width of
    the tool.

    Bill Schuhle


    Bill Guest

  3. #3

    Default Re: How do I punch out an open path?

    Thanks for the great tips, Bill.

    A user in the Fireworks discussion simultaneously referred me to the same
    "expand stroke" technique you describe. I have yet to try it in Freehand, but
    the method works beautifully in Fireworks. I presume both applications support
    this feature and it was under my nose all the time!

    The knife tool suggestion is also intriguing. I will try both approaches and
    compare the results.

    Thanks for the prompt assistance.

    Kerry (Snelephant)

    snelephant Guest

  4. #4

    Default Re: How do I punch out an open path?

    Glad I could help :-)

    "snelephant" <com> wrote in message
    news:dahsvr$ruu$macromedia.com... 
    but 
    support 
    and 


    Bill Guest

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