The editing tools in Linearity Curve allow you to modify existing vector shapes and lines. These tools include the Selection Tool, the Node Tool, the Scissors Tool, and the Eraser Tool.
With the Selection Tool, you can select and move entire shapes, while the Node Tools tool allows you to select, add, delete, and convert individual anchor points on a shape. With the Eraser Tool, you can erase parts of a shape; with the Scissors Tool, you can cut a shape into multiple shapes with open paths.
Two selection options in Linearity Curve (formerly Vectornator) are available: The first option, the Selection Tool , selects the whole shape. The second option, the Node Tool , allows you to select your shape’s individual points (Nodes).
How to select elements
The Selection Tool is your go-to tool in Curve. It allows you to select objects and rotate, duplicate, and perform additional transformations with the selected object.
1 – The Selection Tool allows you to select the shape itself.
2 – The Direct Selection or Node Tool allows you to select individual points (Nodes) of your shape.
3 - You can select nested elements by activating the Click-Through Mode.
How to activate the Selection Tool
The Selection Tool (1) is the first tool at the top of the Curve Toolbar. Click on the tool icon to activate it. Once the Selection Tool is activated, you can click on any object on the canvas to select it. The object will be contained within a bounding box as soon as it is selected.
The bounding box controls or the buttons to the right will enable you to move, rotate (A), or scale (B) the object or access nested objects directly via the Click-Through Mode (C).
How to Multi Select objects
You can select multiple objects or paths by clicking outside the shapes, dragging a box around them, or using the Multi Select Mode. To enter the Multi Select Mode, hold ⇧ while selecting the objects.
How to select nested elements
You can select nested elements by activating the Click-Through Mode. When you have many Nested Groups, selecting a single element of a group can be difficult. The Click-Through Mode circumvents the layer hierarchy while selecting an element.
Once activated, this button lets you select directly what you see, and clicking on any parent element of your selected object will be bypassed. The Click-Through Mode comes in handy while working with Masks .
How to duplicate shapes
You can duplicate objects or paths in Linearity Curve by copy-pasting them ( ⌘C + ⌘V ) or using the Duplicate Mode. To enter the Duplicate Mode, hold ⌥ while dragging your selected object.
After duplicating a shape or group, you can press ⌘D to create another duplicate with the same offset value as your first duplicate.
You can also combine modes to speed up your workflow and create Rotational or Scalable Copies.
In a Rotational Copy, you copy the shape while simultaneously rotating it. To activate it, click the Rotate Mode Button while holding the ⌥ key simultaneously.
In a Scalable Copy, you copy the shape while simultaneously scaling it. To activate it, simply click the Scale Mode Button while holding the ⌥ key simultaneously.
How to Resize paths and elements proportionally
While drawing or resizing objects, press the ⇧ key to lock the shape's aspect ratio. This allows you to resize a shape while maintaining its original aspect ratio.
Alternatively, you can proportionately resize your path by using the Scale Tool. The Scale Tool Button appears after you have selected your object using the Selection Tool or the Node Tool and is visualized by a green circle at the bottom right corner of your selected object. Click on the green circle and drag it to resize the shape or path proportionally.
Holding ⇧ also allows you to draw perfect circles and squares.
How to nudge elements on the canvas
If you want to move an object on the canvas to the top, down, left, or right, you can select it and use the arrow keys.
By holding shift ⇧ and using the arrow ←⇅→, you can move selected elements or objects by 10 px to the top, down, left, or right.
Disclaimer: The document interface will vary if you don't have the macOS 13.0.1 update or later versions installed.
Learn more about tips and tricks for Linearity Curve. (Set link to Academy page)
The Node Tool will help you select individual points in your shapes and paths.
Vector-based shapes consist of points connected by paths via mathematical equations. The path-connected points create vector shapes. These points are called Bézier Nodes. With the Node Tool, you can edit the points to refine the path of your shape.
Linearity Curve (formerly Vectornator) has incorporated color-coded Bézier Nodes. With the color-coding system, you can immediately distinguish the Starting Point, the End Point, and the Standard Path Node on your path.
Bézier Nodes are color-coded:
- Green Node = The Green Node signifies the Start Point of your path.
- Blue Node = The Blue Node signifies a Standard Path Node between Start and End Point.
- Red Node = The Red Node signifies the path's End Point.
The two Adjustment Handles of each node will always have an identical color when the node is selected.
The Content-Aware Menu
When you select a node with the Node Tool, the Content-Aware Options appear at the top of the Style Inspector. The Node Tool options allow you to change the Node Type (1). In the Path Section of the Inspector (2), you can also find options to Add or Delete nodes.
In Linearity Curve, you have the following four different Bézier Node Types available:
A Single Node has no handles and creates straight paths. If you convert a Single Node to another Node Type, you can always revert to a Single Node Type by double-clicking on the node.
The Mirror Node creates curved paths with two mirroring handles. The resulting Bézier Curves have the same distance from the node. When you move one handle, the other follows the movement in the opposite direction.
The Asymmetric Node creates curved paths with a different curve distance from the Bézier Node but with the same angle.
The Disconnected Node : creates paths with handles independently movable from each other.
You must first activate the Node Tool in the Toolbar to change the Node Type. You can select a singular node by clicking directly on it. To select multiple nodes, you can click and drag a selection rectangle around the nodes you wish to select or click on the nodes and hold shift.
When you select a node, the context-aware Node Type Panel will appear at the top of the Inspector. Click on one of the four available Node Type Buttons to convert your selected node.
You can speed up your workflow using gestures and shortcuts to change your Node Type while drawing with the Pen Tool.
How to display nodes and Node Handles
To display the path nodes on your screen, you must activate the Node Tool by clicking on the Node Tool in the Toolbar. You can select a single node by directly clicking on it. You can select multiple nodes by dragging a selection box around the nodes you wish to select, or you can click directly on each point by holding ⇧ . Select and press ⌘ to select all nodes on your path. Selecting the nodes immediately displays their color codes.
If you click on a node, the corresponding Node Type will be visible as an activated button in the Content-Aware Options at the top of the Inspector. Even after selecting a node, if there are no visible handles, it signifies it’s a Single Node Type.
You can display the Node Handles of only one path at a time.
How to select nodes
The Node Tool can edit, move, and covert your nodes aligned on the vector path. You can find the Node Tool below the Selection Tool. Click on the tool icon in the Toolbar to activate it.
How to select a Single Node
To select a singular Node Point, directly click on it. Once you have clicked on a node, hold, and you can move the node around and change the Node Type.
How to select multiple nodes
You can select all nodes by holding ⌘ and clicking on one node. You can select multiple nodes by clicking and dragging a selection rectangle with the mouse over the nodes you wish to select or clicking on the nodes you want to select while holding ⇧. Additionally, you can select multiple nodes from multiple elements with the Multi Select Mode.
All lines or shapes in vector-based software are made up of points (or nodes) connected by paths. Each node's position, type, and handles define the appearance of your shape or line.
In Linearity Curve, selecting and editing those points to modify and polish your design is easy. Activate the Node Tool to select any nodes you want. You can click on them, click and drag an area, or activate the Multi Selection Tool to select more than one point.
The Click-Through Mode
You can select the nodes of nested elements by activating the Click-Through Mode . When you have many nested groups, selecting a single node from a nested element of a group can be challenging.
The Click-Through Mode circumvents the layer hierarchy while selecting a node.
Once activated, this button allows you to select directly what you see or click on; any parent element of your selected object will be bypassed.
The Click-Through Mode comes in handy while working with Masks or Groups.
How to add nodes
You can add a node to your path by clicking directly on the vector path. Another option is to hold ⇧, or ⌘ while clicking on the vector path or pressing the Add Nodes button in the Path Section of the Inspector.
How to delete nodes
You can delete a node by selecting it and then pressing ⌫. Another option is to select the node and then right-click and select Delete in the Popup Menu.
You can also press the Delete Nodes button in the Path Section of the Inspector to delete singular or multiple nodes.
You can press ⌘ to select all nodes or press ⇧ to select multiple nodes and then use the options above to delete them.
How to edit nodes
You can change the Node Type by clicking one of the Node Type Buttons in the content-aware Style Inspector.
You can switch between the Asymmetrical Node Type and the Single Node Type by double-clicking on the node. That way, you can activate or deactivate the Bézier Node Handles.
You can use several shortcuts to speed up your workflow while working with nodes:
While clicking and dragging on the Bézier Handle, you can press the ⇧ key, and the Beziér Handles will snap in 45° increments.
If you hold down the ⌥ key while dragging, the node behaves as a Disconnected Node.
You can edit multiple nodes from multiple elements (including compound paths) simultaneously, speeding up your workflow significantly.
How to open or close a path
When the Node Tool is active, you can open a shape by clicking the Open Path Button inside the Path Section. Additionally, you can access the Open Path Button at the top of the Inspector. To the right side of the open/close button, you can Finish a path.
When you select a shape, the Nodes Color System helps you to precisely identify where the shape will open or close when tapping the Open / Close Path Button.
How to move nodes
You can change the structure of a path by moving its nodes. You can do that easily by selecting any node and dragging it to any position on the canvas. Alternatively, you can change the point's XY coordinates from the Inspector.
You can also move any selected node using the ↑ ↓ keys on your keyboard.
You may notice that the Smart Guides appear when dragging a point around. They allow you to align that point to other points, edges, document grids, or personal Guides.
How to extend an open path
Open paths always have a gap between their endpoints.
To extend an open path, select the path with the Selection Tool (first icon at the top of the Toolbar). Then select the Pen Tool (third icon from the top in the Toolbar) and click on one of the end nodes of your open path.
Click anywhere on the canvas to create the next point. The path will be extended directly from the initial node to the new point you created.
Join two open paths
You have the following options to join two open paths:
- Select two open and separate paths (use click and drag to select, or press the ⇧ key while selecting paths.
- Open the Inspector and scroll down to see the Path Section.
- Click the Join Paths Button.
Remember that the path in the bottom-most layer will stay in position, while the paths above will move accordingly to fit together.
Also, when the nodes are not overlapping, Curve automatically adds a new line segment to connect the paths.
Close an open path
The essential drawing tools such as the Pen, Pencil, Brush, Line, and Spiral Tools draw open paths by default. Since closed shapes enable features that do not apply to open shapes - like Boolean operations - you may want to close an open element to make it more versatile.
Since Linearity Curve 4.0, we introduced the Open/Close Button that allows you to close and open a path with just one click. The button is placed in the Path Section of the Inspector. Select the open path, click on the Open/Close Button to close the path, and click once more to reopen the path.
Transform a closed path
The path of a closed shape links the first and the last node. This enables powerful Curve features like Boolean Operations f.ex.
Read more in the Boolean Operations (Options) section →
Combine and Separate paths
The Combine Button will create a compounded path composed of only selected paths. Compounded path holes appear in areas where the paths overlap. The reverse path direction button can change this.
The Separate Button will reverse the Combine function.
Using the Combine action can be helpful when you want to simultaneously change all the color properties of a repeated path in your design.
You can reverse the starting and ending points of the selected path(s) by clicking the Reverse Button.
Outline a path
The Outline Path Button lets you convert the stroke of any path into a new object, where the path becomes the shape's outline.
You should outline a path if you want to edit it beyond the path editing capabilities. For example, if you give a brush stroke or a letter a gradient, you must first outline the path by pressing the Outline button in the Path Section.
Please note that this action is reversible only by using the Undo command.
How to create an Offset Path
The Offset Path tool creates an identical shape to the original shape but at a different scale value. The Offset Path replica shape is evenly distanced from the center of the original shape. The created Offset Path is a Compound Path.
You can create an Offset Path on Mac inside the Path Section located in the Inspector. At the bottom of the feature list, click Offset Path.
The numerical value defines the distance between the original shape and the offset path. A positive numeric value will distend the Offset Path outside the selected shape; a negative value will pull back the Offset Path inside the original shape. A value of 10 px will expand the path beyond the source shape by 10 px. A value of -10 px will retract the path from the source shape by -10 px.
To generate an Offset Path, click on Create Offset Path. Afterward, you can change the Fill and color Stroke color attributes of the Offset Path shape.
You can edit the angles of your newly created Offset Paths in the Join field. You can choose between the three following Join options:
- The “Miter” join option creates a sharp corner.
- The “Round” join option creates a rounded corner.
- The “Bevel” join option creates a flat corner.
You can apply the Offset Path operation to multiple shapes at once by selecting multiple shapes in advance.
Split your shapes or paths into two open path segments with the Scissors Tool . Cut, move, and rearrange your shapes freely on the canvas. With the Scissors Tool, you can split a vector shape or path.
How to activate the Scissors Tool
You can activate the Scissors Tool by clicking on the Scissors Tool Icon inside the Toolbar.
The Scissors Tool can only be applied on a single vector object and not simultaneously on multiple selected shapes or paths. The Scissors Tool cannot be used to split a raster-based image.
How to split a path
You can split a path into multiple paths with the Scissors Tool. Activate the tool in the Toolbar and click on any path segments or nodes (except for the Start or End Point of your path) to split the path. The operation will result in two open paths.
How to edit shapes with the Scissors Tool
Use the Scissors Tool to cut away shape segments. First, select the shape you want to edit with the Selection Tool or the Node Tool, and then activate the Scissors Tool in the Toolbar.
Then, click on any Path Segment or Bézier Node (except for the Start or End Points) and split your shape into two open paths.
💡 Learn more about – How to Close a Shape
To move the newly created shape, activate the Selection Tool in the Toolbar, and click and drag it on any position on the canvas.
Using the Scissors Tool to split a shape into two open paths and the Eraser Tool to split a shape into two closed paths is recommended.
With the Eraser Tool, you can delete content from your document. The tool behaves like rubber on paper on the canvas. It will erase any area of an object along the drawn path.
You can activate the Eraser Tool by clicking on the Eraser Tool Icon in the Toolbar or by pressing E on your keyboard.
The Eraser Tool only applies to vector shapes, not raster-based images. If you import a raster image into Linearity Curve, it cannot be modified with the Eraser Tool.
The Eraser Tool does not apply to grouped or masked objects. It will only apply to Nested Objects, which you can access via Click-through Mode .
We recommend using the Scissors Tool to split a shape into open paths and the Eraser Tool into closed paths.
How to use the Eraser Tool
To erase objects, you must activate the Eraser Tool first and then click and drag over the canvas. Suppose you drag with the Eraser Tool across multiple overlapping shapes. In that case, the tool will erase everything on its path, splitting the overlapping shapes into multiple objects that can be selected and moved independently.
To move the separated objects, you must select the Object Path, not the object itself. If you want to move the separated object parts individually, select the object and click on the Separate Button in the Path Section.
You can adjust the size of the Eraser Tool on the Tool Slider that appears on the right side of the tool icon when the tool is activated.
How to erase a singular object
To erase a singular object on your canvas, select the shape you want to erase with the Selection Tool or the Node Tool. This technique excludes any other objects on your canvas from the erasing operation.
How to erase on a singular Layer
If you select a Layer, the Eraser Tool automatically erases the content on all the connected Elements.
Suppose you want to use the Eraser Tool on one Element or specific Elements. In that case, you can lock the remaining elements to exclude them from the erasing operation. To lock a Layer or Element, click the padlock icon on the corresponding Layer or Element. Then you can select the Layer, but the Eraser Tool will only affect the unlocked Element(s).
Another option is to select an Element directly. The Eraser Tool will only affect the singular selected Element.
A rectangular blue-lined Bounding Box borders all elements affected by the Eraser Tool. All masked objects and Groups will be excluded from the erasing operation.