Inkscape/Path Drawing Tools
The next three buttons as we go downwards are used for drawing paths. A path is a mathematical curve that is specified by a number of points that the path must curve through. Taking them out of order, lets look at the middle one, the bezier curve tool.
Bezier Curve tool
Above is an example of a bezier curve. You can see two nodes in this view. These are the start and end nodes of the curve. But there are node control handles that you cannot see. These determine how the line curves between the end nodes. In order to see those nodes you need to click on the node editing button.
Clicking on the node tool reveals another node in the middle of the curve.
If you then click on the middle node you will see the bezier handles appear.
These handles allow you to change the shape of the curves between the nodes. Notice that a list of node tools appear at the top. You can use these to change the nodes. We will not go into detail about these tools in this beginners tutorial.
The node tool can be used on all the objects created with the other tools to reveal their nodes.
More on the drawing tools
The other two drawing tools also create paths. The top tool of the three is the scribble tool. Use it like a pencil. The computer will calculate all the nodes and beziers for you. Closed paths can be created by drawing a loop. (With the bezier tool, click on the start node to close the curve).
The last tool in the group is the calligraphy tool. It allows you to do calligraphic writing. The pen creates closed loops in a realistic pen nib like way. Because of this many graphic artists like to draw with this pen all the time.