Beginner's Guide to Adobe Flash/Symbols/Making

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There are several different ways to generate new symbols, and the method you choose depends primarily on personal preference. In essence, you can either build a shape and then turn it into a symbol, or make a symbol and then build the shape inside of it. Regardless, symbols can always be edited after they are made.

A. Build the shape first[edit]

  • 1. Select the shape(s) you wish to convert into a symbol.
  • 2. [choose one]

a. Right-click and select 'Convert to Symbol'
b. Press F8.
c. Go to Modify>convert to symbol.

  • 3. Name your symbol, and choose the type of symbol you want.

The symbol will then appear in your library indicated by the name you gave it. In addition, it now has a name in the Properties panel, and a selection box.

B. Create the symbol first[edit]

  • 1. [choose one]

a. Click the 'new symbol' button, located on the bottom left of the library panel.
b. Go to Insert > new symbol.
c. Press ctrl/cmd F8.

  • 2. Name and choose the type of symbol you want.
  • 3. You will then be presented with a blank screen to build what your symbol will look like.


C. Import an external file, such as an eps or bitmap.[edit]

1. Create/acquire the image you want, in a program such as Photoshop.
2. Go to File > Import > Import to library / to stage. If you import to library, the file will appear in your library with the name the external file has. If you import to stage, the file will appear on the stage. The method you choose is up to you, but I generally import to library and then drop the file into another symbol (see below).