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The Pen Tool

How to make the most of this simple yet powerful tool

Many of you have been asking us many questions about the Pen Tool. So, get ready! Because it’s time for another inside look into Vectornator’s tools.

Those of you who are completely new to vector graphic design, you will quickly discover that the Pen Tool is the most powerful yet simplest tool Vectornator has to offer. With it, you can manage the so called Bézier curves (or Paths) whose direction and angle are determined by the position of little Anchor Points that lie nearby.

bezier curve

There are many types of Bezier curves, depending on the Node Type.

node types
From the left, you can see the 4 types of nodes in Vectornator: Single, Mirrored, Asymmetrical, Disconnected.

But let’s begin with the basics.

Start by selecting the Pen Tool in the Action Bar on the left.

Straight Lines

Tap on the canvas to add a corner point. Multiple taps will create a straight path with “sharp” corners.

When selecting the Anchor Point, there will be no handles in this case.

Note: To help you create a horizontal/ vertical path, you can activate the Snap to Grid feature.

pen tool

Curve Paths

Tap and drag your finger (or Pencil) on the canvas to add a corner point. This creates asymmetrical direction handles, as seen highlighted at the top of the Style Tab, and you will obtain curved edges.

pen tool

Holding the canvas with a second finger, while dragging the Pencil, will change the Node into “disconnected” type. In this way, you will be able to move handles independently and change the direction of the next curve.

Holding the canvas with 2 fingers, will enable 45º snapping on both handles. Additionally, holding the canvas with 3 fingers, will enable 45º snapping on one handle.

pen tool

Edit Handles

Tap on the Anchor Point and drag your finger above the Adjustment Point to change the direction of the handle.

To turn a curve back into a straight line, first, tap on the Anchor Point.  Then, change the Node Type by switching from 4 different types in the panel inside the Style Tab.

pen tool

Close a Path

To close a path, tap the first node of the path. Tapping the Pen tool or double-tapping the last node will finish the path without closing it.

To continue editing an unclosed path, just select the path with the Selection Tool. Choose the pen tool afterward and tap on one of the end Anchor Points of the path. The path will be extended from this node.

You can also watch this video tutorial from Will Paterson to create your beautiful next Lettering Design!

Working with the Pen Tool is not really a natural process. Unlike the Pencil Tool, you can create your path by adding points and manipulating handles to shape it accordingly.

Remember also, the fewer points, the smoother a path will be!

Share your designs with us, we would love to see what our awesome community is up to! ♡

In case you missed our latest Tips and Tricks Article about Importing Fonts in Vectornator, go to take a look!

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Anna D'Addario
WRITTEN BY:

Anna D'Addario

Marketing Designer
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