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Mac Layers

Mac Layers

Layers are the building blocks for creating designs in Vectornator. Any Path, Shape, or Group is stored within a Layer.

In the Mac App, the Layers Tab is displayed on the left side of the interface and is completely separated from the Inspector (unlike our iPadOS App). However, as you can see, it supports the same functionalities as in the iPad and iPhone versions of Vectornator.

Inside the Layers Tab, you can also manage the Artboards in your document ➞

Opening the Mac Layers Tab

To access the Layers in your document, click the <key>Sidebar<key> button in the Top Toolbar. Click the Sidebar icon again to close the Layers Tab.

You can also use the <key> \ <key> key to open and close it.

Resizing the Layers Tab

On Mac, the Layers Tab can be resized by clicking on the right border of this tab and dragging to reduce or expand it.

Creating a new Layer

To add a new layer, click the upper <key>+<key> button at the top right corner of the tab, and then click the New Layer button. The new Layer will be automatically inserted above the currently selected Layer.

TIP: In Vectornator, you can create as many Layers as you need!

Selecting Layers

To select a layer on your Mac App, simply click on it in the Layers Tab (A). The Layer's Title will change color into a darker grey.

To immediately highlight the layer's content, you can turn on the "Isolate Active Layer" feature by going to View > Isolate Active Layer in the Menu Bar.

Select a sub-layer

To select a sub-layer, click on the main Layer's thumbnail to expand it, and then click on a single element to select it. When you do this, you’ll see the selection handles appear around that specific element.

Selecting Multiple Layers

To select multiple layers, click on the first Layer or sub-layer's element and click the <key>⇧<key> key while clicking on another.

Moving Layers

To move a layer, click and hold the layer or sub-layer, then drag it up or down to change the order. A blue line will appear to help you visualize the new position where the layer will be placed.

Renaming a Layer

By default, Layers will be given sequentially numbered titles. To change a layer's title, double-click on a layer’s name, type the new title, and click Enter on your keyboard.

When you import any image into Vectornator, the program will automatically recognize any image Layers in the file, thanks to Apple’s machine learning framework CoreML. It also auto-renames the Layer to reflect what it thinks the content depicts.

Locking Layer

Click on the Lock/Unlock icon to lock or unlock a Layer on the current Artboard. You can also right-click on a single Layer to Lock/Unlock it. If a Layer is locked, it can't be moved or edited.

Hide / Show Layer

Click on the Hide/Show icon to toggle the visibility of your selected Layer or Layer’s elements on the canvas. You can also right-click on a single Layer to hide/show it.

Layer Opacity

At the bottom of the Layers Tab, you find the Layer Opacity Slider which allows you to easily change the transparency of all the layer's elements at once. To do so, click on a layer to select it. Then click and slide along the Opacity slider to change the opacity of the elements within that Layer.

Export, Duplicate, Delete Layers

At the upper right corner of the Layers Tab, you'll find the <key>Edit<key> button (1). Click it to access Layer Options (3) such as:

Delete (A), Export (B), Duplicate (C), Hide (D), and Lock (E) layer.

By right-clicking on a Layer you will be able to access these same options, including Copy, Paste, Duplicate, Export a Single Layer, and Delete. These layer-based options help you work faster and more efficiently.‍

Pro Tip – This option allows you to quickly export a Single Layer (B) without leaving your canvas or having to copy-paste your objects into a new document. You can export your single layer as .jpg, .png, .svg, and .pdf.
Download the PDF version here.
Last Updated on Dec 02, 2021
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