There are many more options in Vectornator that you can use to alter your shapes. These options are accessible through the Inspector, and allow you to edit or create new complex paths.
By navigating the different Tabs inside the Inspector, you can manage many different options for your shapes and groups of objects. In Vectornator on iPad, you can perform those actions mainly from the Arrange and Path Tab.
The Arrange Tab is the second tab in the Inspector, after the Style tab. Here, you have access to many operations that can be used to adjust and transform your objects.
Grouping is a way to combine multiple objects into a single adjustable element while keeping them as singular shapes. You'll find the Group (1) and Ungroup (2) button in the Arrange Tab. Also, when selecting multiple objects in your canvas, the Grouping options (A) will appear in the Quick Actions bar as well.
If you have a keyboard paired with your iPad, you can use the ~key~ ⌘ + G ~key~ shortcut to group or ~key~⇧⌘ + G~key~ to ungroup.
Creating a Group
Select the objects you want to group together by dragging a widow around them on the canvas with your cursor, or by using the Multi Select Mode. Then, tap the Group button inside the Arrange Tab.
Once grouped, a letter G will shows up in the bottom right corner of the selected group.
The Flipping buttons allow you to mirror the selected object horizontally or vertically. Simply tap the buttons in the Arrange Tab to perform the actions.
In this section, you can change the order of your grouped objects in four different ways:
A – Move Forward - Move the selected object towards the top of the stacking order.
B – Move Backward - Move the selected object towards the bottom of the stacking order.
C – Move to Front - Move the selected object to the top position of the stacking order.
D – Move to Back - Move the selected object to the bottom position of the stacking order.
To move your shapes simply tap on the buttons in the Arrange Tab. Alternatively you can use the Stack Order button inside the Quick Actions bar.
In this section, you can properly align your selected objects with just a tap.
By simply tapping these buttons, you can set three or more selected elements to be distributed in equal distance from each other horizontally (A) or vertically (B).
Located at the bottom of the Arrange Tab, you will find these two buttons:
Transform Again will repeat the last action you took, i.e. it will always rotate the selected object to the same rotation value you set before.
Duplicate and Transform Again will allow you to duplicate your selected object and repeat the last action you took simultaneously. Using this tool will speed your workflow when creating vector patterns. Using a keyboard, you can also do this by simply use the ~key~ CMD+D ~key~.
The Path Tab
From the Path Tab you can combine your vector paths and shapes by using Boolean, Masking, Outline and more.
The term “Boolean”, in computer programming, is a data type which can be either “true” or “false”. But, in terms of graphic design softwares like Vectornator, we use the term “boolean” to describe how shapes are combined between each other. Those operations are often used in Icon and Logo Design.
There are five types of boolean operations:
1 - Unite merges your two selected shapes into one.
2 - Subtract removes the front shape from the back one. As you can see from the image below, the area of the top path is removed from the one underneath.
3 - Intersect removes everything that doesn't intersect and shows only the part where the shapes overlap.
4 - Divide separates the intersecting parts of the overlapped shapes into separate objects.
5 - Exclude removes everything that intersects. The area where the shapes don’t meet is retained. It's basically the opposite of Intersect, leaving the parts where the original paths don’t overlap.
In Vectornator iPad, you can find these options (2) at the top of the Path Tab. These operations will allow you create new complex paths with just a tap.
Anytime you select more than one object at the same time you can simply find them inside the Quick Actions bar too.
Note: Remember, you can perform a Boolean Operation only with shapes that have some parts overlapped.
Video Recap – Boolean Operations
Boolean operations are a very powerful tool for any product or graphic design project. A complicated-looking shape can be constructed in no time using the five Boolean operations. Creating complex shapes is something you’ll inevitably come across in icon or logo design, so let’s take a deeper look at these 5 options in this video.
Applying a mask to an image in Vectornator can be really useful to give it a beautiful texture or pattern.
But, what is a Mask in a vector software?
Masks are used to show parts of an object within a specific shape.
In Vectornator, the Mask / Unmask button can be found in the Path Tab inside the Inspector.
Creating a Mask
Any closed shape can be turned into a mask.
To do so, select the element you want to mask plus the shape you want to use as a mask and then, tap the Mask button inside the Path Tab.
Note: The top object will be always the Mask Shape.
How to know if an object has been masked?
In Vectornator, you will immediately recognize if there’s a mask thanks to a letter M that shows up at the bottom corner of your masked object.
When you see the Unmask button highlighted, it means that the object selected is under a mask.
Editing a Mask
To edit a Mask Shape, you simply have to double-tap on it.
Then double-tap again on an empty area of the canvas to exit from the Isolated State.
Note: Everything outside the Mask Shape will be obscured by a transparent layer.