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Drawing a Wall and Floor in Flash CS5

The inspiration for this FlashR CS5 tutorial came from the Box of Joy Christmas Ecard that I animated for Pamela Gladding Ecards. It's an ecard animation with beautiful artwork created by Diane Pedersen. The animation starts with a Christmas present sitting on the stage. But the box looked a little lost. We needed a background for the animation. This could have been simply a gradient or solid color but I wanted to do a little something more. So I decided to add a wooden floor and red painted wall. Now the Christmas box was in a room instead of floating in space.

Because most of the artwork used in PG Ecards is raster graphics, I took this opportunity to draw the wall and floor in Flash. I started with a simple gradient for the wall. Because the box is green with a red ribbon, I used the red from the ribbon on the wall. Then I drew the wooden boards that made up the floor and the baseboard.

Starting on the wall, I drew a rectangle (null stroke) that covered the entire stage. To create the gradient, I selected the rectangle and opened the Color panel. From the drop-down list, I set the Color Type to Linear Gradient. This turned my wall into the default black/white gradient. But the gradient was horizontally dark to light. I needed my wall to be dark at the top and lighter at the bottom of the wall (to draw attention down to the Christmas box). To turn the gradient, I used the Gradient Transform Tool. Finally, I set the light and dark red colors for my gradient by changing the color pointers below the gradient definition bar.

Now it was time to make the floor. I started by creating one wooden board out of a rectangle on a new layer. I set the fill to a light brown and the stoke to a dark brown. After drawing the first rectangle for the floor, I copy/pasted the rectangle, placing each rectangle next to the other, until half of the stage was covered. Next, I selected all the rectangles and used the Modify Transform Distort command to add perspective to the boards. While all the rectangles were still selected, I copied them in order to create the other side of the floor. Once I pasted the copied rectangles, I needed to flip them horizontally. This gave me the entire floor.

To finish the room, I drew the baseboard on a new layer, using the same fill and stroke colors. I drew a long thin rectangle along the top of the floor. Once I converted this to a symbol, I could add an Inner Shadow filter to give the baseboard some definition.

Box of Joy Ecard at Pamela Gladding

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