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Old 13th June 2012, 04:35 PM   #1
pumeco
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Default Basics Features Missing or Broken : DrawPlus

First of all, this is my first post here, so hi there!

I've been wanting to buy Serif products for years now, but have been unable to do so due to a major problem that Serif simply don't seem to be interested in tackling.

It started when I took a look at DrawPlus. I'm into design and need a vector graphics package with a good, clean, logical design. The good news is that DrawPlus wins me over every other package out there. The bad news is that it's as good as useless to a designer (at least this designer).

Have Serif got something against grids and snapping?

First of all the grid snapping is just unbearable. When using the Pen Tool it does seem to snap to a grid, but not the grid that is on the screen. Seriously, such things are not acceptable for a vector graphics package.

The other issue, again involving the Pen Tool, is the total lack of snapping for the handles of curves. In other words, once you've placed the nodes and handles, only the nodes will snap to the grid if you later decide you need to move something.

Snapping handles to the grid simply does not work with the Pen Tool, which again, is totally unacceptable in a vector graphics package used for design work. If you look across the entire range of products from Serif, it's entirely hit and miss where snapping and the Pen Tool come into it. Some aren't offset but other are, and some snap, but only on certain curve types.

For me, Serif's otherwise truly superb products are a total waste of time and money. I prefer Serif products over any others out there, but cannot use any of them because of what seems to be a total disregard for getting the basics right.

Serif products have the power to win me over anything else out there (including all that overpriced Adobe ****), but if this problem still exists in the next version of DrawPlus, I'll just have to stick to Corel even though I like the Serif products better.

Sorry Serif, and I'm sorry my first post here had to be a complaint, but I joined the forum just to post this. It's infuriating to see all those feature requests on this forum, yet no one seems bothered about the basics that are required for accurate design work.

For crying out loud, Serif, please fix it, both the grid offset and the total lack of snapping on handles.

Last edited by mjh; 13th June 2012 at 07:34 PM. Reason: clarified title
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Old 13th June 2012, 04:38 PM   #2
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken :

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Originally Posted by pumeco View Post

For me, Serif's otherwise truly superb products are a total waste of time and money.

Welcome to the Serif forums.

I don't want to minimize your perceived frustrations, but as a writer, I find the juxtaposition of these two phrases particularly strange.



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Old 13th June 2012, 04:48 PM   #3
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken :

Thanks for the welcome.

I think it's a superb program in that it managed to win me over even the Adobe and Corel products, but a total waste of time and money in that they keep messing it up due to issues that really shouldn't exist in a vector graphics program.

A properly functioning grid is essential in design work, as is the ability to snap handles to that grid.
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Old 13th June 2012, 04:53 PM   #4
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken :

Is there really nothing in View > Layout Tools > Snapping Grid and/or Tools > Options > Layout > Snapping that will give you what you want?

Your problem isn't a case of a conflict between a couple of different options is it?

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Old 13th June 2012, 05:41 PM   #5
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken :

I've experimented with those options, but they don't make any difference to the issue.

I've used the product a lot, but only in an effort to get things to snap properly. The handles of a curve just will not snap to anything, it's as if the ability to do that simply doesn't exist.

Funny thing is, DrawPlus has a lot of useful snapping abilities. I mean, even messing around with gradients I notice the handles of a gradient can be snapped to the grid. Such detailed features as that make it all the more baffling that we don't have design essentials such as snapping pen handles to the grid.

It just doesn't make sense.

When a designer downloads DrawPlus, one of the first things that will be tested is the Pen Tool because that is the most important tool to a designer in any vector graphics program. As soon as they realise they can't snap handles, that's it - useless.

The only reason I keep looking into it on each release is because I otherwise like the program. It's notably better than the other stuff out there as far as I'm concerned. It's just a shame such ridiculous problems render it useless for me so I thought I'd speak up about it, see if they'll listen.

The next release of DrawPlus will have to be the last time I'm going to bother checking it out because I really need to knuckle down and master one package. I'd like that package to be the Serif product, but it needs to be fixed or I can't use it.
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Old 13th June 2012, 06:02 PM   #6
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken :

I have been a graphic designer since 1989. I own just about every design package out there and they are current. I have never, ever, snapped curve node handles to a grid. Heck, unless I am doing precise technical illustration that will be exported and imported to CAD, I don't use a grid either.

What am I missing? What does snapping handles to a grid gain you--other than perceived precision?

Take care, Mike
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Old 13th June 2012, 06:23 PM   #7
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken :

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Originally Posted by pumeco View Post
As soon as they realise they can't snap handles, that's it - useless.
“I've reached breaking point,” he snapped!

When using a new application, let go of all of your assumptions, and learn how it works. Sometimes, there is no way to get the same result in Serif™ apps that one can get in others. In that case, use the other apps (and pay the price in hard cash or lack of features/ease of use available in Serif™ apps)

This support forum is a great place to get help from experienced users who can do fantastic work in DrawPlus. Ranting is a waste of energy. It is better to post a feature request on the DrawPlus X6 Wish-list, but some requests have not been implemented after many years. Its not possible to please everyone.

Just for example, the request to align nodes using the Align Tab. Nevertheless, there are other ways to get a similar result. Drag a guide, and snap nodes to that.

DrawPlus is not strong on features found in CAD programs, but seems to be aimed more at creative design.
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Old 13th June 2012, 06:28 PM   #8
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken :

I suppose even a basic cube with rounded corners would be a good example. I expect to be able to draw a line for the top, then a curve on the corner, then another line for the side, then another curve for the next corner etc...

To do that and get the rounding accurate, you need to be able to snap the handles to the grid, so that when you pull them out on the corners, you get the correct tangents. Another example is when you want to aim towards another point in order to get an accurate tangent. Precision logos and stuff like that are prime candidates for having handle snapping.

To my knowledge, Serif produce the only vector-capable products that can't do it. Even Corel's Paintshop Pro(which is a bitmap orientated program) can do this. It has a pen tool, and so the ability to snap handles is there. Not being able to snap handles in a vector program is actually quite amusing!


I personally don't think it's amusing, but I'm guessing the competition secretly do.
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Old 13th June 2012, 06:43 PM   #9
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken :

Sorry Bhikkhu, I didn't see your post before my previous reply.

No offence intended, but I have to say I don't agree with you. This isn't rocket science stuff, it's essential vector stuff, and DrawPlus is a "vector" graphics program.

- The grid is faulty, it shows dot's offset to the snapping.
- All pen tools (apart from Serif's) have the ability of handle snapping, it's sort of standard and expected.

I do agree that things shouldn't be assumed, but within reason. I expect the wheels on a car to be round no matter who makes it. Likewise, I expect a grid to be correctly aligned with the grid dots, and for handles to snap to that grid.

I hope no one here misunderstands my intentions. I am not here to troll, not here to be a complainer. I am here because I like the product and want to be a customer. Sometimes companies get lost in the ever-increasing demand for "clever stuff", and the essentials get lost in the crowd.

The two issues I've brought up here are essential in vector graphics programs.
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Old 13th June 2012, 07:11 PM   #10
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken :

Sorry. Once again I do not see what is so essential. And I do not believe that for accurate work what you have cited are necessary on whit.

I will agree that it is important to you. And that it isn't to me. An agree to disagree thing.

Take care, Mike
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Old 13th June 2012, 07:21 PM   #11
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken :

You clearly have a different use for DrawPlus, Mike, I'm pleased you figured it out.
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Old 13th June 2012, 08:25 PM   #12
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken : DrawPlus

Take a look at the links in this post:

http://forums.serif.com/showpost.php...7&postcount=14

Now, Griff uses a lot of software and but those are a sampling of his DrawPlus use.

Perhaps you can let us know by example of what it is you draw?

Take care, Mike
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Old 13th June 2012, 09:23 PM   #13
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken :

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Originally Posted by pumeco View Post
I expect to be able to draw a line for the top, then a curve on the corner, then another line for the side, then another curve for the next corner etc...
I would just draw a quick rectangle and shape the corners using the slider.

Though you may not mean to troll, that is basically what you're doing. Without even learning the program, you expect it to behave just like others that you have used, and make insulting remarks that the opposition must be amused, that the company has lost its sense of direction, etc.

I see the same rude behaviour on the Opera forums on a daily basis — users of other browsers register just to complain about something that is missing or different in Opera, and they demand that their pet feature be added to suit their current way of working before they are willing to switch.

I don't mind if they have clearly spent a considerable time learning to use the software, and I am happy to support sensible feature requests, but when they have barely even looked at it, such complaints / feature requests / demands are very irritating.

However reasonable you think your feature request might be, you're being very unreasonable in your expectations/demands that it should be available already. Just add your feature request to the wish-list, and wait to see if the developers agree that it is important.
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Old 13th June 2012, 09:48 PM   #14
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken : DrawPlus

@mjh
Thanks for clarifying the title and moving the thread.


@Mike
Thanks for that link, that's truly amazing stuff - really nice!
I'll have to take a more detailed look at that lot, wow.

I tell you what, I'm extra pleased to see the quality of that work because it just goes to show how capable the product is, as well as the artist of course. I don't need DrawPlus for that level of work, but it still doesn't change the need for the basics. I want it mainly for precision designs. I don't mean stuff that would be put under analysis, I just mean it has to be at least "grid" accurate for doing 2D design.

Logos for example.

Designing a logo that is organic wouldn't be a problem in DrawPlus, because grids and snapping have no part in organic design. I need it for accurate drawing tools; hard edges and rounded corners, perfect fillets and correct tangents - that sort of thing.

The only thing stopping me achieving this is the faulty grid and lack of handle-to-grid snapping, both of which should be present and working in a program like this, it really should. It's infuriating because I really do love using the program and it p*sses me off that I have to resort to programs I don't like as much, just because the Serif software lacks the basics.

It's just crazy these issues even exist.

I could do it by eye, but that's just not acceptable in a vector program, especially if it's a "machined" sort of design that is supposed to be accurate.


@Bhikkhu
I'm not being rude, I'm being realistic.

You also underestimate how much effort I put into workarounds before I decided to post here. Rounding the corners of a square is not an option because it only works on a square. Just to prove I'm not some a$$hole here to rant, I even tried using booleans on squares and circles so that I could build-up my round edges on any shape that required them.

It's far from ideal, but like I say, I was being inventive. But guess what, even that won't work because using the booleans on objects snapped to the grid is also faulty. If you put two identical squares next to each other on the grid and blend them together side by side, you get a rectangle.

Put one directly below the other however, and you're still left with two squares.

The reason I've not bothered with the feature request is because I saw this mentioned in the forum years ago and nothing was done about it. This is really an attempt to capture their attention before the next DrawPlus release. This isn't really a feature request, it's for something that already exists, is faulty, and a bit half-baked.

It's been like this for as long as I can remember.
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Old 13th June 2012, 10:09 PM   #15
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken : DrawPlus

Quote:
Originally Posted by pumeco View Post
Logos for example.
See http://www.visualrevolt.net/ All done in DrawPlus I believe.

Geoff
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Old 13th June 2012, 10:36 PM   #16
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken : DrawPlus

Thanks Geoff, but again, I still need the basics.

BTW, something I really should point out here is that when I say "the Serif software lacks the basics", I do not mean that the program is basic. In fact my feelings on the program are quite the opposite because I love how sophisticated it is, how well it's designed and how fluid it is (performance is first class).

What I'm getting at is that despite it having all this amazingly "clever stuff", it is lacking the basics. It's ok to go beyond the basics when you have the basics, and that's the problem, DrawPlus has the clever stuff but it lacks the basics.

Put in the bread'n'butter stuff and it will be even more killer.

Putting such a request in the request thread will be a waste of time, because if Serif were interested in this, it would have been there from the start - like I said - this is "essential" vector stuff for design work.

I really hope Serif will sort it out, but if not, ah well.
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Old 13th June 2012, 11:05 PM   #17
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken : DrawPlus

Ok, I added it to the request thread as suggested, I just hope it was worth it
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Old 13th June 2012, 11:05 PM   #18
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken : DrawPlus

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Originally Posted by pumeco View Post
Putting such a request in the request thread will be a waste of time.
If posting in the wish-list is a waste of your precious time, why do you bother to waste your time posting here at all? QED, you're just trolling.

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Old 13th June 2012, 11:07 PM   #19
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken : DrawPlus

Oh don't cut the developers short. They do add things.

Take care, Mike
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Old 13th June 2012, 11:13 PM   #20
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Default Re: Basics Features Missing or Broken : DrawPlus

@Bhikkhu
I think you just enjoy calling me a troll because you know I'm really very nice
But that's what happens when you post at the same time and miss my previous post


Yours Sincerely
- Mr Troll


@Mike
Cheers, I hope they sort it
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