|Continuing with our basic learning of the most famous free office suite, today we are going to move away a little from the previous entries about Calc, in which I taught you import a data series and how create a scatter chartOn this occasion, we will take a little experienced look at the Draw graphics tool, which will allow us to create, for example, flowcharts.|
By default, the Draw interface has the following sections:
- Toolbar: common to any Libreoffice program, with the typical file accesses, export, undo, help ...
- Styles and Formatting Bar - for quick access to line, character / text, and background style and color, as well as shadow, effects, alignment, and positioning options.
- View of pages where we obtain, at all times, a preview of the graphics made.
- Editor: main work area. It allows to superimpose layers, incorporating to each graphic the layers «Design», «Controls» and «Lines of dimensions» by default.
- Toolbar «Drawing».
Collect the fundamental tools to work with diagrams. Note that all of them are available in any program of the LibreOffice suite, although for the reasons of each of them the graph will be treated in one way or another. For reasons of resolution and "dpi's", nothing better than using them directly in Draw. These are:
- Line with arrow at the end.
- Text [F2].
- "Curve" drop-down menu: with options curve, polygon and freehand line with or without fill.
- "Connector" drop-down menu: with or without arrow, linear, direct ...
- Drop-down menu «Lines and arrows»: line, dimension line, with arrow, circle and / or square.
- Drop-down menu «Basic shapes»: rectangle, circle, polygons, sector, cylinder ...
- Drop-down menu «Symbol shapes»: cloud, forbidden, smiley ...
- Drop-down menu «Block arrows».
- Drop-down menu «Flow diagram»: process, decision, AND, OR ...
- Drop-down menu «Calls» («speech bubbles»).
- Points [F8].
- Bonding points: very useful in flow diagrams.
- Gallery integrated and from archive.
The use of these is very simple: we select the shape and create it with the mouse; if we click on it we can resize it, change the format ...; finally, if we double click, we can modify the inner text and its format.
Although there are common shapes, their operation varies according to their purpose. I have created basic rectangles ("Basic Shapes" menu) and processes ("Flowcharts" menu). When I want to draw a line with arrow, the behavior is somewhat different.
As can be seen in the screenshot, the margins of the "SETTINGS.DAT" rectangle show an "X" in the middle of each side, which is not the case in the rectangles on the left. This is because "SETTINGS.DAT" belongs to the flow chart, so it shows predefined "stick points". These points are easily modifiable, having available a "Points of Adhesion" menu within the "Drawing" bar.
When drawing, it will be helpful to have activated the "Show Grid" and "Align to Grid" options in the "View> Grid" menu. The operation of this alignment is very smooth, being preferable to use a lot of zoom for our greater comfort.
When decorating our graphic, we can select any shape and activate the "Extrusion" from the "Drawing" bar. We can adjust this box, once extruded, by means of new controls that will be displayed to the right of the «Extrude» button. These controls will allow us to rotate horizontally and vertically, increase the extrusion, undo it, modify its direction, lighting and surface or assign colors in 3D.
Finally, with a couple of clicks and a visit to the "Export" menu, a nice .png has been left.