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Squares and Rectangles

The Rectangle tool can be enabled by clicking the icon shown below, or by pressing either the F4 or R key. For drawing a rectangle, click and drag the mouse diagonally, using the same motion as when dragging a selection box. The rectangle will appear immediately after you release the mouse button. To draw a perfect square, hold down the Ctrl key while click-dragging with the mouse.

Rectangle Tool's icon

The square-shaped handles can be used to change the rectangle's size. However, when you only want to change either the height or the width of the rectangle, it's hard to control with the mouse alone. Here you can use the Ctrl key to restrict the size change to either width or height of the rectangle.

When you hold down Ctrl while dragging the square-shaped handles, it is easy to limit the change in the rectangle's size to a single direction.

The circle-shaped handles are for rounding the corners. Grab a circle handle and move it just a tiny bit. You'll see that all four corners will be rounded. Additionally, a second circle handle has appeared. Each handle changes the amount of rounding in one direction (It is not possible to only round a single corner of the rectangle independant from the others. They all change together).

The rectangle's circular handles

Moving the circle handles rounds the corners. Each circle handle changes the radii in a different direction.


The rectangle's corner radii

The "Rx" and "Ry" values on the control bar, determine the radius of the imaginary circle which the rounding is based upon.

To restore the initial, sharp-cornered shape of a rectangle or square, click on the far right icon in the tool control bar (which is a tiny version of the image below). This is very useful, when you're still learning how to master the usage of the circular handles!

Rectangle Tool: make corners sharp icon

When you need to draw a rectangle with accurate dimensions, you can use the tool control bar:

  • the field labelled "W" is for the width;
  • the field labelled "H" is for the height;
  • the "Rx" and "Ry" fields define the rounding radius for the corners.

(For rectangles and squares, this can also be done from the Select tool control bar.)

The dropdown menu allows you to select the unit you need for your rectangle.

Rectangle Tool's tool controls bar

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