Whether you are new to FreeHand or an experienced user who's upgraded and wants to get a handle on the newest features, you will appreciate the thorough tutorials in this book. Beyond a basic familiarity with using a mouse, folders, files and saving, the book doesn't presume you have any prior knowledge of FreeHand, making it ideal for beginners. Each lesson takes roughly an hour, after which the reader is comfortable with each tool, menu and palette.
The lesson files are located on the companion CD-ROM, along with finished files with which to compare your work, plus several QuickTime movies that walk you through trickier tools like the new Perspective Grid. The lessons involving the pen tools, along with the movies, are especially helpful.
The projects include a letterhead system with business card and envelope (FreeHand 9 has the ability to create multipage files in which the pages can be different sizes), an advertisement that requires "perspectified" typography and an animation that can be exported in Flash .swf format. The latter is particularly useful for Web designers working on Flash animations because the drawing tools in Freehand far surpass those in Flash. Another lesson shows how to make changes to artwork in a "live envelope" (in this case, type on a coffee mug). In version 9, the envelope is directly on the page as you make the changes.
Tips throughout offer different methods or specific advice--even "power" tips, although the text is so basic and slow-paced that beginners shouldn't have any trouble with those. The illustrations and screen shots are very clear. Step by step, they show where your cursor should be, when you need to click or hold the mouse button, or which tool to select, as well as what your screen should look like at regular intervals.
The complete curriculum originally created for Macromedia's authorised trainers is included. This long development process is evident in lessons that model real-world work methods, anticipate users' questions, show what to expect in each lesson and recap what has been accomplished, all of which provide a solid foundation in this popular software. --Angelynn Grant, Amazon.com
Topics covered: Step-by-step lessons in FreeHand 9, including a basic tour of the application; creating a stationary system using custom pages; working with points and paths using the freehand, pen and bezigon tools on both freeform and precise renderings; working with layers; tracing patterns; colours (including an explanation of process and spot colours); clipping paths and the Paste Inside command and object styles; perspectifying artwork and working with envelopes; using the Punch, Unio, and Inset Path commands; creating custom blends, shading and shadows; using FreeHand as a layout application; creating Flash animation and storyboarding a Web site. The CD-ROM contains all lesson files, completed artwork, QuickTime movies, demo versions of FreeHand and other Macromedia applications, and a QuickTime 4.03 installer.
From the Back Cover
Fully updated for Version 9, including seven new lessons,FreeHand 9 Authorized is the complete curriculum from Macromedia's Authorized Training Center's hands-on course. For a fraction of the cost of the class, the book presents lessons in manageable, step-by-step sessions, letting you work at your own pace. At the end of this "desktop course," you'll be proficient at creating and manipulating graphics and text in FreeHand.
In 16 hours of hands-on lessons, FreeHand 9 Authorized leads you through the basics and introduces you to FreeHand 9's powerful new enveloping and perspective grid features, shows you how to best use FreeHand with Macromedia Flash, and teaches you how to create graphics and special effects for print and the Web. The accompanying cross-platform CD-ROM includes all the files you need to complete each lesson. Platform: MAC WIN