Creating, Opening and Saving Documents

Creating new documents

In VectorStyler there are four commands, all located in the File menu, that can be used to create a new document. Depending on the selected command, the new document will be created with a blank canvas using the selected artboard formatting options. The following document creation commands are available:

  • The New Document command (shortcut Command+N (Mac) or Control+N (Windows)) is the default, and probably most common way to create a new document. This command creates an new empty document without any extra steps, using the default document template. Some of the default document options, like grid or guideline visibility, may depend on a previously opened document. The New Document command is the simplest and easiest way to create a new document to quickly start with a design. The specific options of the default document template are retained from the previous use of the New Document Setup command.

The document setup view shown for the new document creation. The default tab is the *General* options.

  • The New Document Setup command (shortcut Option+Command+N (Mac) or Alt+Control+N (Windows)) command creates a new document by first showing a modal view to select various document formatting options. This view is similar to the document setup view accessible from the File - Document Setup command, except that when creating a new document a New tab is also available.

Options available in the document setup view while creating a new document.

The following options are available when creating a new document:

  • The Canvases: is used to specify the initial number of canvases created in the new document.
  • The Local Artboards: check this options if the number and layout of artboards are expanded into each canvas. Otherwise the artboards are automatically generated based on the artboard options.
  • The Artboards: set the number of artboards created on each canvas.
  • The Columns: the number of columns used to arrange the artboards. The buttons next to the columns field can be used to select the artboard layout direction.
  • The Spacing: the amount of spacing used between the artboards when multiple artboards are arranged in a grid.

The document level formatting options can be changed later using the File - Document Setup command. This, of course, is possible also when creating a new document with any of the other commands.

The third method to create a new document is the New from Clipboard command. This command is available when the clipboard contains importable graphics, document or text. The New from Clipboard command will create a new document and paste the content of the clipboard into the document. The size of the artboard in this new document is adjusted to the size of the content available from the clipboard.

The fourth method to create a new document is the New from Template command. In this case a file open modal view is presented to the user to select a VectorStyler document template file. The new document is created with the content and formatting options available from the selected template file.

Opening documents

An existing VectorStyler document can be opened using the Open Document command of the File menu. The user is presented with the file open modal view, where one or more file names can be selected.

When more than one file name is selected, these files will be opened in separate document views. The document views will be arranged in a tabbed views inside the main application view, and can be accessed by clicking on the document tab indicating the document name.

Selecting multiple documents in the file open view.

An alternate way to open one or more documents is to drag and drop the document files into the application view. This only works when there are no opened documents in VectorStyler. Otherwise the dropped files will be imported into the currently opened document.

When multiple documents are opened at once, VectorStyler will load these document in parallel, taking advantage of the multiple CPU cores available in the users computer. The selected files need not be in VectorStyler specific file format. Documents can be opened from AI, PDF, PS and SVG file formats as well. In the case of foreign file formats, VectorStyler will create a new document with the imported content of the file. Saving to foreign file format can only be done using the Export command of the File menu.

Saving documents

The current document is saved using the Save command of the File menu (Command+S (Mac) or Control+S (Windows)). If the document was not saved previously, the file save modal view is presented to the user to select a file name. Documents can only be saved to the VectorStyler file format. For other file format outputs, use the Export command of the file menu. It is recommended that documents are saved frequently to avoid unintended loss of your work.

A number of additional commands are available to save the document or a part of it:

  • The Save As command will save the document using a new file name.
  • The Save A Copy command will save a copy of the document into another file, and it will keep editing (and saving in the future) under the current file name.
  • The Save Canvas As command saves the current canvas only into a separate file, while the current document remains in its original place.

An additional quick access to saving a document is the save button in the VectorStyler status bar. Found at the bottom of the screen (next to the status line), the save button changes its colors from a neutral gray to red as the unsaved changes in the document accumulate. The color of the button indicates an important (or opportune) moment for saving the document. Clicking on the button will save the current document into its file, and if the document was not previously saved will prompt the user the file save view to select a suitable file name.

Automatic document saving and backup options can be selected in the Document Files section of the application preferences.