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3. Set up your document to integrate with Flash CS3.

The fantastic Illustrator CS3 has some new integration with Flash CS3. When setting up your Illustrator document, take advantage of features such as layers, symbols, and blends (Figure 4). You'll not only make an easy-to-edit file in Illustrator, but one that's easy to edit and animate in Flash CS3. For this exercise we're going to combine symbols, blends, and layers.

Figure 4

Figure 4 Create symbols from graphics in Illustrator CS3 and enjoy seamless integration with Flash CS3.

Just about any object created in Illustrator can become a symbol. Here we'll just use the Ellipse tool to create a dot similar to those used in Aboriginal art. Create your shape with the Ellipse tool, holding down Shift to keep it constrained to a perfect circle. You can color this with any fill you wish using the Swatches panel. Then press F8 to convert your selected artwork into a symbol. You'll be asked if this should be a Graphic or a Movie Clip; choose Movie Clip.

By creating artwork as symbols, we save on the file size of our final document. Rather than having to reference objects individually, Flash will be able to reference one object many times. This way we can repeat an object many hundreds of times during an animation and not be too concerned about file size.

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