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Using the Transform Panel

The Transform panel allows you to move, scale, rotate, and shear objects precisely, using numerical values.

To open the Transform panel:

  • Choose Window > Object & Layout > Transform to open the panel square37.gif.

    square37.gif The Transform panel is a command center for positioning and transforming objects.


    If the Transform panel is behind other panels, click the Transform panel tab.

As you work with the Transform panel, it is important to know its reference point on the object. This is the same as the reference point used with the transform tools.

To set the Transform panel reference point:

  1. Select the object or objects that you want to transform.
  2. Click the reference point control on the Transform panel to choose the point around which the object moves square38.gif.

    square38.gif The reference point controls where in the object the transformation occurs.

You can use the Transform panel to move objects numerically.

To move an object with the Transform panel:

  1. Select the object or objects that you want to move.
  2. To move the object horizontally, enter an amount in the X field square39.gif.

    square39.gif The X and Y fields in the Transform panel control the position of an object.

  3. To move the object vertically, enter an amount in the Y field square39.gif.
  4. Press Enter or Return to apply the changes.

You can use the Transform panel to resize an object numerically.

To resize with the Transform panel:

  1. Select the object or objects.
  2. If necessary, change the reference point as explained on the preceding page.
  3. To change the width of the object, enter an amount in the W field square40.gif.

    square40.gif The W and H fields in the Transform panel control the width and height of objects.

  4. To change the height of the object, enter an amount in the H field square40.gif.
  5. Press Enter or Return to resize the object.

You can resize proportionally even if you know the size for only one side of the object.

To resize proportionally:

  1. Select the object or objects.
  2. Enter the new size in the W field or H field square40.gif.
  3. Do not change the amount in the other field.
  4. Hold Cmd/Ctrl as you press Enter or Return. The amount in both the W and H fields changes proportionally.

You can also scale using the Transform panel.

To scale with the Transform panel:

  1. Select the object or objects.
  2. If necessary, change the reference point.
  3. To change the horizontal size, enter a percentage in the Scale X field square41.gif.

    square41.gif The Scale width and height fields in the Transform panel let you apply percentage amounts to scale objects.

  4. To change the height of the object, enter a percentage in the Scale Y field square41.gif.
  5. Press Enter or Return to apply the changes.

To scale proportionally with the Transform panel:

  1. Select an object or objects.
  2. If the Link icon is in the open state, click to close it square42.gif.

    square42.gif The Link icon in the closed state forces both the Scale X and the Scale Y fields to the same amount. In the open state, you can enter different amounts for the Scale X and Scale Y fields.

  3. Enter an amount in either the Scale X or Scale Y fields. You do not have to enter an amount in both fields. The closed Link icon forces both fields to display the same amount.
  4. Press Enter or Return to apply the changes.

You can also rotate objects using the Transform panel.

To rotate with the Transform panel:

  1. Select the object or objects.
  2. If necessary, change the reference point.
  3. Enter the amount of rotation in the Rotation field square43.gif.

    square43.gif The Rotate field in the Transform panel lets you change the angle of objects.

  4. Press Enter or Return to apply the changes square44.gif.

    square44.gif The difference between rotating an object or rotating an object and its content.

You can also shear objects using the Trans-form panel.

To shear with the Transform panel:

  1. Select the object or objects.
  2. If necessary, change the reference point.
  3. Enter the amount of distortion in the Shear field square45.gif.

    square45.gif The Shear field in the Transform panel lets you distort the shape of objects.

  4. Press Enter or Return to apply the changes square46.gif.

    square46.gif The difference between shearing an object or shearing an object and its content.

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