Director's Paint window is a museum piece ”a perfectly preserved bit of 1988 technology in a 21st-century program. Except for a slight cosmetic brush-up to give it the MX "look," the Paint window literally has not been changed since Director's earliest days. Looking for layers ? Forget about it. Antialiasing? Never heard of it.
With much more sophisticated paint tools ”such as Adobe Photoshop or even Macromedia Fireworks ”so widely available, why would anyone use Director's primitive Paint window to create cast members ?
Well, for the most part, they don't. Most Director users import their bitmapped cast members from other programs. And yet, the Paint window remains an integral part of Director, chiefly because of the convenience factor: Anything created in the Paint window automatically becomes a cast member, with no importing or cutting and pasting necessary. And if you need to make changes in a cast member, you can do it in the Paint window with a simple double-click.
Beyond convenience, the Paint window has features that you won't find in Photoshop. There are unusual ink effects, such as Switch and Cycle, that let you use color in creative ways. There's an Auto Distort feature that creates tweened versions of cast members. Perhaps most useful of all is the Onion Skinning feature, which makes frame-by-frame animation easier by letting you use existing cast members as a guide for painting new ones.
If you know you'll be importing cast members from other programs, you can ignore Director's paint tools ”and this chapter ”altogether. But if the convenience of creating your cast members within Director appeals to you, this chapter will show you how to use Director's built-in paint tools to create, edit, and apply effects to your images.