Adobe Flash

About creating symbols

When you create a symbol, you specify one of the following symbol behaviors:

  • Graphic

  • Movie clip

  • Button

In this lesson, you'll work with graphic and movie clip symbols. For a lesson about button symbols, select Help > Flash Tutorials > Basic Tasks: Add Button Animation and Navigation.

Create a graphic symbol

A graphic symbol is well suited for repeated use of static images, or for creating animations associated with the main Timeline. Unlike with movie clip and button symbols, you cannot give instance names to graphic symbols, nor can you refer to them in ActionScript.

You'll take vector art on the Stage and turn it into a graphic symbol.

  1. In the Tools panel, click the Selection tool.

  2. On the Stage, drag around the car to select it.

  3. Select Modify > Convert to Symbol.

  4. In the Convert to Symbol dialog box, enter CarGraphic as the name and select Graphic as the behavior.

  5. The Registration grid uses a small black square to indicate where, within the symbol bounding box, the registration point is located. A registration point is the axis around which the symbol rotates, and the point along which the symbol aligns. Click the upper-left square on the grid to select the registration point location, and click OK.

  6. The car on the Stage is now an instance of the CarGraphic symbol. The Property inspector shows properties for the graphic symbol instance.

  7. Open the Library panel (Window > Library) to view the symbol.

    You'll find the CarGraphic symbol in the Library panel. Flash stores symbols in the library. Each document has its own library, and you can share libraries between different FLA files.