Deconstructing the Paint Application I: Setup, Skins, Canvas Color, Help File
By Adrien-Luc Sanders
Were going to start off with the basics of setting up the applications layout and a few other simple things; this is a fairly simple lesson, and if youve already got your design and navigation functionality worked out, you can probably skip it. However, its also going to zip past fairly quickly, so for those of you following along at a beginner level, Ill try to link to relevant material when its needed. We've covered a great deal of this, but mostly in examples; this is the first time we're going to tackle a serious, multi-leveled project with more practical uses.
The first thing youll need to do is set up your skins and your canvas. I made my skins in Photoshop, exported them as transparent GIFs with the canvas area left clear/blank, and then imported them into Flash before converting them to symbols (F8). You could also design your skins in Flash, but the important thing is that they must all be symbols with distinct identifying instance names, and it helps to arrange them all on top of each other on a single layer, with the default skin on top of the others.
Your canvas should be a blank white area, converted to a movie clip and placed on a layer underneath your skins layer. Assign an instance name to this, as well.