Creating a feature by drawing freehand

The Freehand tool allows you to create lines that follow the movement of your pointer. The segments are smoothed into Bézier curves when you finish the sketch. For this reason, the Freehand tool is most useful when making quick, free-form design notes (redlining), such as indicating a study area on a map.

  1. These steps can be used to create lines or polygons:
    • To create lines, click a line feature template in the Create Features window.
    • To create polygons, click a polygon feature template in the Create Features window.
  2. Click the Freehand tool Freehand on the Create Features window.
  3. Click the map to start the freehand drawing. You do not need to hold down the mouse button.
  4. Drag the pointer in the shape you want. Hold down the SPACEBAR to snap to an existing feature.
  5. Click the map to finish the sketch and create the feature. The freehand drawing line is automatically smoothed into Bézier curves.
  6. TipTip:

    If you are creating a polygon, it is closed to form a continuous ring. If you click the map to stop sketching just before reaching the original start point, you can avoid creating an extraneous multipart polygon or jagged edge where the polygon closes. If you do overshoot the start point, double-click the feature with the Edit tool and delete the extra vertices.

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