• Need a hexagon shape to show off a model of your bee-keeping facilities? Want a pentagon icon to illustrate a five-phase development plan? LayOut’s Polygon tool enables you to draw a polygon with any number of sides. (Well, almost any number: polygons need at least three sides.) You find the Polygon tool () on the default toolbar or by selecting Tools > Polygon from the menu bar. To draw a polygon, follow these steps:

  • Want to make your LayOut document a little more well-rounded? Perhaps a circle or ellipse can help. LayOut has both a Circle tool () and Ellipse tool (), which you find on the default toolbar’s Circles menu or on the menu bar by choosing Tools > Circles and then selecting your desired tool.

  • Rectangles are simple shapes, but for those of you who like pizzaz in your rectangles, LayOut has four rectangle tools. Each tool does a little something different with the rectangles lines or corners, as shown in the following figure:

  • Whether you want to draw the long arc of history or just a precise section of a circle, LayOut has four arc tools that enable you to draw an arc any way you like:

  • To draw the most basic lines in your LayOut document, you can use the orderly Line tool to draw straight lines or its freewheeling cousin, the Freehand tool, to draw loopy swerving lines any which way you like. You see an example of both in the following figure. Each tool has a few tricks and secrets, as explained in the following sections.

  • If you’re new to creating documents and presentations in LayOut, a quick tour of the interface and few mousing tips can help orient you to LayOut’s basic tools and features. Parts of the LayOut interface, like the Measurements box and some of the mousing tricks, look and feel like SketchUp. Other parts, like some menus and dialog boxes, are unique to LayOut. Ready to tour the interface? Let the following sections be your guide.