Working with symbols or shapes in SmartDraw is easy.
Each SmartDraw template comes with the most commonly used symbols needed to create that specific diagram docked to the left of your drawing area in that diagram's SmartPanel.
The simplest way to add symbols to your visual by dragging and dropping or clicking and stamping a symbol from the SmartPanel or Symbols tab onto your Work Area.
Other Ways of Adding Symbols
Diagrams like org charts and mind maps use an intelligent formatting engine, which gives you the ability to automatically format and connect shapes in a diagram. You can use the Add Left, Add Right, Add Up, Add Down controls in the SmartPanel, the yellow action buttons around a shape, or your keyboard alone (Ctrl and arrow keys on screen) to add the currently selected shape and everything is automatically connected, aligned, and evenly spaced.
Some diagrams, like network and software design, use a flexible line drawing style which gives you more freedom to add shapes in different places with your own spacing and line length. Just click on the yellow circles that appear around each shape, drag to add a line in any direction and choose a shape from the options that pop up. This pop up has the most commonly used shapes for your selected diagram by default, but it will learn which shapes you use and present you with the shapes you used last as you build your diagram.
Some diagrams will have multiple symbol libraries docked in the SmartPanel.
You can scroll to see all the libraries docked or use the carats (small black arrows to the right of the name) to expand and collapse any library.
Click the X to unpin the library from the SmartPanel.
You can drag libraries up and down the stack to reorder them.
To locate additional symbols, click click on the blue "Search symbols" text at the top of the SmartPanel, type any keyword and hit enter or click the magnifying glass to search. Read this article about searching for symbols.
Moving, Changing and Aligning Symbols
You can resize symbols using the black square growth handles located along the perimeter of the symbol when selected. Click on a handle and drag it to change the size of the shape.
You can also define the exact dimensions of an object using the height and width fields in the
For certain technical diagrams like floor plans and landscape, you can also type in the dimensions in the dimension display of the object in the Work Area using the scale defined for that diagram.
For wireframe diagrams, you can type in the dimension in pixels.
Rotate a symbol by clicking on the symbol in your Work Area, then choosing Rotate from the Design tab. You can choose from a few preset angles or specify a custom one.
Alternatively, you can rotate a symbol using the round rotation handle on the right hand side. Grab it with your cursor and move it to rotate the symbol.
You can also quickly flip a symbol along the vertical or horizontal axis using the Flip command on the Design tab.
Add style to a symbol by clicking on it in your Work Area, then selecting from the options in the Styles section of the Home tab.
You can change the fill color using Fill, change the border color using Line, change the Style from the selected Theme, or change the Theme of your entire diagram.
Add Text to a Symbol
To add text to any shape, simply select the shape and type.
If you need to quickly change a shape in your visual, select the current shape from your Work Area, then chose Change Shape from the Design tab.
Align a group of symbols by first selecting the symbols you want to align. You can do this by drawing a selection box around them in your Work Area or holding down the shift key while clicking on each symbol. The last symbol selected will have black handles and this is the symbol that will be act as the target symbol the other symbols will align to. Select an option from Align in the Design tab.
Arranging Symbols in the Work Area
Send symbols forward or backward, make them the same size, or space them evenly on your visual by clicking on the symbols in your Work Area, then selecting Bring to Front, Send to Back, Make Same, or Space Evenly.