In my previous post “On the Art of Network Diagrams and Presentation” I created shapes and shading. Some people asked how this was done…..
Draw a rectangular shape
So lets draw a rectangle on the screen:
Then put your pointer over the object and wait for a few seconds and the object will look like this:
Then grab the green diamond shape in the corner, press the shift key ((pressing the shift key forces Visio to keep the pointer on 90 degree or straight lines)) and then move it to the right:
Do the same with the other corner, just not so far over:
Now this bit is hard to explain, you need to select both of the top corners by clicking the first, then press and hold shift and then pull the top line of the shape to the right:
So you now have the basic shape that you need – lets prettify that by filling the shape with colour. Right click on the shape and select Format, Fill:
Select a dark shade of colour for the fill, then select number 28 from the Pattern. This is uses a shade from top to bottom.
Underneath the pattern you will now have the Pattern Colour box. Select a lighter shade of the same colour as shown.
Now click apply and you should have something like this:
Now this is bit too bright, it is visually overpowering so we need to “turn down” the colour. The easiest way to do this is to make the colour transparent:
And now we have the shape like this:
A little liner……
Now the line around the edge of this shape is a bit…. ugly.
Right click on your shape, select Line:
and this looks much more appealing:
And the magic trick
One of the difficulties in Visio with a large shape in the background, is that snapping and connectors tend to use the background shape that you have just made. There are two ways to stop this. But that will be in my next post I think.
As always, let me know if I got it right in the comments. Tips and pointers always appreciated.
Other Posts in A Series On The Same Topic
- Network Diagrams: Choosing Better and Free Fonts (10th January 2014)
- My New Diagram Colour Scheme "Old Disco Style" (24th September 2013)
- On Diagrams and Information (10th September 2013)
- Colour Blindness, Network Diagrams and Reliability (3rd March 2011)
- Designer or Engineer, Artist or Painter (19th January 2010)
- Network Diagrams: Rotating Text on a Line (1st October 2009)
- Network Diagrams: Tips for Printing from Visio (22nd September 2009)
- Network Diagrams:Zones on a diagram with Visio shape union (31st July 2009)
- Network Diagrams: Drawing complex VLAN Networks with IP Addressing (7th July 2009)
- Network Diagrams: Drawing Freehand Curves (and then fixing them) (23rd March 2009)
- Network Diagrams:Aligning Shapes (12th March 2009)
- Network Diagrams:Locking the Background Shape (10th March 2009)
- Network Diagrams: Labelling an VLAN/IP Segment (9th March 2009)
- Network Diagrams: VLANs and IP Subnets (8th March 2009)
- Network Diagrams: Drawing the Background Shape (6th March 2009)
- On the Art of Network Diagrams and Presentation (4th March 2009)