Review: CorelDraw X3 graphics suite - Time-savers
Fill me up
The new smart fill tool is something I've wanted for a long time in Corel - the ability to only fill a portion of a vector-based drawing. This tool intelligently works out where lines cross and let's you fill in areas that normally would need to be broken into a separate, whole object. The star example (created using the new complex star shape) is a good case in point. To create this in previous versions would have taken several minutes, but this example took only a few seconds.
Know your boundaries
Creative boundaries and interactive crop are two new features which, at first glance would not have many applications, but will no doubt save you a lot of time when you need to use perform specific tasks. Imagine drawing a complex shape which you then want to have as a silhouette e.g. for sign-making - one click will do the trick. Imagine that you also needed to crop that same object - let's say that we wanted to crop the star image above in half - previously this would require breaking the nodes down, which would be especially complex around the points. With the interactive crop you just drag a box around the area to keep.
We now start getting down to the minor enhancements, too numerous to mention, but that all add up to greater than the sum of their parts. Better text handling and font matching, the new character and paragraph format dockers, improved hyphenation, fit text to path tool, overprints preview (simulates the colour of areas where overlapping objects were set to overprint), better pdf publishing and security, enhanced colour pallete management (including Pantone transparent white)...
Some of the ancillary applications and features still lack the raw grunt of competing products. For example, I'd still use Techsmith's Camtasia and Snagit range rather than CorelCapture, but for the occasional user it is still a competent application.