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How to Use DesignScape on an iPad
  • By Kia Lor
  • 15 Mar 2022
  • 11 Mins
  • Beginner
  • DesignScape

How to Use DesignScape on an iPad

Discover how to use DesignScape on an iPad and take it with you anywhere you have internet access.

Because DesignScape is an internet-based software, you can also use it on an iPad. This tutorial will go over some differences between using DesignScape on an iPad versus on a computer.

Using DesignScape on an iPad is so convenient, and it's an excellent alternative to Illustrator/Photoshop. DesignScape is available to Gold Plus Members only, so we have a 30-day free trial available for you to try out the Gold Plus Membership and DesignScape if you don't already have it.

Virtual Keys

One big difference between DesignScape on an iPad and DesignScape on a computer is that you don't have a keyboard to use hotkeys easily. Instead, you can use virtual keys for some of the commands that require you to press Control/Command, Alt, or Shift. The virtual keys can be found by tapping the last icon at the bottom of the left toolbar.

Image shows the Virtual Keys icon at the bottom of the left toolbar

Virtual Ctrl Key - Select Pixels

To select all pixels of a layer on the iPad, tap the virtual Ctrl key and then the layer’s thumbnail. You'll know the pixels have been selected when you see dotted outlines.

Shows to click on the virtual Ctrl key and then the layer thumbnail to select pixels in DesignScape

Virtual Alt Key - Make a Clipping Mask

Simply tap the virtual Alt key, then tap a layer to clip it to the layer directly below it.

Shows how to create a clipping mask by clicking the virtual Alt key then the layer

Virtual Shift Key

Scale Objects

You can lock the aspect ratio when scaling objects by tapping the virtual Shift key. Then when you tap + drag one of the corner handles on the bounding box while using the Move Tool, the object will keep its aspect ratio as you resize it.

Make sure you have Transform controls enabled in the top toolbar when using the Move Tool so you can see the handles and rotation point.

Shows what using the virtual Shift key does when scaling objects

Move Objects

You can enable the virtual Shift key to move objects in a straight line.

Shows that you can enable the virtual Shift key in DesignScape to move objects in a straight line

Constrain Angles

When Using the Pen Tool

When using the Pen Tool on the iPad, you can constrain the angle by enabling the virtual Shift key. Below shows how the second point is not constrained at all, while the third point is constrained to 45°, 90°, 135°, or 180°.

Shows how using the virtual Shift key affects the Pen Tool in DesignScape on an iPad

When Rotating Objects

You can also constrain angles when rotating objects. To rotate an object in DesignScape on an iPad, select the Move Tool and make sure Transform controls is enabled in the top toolbar. Then tap + drag on the outside of the bounding box near one of the handles.

Note: rotations are constrained to 15° angles instead of 45°.

Shows an object rotating with the virtual Shift key enabled in DesignScape on an iPad

Alternative to Right-clicking

Because we don’t have a mouse for right-clicking, we must access everything available via the right-click menus elsewhere, such as in the menu at the top or in the top toolbar for the selected tool.

For example, most of the options in the menu when you right-click on a layer can be accessed via the Layers dropdown menu at the top.

How to Use DesignScape on an iPad 18

Finger Gestures

Zoom In and Out

Although you can still use the Zoom Tool, it's not necessary on the iPad. Instead, you can pinch two fingers together to zoom out and pinch two fingers apart to zoom in.

Notice below that the Zoom Tool is not active. We are zooming in and out using two fingers.

Shows the canvas being zoomed in and out without the Zoom Tool enabled in DesignScape on an iPad

Move Project View

Tap + drag with two fingers to move the project view around.

Shows the canvas being moved around without using the Hand Tool in DesignScape on an iPad


Pressure Sensitivity for Opacity and Size

One advantage of using DesignScape on an iPad is being able to make use of pressure sensitivity. Whether you're using an Apple Pencil, a different smart stylus, or your finger, you can use the pressure sensitivity controls for several different tools, such as the Brush Tool, Eraser Tool, Blur Tool, and more to control opacity and/or tool size.

After selecting a tool from the left, if you see the following two icons shown in the image below in the top toolbar, that means that pressure sensitivity is available for that tool.

Shows icons for Stylus Pressure Controls Opacity and Stylus Pressure Controls Size in DesignScape

Using the Brush Tool, we’ll show you how opacity and size are affected with the pressure control options enabled.

When the Stylus Pressure Controls Opacity option is enabled, more pressure creates a darker/more opaque line, as shown below with the top wavy line.

When the Stylus Pressure Controls Size option is enabled, more pressure creates a thicker line, as shown below with the middle wavy line.

The bottom wavy line below is with both options enabled at the same time.

Shows how stylus pressure affects opacity and/or size when pressure sensitivity options are enabled

Gallery Panel

The Gallery panel is very handy when using DesignScape on an iPad, especially for downloading fonts to load into DesignScape! You can easily download files from Design Bundles using the Gallery panel from within DesignScape.

Open the Gallery panel and navigate the Design Bundles website like you normally would on a computer.

Note: if you don't see the Gallery panel icon on the right, tap on Window > More > Gallery.

Shows Gallery panel and where to access it in DesignScape

Once you've selected and purchased the font, click the download button.

Shows to click the download button in Gallery panel

Click Download in the popup.

Shows to click Download in the popup

Next, load the font into DesignScape the same way you would with DesignScape on a computer. Select the Type Tool, tap the font name in the top toolbar, and tap the Load Font button.

Shows to select the Type Tool, tap the font name, and then the Load Font button

Locate and select the font file. Click OK when prompted.

Shows to click OK in the popup asking whether you want to load the font next time you use the editor

Your new font will be added to the end of the font list.

Shows the newly loaded font at the end of the font list

DesignScape on a computer and DesignScape on an iPad both have their own perks. The convenience of taking and using DesignScape anywhere you have internet access is great! We hope you got a better feel of how to use DesignScape on an iPad with this guide.

pressure sensitivity designscape virtual keys

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