Creating a Black Outline From an Object/Convert Marquee to Path

This activity can be used to create unique coloring sheets or editing an existing object. First find a picture with a black outline. I am using a Christmas wreath found online at Microsoft Office online. We are going to convert it to a black outline, resize it, then recolor it with the different fill effects packaged with Fireworks 8.

Christmas Wreath

Open the above clipart in Fireworks or open your own picture. Enlarge the picture to 200% by clicking the set magnification tab at the bottom right corner of your document window:

Set Maginification

Make sure the paint bucket is set to black Paint Fill Set to Black. Click the magic wand Magic Wand which is used to select pixel colors that are similar. We just want to choose the black outline so click on the black to select only the black in the picture. You should see something that looks like marching ants outlining the black:

Wreath Selected

Next we need to smooth the selection. Click Select > Smooth Marquee:

Smooth Marquee

Select pixels 1:

Marquee Pixels

Next you will convert the marquee to path. Select > Convert Marquee to Path:

Convert Marquee to Path

Next you want to hide the original picture by clicking the eye on the layers palette to hide it.

Hide Layer

The eye should disappear along with the colored picture on your canvas. Your outline should resemble the picture below:

Black Outline

Select the layer that contains the black outline by clicking on it in the layers palette. It should be blue. Notice the eye on the bitmap layer is not visible letting you know that you have turned off the visibility to that layer. If your outline is not black click on the paint fill tool and set it to black Black Fill.

Selected Layer

Next we want to change the canvas size so we can resize the image. Click Modify > Canvas > Canvas Size:

Modify Canvas Size

Set your new canvas size at 150 X 150:

Canvas Size

Your black outline should still be still selected. A blue rectangle should appear around the image. Click the scale tool Scale Tool and resize your image by dragging the handles around image.

Next we will need to flatten the selection so we can make changes to the outline. Modify > Flatten Selection:

Flatten Selection

Now you can export the file as a gif and insert in a word document if you want to use as a coloring sheet. To convert to gif click on the optimize palette (if not open click Window > Optimize) and select gif as the picture format:

Gif Format

You can edit the picture by coloring it right in Fireworks. To do this click the magic wand Magic Wand set to Anti-Alias Edge found on the properties palette and select the area you want to add color. If you are choosing more than one area, hold the Shift key down and click in the other areas you want to apply the same fill color to. Click the fill bucket and select a color or pattern then click in the selected area to fill in the selection. Below I have selected the bow on the wreath and selected a solid fill color of red with a texture of Dots-Small set at 50 %:

Wreath Fill

This is how the Wreath appears with the fill I used above:

Wreath with Red Texture Fill

Deselect the bow Modify > Deselect. Click back on the magic want and select the other areas you want to apply a fill to and follow the steps above. Try using pattern fills and different textures to give your original picture a totally different look.

Fireworks 8 Tutorials