Replace Instance

To replace an instance in your document by another symbol, first select the instance to replace in your document (1).

You then select the symbol in the symbol library, with which you want to replace (2).

Then click the menu button at the top of the “Symbols” panel (3).

And you choose “Replace Symbol” in the drop-down menu (4).

The selected instance of the symbol is replaced (5) by the new symbol.


If you have multiple instances of a symbol in your document that you want to replace with the same symbol, first select all of these instances before proceeding with step 2.


To make a Symbol

We still have not seen anything on how to draw something, but now that I’m with symbols I will immediately explain how to make a drawing into a symbol. There is nothing to it.

As an example, I have drawn a simple asterisk, which I want to make a symbol.

You drag it to the “Symbols” (1) pane. The shortcut for this is the F9 key on your keyboard.

This opens a dialog where I enter the symbol name (2), the other options in the dialog box apply only when you want to use the symbol in Flash.

Click the OK button.

This puts our drawing in the “Symbols” panel(3).

We can now use it as many times as we want.


Symbol Sprayer

We now know how to add a symbol to our document.

If you want to have multiple instances of that symbol in your document, for example an entire lawn or a whole flower garden, you have the opportunity to use this excellent tool, the “Symbol Sprayer”.

First select the symbol in the symbol library (1) and then select the tool “Symbol Sprayer” (2) in the toolbar.

When the mouse pointer moves over the document you see this as a circle with a spray can icon in there (3).

Click and drag in the document for “spraying” different instances of the symbol.

If you leave the mouse button, it stops the “spraying” and a marquee (4) is placed around the various instances. This is called a symbol set. You see this in the options bar (5).

This symbol set is treated as an instance. In other words, if you scale your symbol set in this example, all instances of this symbol set are customized (A).

When this symbol set is selected, you can add multiple instances of this symbol set (B). Whether or not of the same symbol.

However, to add a new symbol set to your document (C), first select the symbol set by choosing a different tool, for example the selection tool (1).

Then you choose the “Symbol Sprayer” tool (2) again and click and then spray in the document (3).


In order to remove instances from a symbol set, first select the symbol set, then select the “symbol sprayer” symbol in the toolbar. Then hold the Alt key on your keyboard pressed and click and drag on the instances you want to remove from the symbol set.

You've completed Lesson 8