Take our free Flash CS4 tutorial. Our online Flash CS4 tutorial covers creating graphics, working with layers, and adding motion, sound, and text to your Flash CS4 movie.

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Flash CS4 Tutorial

View the Movie

Click here to download a free Flash Player. Then click on the Start Movie button to view my Flash CS4 Professional movie.

In this tutorial I take you step-by-step through the process of creating this Flash CS4 Professional movie. You will learn how to create graphics, work with layers, and add motion, sound, and text to your movie.

You will need Flash CS4 Professional to take this tutorial. If you do not have a copy, you can download the trial version by clicking here.

Get Started

To begin, open Flash CS4 Professional. The window shown here appears:

Initial Screen

Click Flash File (ActionScript 3.0). The window shown here appears:

Flash Window

Note: The window shown is the default layout and is named Essentials. If your window has a different layout, click the down-arrow to the right of Help on the Menu bar and then select Essentials.

On the far right edge of the window, you see the Tools panel, which contains the tools you use to create or modify drawings and text. You select a tool by clicking it. If there are multiple tools in a single well, click the visible tool a second time and a popup menu appears. You can then choose the tool you want. Wells with multiple tools have a small triangle in the bottom-right corner.

Tool modifiers for the selected tool are shown at the bottom of the Tools panel. You use modifiers to set tool options.

When you hover your mouse pointer over a tool or display a tool menu, you will see that each tool has a letter associated with it. You can choose a tool by pressing the letter. For example, when you hover your mouse pointer over the Selection tool Selection Tool, you see "Selection Tool (V)." Pressing "v" activates the Selection tool.

The Property inspector and the Library panels appear to the left of the Tools panel. You use the Property inspector to set object and tool properties. You store objects in the Library.

The Timeline appears in the bottom portion of the window. You use the Timeline to lay out the sequence of your movie.

The Stage is in the center of the window. You create your movie on the Stage.

Set Document Properties

You start creating your movie by setting the Frame Rate, Dimensions, Background Color, and Ruler Units.

Frame Rate

The speed of the movie. The number of frames per second.


The size of the Stage.

Background Color

The color of the Stage.

Ruler Units

The unit of measure shown on the rulers. To display the rulers, choose View > Rulers from the menu.

You can set these properties in the Document Properties dialog box.

Set Document Properties

  1. Choose Modify > Document from the menu or press Ctrl+J. The Document Properties dialog box appears.
Document Properties
  1. Type 400 px in the Width field to set the width of the Stage to 400 pixels.
  2. Type 400 px in the Height field to set the height of the Stage to 400 pixels.
  3. Click the Background Color box and then choose white as the background color.
  4. Type 12 in the Frame Rate field.
  5. Choose Pixels from the drop-down menu in the Ruler Units field.
  6. Click OK. Flash sets the document properties.
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