CorelDraw 12 Eases Freehand Work

In digital graphics, there's an often-underserved middle ground: users who are too savvy to use novice-oriented tools but who find high-end Adobe and Macromedia tools to be overkill.

In digital graphics, theres an often-underserved middle ground: users who are too savvy to use novice-oriented tools but who find high-end Adobe and Macromedia tools to be overkill.

Corel has probably served these users most effectively and for the longest time, and the recent release of the $399 CorelDraw 12 graphics suite carries on this tradition. The suite, released last month, comprises the CorelDraw illustration tool, Photo-Paint for image and photo editing, and a vector animation tool.

Among my favorite features in CorelDraw 12 are several that made it easier to create simple drawings. The shape-recognition tool automatically cleaned and straightened the shaky lines and shapes I drew freehand. I also liked the eyedroppers ability to copy properties and colors on the fly.

One big negative for users of past Mac OS versions is that CorelDraw 12 is available only for Windows. For more information, go to www.corel.com.