CorelDraw Basics: Drawing speed lines and blast lines

Category: Techwriter
Blast lines, motion lines, and perspective lines are used to emphasize movement in a comic book or provide emphasis to a particular object, face, or person. The classic effect is still used in product packaging and is still used in comic books (though today more frequently in manga than Western comic books).

Blast lines are used to emphasis this team-up between Spider-Man and Molten Man. Panel taken from Web of Spider-Man #66 and art by Alex Saviuk.

To quickly create blast lines in CorelDraw, users can draw two simple shapes using one of the many drawing tools available and "fill out" the space between the two using the Blend Docker options.
To create a simple blast lines effect in CorelDraw:

  1. Click the Bezier tool and draw a line at an angle. Adjust the line width and Outline Pen properties to adjust the appearance of the line segment.
  2. Select the line segment and click CTRL+D to duplicate the line segment. Position the second line segment at an opposing angle. Alternately, open the Transformations Docker by clicking Window then Dockers to rotate, reflect, or skew a duplicate line segment.
  3. Select both line segments using the Pick tool.
  4. Click Window, then Dockers. Select Blend to open the Blend Docker. The Number of Steps option is selected by default. Enter a number in the field. Add a rotation angle and tick the Loop box for additional effect. Click Apply.

The blast lines can be duplicated, rotated, skewed, and colored to produce different visuals. The Blend tool fades the colors between the two objects, so by using a darker color on the first line segment and a lighter color for the second, you can produce a useful vector-based fading effect. Adjusting the Rotate settings, selecting the start and end point, and attaching the Blend to a path also produces a variety of useful effects.

Blast lines created in CorelDraw can be added to bitmap images such as this modified panel from Web of Spider-Man #67 (art by Alex Saviuk)


This simple ad uses speed lines in the background to create a retro 80s look. All graphics were created in CorelDraw. Art by author.


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