Explore the controls and gestures you’ll use to create paintings and drawings on your tablet.

What you learned: Work with layers, the Toolbar, the Touch Shortcut, and gestures

Working with layers

Placing different elements of your illustration on separate layers lets you create a drawing that can be easily modified.

  • In the Layers panel, the active layer is highlighted with a blue border.
  • The Layer Task bar is on the far right. Tap the buttons at the top of the Task bar to hide and show the Layers panel and Layer properties like Opacity and Blend mode. Explore other layer commands in the center of the Task bar.
  • Drag a layer thumbnail up or down to move it in the Layers panel.


  • Use standard two-finger gestures to zoom in and out, or move the image around on screen.
  • A quick two-finger pinch gesture fits the image on screen.
  • Use a two-finger tap gesture to undo, and a three-finger tap to redo.
  • Tap the question mark at the top right for a list of gestures.

Working with the Toolbar

  • Tap a tool to select it; tap again or long-press to reveal additional related tools.
  • Other tool options are docked at the bottom of the Toolbar. These options can be dragged away from the Toolbar and positioned anywhere on screen.
  • Each of the brush types has a Brushes panel that can be detached and positioned anywhere on screen. 
  • In the Pixel Brushes panel, you can load Photoshop Brushes by tapping the Add Brushes icon (the plus sign) at the bottom of the panel.

Using the Touch Shortcut

The circle in the lower left of the screen is the Touch Shortcut, which you can use to quickly change the behavior of some tools. Press the Touch Shortcut and hold it down while you use a tool. This temporarily changes the action of the tool, and a blue label appears in the upper right identifying the action.

  • When used with a Pixel or Vector brush, the Touch Shortcut gives you a quick way to erase with the selected brush.
  • Tap the question mark at the top right for a list of touch shortcuts.

Save your work

  • As you work in Fresco, your image and the changes you make to it are regularly saved as a cloud document.
  • To close the file, tap the Home button in the upper left. This saves the cloud document and returns you to the Home screen.


Up next: Your first illustration



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