Working with Symbols

Symbols allow you to place multiple instances of an item in your project. This can save memory, since all instances of a symbol simply refer to the original item and it can speed up moving around complex objects, since internal properties such as segment lists and gradient positions don't need to be updated with every transformation.

Creating Symbols

To create a symbol from an item, just pass the item to the new Symbol(item) constructor. When you create a symbol using an item, that item is automatically removed from the document.

To place instances of the symbol in your project, you can call on it, with the position where you want to place it.

For example, lets create a circle shaped path and place a few instances of it:


Placed Symbols

A placed instance of a symbol is a PlacedSymbol and can be manipulated like any other Item.


Selecting Placed Symbols

When you select a PlacedSymbol by setting item.selected to true, Paper.js draws its bounding box. This allows you to see how it has been transformed.


Symbol Definition

When you create a symbol from an item, that item becomes the definition of the symbol. Editing the definition of a symbol is reflected in all its PlacedSymbol instances.