MUST READ: Answers to Frequently-Asked Questions (FAQ)
Here are answers to questions about accessing and utilizing this course that will help you as you work through the course. This page should be your FIRST stop when you have a question, as 99% of the questions you will ever have are answered here. If you cannot find an answer to your question here, scroll to the bottom to learn how to get more help. Thank you!
Q #1: I lost my password. How do I get in?
A: Request a password reset at https://sso.teachable.com/secure/152016/users/pass...
Q #2: I can't get the videos to play. How do I solve this?
A: Some students report issues playing the videos on the iPad. If you have issues, click on the video box anywhere near the start arrow and it should work for you. Clicking on the start arrow arrow itself seems to be an issue.
Q #3: I'm on a Mac and I when I try to install Inkscape, I'm told it is from unidentified developer. What do I do?
If you have this issue, locate the Inkscape item in your Applications folder, hold down the Control key, and left click on Inkscape. You'll get a similar window telling you it is from an unidentified developer, but this time you can click the Open button. Once you do that, Inkscape will install.
Q #4: When I try to download an SVG, it just displays it for me in a browser. How do I get the SVG file?
A: Look for a ZIP file of the SVG, linked to the bottom of the lesson, and download that instead. Also, be sure you open the SVG from within your illustration software. I also recommend you review the SVGs Made Simple pre-training unit that begins here: https://jennifermaker.teachable.com/courses/cut-above-course-how-to-create-svgs-cricut-silhouette-upload-sell/lectures/3413601
Q #5: When I try to download an SVG, it just shows up as a Chrome HTML file. Where is the SVG?
A: Sometimes SVG files can appear in your Windows File Manager as Chrome HTML. The file is still an SVG, but your computer doesn't recognize it as such because it's not associated with an SVG-related program on your computer. You can either ignore this and continue to use and upload this file to your illustration and design software, or you follow these directions to associate it:
1. On Windows 10: Click on MS icon on left corner of the task bar (4 rectangles or windows sign)
2. Right click > Control panel > Control Panel\Programs\Default Programs\Set Associations
3. Sort by Description (Other available options are Name, Current Default)
4. You will notice that the SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) files have been associated with Chrome html or other similar file types like Firefox etc
5. Click any one file name which is the 'errant file type'
6. Click on the Change Program button which will open a fresh Dialogue box
7. Say OK, Save, and exit.
8. Wait for 15-20 secs, (could be longer if you have many many files to be reset).
9. Go back and open any file which was previously acting funny and Voila! it is all set and you are back to the normal world!
Q #6: I don't see the same things in my software that you show in your videos. Why is that?
A: You probably don't have the latest version of your software installed, which I highly recommend. Currently, we are using Inkscape 0.92.4 and Illustrator 23.0.1. Please upgrade so that you have the same options as I do. And don't be fooled into thinking Inkscape 0.91 must be similar to 0.92 -- they came out two years apart.
Q #7: My Document Properties window isn't appearing, even though I select it from the menu. Where is it?
If you can't see that window, you may have clicked the "Iconify this dock" button in the upper right corner. If you do that, it moves the window over to a line of vertical text at the right side of your screen. Go look for that text (circled in red in the image below) and click it to open it back up.
Q #8: When I open a window or dialog box, it is really small and I can't see any of the options. Is something wrong with my software?
A: No, it's just that your monitor resolution is likely higher than Inkscape anticipated and it's showing you a much smaller box than what you really need. To make the box or window larger, click and drag the lower right corner outward, then let go of the mouse when it is the size you want.
Q #9: How do I save my SVG file?
A: In Inkscape, go to File > Save and choose "Plain SVG" from the dropdown menu at the bottom, then click the Save button.
In Illustrator, go to File > Save and choose "SVG (svg)" from the dropdown menu at the bottom, then click the Save button.
Q #10: When I click "Save" or "Save As" in Illustrator, I don't see PNG as an option.
A: In some versions of Adobe Illustrator, you'll find the PNG option in different spots. Try these:
File > Export > Export As
File > Save for Web and Devices...
File > Export > Export for Screens
Q #11: Why is my PNG so small after I export it?
A: The PNG will export at the same size as your image on your Canvas. Also, if you have a high resolution monitor, it will appear smaller than you'd expect. It's not an issue.
Q #12: Why is my PNG blank after I export it?
A: If you create your design off the canvas (the page rectangle), it will not be included in the export. To fix this, click and drag your design onto the canvas then export again.
Q #13: How do I upload my PNG to the Facebook group?
A: First, go to the Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/cutabovelab/. Now click the Add Photo/Video button-link near the top of the page, highlighted in yellow below:
2. Click the Upload Photo/Videos button-link in the next screen, highlighted in yellow below:
3. Find the PNG file you saved, click it, and click Open.
4. In the next window, you can say something about your image, then click Post (both are highlighted in yellow below):
Also, here is a recording of a live video that shows how to upload to our Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/jennifer.anderson.marx/vi...
Q #14: I don't like to use Facebook. Do I have to join the group?
A: No, you do not. You can do everything in this course. And if you want feedback on something, you may email [email protected] Please allow up to 72 hours for a response.
Q #15: When I upload my SVG to Cricut Design Space, it's all black. What happened?
A: Most likely this is because your objects stroke color is set to black. So if you have a black stroke and no fill color, Cricut Design Space will use the stroke color you set for the fill color too. And since it uses black for the outline of all objects, it appears as though you see nothing but a black box. Everything is there, but you can't see it because it's all black on black.
Q #16: When I upload my SVG to Cricut Design Space, it's HUGE! What happened?
A: Usually this happens when your Inkscape document's scale gets set to the wrong size, which isn't anything you've done wrong. It can happen when you change your Display Units in File > Document Properties. To fix this issue, open your SVG file in Inkscape, go to File > Document Properties, make sure your Display Units are in inches (change it if necessary), your document size is something reasonable, and then click "Resize Page to Drawing or Selection," and save it. (If you do not see the "Resize Page to Drawing or Selection" you probably have an older version of Inkscape installed. Update to the current version.) If it comes out too large, you'll need to resize everything on your canvas to an appropriate size. To prevent it going forward, watch this recording of a live video I did about it: https://www.facebook.com/jennifer.anderson.marx/vi... I also recommend you use the "new-design.svg" file as a template for all new documents to avoid this issue, too. I attached this file at the bottom.
Q #17: When I upload my SVG to Cricut Design Space, it's TINY! What happened?
A: This seems to be a similar issue to the "too huge" problem I just mentioned, but with a different fix. Open your file in Inkscape, go to File > Document Properties, and make sure your Display Units are set to "in" and your Scale is set to "1.00000." If they aren't, change them following the instructions in the video linked above. If they are correct, click the "Resize page to drawing or selection" button in the Custom Size area of the Document Properties, save your SVG, and upload it to Design Space again. (Note: If you do not see the "Resize page to drawing or selection" button, it means you are using an older version of Inkscape. Please update before continuing.)
Q #18: When I am designing, my objects keep sticking together or moving weird. It's hard to move them around. What gives?
A: Chances are likely you're having an issue with Snap, which is a feature to help you align objects. Click the "Enable Snapping" button in the upper right corner of your Inkscape window to turn Snap on and off.
You can also change your Snap settings in Inkscape by going to File > Document Properties > Snap. There are additional settings at Edit > Preferences > Behavior > Snapping. To turn off Snap in Illustrator, go to View > Snap to grid/guide/point (there are three different options)—select any of those options to turn them on or off.
Q #19: When I am designing, I can create objects, but as soon as I click off them they seem to disappear. What is happening?
A: This usually means your shape tool or pen tool has no color. To change this in Inkscape, go to Object > Fill & Stroke and make sure you have a color selected for either Fill or Stroke. Also make sure your opacity is not set to 0%. To change this in Illustrator, go to the drop-down Fill and Stroke menus in the bar above your canvas and make sure a color is selected.
Q #20: Every time I create a new object, my tool reverts back to a different color or style. I want it to stay the same. How do I do this?
A: In Inkscape, go to Edit > Preferences > Shapes > (the shape tool you are using) and make sure it is set to "Last used style." The Pen Tool can be changed at Edit > Preferences > Pen.
Q #21: When I copy and paste in Inkscape on my Mac, I get pixels instead of my vector object(s). What gives?
Copying/pasting on Inkscape on a Mac doesn't behave the way it should out of the box. This is because it is using an XQuartx X11 wrapper to run Inkscape for you. If you copy and paste in Inkscape on a Mac, it will actually pixellize your object. You can usually tell when this happens because the object gets a weird white background even where there shouldn't be a background. We do NOT want pixellized objects. To fix this for all future copy/pasted objects, select the XQuartz icon in your Dock, go to XQuartz > Preferences > Pasteboard, and uncheck the "Update Pasteboard when CLIPBOARD changes." Now when you copy and paste an object, it will not turn it into pixels.
Q #22: Is there a way to save various Inkscape settings, like the letter-inches-grading and snap settings, so that it doesn't have to be redone every single time?
A: When Inkscape starts up, it checks to see if there's a file called default.svg and, if there is, it loads it and whatever document properties are set in that default file. This only applies to the Document Properties and not the options set in Preferences.
To set this default.svg in Windows 10, use this tutorial: https://logosbynick.com/inkscape-default-template
To set this default.svg file on Mac, use this tutorial: https://eastmanreference.com/inkscape-default-document-properties-and-canvas-size-tutorial
Q #23: When I click on an object with my Selection Tool, I don't get a box around it with handles for resizing or rotating. Why not?
A: You may have accidentally turned your bounding box off in Illustrator. Go to View > Show Bounding Box and it should reappear.
Q #24: I have a question that is not answered here. How do I get help?
A: Please review the appropriate Unit Question threads in the Lab to see if your question has been asked and answered, and if not, please ask your question there. Here are the links to each Unit Question Thread:
Unit 1: https://www.facebook.com/groups/cutabovelab/permalink/191889098097927/
Unit 2: https://www.facebook.com/groups/cutabovelab/permalink/142611459692358/
Unit 3: https://www.facebook.com/groups/cutabovelab/permalink/144218532864984/
Unit 4: https://www.facebook.com/groups/cutabovelab/permalink/145928629360641/
Unit 5: https://www.facebook.com/groups/cutabovelab/permalink/147460102540827/
Unit 6: https://www.facebook.com/groups/cutabovelab/permalink/149737618979742/
Unit 7: https://www.facebook.com/groups/cutabovelab/permalink/150784342208403/
Unit 8: https://www.facebook.com/groups/cutabovelab/permalink/153133441973493/
Please allow 72 hours for a response (though we usually respond MUCH faster). Please note that it is VERY important you post your question in one of the question threads, as there is no guarantee we'll see it if you post outside of a question thread due to the way Facebook works. If you do not get a response within 72 hours, please post in the thread again and email [email protected] to alert us to the issue.