How do I make this arrow symmetrical?


First of all, I use Inkscape for this. I am also not a graphic designer by trade.

Anyway, here's the deal:

Asymmetrical arrow symbol which I want to make symmetrical

As you can see, the nodes aren't lined up properly to make the arrow symmetrical. I only need the left-most node and the right-most nodes to line up with each other and be equally far from the arrow's point.

I really can't figure this one out, so any help is appreciated!

10/26/2015 1:07:00 PM

Accepted Answer

Two options:

  1. When you select a node, you can manually enter the coordinates.

    1. Select either of the two outer nodes and make its Y coordinate match the other one’s
    2. Make its X coordinate such that the distance matches (you have to do the calculations yourself).
  2. Open the align and distribute objects dialogue.

    1. Select both nodes and the tip of your arrow and align selected nodes to a common vertical line. Then select the rightmost node and hit Shift + → until its in position and remember the number of hits. Do the same thing with the leftmost node and the other direction. (Repeat without Shift to fine-adjust, if desired.)

    2. Select both outer nodes and then align selected nodes to a common horizontal line.

10/26/2015 1:19:00 PM

You can use clones...

Clone arrow example

Create one side (e.g. here we've created the right side) and ensure the side has a perfectly vertical edge by using the "Align and Distribute Objects" dialog to align the nodes). Then create a clone of that side (Edit > Clone > Create Clone), flip the clone horizontally, and align the two objects so their vertical edges touch (again, using the Align and Distribute Objects dialog). Now you can go wild with re-shaping your arrow, and symmetry will be automatically maintained.

EDIT: In some cases, Inkscape will (somewhat incorrectly) render adjacent objects (like these two arrow halves) with a tiny sliver of empty space between them. I find that this rendering error usually disappears when exporting to PNG. A couple ways to work around it though, if needed: (1) add a minuscule stroke to the source object; or (2) once you are satisfied with the shape of the arrow, convert the clone into a path using Edit > Clone > Unlink Clone, then select both sides and choose Path > Union.