For designers who work with multiple tools, doing double work is nothing new: you create a design in one tool, to then use that same design in another. Especially with larger designs, it often takes a lot of time to manually export the separate elements to use them in different design tools. Our own Maglr Studio also experienced this issue, showing us that it was time to come up with a solution for all designers who use Maglr Pro.
For that reason, we started researching among our customers, which resulted in Sketch as the most used design tool. The Maglr Studio also uses Sketch to create the initial design for customers, showing us that there was no better starting point. That’s why we started developing an import-functionality for this design tool late last year.
We are now capable to read a Sketch file and import an artboard to Maglr. Where you previously had to manually export all elements an images from Sketch, we can now place a complete Sketch artboard directly in your Maglr Pro scene. A considerable time saver for Sketch users!
How does the Sketch import work?
When developing the import functionality for Sketch files, we mainly focused on speed and productivity. Since Sketch files can become very large, we chose to set up a direct connection between Maglr Pro and the Sketch file on your own device. Via the ‘import menu’ in Maglr Pro, you can now select the artboard in your Sketch file to import. No need to wait long, as we only upload (and resize when needed) the elements within the chosen Sketch artboard. This means that all elements in your Sketch artboard are converted into a completely editable Maglr Pro scene in no-time.
Designing in Sketch, applying interactivity in Maglr
Every layer or group in your Sketch artboard will be converted into a unique layer or group in Maglr when imported, including the layer names you applied in Sketch. All of these elements are then completely editable in Maglr and can be made interactive using animations, effects and actions.
What do I need to keep an eye on when importing my Sketch files?
While the import functionality for Sketch files is a considerable time saver, there are several things to note when designing your Sketch file in order to successfully import its elements to Maglr. Think of specific practices to keep your workflow as productive as possible, but also features in Sketch that our Pro editor does not support (yet).
A full list of tips & restrictions can be found in our Help Centre.
What else is new?
When developing the import functionality, many extra features have been developed to straighten the design in Sketch with the result in Maglr. Below you can find a list with the most important new features in Maglr Pro:
- We’ve added more styles for ‘Borders’, such as ‘solid’, ‘dotted’ and ‘dashed’.
- A mask can now be place visible or invisible.
- Both the X and Y-values of shadow distance can be set manually.
- Elements can now be ‘flipped’ horizontally or vertically.
- The ‘Timeline’ panel has been made more structured to provide an overview of the selected groups and layers.
- We’ve expanded the amount of ‘Blend modes’ under our Effectspanel. You can now find blend modes such as ‘Exclusion’, ‘Hue’ and ‘Saturation’.
- In addition to line height, the height between paragraphs can now be set for textelements.
- It’s now possible to vertically align text inside the available frame.
- Via the context menu (right click) a Headingelement can now be changed into a text-element and vice versa. Useful for accessibility!
- For texts, it’s now possible to set a ‘Border / Stroke’. This places a stroke around the text itself, which then provides for extensive editing options.
- Find your font faster by typing its name in the dropdown menu.
- Texts do not become ‘scrollable’ automatically when placing new text frames. A text can now run outside of its frame borders, unless the scrollbar is enabled manually via the Optionspanel.
The Sketch import and its new features are now in Beta and ready to use by all Maglr Pro users! More info on the Sketch import and the new features can be found in our Help Centre.
Depending on your feedback and desires, we’re looking at further integrations with, for example, Figma or Adobe XD in the near future. We’re very keen to learn what you think of the Sketch import and which other features you would like to see in Maglr. You’re welcome to share your thoughts with us via firstname.lastname@example.org.