Concepts has three types of “erasers” - Slice, Hard Mask and Soft Mask. As Concepts uses vectors to draw (saving underlying path data for every stroke), none of these act exactly like traditional pixel erasers, but each tool can help you to edit your work in different ways.
The Slice Tool
Slice is a destructive tool that lets you cut through strokes like a razor blade. Any data Slice touches is destroyed, and remaining pieces are re-formed into independent lines.
You can make the Slice tool bigger and “erase” more at once, or make it smaller and incise just what you need, including a zero point slice. You can also toggle whether you’d like to slice only in your active layer or in all layers at once.
If you have stroke ends to trim, lines to cut, or sketching to “erase”, you can do this with Slice. As Slice is not a stroke, the only way you can undo a slice is to Undo it.
Hard and Soft Masks
The Hard and Soft Masks are masking tools that hide your strokes, either with a clean edge or a soft, blending edge. These tools create masking strokes you can move and adjust for position, size, smoothing and opacity, just like Concepts’ other vector-based brushes.
If you are using a pressure sensitive stylus such as the Apple Pencil, the mask will respond to the pressure of your stroke. You can disable pressure settings under Settings > Stylus, helpful particularly when using the Line and other Shape Guides, also with 100% line smoothing.
These masks work in your current layer. If you’re using Automatic layering, the current layer is based on the last tool you drew with. For example, if you last drew with the pencil tool, the mask will only erase in the “Pencil” layer and affect pencil strokes. Tap either the tool or layer that matches the stroke you want to erase, tap the eraser and mask away.
If you’re using Manual layering, the mask is always applied to your current active layer, including any tool you drew with inside that layer. Tap a layer to select it, then erase.
You can use the Hard and Soft Masks with the Shape Guides (line, rectangle etc). Tap the mask, activate the Shape Guide and trace along the guide. This works great for creating perfect block masks in your drawings.
For more on how to use the masks, check out our YouTube or illustrated tutorials. Learn how to create simple reflections with the Soft Mask here. These tutorials were created with our Concepts 4 UI but are also great for Concepts 5. Note that these tools were called Hard and Soft Eraser in older versions of Concepts and so these tutorials may still use those terms.
Troubleshooting the Hard and Soft Masks
If you don’t see any erasing going on, check that you are in the right layer, and that your opacity is greater than 0%.
When using the Shape Guides with the mask and a pressure-sensitive stylus, your stroke may not completely meet up with the boundaries outlined because of the sensitivity (the boundary shows the maximum width of your tool). If you want to fully erase along the guide, try using your finger instead or disable Pressure settings under Settings > Stylus.
Please note that other vector editors don’t support our Masks - any lines you draw with the Hard and Soft masks will appear as white lines in your exported files. Use the Slice tool instead to clean up these types of drawings.