|Instruction manual - Pizzicato 3.6.2||EN285 - Revision of 2013/05/29|
Graphic note entry tool on the staff
Graphic note entry tool [Light] [Beginner] [Professional] [Notation] [Composition Light] [Composition Pro] [Drums and Percussion] [Guitar] [Choir] [Keyboard] [Soloist]
You will find a tool with icon in the Composition palette from the Tools menu. This is a special tool to enter music graphically on the staff. The idea is to combine several movements of the mouse to specify the note characteristics. It is designed to enter simple music, mainly with one voice per staff, but may be combined with all other Pizzicato tools. It only requires to use the mouse. If you copy an existing score, you can for instance keep one finger on the original score to follow where you are copying from, and use the other hand with the mouse to enter the music. Its main positive point is how rhythmic values are selected. We will explore this tool with several examples.
- Open a new document and also the Composition palette. Select the tool. The score shows that we are in a special note entry mode by coloring the staff and by adding lines up and down each staff:
- This note entry mode is much more precise if you increase the zoom value for instance to 150 % (except for Pizzicato Light, limited to a 100 % screen zoom). The first two measures then appears this way :
You will notice that each vertical green line corresponds to a beat of the measure. The additional horizontal lines are displayed as a reference to add notes above or below the staff.
- Click at the level of C4 and hold down the mouse. You will see the following:
The red line in fact shows how long the note will be. Release the mouse button now and the quarter note will be validated.
- Click another note to the right of the first note and hold down the mouse button. Until you release the mouse button, you can in fact move the mouse to the right or to the left (but at this point be careful to stay on the same horizontal level). This mouse movement will in fact lengthen or shorten the note duration. This will be displayed by the red line length, but also by the note itself. Try to move slowly to the right, until the note has become a dotted half note (which is the maximal note duration that is still possible to enter in this measure):
Watch the various transformations of that note. Now do the same to the left, until the note has become a 32nd note. Now elease the mouse button to have an 8th note.
With this tool, you can decide the duration of the note. You do not need to select each time a rhythmic value on a palette or with a keyboard shortcut.
- Now click several new notes to the right, without holding down the mouse key longer. They will all be 8th notes:
When you click a new note, its rhythmic value is by default the same as the last rhythm you have entered. So when the music contains several notes with the same rhythm, you just have to adjust the first and the others will automatically be the same rhythm.
- Before releasing the mouse button, independently of the horizontal movement, you can also move the mouse slightly up or down. This will add an accidental to the note, according to the vertical movement you do. By moving it slightly up, you will add a sharp (but the exact accidental really depends on the key signature or the presence of another accidental already in the measure). A bit more up and you get a double sharp. Same principle when you move it down to get a flat or double flat. Try it now.
- If you move the note too high or to low, it becomes a rest of the same rhythmic value. This is then the way to enter rests.
- If you click on an existing note or rest, you can move it as previously explained with the standard Pizzicato arrow tool. But if you move it outside the current measure (to the right or to the left), the note or rest will be removed from the measure. This is an easy way to delete a note without the need of an additional tool. By the way, this works also without this special tool selected. You can do it with the arrow tool. You can always delete a note or rest by dragging it outside the measure, left or right. Try this and remove a few notes.
You will notice that the vertical lines change their position according to the measure content. Some notes are graphically small with a longer duration and for other notes it is the reverse. The vertical lines are adapted so as to always show where the beats are, related to the notes.
When you double-click and hold the mouse button down (which means: click, release fast, then click again fast, but do not release the mouse button after the second click), you can do three other things with it. Here they are.
- Double click an existing note and now move up or down. You will see that a new note will be created. You can set its position by moving up or down. When you release the mouse button, the new note will be attached to the same stem. This is the way to create a chord.
- Double click an existing note and first move to the right. At this point, nothing happens. If you now move the mouse up, an upper tie is created. You can release the mouse and add another note (of the same pitch) and the two notes will be tied together.
- Double click the note and move to the left. The stem direction is reversed. This is the way to change a stem direction without the need of another shortcut or tool selection.
These new ways of entering music are experimental. You can always suggest us new ways to improve this function. The purpose is to enter music more intuitively and faster. To master this tool, you should work with it a few hours to enter music. Only then it should show its power. At any moment, you can still use the other shortcuts (accidental corrections, beaming,...) in combination with this special tool.
Intuitive chords entry [Light] [Beginner] [Professional] [Notation] [Composition Light] [Composition Pro] [Drums and Percussion] [Guitar] [Choir] [Keyboard] [Soloist]
In the Composition tool palette, you will find the intuitive chord entry tool: . This tool is a new way to enter the notes of a series of chords. You should already have a series of chords symbol in the score and this tool will help you to set the exact notes on one or more staves, very easily and intuitively.
- With the File, Open... menu item, select in the Examples sub-folder of the DataEN folder, the Ex087 document; you can also open it through the document manager, in configuration 2 (blue buttons, on the upper left part). Select the tool. The score contains a series of chord symbols:
- Click below the C chord symbol, around the level of the upper C in the first staff and keep the mouse button down. You will see and hear a chord like this:
The red line below the chord has the same meaning as in the tool explained previously. If you move the mouse to the right or to the left, you can respectively lengthen or shorten the duration of the chord. When you release the mouse button, the chord duration is validated.
- Before you release the mouse, you can also move the mouse up or down. This will transpose the chord position accordingly. You will see the chord notes displayed and you will hear the sound of the chord. Try for instance to move the mouse down at the level of the first E note (first line) as well as to the right, so that the duration becomes a half note. Pizzicato will display:
The vertical mouse position specifies the upper note of the chord. Notice that if there is no chord symbol in the score, the chord displayed will always be C. Otherwise, as we will see in a moment, the notes are taken from the current chord displayed as a symbol.
- You can now release the mouse to validate the chord. Now, click to the right and select another chord position. Continue with this process to fill in the first 3 measures. You may vary the note duration and the chord positions. One possible result is:
Of course, once you have validate a chord, you may still rearrange its notes just by moving them up or down, or by removing a note by dragging it outside the measure.
- This is the default method how Pizzicato will place the notes: starting from the mouse position and adding two other notes from the chord, downward, on the same staff. This may be customized. Double-click the tool and the following dialog appears:
You can specify here how the chords must be constructed. The following options are available:
- You can specify how much notes must be generated. If the chord contains less notes than you specify here, some notes will be doubled.
- You can specify in which direction the notes are added: up or down.
- You can specify how notes are adde: all notes on the same staff or each note on the next staff. In this case, each time Pizzicato adds a note, it adds it on the next staff (depending on the up or down direction, the next staff is either the upper staff or the lower staff).
- You can force the inversion of the chord (chord position). By default, it is set to Automatic, which means that the nearest chord note to the mouse position is used as the starting note. In all other case, the position of the chord is always respected.
- You can also specify to skip one or more notes between each note of the chord. This will result in chords played in a wider pitch range, the interval between successive notes being larger.
- In the above dialog, select Next staves and Skip 1 note, then click on OK. Try now to enter 4 half notes to fill in the last two measures. You will have for instance:
As there are only two staves, Pizzicato has placed the two additional notes on the second staff.
One interesting application of this tool is for instance the harmonization of a string, brass or woodwind section. You can have for instance 4 staves and specify to skip one or two notes. By adding a note to the first instrument and moving it to hear how it sounds like, you can quickly fill in an orchestral set of measures for a given chord progression. Please note that this is not really harmonization according to the rules of harmony, as Pizzicato will only display the notes as a systematic application of the above explained rules, with no other consideration (parallel fifth or octaves, resolution of dissonnances,...). But it can help to quickly have some idea of how a passage may sound. You are free to move some notes here and there to improve the voice leading.
Viewing note colors according to chords [Light] [Beginner] [Professional] [Notation] [Composition Light] [Composition Pro] [Drums and Percussion] [Guitar] [Choir] [Keyboard] [Soloist]
An addionnal tool in the Composition palette is the icon. This tool is just a handy duplicate of the coloring function of notes according to the chords and scales present in the score. This option may also be found in the Options, menu, Graphic options item, in the Use of colors popup menu. When this tool is active, the note heads will be displayed in green if they are part of the current chord, in orange if they are part of the associated scale to the current chord, or in red if they are not part of either the scale or the chord. If you select it with the above score, you will get all notes in green, as by definition they are all part of the current chord. But if you move some notes of that chord, you will for instance have:
This coloring feature may be very useful, mostly to beginners, when harmonizing a section, as you can directly see the status of each note in the score. Of course you can at any time change the chord symbol and the colors will change accordingly.