A guide to drawing in android


Here we will be creating a view which will let us draw on canvas.

We will be creating something like this but bit simpler. Before jumping to the code try out sample app.

I have also created a library for android draw. Check out the github repo.


class DrawView(context: Context, attrs: AttributeSet) : View(context, attrs) {private var mPaint = Paint()
private var mPath = Path()

private var mCurX = 0f
private var mCurY = 0f
private var mStartX = 0f
private var mStartY = 0f

init {
mPaint.apply {
color = Color.BLACK
= Paint.Style.STROKE
strokeJoin = Paint.Join.ROUND
strokeCap = Paint.Cap.ROUND
strokeWidth = 8f
isAntiAlias = true

Here comes the important part. We will now override onTouchEvent and create three functions for ACTION_UP, ACTION_DOWN and ACTION_MOVE.

override fun onTouchEvent(event: MotionEvent): Boolean {
val x = event.x
val y = event.y

when (event.action) {
MotionEvent.ACTION_DOWN -> {
mStartX = x
mStartY = y
actionDown(x, y)
MotionEvent.ACTION_MOVE -> actionMove(x, y)
MotionEvent.ACTION_UP -> actionUp()

return true

when ACTION_DOWN event is called we will move path to x & y and update the value of mCurX and mCurY.

private fun actionDown(x: Float, y: Float) {
mPath.moveTo(x, y)
mCurX = x
mCurY = y

when ACTION_MOVE is called we will make a quadratic curve. Using quadTo helps to make smooth line on curve.

private fun actionMove(x: Float, y: Float) {
mPath.quadTo(mCurX, mCurY, (x + mCurX) / 2, (y + mCurY) / 2)
mCurX = x
mCurY = y

When ACTION_UP is called we will make a line to mCurX and mCurY.

private fun actionUp() {
mPath.lineTo(mCurX, mCurY)

// draw a dot on click
if (mStartX == mCurX && mStartY == mCurY) {
mPath.lineTo(mCurX, mCurY + 2)
mPath.lineTo(mCurX + 1, mCurY + 2)
mPath.lineTo(mCurX + 1, mCurY)

At the end draw path on canvas in onDraw() function.

override fun onDraw(canvas: Canvas) {

canvas.drawPath(mPath, mPaint)

HURRAY! We have completed our drawing view. Our whole code will look something like this.tps://writings.jlelse.de


fun clearCanvas() {

Now you can add your view to xml

android:layout_height="match_parent" />

To check github repo for more features like change strokeWidth, change strokeColor, change Alpha, erase, redo, undo. https://github.com/divyanshub024/AndroidDraw

Also try out the sample app.

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