Events and interactions

Turn your wireframes into hi-fi interactive prototypes by adding events. In this article, you’ll learn how to create and use interactions with the Events palette.

How events work

An event includes a trigger and an action. The trigger is how you interact with your prototype, like clicking, dragging, or mousing over an element. The action is the result you’d like to happen after the trigger, like linking to another screen or changing how an element looks.

With events, you can:

  • Make nearly every element in your prototype interactive, including buttons, images, and text.
  • Trigger multiple actions on one element. For example, you can click on a rectangle and change its color, and then move that rectangle to a different position on the screen.
  • Create interactions on one element that affect another element. For example, you can click on a button and then change the color of a rectangle on the screen.
    Use different triggers for one element. For example, you can click on a rectangle and change its border, and you can also swipe left on that rectangle and move it.

You’re able to see the results of the events you’ve created by simulating your prototype. Look to and click the ‘Play’ button to launch a simulation browser where you can interact with your prototype. Just close or minimize the browser to return back to the editor.

Create an event

While you can easily create Links by dragging and dropping (link to getting started section), you’ll create most events in the Events palette. If you don’t see the Events palette, make sure it’s checked to be visible in the Window menu.
You can check the events palette to be shown in the Window menu
To build an event:

  1. Select an element on the Canvas.
  2. Click the ‘Add event’ or ‘+’ button in the Events palette. You can also right-click on an element and select ‘Add event’.
  3. You’ll see the Events dialog appear. Click on the ‘Choose Trigger’ dropdown and select a trigger you’d like to use. For example, if you’d like the event to start when you click on an element, choose On Click.
    Choose a trigger for the action from the dropdown

    Note: on mobile and tablet prototypes, On Click will be On Tap.

    Check out a description of each trigger.

  4. You’ll see the ‘Action’ dropdown appear next. Click on it and pick a resulting action. As an example, you can choose Change Style.
    Choose a resulting action from the actions dropdown
    Check out a description of each action.
  5. Depending on which action you choose, you’ll see a few different things next. For Change Style, you’ll see a preview of the screen Canvas. Here, you can pick which element on the screen will change appearance after you click.Choose the target of the action in the canvas preview
  6. For a Change Style action, you can specify some element properties, like background or border colors, to change from the dropdown below. Click ‘OK’ to finish building the event.Select the styles to change from the dropdowns

You’ll see the event you just created in the Events palette. You’ll also see a ‘bolt’ icon next to the element you added an event to on the Canvas.
See a bolt icon where you have added an event
Click the ‘Play’ button to simulate your prototype and check out the interaction you created.
Click the play button to simulate the prototype

Details of the Events palette

In addition to displaying the events you create, you can also perform a number of actions in the Events palette:
View different details of the events palette

  1. Create a new interaction.
  2. The interaction name. Double click to rename it.
  3. Interaction conditions. Define when the actions below should or shouldn’t occur. Learn more about conditions(link to tutorial about conditions).
  4. View an action. Double click to open the Events dialog and edit it. Select an action and hit the delete key to remove the action. Hold Command (on Mac) or Control (on Windows) to multi-select actions.
  5. The action order. By default, actions will run one after another in the order in which you created them. You can also change them to run at the same time or after a duration you specify. Drag and drop an action to move its position in front of or behind other actions.
  6. Add another action with the same trigger.