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In Fireworks CS5 Essential Training, author Jim Babbage gives a detailed overview of Fireworks CS5, Adobe's software for creating and optimizing web graphics and interactive prototypes. This course includes a detailed tour of the interface, the enhanced PNG format, and the image editing toolset in Fireworks. Critical concepts, such as prototyping for HTML applications and working with symbols, the heart of an efficient workflow in Fireworks, are covered in detail. Exercise files are included with this course.
Creating vector shapes is all well and good, but in many cases you want to actually have a shape that looks a little more realistic. Another term you'll often hear is organic. And you can do that with vectors by working with some of the fill properties, such as patterns and gradients and textures. In this particular example we see on the screen right now, the red pepper has a little bit of extra treatment added to it. If we take a look over here, you'll see that there's kind of a subtle texture or a pattern running through the pepper itself, giving it a little bit more detail, and we've also got a nice little shadow running across the edge of the pepper, making it a look a little less flat, little more three-dimensional.
And we're going to do the same thing with our large pepper here, just to give you an idea of the kinds of things you can do. So, I'm going to grab my Pointer tool, and I'm going to click on the actual pepper shape. Now, all of these effects are applied through the Properties panel, and we'll start off with the Texture. Texture is that kind of swirly detail that we see in there, almost looks like different reflections or sheen on the pepper itself. So, I'm going to go into a Properties panel, and we're going to be going into our Texture menu, and the texture that I want to work with, and there's tons to pick from here, the list is huge, but the one I want to work with in this case is called Swish.
You see a little grayscale preview of the texture right beside the name when you select it, so you can get a sense of what it looks like. When I select the Swish Texture, you can see it's get applied directly to my new shape. Now, I can control the impact of the texture by adjusting its opacity. So, right now it's set to about 17%, so I'm going to go ahead and beef this up to 100, just so you can see what happens. And then you can see that it's become much more obvious, but it doesn't look like a pepper. So, we're going to change this down to a lower value. I'm going to go down to about 20. And that gives us a little more subtle impact.
It's there, and we can sort of see it, but it's not taking over in the entire illustration. Now, the other thing that I've done with this red pepper is I've added an inner shadow to create that sense of three dimensions, and we'll do the same thing here. And again, we're applying another effect through the Properties panel. So we'll go to our Filters menu, and we'll choose Shadow and Glow, and we'll choose Inner Shadow. It doesn't get much easier than that. So we're going to change the values here a little bit just to make it stand out a bit more. I'm going to increase the distance to about 10. I'm going to reduce the opacity to about 60.
And I'm also going to change the shadow color. The default color is black, but it tends to be a little bit overpowering. So, I'm going to go ahead and click on that color value, and I'm going to choose a dark green from my Swatch Picker here. So now I get a similar green shade, and if it's still a little off-putting then I can certainly go ahead and select a green from my pepper itself, and then make adjustments to that. I'll click on it again, and this time from the Color Picker, I'll just increase the density of it, make it a little bit darker, then click OK.
And that gives me a little more of the result that I want, something subtle but something that still shows up. And I can continue on editing this if I like. The great thing about both of these effects that I've applied is they're both completely editable. I can change them. I can remove them any time I want, if I really want to I can experiment with the whole range of different textures until I find the one that I find most suitable. So, we have added the subtle texture and then added the live filter to add a bit more depth and dimension to our shape. We've taken it from being a basic, flat object and turn it into something that looks a little more three-dimensional.
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