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This installment of Illustrator Insider Training shows an expert's approach to color choice and control in Illustrator. Mordy Golding guides experienced designers and artists through what he sees are the three stages of applying color to artwork: creation, inspiration, and editing. The course also shows how to build art in a way that allows artists to make changes quickly and how to take advantage of the newer features that have been added to Illustrator over the recent versions.
While it's true that you can use Kuler to come up with really cool and interesting color themes, and you can download those files as ASE files or Adobe Swatch Exchange files, which you can then load into Illustrator, that process is a bit unwieldy, and many times you quickly want to just find a color to use and then be able to apply that color directly inside of Illustrator. Well, the good news is, is that Kuler itself is something that you can access directly from within the Illustrator interface. Let me show you how to do that.
Once the Illustrator is running and I just have right now just any blank document open, I can go to my Window menu and I can choose Extensions, and then choose Kuler. This actually loads a panel here inside of Illustrator, which actually is what we call a Flash-based panel. It's interactive and the information that I am seeing inside of that panel is actually being fed live through the Internet. So, for example, right now, I can actually scroll through these different themes that are inside of Kuler or more importantly, I can do a search. For example, if I want to search on golf, I will go head and do that and I will now search to all the themes inside of Kuler that have the tag, golf, inside of it.
But if I want to find the themes that I myself have created, I can do a search of my own username, in my case, it's Mordy. So if I do a search on that, I will find all the themes that I created. I'll even do a search here on lynda, because in my lynda.com Online Training title called Kuler Essential Training, I've had people actually go ahead and create their own themes and tag it with the keyword lynda, so I can easily track who is creating these colors who have already taken my training course. Now if I like any these, for example, this one here called Hotkisses looks really interesting, I can now scroll here to the bottom of my Kuler panel and click on this button over here to actually add that entire color theme directly to my Swatches panel in my document, I now can actually access those colors.
Now it's important to realize that I'm right now working in a CMYK document; the colors themselves inside of Kuler are going to be RGB. So I may see some color changes or shifts that happen when I actually bring colors from Kuler directly into this CMYK document. Still, I have a really easy way now from within Illustrator directly to access any of the color themes that I might find on Kuler.
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