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Adding gradients and depth

From: Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Advanced

Video: Adding gradients and depth

In this exercise, I'm going to show you how to take those two objects, at least our perceived objects; the green one and the orange one. We'll fill them in with gradients, as we're seeing in this final Celtic knot.ai file. It's not really hard to pull this off. It's just that it takes a fairly deliberate approach, because things can go wrong as I'll show you. So you just have to be careful. I've gone ahead and restored the saved version of my Intricate weave.ai file. So let's say, I decide to select the green object. We've seen that you can do that using the White Arrow tool.

Adding gradients and depth

In this exercise, I'm going to show you how to take those two objects, at least our perceived objects; the green one and the orange one. We'll fill them in with gradients, as we're seeing in this final Celtic knot.ai file. It's not really hard to pull this off. It's just that it takes a fairly deliberate approach, because things can go wrong as I'll show you. So you just have to be careful. I've gone ahead and restored the saved version of my Intricate weave.ai file. So let's say, I decide to select the green object. We've seen that you can do that using the White Arrow tool.

So I'll go ahead and grab my White Arrow tool, and then I'll Alt+Drag or Option+Drag around the top of that object to select it independently of the orange circular object. Then I'll go up here to the Fill swatch in the Control panel and I'll change that Fill to Green grad, which is one of the swatches I've set up in advanced, and I get this effect here, which is okay. I guess that's more or less sort of what I'm looking for, at least it's a starting point. I did fill in these regions as well, the parts of the circle that are not selected with the green gradient and up here as well.

So everything that's caught inside of these objects got filled, which isn't what I want. But anyway, I'll Alt+Drag or Option+ Drag now around a portion of this orange shape in order to select what I perceived to be a circle with the hole cut out of it. Then I'll go up to the Fill option, and I'll change that to Orange grad, another swatch that I've set up in advance, and that absolutely kills the stuff on the inside. So that wipes out everything. In truth to be told, this is the wrong approach. So, let me show you the right approach, because you could be at this for a little while, trying to get all these guys roughed in properly, and you could end up, if you go too far with it, you could end up losing your strokes and that's a big pain in the neck if you have to reestablish those.

So, I'm going to press Ctrl+Z or Command+ Z on the Mac a couple of times in order to undo those modifications. We're going to switch here from a Live Paint Bucket tool to the Live Paint Selection tool, which you can get by pressing Shift+L of course. Now problem is, I need to select my fills, but I can't, because you may recall a few exercises ago I set this tool so it only select strokes. So I need to double-click on it in order to bring up the Live Paint Selection Options dialog box and I need to turn on Select Fills. So, both of these check boxes are on. I'll click OK.

Now I'll just click some place inside of the green object in order to select that green. Now you might figure okay, now I've got to Shift+Click and Shift+Click, and so on, and actually not. Here is what you can do. With one of these green areas selected, you can go up to the Select menu, choose Same, and choose Fill Color. That actually works. That'll go ahead and select the rest of the green fills. So huge timesaver, and now just so, I can see what I'm doing. I'll press Ctrl+H, Command+H on the Mac to hide those selection regions.

I will switch my fill here in the Swatches panel and that works great. Now you might look at and say no, it doesn't. We have all these horrible intersections going on. Basically, that's what Illustrator has done. It's filled each and every one of these sub-paths with its own independent gradient. That's okay. We can fix that later, so don't worry about it. What I'm going to do now as long as I'm here is I'm going to go to the Gradient panel. So go ahead and open it up, if you want to work along with me, and I'm going to change the Type. I saved these gradients as linear gradients; I want them to be radial.

So right now at this point, so that I don't have to go back and mess around with things. I'm going to change the Type from Linear to Radial and then we'll get these tiny little spotlights of gradients throughout all these little sub-paths. Now we will override that shortly. But right now, I think it's pretty cool. Now I'm going to click inside one of the oranges. We're not going to see the selection pattern this time, because I press Ctrl+H or Command+H to hide him. That's fine. I know it's selected. I'm going to go up to the Select menu, I'm going to choose Same and I'm going to choose Fill Color again. That selects all of the oranges.

And I can confirm that by pressing Ctrl+H, Command+H on the Mac. That brings back my little weird selection patterns. Fair enough. Press Ctrl+H or Command+H again to get rid of them. Now go over to the Swatches panel, and click on Orange grad, and we get a bunch of little orange gradients all over the place. Here inside the Gradient panel, I'll change Type from Linear to Radial in order to create this effect here. Now you might be thinking what in the world do we do now? How do we solve this particular problem? Well, here is what I want you to do. I'm going to go ahead and zoom out. If you're working along with me once again, I want you to select all of the objects in this illustration by pressing Ctrl+A, or Command+A on the Mac.

This would be all the visible objects. I'll press Ctrl+H, Command+H on the Mac, so I can see that everything is selected. I just want to make sure this outer rectangle is also selected and I'm going to go ahead and zoom in. Now, check this out. Using the Gradient tool, you can go ahead and drag inside of the illustration in order to set the angle, and size, and all that jazz associated with your Radial gradient. So, get the Gradient tool or press the G key if you want to, and I'm going to start my gradient from about here and I'm going to drag down to the lower right region of my window and I'm going to release.

That goes ahead and fills everybody with this same sort of radial gradient and it's continuous throughout the various shapes. The problem is, it's looking like I just wiped out my strokes, which would be terrible news. In fact, what Illustrator has done, it's just changed all my strokes. So it still knows where the right strokes are, didn't completely wipe them out, which makes them fairly easy to reinstate. But it did for some reason override them. I don't know why it did that. Anyway, I'm going to go ahead and change the placement of my Radial gradient a little bit.

I think I'll start it right about there, and drag down, like so. So you can apply the Gradient tool to multiple path outlines even if they're part of live paint objects here inside of Illustrator, which is really great. All right, anyway, I'm going to switch back to my Black Arrow tool. I'll click off my paths for a moment to deselect them and then I'm going to marquee around these shapes, so that I'm selecting them independently of the background rectangles. So the square is not selected this time around. I'll go ahead and reinstate my stroke information. I'll press Ctrl+H or Command+H on the Mac, so you can see that all of the strokes are in the right place.

It's just that we now have weak blacks I believe, and we also have one point strokes, which is no good. So I'll click on the Stroke Swatch here in the Control panel and I'll select Rich black and that will darken up the blacks. Then I'll click inside of this line weight value right there. I'll enter 2 and press the Return key or the Enter key on the Mac to reinstate those strokes. All right, one more thing I want to add a little bit of depth as I was saying. You could try to heap of another stroke on this object here inside the Appearance panel if you want to.

I don't recommend you go that route. I didn't find it to be that successful myself. Instead, the best approach I found was go to the Effect menu, choose Stylize, and then choose Drop Shadow, or you can press my keyboard shortcut if you have loaded dekeKeys, Ctrl+Alt+E, Command+Option+E on the Mac. These are the settings that I applied. So mode is set to Multiply. The Color is black by the way. Opacity 50%, X and Y Offset both 1 point. Blur 0. Turn on the Preview check box, and you'll see what happens. So it's just a slight amount of depth there. Click OK.

So, to just give you a sense of what happened, because it's pretty subtle actually, I'll turn off that eyeball here inside the Appearance panel, the one that's associated with Drop Shadow. Turn it off. That's what the shapes look like without the drop shadow. This is what they look like with the drop shadow. So it's just a little bit of depth going on, and that is the final version of my illustration. So once again, if you decide to do this number where you click off the paths, or press Ctrl+H, Command+H on the Mac, so I can see what I'm doing. Click off the paths to deselect them.

Then start dragging these items to different locations, like so. Then you start to reveal these little bits of weirdness, that is the ghosting associated with the original gradient pattern. Then all you need to do is select the shape once again, and then apply the Gradient tool in order to rectify the situation. That's entirely up to you. But this gives you a sense of the amazing power really of this basic feature. The whole reason that Adobe created the Live Paint feature in the first place was to simplify things, and what they ended up doing was creating a feature that does something you can't otherwise do inside of Illustrator, create overlapping path outlines, paths that weave in and out of each other, and in and out of themselves.

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This video is part of

Image for Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Advanced
Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Advanced

153 video lessons · 28238 viewers

Deke McClelland
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 38m 35s
    1. Welcome
      1m 48s
    2. Linking AI and EPS files to Illustrator
      6m 48s
    3. Installing the dekeKeys keyboard shortcuts
      7m 43s
    4. Remapping Mac OS shortcuts
      6m 56s
    5. Installing the Best Workflow color settings
      4m 54s
    6. The color settings explained
      7m 4s
    7. Preserve Numbers vs. embedded profiles
      3m 22s
  2. 1h 40m
    1. Converting pixels to vectors
      1m 2s
    2. Tracing an imported image
      6m 17s
    3. Other ways to trace
      3m 17s
    4. Raster and vector previews
      7m 2s
    5. Threshold, Min Area, and Max Colors
      5m 27s
    6. Tracing options: The raster functions
      8m 2s
    7. Using the Ignore White option
      5m 3s
    8. Tracing options: The vector functions
      6m 40s
    9. Expanding traced artwork
      5m 6s
    10. Sketching and drawing for Illustrator
      6m 24s
    11. Editing scanned line art
      9m 23s
    12. Adding contrast and color
      10m 32s
    13. Live Trace and resolution
      9m 8s
    14. Expanding and separating paths
      8m 43s
    15. Scaling and editing traced art
      8m 4s
  3. 1h 8m
    1. Gradients are good
      1m 15s
    2. Assigning a gradient fill
      6m 9s
    3. Using the gradient annotator
      7m 31s
    4. Editing multiple gradients
      4m 37s
    5. Establishing symmetrical gradients
      5m 28s
    6. Creating a radial gradient
      5m 46s
    7. Adjusting the midpoint skew
      3m 23s
    8. Mixing gradients with blend modes
      6m 11s
    9. Making a transparent gradient
      6m 42s
    10. Drop shadows and dynamic effects
      5m 58s
    11. Assigning a gradient to editable text
      5m 42s
    12. Editing text that includes dynamic effects
      2m 56s
    13. Assigning a gradient to a stroke
      6m 46s
  4. 1h 37m
    1. The earliest dynamic functions
      1m 10s
    2. The gradient-intensive illustration
      5m 26s
    3. Creating a multi-color blend
      7m 39s
    4. Establishing a clipping mask
      3m 34s
    5. Reinstating the mask colors
      9m 7s
    6. Editing blended paths
      6m 50s
    7. Adjusting the number of blended steps
      6m 49s
    8. Using the Blend tool
      4m 33s
    9. Blending between levels of opacity
      7m 32s
    10. Editing the path of the blend
      6m 22s
    11. Adding a custom path of the blend
      5m 4s
    12. Placing one mask inside another
      8m 33s
    13. Blending groups and adjusting the speed
      6m 1s
    14. Rotating objects in 3D space
      10m 21s
    15. Creating custom perspective guides
      8m 31s
  5. 1h 37m
    1. What was old is new again
      39s
    2. Introducing tile patterns
      6m 11s
    3. Determining the points of intersection
      6m 51s
    4. Extending paths from the intersections
      5m 40s
    5. Crafting symmetrical subpaths
      5m 38s
    6. The final flawed subpaths
      5m 52s
    7. Reconciling misaligned paths
      5m 34s
    8. Completing the core path outline
      6m 14s
    9. Making a symmetrical modification
      6m 47s
    10. Adjusting the interior elements
      8m 26s
    11. Coloring paths and testing the interlock
      9m 29s
    12. Establishing a rectangular tile
      6m 22s
    13. Defining a tile pattern
      3m 43s
    14. Creating a few color variations
      8m 50s
    15. Protecting patterns from transformations
      6m 9s
    16. Transforming patterns without paths
      5m 30s
  6. 1h 12m
    1. Filling and stroking virtual areas
      44s
    2. Introducing Live Paint
      7m 57s
    3. Stroking with the Live Paint Bucket tool
      5m 30s
    4. Using the Live Paint Selection tool
      7m 18s
    5. Adding a path to a Live Paint group
      4m 33s
    6. Building a classic Celtic knot
      8m 28s
    7. Constructing the base objects
      5m 31s
    8. Weaving one object into another
      6m 13s
    9. Creating a path that overlaps itself
      7m 15s
    10. Painting a path that overlaps itself
      5m 34s
    11. Creating knots inside knots
      5m 2s
    12. Adding gradients and depth
      8m 22s
  7. 1h 4m
    1. Dynamic effects and OpenType
      1m 12s
    2. Applying a dynamic effect to type
      5m 43s
    3. Creating a basic bevel effect
      4m 12s
    4. Building up a multi-stroke effect
      4m 49s
    5. Best practices for 3D type
      6m 34s
    6. Applying a "path wiggler" to type
      6m 14s
    7. Drop shadows and Raster Effects settings
      4m 52s
    8. Duplicating attributes and effects
      7m 8s
    9. Editing type with dynamic effects
      7m 27s
    10. Ligatures, swashes, ordinals, and fractions
      5m 45s
    11. Small caps and the Glyphs panel
      4m 25s
    12. Warping text and increasing resolution
      6m 9s
  8. 1h 44m
    1. A world of colors at your beck and call
      1m 32s
    2. Customizing a letterform to make a logo
      8m 37s
    3. Creating a custom drop shadow effect
      6m 26s
    4. Introducing the Color Guide panel
      9m 3s
    5. Harmonies and Color Guide settings
      5m 39s
    6. Lifting harmony rules from color groups
      7m 21s
    7. Harmony layouts and the Lab color wheel
      8m 15s
    8. Working inside the Edit Color dialog box
      6m 36s
    9. Limiting a color group to spot colors
      5m 47s
    10. Recoloring selected artwork
      5m 50s
    11. Recoloring with custom color groups
      6m 1s
    12. Swapping colors with the Color Bars feature
      5m 18s
    13. Using the options in the Assign panel
      8m 41s
    14. Moving color groups between documents
      7m 17s
    15. Distilling your artwork to one spot-color ink
      7m 45s
    16. Recoloring artwork that contains gradients
      4m 17s
  9. 1h 21m
    1. How symbols work
      1m 2s
    2. The power of symbols
      5m 1s
    3. Creating new symbols
      6m 0s
    4. Enabling the new 9-slice scaling
      4m 24s
    5. Adjusting your 9-slice scaling guides
      6m 54s
    6. Previewing and acquiring symbols
      4m 12s
    7. Finding a symbol and creating an instance
      4m 13s
    8. Duplicating and replacing instances
      4m 19s
    9. Breaking a symbol link and envelope fidelity
      5m 26s
    10. Distorting and expanding a symbol
      4m 54s
    11. Updating an existing symbol definition
      3m 40s
    12. Recoloring a symbol definition
      4m 13s
    13. Applying a basic "local" color adjustment
      5m 20s
    14. Applying a more elaborate local color adjustment
      5m 4s
    15. Laying down a random symbol set
      5m 35s
    16. The eight symbolism tools
      6m 55s
    17. Editing selected instances
      4m 11s
  10. 1h 32m
    1. Illustrator needs Photoshop
      1m 1s
    2. Two ways to place a pixel-based image
      6m 6s
    3. Working with linked images
      6m 6s
    4. Linking versus embedding
      9m 38s
    5. Stroking and blending an image
      6m 16s
    6. Adding a clipping mask and page curl
      6m 51s
    7. Creating a blended border effect
      7m 10s
    8. Rasterizing your artwork in Photoshop
      8m 0s
    9. Saving a flat raster file from Photoshop
      4m 58s
    10. Restoring cropped border elements
      5m 39s
    11. Copying and pasting into Photoshop
      6m 27s
    12. Working with Photoshop Smart Objects
      5m 26s
    13. Adding a pixel-based layer effect
      4m 12s
    14. Editing a Vector Smart Object in Illustrator
      7m 20s
    15. Creating and placing a transparent image
      7m 1s
  11. 1h 15m
    1. The many forms of transparency
      1m 29s
    2. Real-world blending modes
      7m 57s
    3. Exporting transparency from Illustrator
      6m 24s
    4. Opacity and blending modes
      6m 18s
    5. The Darken and Lighten modes
      7m 17s
    6. The Contrast, Inversion, and HSL modes
      6m 12s
    7. Blending modes in action
      5m 11s
    8. Creating a knockout group
      6m 14s
    9. Confirming the viability of your artwork
      6m 8s
    10. Introducing the opacity mask
      4m 6s
    11. Making an opacity mask
      5m 25s
    12. Drawing inside an opacity mask
      3m 34s
    13. Creating a gradient opacity mask
      5m 29s
    14. Adding an opacity mask to a single object
      3m 22s
  12. 1m 13s
    1. Until next time
      1m 13s

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