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In Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Mastery, the third and final part of the comprehensive Illustrator One-on-One series, author and industry expert Deke McClelland shows how to take advantage of the wide array of dynamic effects in Illustrator CS5. Deke explores Illustrator’s powerful Gradient Mesh feature, great for creating photorealistic airbrushing effects. He also covers graphic styles, the liquify tools, envelope-style distortions, the new Bristle Brushes, 3D text, and perspective drawing. Exercise files accompany the course.
In this exercise I am going to show you how to map a photographic texture onto a piece of synthetic artwork, specifically we are going to map the skin from a photographic Apple on to our 3D Apple. I have saved my progress as Toned-down apple.psd. And I have the file open in Photoshop, so were working in Photoshop over the next couple of exercises here. Notice here inside the layers panel, I have a layer called skin, go ahead and turn it on and it's a photograph of an apple from the Fotolia Image Library, and it's got some good skin details as you can see.
We have this sort of variable red and orange skin going on, a little bit of highlight that's not actually going to translate, and then we have this additional Apple coming in from the right- hand side, we'll have to mask that's away. We also have this leaf and stem coming in from the top, we'll need to mask those away as well. And just so you have a clear ides of what's going on, I'll click of the skin layer and then assuming that one of my selection tools is active, which it is. Right now I've got my Rectangle Marquee tool selected, then you can just press the 5 key in order to reduce the opacity of this layer to 50% and you'll see that the photographic Apple, more than covers the 3D Apple, which is very important, that gives us room to work.
All right, I am going to press the 0 key to reestablish an opacity value of 100%. Turn off the skin layer, click on the apple layer, and now what I want to do is just select the red portions of the Apple, so that I'm not mapping the texture onto the interior in the background and so forth. So the best automated selection tool in Photoshop is located under the select menu and it's called Color Range. So if you are working along with me, go ahead and choose that command. And for you if this is the first time you've brought this dialog box, the fuzziness value will be set to 40, and I'll explain what that means in just a moment.
And you'll see this black region down here in the central portion of the dialog box, that black region is there to illustrate the selection. That's actually a selection preview and Photoshop is previewing the selection as a mask. And again, I'll show you what that means in just a moment, but you use this tool more or less like the magic wand tool, that is Photoshop's magic wand, not that Adobe magic wand, nobody ever uses inside Illustrator. And if you click inside of the red portion of the Apple, then you'll lift that as a base color, and notice then you'll see some white inside of the selection preview, that White indicates the area that will be selected.
So white indicates the selection, black indicates the area that's not going to be selected. Now what I want you to do is, more or less avoid these highlight areas, because these whites will pick up whites elsewhere inside of the Apple. I want you to press the Shift key and then drag across this top region of the Apple like so, and that will expand the selection. So as you Shift+Drag inside of an image, you're continuously picking up more key colors to add to the selected area. All right, I'm also going to Shift+Click down here near the base of the Apple, just to make sure I have got that area selected.
I'll shift drag over the top as well. Notice that I still have a few highlights that are not selected, that's not really a problem, that's actually just fine. And now I am going to increase the fuzziness value, and what I am doing is I'm increasing the range of luminance levels that are selected based on the key colors. So we can drift now 120 luminance levels from those key colors, from the ones that I clicked and Shift+Clicked on, and they will become partially selected. So the selection naturally drops off, which is a great thing. Anyway, once you get an effect that looks like this, and if you want to confirm that your selection looks like mine then you can change your selection preview here from None to Grayscale, and then you'll get a decent view of your selection out here in the image window, and this one looks pretty good to me so I'll go ahead and click OK in order to generate that selection outline.
So it goes ahead and converts the selection back to standard marching ants, which indicate the selected area inside a Photoshop. Now I'll go to my skin layer, click on it to make it active, and I am going to drop down here to the bottom of the layers panel and notice this little icon, it reads Add layer Mask, when you hover over it. If you click on it, then it's going to go ahead and convert that selection outline you've just created to a layer mask, anything that's white inside of this will layer mask thumbnail that's going to be visible. Anything that's black is going to turn invisible where this layer is concerned.
And by the way, I can see these big previews, because I've gone up to the flyout menu, here in the layers panel. I've chosen panel options, and I've gone ahead and selected this largest flower right here, which is the largest thumbnail view. And if you want large previews; that's what you would do as well. I'll cancel out of there. All right, a few other things that we have to do here, I'm going to change to blend mode from normal to multiply, in order to sync that Apple skin into our 3D Apple and notice how great that looks I'll go ahead and zoom in a little bit here, so that you can see the difference.
This is without the Apple skin, this is with that Apple skin, and see how that mitigates the highlight, it gets rid of a lot of the banding, it adds some organic feel to our Apple, which I think is extraordinarily useful. Now we're seeing the edge of that Half an Apple that was sitting next to the red Apple, right there is that edge, we need to paint it away. So make sure your layer mask thumbnail is selected, make sure it's active here inside the layers panel, then go over and grab the Brush tool, which you can get by pressing the B key, and has the same keyboard shortcut as it does in Illustrator.
If you right-click inside the illustration window, then you'll see that I've got a really big brush going. Let's tone it down a little bit, I'll take it down to 1000 pixels and the hardness is 0%, very important. Go ahead and hide that panel by pressing the Enter key or the Return key on a Mac. Make sure that your foreground color down here at the bottom of the toolbox is set to black, and if it isn't, you can just press the D key followed by the X key, so it's D for default colors and then X to switch them, because when we're working in a mask the default foreground color is white.
Anyway, now I am going to paint with black inside of the layer mask. The layer mass must be selected, then go ahead and paint with black, and I'm not getting anything, that's because I've got my blend mode set to overlay. I'll go ahead and undo that and change my blend mode to normal, that's the way it will be for you I'm presuming. Then just go ahead and paint in that area and you should paint that little bit of edge away. Another thing I am going to have you do, if you want to clean up this mask, which is probably a good idea. It's not essential, again, just a good idea. Alt+Click or Option+Click on that layer mask thumbnail inside the layers panel, so that you can see the mask by itself.
And notice that we have these banding areas down here at the bottom of the mask that we need to get rid of, and let me show you how. Now we go ahead and switch the mode from normal to overlay, and when you're overlay painting, you are just going to emphasize the darkness or you are going to emphasize the lightness of the mask. So if you're painting with black, check this out. I will just paint the darkest of black; I can drag right over that white stuff and not hurt it. And this is a sensational masking technique by the way, if you've never tried out masking inside of Photoshop before.
I'm just going to paint away that garbage down below and that takes care of the problem, do not paint inside of his highlight region, because you'll make a mess of it. All right, so done. Alt+Click or Option+Click on that layer mask thumbnail, again, just one more issue outstanding. Notice at this point that we still have a little bit of a problem, we've got this red flesh from the apple creeping into the stem, and the best way to take care of that is to go ahead and grab that stem, as opposed to trying to select the stem here inside of Photoshop, we've already created the stem inside of Illustrator.
So we can just grab it and bring it in independently and I'll show you exactly how that works in the next exercise.
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