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This course is the third in a four-part series devoted to mastering the premiere graphics creation application, Adobe Illustrator, version CS6. Industry pro Deke McClelland takes a project-based learning approach to the key features in Illustrator, including Recolor Artwork, transparency, masks, blend modes, strokes and fills, and dynamic effects. The course also covers techniques for creating custom gradients, designing logos, generating photorealistic neon text, and wrapping type around objects. Plus, Deke shows how to call up the most essential features by organizing your workspace and employing time-saving keyboard shortcuts, how to manage the color settings, and how to adjust a few settings to make the program work even better.
In this movie, I will show you how to modify a couple of blends at the same time, and also show you how to create a pair of clipping masks--one of which is nested inside of another-- without losing your Fill and Stroke attributes. So a lot of advanced blending and masking coming at you here. I am going to start off by bringing up my Navigator panel and then I'll change the zoom level to 200% and I will go ahead and drag down like so inside the panel in order to scroll to this portion of the sarcophagus. Now these panels happen to be located on a locked layer, which is this one right here, the purple layer called shield and ribs.
Go ahead and unlock it if you are working along with me. Now it's tempting to grab all four of these lines-- let's say I want to create a series of rib lines between them-- to grab all four of them by clicking on one and then Shift clicking on the other three, and then pressing Ctrl+Alt+B or Command+Option+ B on the Mac. in order to blend between the two pairs at the same time. But Illustrator doesn't think that's what you're trying to accomplish. It thinks that you are trying to blend between all four lines at the same time, so we end up getting this cross line right here, which is not what we want.
In other words, you can only create one blend at a time. So I will press Ctrl+Z or Command+Z on the Mac, in order to undo that change. And then I will Shift+Click on these right-hand lines in order to deselect them, and I will press Ctrl+Alt+B again, or Command+Option+B, in order to blend between those lines. We only get one step by default. We will fix that problem in a second. Then go ahead and click on this right-hand line and Shift+Click on the top right hand line and press Ctrl+Alt+B or Command+Option +B on the Mac, to create the second blend. Now you can Shift+Click on the first blend, so both blends are selected and modify them both at once.
So you can only create one blend at a time, but once they are created, you can modify as many blends as you like. And we are going to do so by double-clicking on the Blend tool, as we have so many times before, and I will change the Spacing value to Specified Steps and I just happen to know that I want 15 steps. I will turn on the Preview checkbox and we end up with this effect here, then I will click OK to update the blends. All right, now let's say we want to place the blends into this gradient shape right here. I will press the V key in order to switch to my Black Arrow tool and I will select the shape if only to reduce the ambiguity here, so you know what I'm talking about.
And normally when we are creating a clipping mask, what you do is you put the mask in front, right? So I press Ctrl+X or Command+X on the Mac and then I'd select my ribs and I need to select both sets of them, so I don't end up pasting that shape that I just cut in between the two blends. And then I will press Ctrl+F or Command+F on the Mac, to paste the shape in front. We can see through to the ribs by the way, because this gradient includes transparency, and then you would go ahead and Shift+Click on those blends once again, in order to select them and you would go up to the Object menu, choose Clipping Mask and then choose the Make command.
And sure enough we end up masking those blends, which is great! However we lose the Gradient Fill that was previously associated with the clipping path, which is a big pain in the neck, because now we have to re-create that gradient; and I don't want to do that. So I am going to press Ctrl+Z or Command+ Z on the Mac, in order to undo that change. And instead what I will do is I will cut the blends and paste them inside of the gradient shape. And I will do that by Shift+Clicking on the gradient, which goes ahead and deselects it. And then I will press Ctrl+X or Command+X, this time to cut the blends, and now I will go ahead and click on the gradient path in order to select it.
All right, here's what you do. This is sort of a new style way to create clipping masks and involves a little more work. However, we don't end up losing our Fills and Strokes. So in my case, I need to switch to the double column toolbox here. So the bottom of the toolbox does not end up getting cut off, and I will click on this icon right there, Draw Inside. And you can also press Shift+D to advance to it, if you want to, but you will end up cycling through the Draw Behind mode. So it's easier just to go ahead and click on this guy and you'll see dotted corners surrounding the bounding box around the selected shape. And now what you want to do is go up to the Edit menu and choose Paste in Place, or you can press Ctrl+Shift+V or Command+Shift+V on the Mac, and that goes ahead and pastes the ribs inside of the gradient without getting rid of the gradient--which is very important.
All right now we want to take both the gradient mask here and the ribs, and we want to paste them into the larger sarcophagus shape in the background. And it contains a gradient too, as well as a stroke and we don't want to lose those attributes. So go ahead and click on the Gradient shape in order to select the entire clipping group, and press Ctrl+X or Command +X on the Mac, once again. Now notice that Illustrator automatically switches you back to Draw Normal mode. So that's something you had to keep an eye out for. Now click on this big perspective rectangle here in order to select it; and you want to click on the left-hand side of the outline.
That's the easiest way to select the shape. Then switch back to the Draw Inside mode by clicking on its icon there; you will see the dotted corners once again--you may not be able to see all of them, but they'll be there. And then return to the Edit menu and again choose Paste in Place in order to create this effect here. And now you can press Ctrl+Shift+ A or Command+Shift+A on the Mac, in order to deselect your artwork. Now you will need to manually switch back to Draw Normal mode, if you want to once again drawn normally inside of Illustrator. And just to see what we've managed to do here, I will scroll down inside my Layers panel, I will twirl open that shield and ribs layer and then I will scroll down to this clipping group item right there, and you can see if I meatball it, we see the words clipping group on the far left side of the Control panel.
And if I twirl it open, you'll see that we've got a clipping path on top here and below that we have another clipping group. Again, you see the words clipping group on far left side of the Control panel. Twirl it open and we've got this nested clipping path right there that contains two blends behind it. And so Illustrator has even changed the stacking order so that the clipping masks make sense. And that's how you create clipping masks-- whether one is nested inside of another or not is irrelevant--without losing your Fills and Strokes, using the Draw Inside mode combined with Paste in Place.
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