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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'll show you how to apply and customize a scatter brush. If you take a look at the final version of the artwork here, you can see surrounding the letters a series of these little starbursts, or flowers if you will, that are scattered around the perimeter of the characters. And that is a function of a scatter brush. And you can see that they vary in size; they vary in terms of their spacing; they vary in terms of their distance from the character outlines; they even vary in terms of their angles.
So let see how it's done. I'll go ahead and switch over to my artwork in progress here, and I'll click on the baseline for my type, which is getting more and more difficult to find actually. And now I'll switch over to the Appearance panel and I'll click on that hand-drawn brush stroke right there in order to make it active, so I can put the new stroke on top of it. And then I'll click on the Add New Stroke icon down here in the bottom-left corner of the panel. And notice, for a brief moment--even though this is a standard basic stroke--I have access to my brushes. So, instead of a Line Weight value here, I am seeing my list of brushes.
I'll go ahead and scroll up the list until I find this scatter brush right here, random sized flowers--which is included along with this document--and I'll go ahead and click on it in order to apply it. And by the way, I'm using that same color I used before, which is OW peach, and that's going to serve us just fine. All right! Now I want to make some modification to the size and spacing associated with the scatter brush. So I'll bring up the Brushes panel, and I have one of two ways to work: I can go ahead and double-click on the scatter brush itself, if I want a modify it permanently, along with how it's applied to my text. Or I can just change how it's applied to the text, which is what I want to do, by clicking on this Options icon down here at the bottom of the panel.
And that brings up a fairly Byzantine list of settings as you can see here, but they turn out to be pretty straightforward once you come to terms with them. Now the first thing I want to do is turn on the Preview checkbox so I could see what in the world I'm doing. Notice that Size Spacing Scanner and Rotation are all set to random for this specific brush, and that's very likely the way you're going to work with just about any scatter brush. You are going to have it set to Random that is, but you can also fix the size for example-- in which case you get rid of that second value, because you no longer have two limits associated with the random variations.
Or if you're working with a pressure- sensitive input device, you can assign Pressure all the way through Rotation, which where this text is concerned has no bearing whatsoever. Anyway, I am going to leave this option set to Random, and I want the size of these flowers to come down a little bit. So I am going to make the Minimum value--that is lowest the size of any flower can go--30%, and then I am going to set the highest value to 100%, and that's going to keep them in that range. Now notice this time around, unlike what we experienced with the Calligraphic brush--which was random--but it was only random one way at a time, we're seeing something that makes a lot more sense in my opinion. We are seeing the flowers change in size on-the-fly throughout the character outlines.
Now for Spacing, which is give out a space between the flowers, I am going to reduce the first body quite a bit to 20%, because I really want them to be tightly packed. And I'm going to take the upper value down to 40%. And that's going to really squish them in there, as you can see. Scatter is the distance between the flowers and the character outlines in this case. It might be a path outline as well. So, a Negative value is going to go inward and the Positive is going to go outward. In this case, by default, we have a huge spread going on here. I am just going to tighten things up by taking the minimum value up to -30% and the maximum value down to 40%. And we end up achieving this effect here.
The final value, Rotation, I don't really give a darn about this value where these flowers are concerned, you can play around with it if you want to, it doesn't really make that big of a visual difference. What does make a difference is the Colorization Method. Right now it set to Tints, so that we can create brighter shades of the base color. If you set it to None, you are not going to apply any Colorization whatsoever, so you are going to end up with the original color assigned to these flowers, which was black. If you go in Tints and Shades, then you're going to allow Illustrator to darken your base color, which in our case is that bright orange. And then finally, Hue+Shift will allow Illustrator to Shift the Hue, that is in our case go with a redder shade of orange.
Anyway, I'm going to switch it back to Tints, which is the default setting and obviously gives us the most desirable effect. And then I'll click OK in order to apply that modification. And now I want make just a couple of additional changes here. I want the Fill to appear in front of our newest stroke, the random flowers. So I'll go ahead and drag the Fill up the list and drop it between the 10 oval calligraphic brush stroke and the scatter brush stroke that we just applied. And then finally, I'm going to go ahead and take this dark green stroke down here at the bottom of the stack, twirl it open, click on its Opacity option, and change the Blend mode from Normal to Multiply in order to burn that stroke into the background like so.
That just gives us an even higher degree of contrast, then I'll press Ctrl+Shift+A or Command+Shift+A on a Mac in order to deselect the text. And that, friends, is how you go about applying and customizing a scatter brush here inside Illustrator.
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