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One of the questions that I get asked about a lot when I'm teaching Adobe Illustrator is, how do I add multiple strokes to an object? There's a lot of ways that you can actually do it; there's ways to fake it, and there's ways to actually do it. In this movie, I'm going to be walking you through, step by step, how to add two or more strokes to an object. It's pretty easy, and once you know this little secret, by using the Appearance panel, you will be amazed that you have never been able to do this before. The first thing I am going to do is make sure the Appearance panel is somewhere where I can see it. If you don't have the Appearance panel open, you can drag it out from the panels on the right, or you can hit Shift+F6 to make sure that it's up on your screen.
Once I do that, I am going to choose artwork that I want to add the stroke to. In this case, it's the circle in the background here. So I am going to zoom in a little bit, so we can see this, and I will temporarily hold down the Spacebar key, and position this right in the center of my screen. I am then going to target the circle in the background, and I notice here that when I select it, the Appearance panel tells me that this is actually part of a group. That's one of the handy things about the Appearance panel; it's always going to tell you what you have selected. Now by clicking on this, to me, it looks like I've just selected the circle, but apparently, it's grouped with some other objects.
So I need to go into Isolation mode to get in there. I will double-click, and then I will click the circle. Once I see that the fill color has changed that blue, and also that it says path here in the Appearance panel, I know that I've got just the circle selected, and that's what I wanted. So if you can learn to read the Appearance panel, like I just did there, it's going to go a long way to helping you get the right object each and every time. I am going to scroll down here. I am going to resize the panel here, so we can see everything that's going on, and I am also going to go to the Stroke.
When I target the stroke, I can drop is down, and I can add a stroke to it. I am going to start off by adding a blue stroke. When I do that, it might be kind of hard to see, but I will increase the size a little bit, like so. Once I do that, I now want to add another stroke to it. So I will come down here to the bottom left corner, and I will add a new stroke. The new stroke is right here, and I can now change the way this stroke looks and feels.
First thing I am going to do is change the color. I want this one to be white. Watch what happens when I do this, though. My other stroke seemingly disappears, right? That's because they're both in the exact same position on the path. I have to change the positioning of the stroke in order to make it look like there are two. So I'll come right here to this little link that says Stroke. I will click that, and it opens up the stroke panel. In the Align Stroke section of this dialog box, I can pick which way I want the stroke to go. In this case, I am going to align the stroke to the inside.
When I do that, you'll see the old stroke on the outside. Then I will come back over here, and I'll click Stroke again to close the panel. If I want the original stroke to be the most dominating part of this, I can actually have it overlap the other stroke by clicking, and dragging it up. So I will target it, click, and drag it up there. Once I do that, I've now got a double stroke. I can add as many of these as I want. For instance, I might want to add one more to the outside. So I will come down here, add another new stroke; this time I will make this one a black stroke.
I will increase the weight just a little bit, and then I will drag it down beneath both of them. Once I do that, you'll still see it's on the outside, but I may need to increase the size just a little bit more; something like 10. Then I will click away, and if I want to exit Isolation mode, I will double-click. Now let's zoom out. As you can see, I have completely changed the look and the feel of this particular object, simply by adding in multiple strokes.
It's nothing special; it's just three new attributes that I have added inside of the Appearance panel, but there's a lot of people that would have gone out and created three different circles in order to achieve this effect. However, by utilizing the Appearance panel, you're able to create this on one object by just using these three separate attributes. So the next time your project calls for something like this, you'll know exactly how to do it, and how to maneuver the strokes to get the exact look that you want.
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