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Adobe Illustrator has long been a popular vector–based drawing program, but for many the learning curve is steep. In Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals, author and leading industry expert Deke McClelland shows users how to get in to the Illustrator mindset and overcome this learning curve. He covers the application's key features in a new way, making it simple and easy to master Illustrator. Deke teaches viewers how to use the core drawing and shape tools, the transformation and reshaping features, text, and the Pen tool. He also explains how to export and print. Even if learning Illustrator has been a struggle in the past, this training can help make sense of it. Exercise files accompany the course.
In this final exercise of this chapter, we are going to engage in a little bit of cleanup. We need to get rid of one part of this concentric circle here that violates the outer edge of the eye and it's a little bit tricky because these concentric circles are all grouped together, automatically as a function of having made them with the Polar Grid tool. So I'll show you how we work with that. I am still inside the Now for the iris. ai file, and my biggest contribution to it so far has been to draw these concentric circles, as per the last exercise.
Now let's go ahead and Ctrl-click or Command-click on that eyeball there that's associated with the Draw here layer in order to switch to the Outline Mode just for this layer. You don't need to do it for anybody else. Let's zoom in and you can zoom in as tight as you want. You can get way tight if you like by Ctrl+Spacebar+dragging there or Command+Spacebar+dragging on the Mac and we have zoomed quite far in. I could now go ahead and grab my Scissors tool once again and I'm going to click at this location in order to insert a cut and I'm confident that I'm cutting the right shape, I'm cutting the concentric circle, not the eye because after all the last shape, if we were to twirl things open here, you can see that it's that group of concentric circles that are organized like this; basically of groups inside of groups and all of this other jazz. This group here is for the non-existent rays that we got rid of and this group is for the concentric circles. So you could just say you know what, we don't need that, throw that away and Illustrator will say okay, if you say so. That's fine. I'll get rid of it.
So as a good thing, way to be obedient Illustrator since it tends to be so fussy sometimes. All right, let's go ahead and zoom out and scroll over and zoom in on this area and I could have used the Navigator palette as well in order to move around here and then I'm going to cut right at this location, still armed with the Scissors tool. Notice, no complaining, everything is working out beautifully here and you can see down toward the bottom, we have this guy and this guy are now cut apart from each other.
All right, so let's go ahead and zoom out here. One way to get rid of that shape, right there, this little line now, because we have two open paths, this top open path, one way to get rid of it is to just grab it here in the palette. Since I can identify it here in the Layers palette, I could grab it and throw it away like so and then it goes away and everything is good; we actually got rid of the overlapping stuff and we have now finished the illustration. It should look really great at this point, but I'll go ahead and undo that modification because, what if you are not really paying attention to Layers palette and you haven't found the object and that sometimes is a big issue.
Unless you are really dutifully paying attention to the Layers palette and creating new layers and sub layers and trying to group things and you are planning your illustration, it's very easy to kind of just sit there and ignore it and pile up 100s, if not 1000s of objects in a single layer and at that point, digging through the Layers palette becomes a little but cumbersome. So another way to work if, for example, you have nothing selected. All right, we don't have anything selected at this point. If I was to use the Black Arrow tool to click on any one of these pieces of this concentric circle, I would get all of them because they are grouped together and the Black Arrow tool grabs your big objects. So it grabs whole paths and if those whole paths are part of a group then it grabs the entire group. So the Black Arrow tool is always getting the biggest object possible, whereas you've got your White Arrow tool right and it's always getting the smallest element.
So if you were to click, for example, just on a segment here, you would just get that segment; you don't even get the anchor point selected, just the segment is selected. If I were to press Delete or Backspace right now, I would leave some anchor points behind. That's how molecular this tool is. So you have got these wild extremes, Mr. Big Selector and Mr. Tiny Selector, how do you kind of go, well, can we do something in between you two guys, perhaps? And what you do in order to select in between, you press the Alt key or the Option key with the White Arrow tool, so the White Arrow tool is your buddy here. Press and hold the Alt key or the Option key on the Mac and click and what that does is it selects an entire path and this is a path inside of a group, so we can select inside of the group. If I were to Alt-click again on this same location, like so, then I would grab the entire group and select the whole thing.
All right, so what you really want to do is just a single Alt-click or Option-click on this top path and the reason I'm seeing all of those control handles is because I set my preference settings. If I press Ctrl+K or Command+K on the Mac and I switch to Selection and Anchor Display, you may recall that I said to go ahead and Show handles when multiples anchors are selected, so that's why we are seeing all these, control handles. Just in case you aren't, it's not that big deal. So I cancel that at there. So one Alt-click or Option-click on this top thing. That's all it takes, that selects it. Now, I'll press Backspace or the Delete key to get rid of it and you are now looking at the final version of the illustration. Were I to Ctrl-click or Command-click on this eyeball for draw here-- and let's go ahead and turn off Horus, by just clicking on its eyeball and let's also turn off the guides, so that we can see this is it. This is the final illustration, as rendered using just the Line tools, except for the things I pre-drew which were the eye and the eyebrow, everything else drawn just using these basic Line tools here inside Illustrator.
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