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Knowing the fundamentals of drawing and reshaping paths is only part of the story. In Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Advanced, the second of the popular One-on-One series, computer graphics expert Deke McClelland covers some of Illustrator's most powerful and least understood features. He shows how to merge simple shapes to create complex ones with the Pathfinder palette, as well as align paths to create schematic illustrations. Deke explains how to paint fluid, multicolor fills with blends, and the new and improved gradient tool. He explores seamlessly repeating tile patterns, blobs and brushes, and imported images. He also dives into one of the deepest features in all of Illustrator, transparency. Exercise files accompany the tutorial.
Recommended prerequisite: Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals.
Download Deke's customized keyboard layouts and color settings for Illustrator from the Exercise Files tab.
In this exercise, I'm going to show you how to colorize art brushes inside Illustrator. I've gone ahead and saved my progress so far as Concentric circles.ai and if you've got the Layers palette open, I want you to scroll down the list after going ahead and twirling open the Horus layer. Scroll all the way down the list, twirl open the eye group and you will see this hypno group right there inside of it. Go ahead and meatball that group in order to select it. You could also with the White Arrow tool, you could Alt-click twice on one of those rings in order to select all three of them. That will be Option-Click twice in order to select that entire group inside of the larger group that contains the clipping mask.
All right, having selected those items, move over to the Brushes palette and I want you to click on this guy right there. Watercolor Stroke, and it will look like this, which is to say hmm, whatever. So let's go ahead and zoom in actually, so we can check it out in a higher degree of detail right here. It's not looking any too good, but we can modify it. We can actually take the green that was originally assigned to this stroke, and that would be this green right here, 100% Cyan, 40% Magenta, and 100% Yellow, and we can infuse the art brush with it.
Then go ahead and drop down to this icon, options of selected object at the bottom of the Brushes palette. Click on it, and I want you to make sure the Preview checkbox is turned on, raise the Width value to 200%, like so. So that we're really filling in those brush strokes. And then I want you to turn on Flip Across. Now, you wouldn't know that this was one to turn on because I mean this is pretty difficult to anticipate. But Flip Across happens to produce the effect that I'm looking for, like this. And we have almost a planetary effect as you'll see it. It's almost as if we're starting things off, with a kind of inverted Antarctica down here at the bottom of the globe and building our way outward, and it will become a planet by time we're done. You just watch.
All right, now I want you to check out the Colorization methods. Currently the Method is set to Tints, but notice what we got here. You could set it to None, which is going to go ahead and use the original gray values that are associated with this watercolor effect. That's no good of course. Tints will go ahead and assign the color of the stroke, which is 100, 40, 100, as the darkest of all of the colors inside of the Art Brush, and then everything else will become lighter.
If you don't want that, if you want something with more weight to it, you still want to colorize Art Brush, but you want it to be darker, then you switch to this guy right there, Tints and Shades, and that will darken things up considerably as you're seeing right there. And then finally, we have this option Hue Shift. And in our case, what it's going to do is it's just going to lift the average Hue across the entire illustration. So the average base color and it's going to colorize the Art Brush accordingly. Now, often what I recommend people to do is click on this little Tips icon because it brings up this great Colorization Tips discussion right here. That does a wonderful job of explaining None, and Tints, and Tints and Shades. But a confusing job of explaining Hue Shift because notice it says For the Hue Shift colorization method, the key color you select from the artwork, with the Key Color Eyedropper. Which isn't actually a complete sentence but I guess what they mean is you're supposed to find some kind of Eyedropper and click in it and that becomes your core hue, and so great. All right, so you say OK, and then you try to find the Eyedropper. There is no Eyedropper, is what it comes down to.
Not when you're modifying the options for the selected object, as we are in this case. You only get that Eyedropper, when you are building the custom Art Brush in the first place. So anyway, in our case, what we want is Tints and Shades because it does a beautiful job of colorizing that Art Brush there. Inside the illustration I'll click OK in order to accept the effect, and we now have something that vaguely resembles a planetary body inside the eye of Horus, but it doesn't resemble it enough and we're going to bolster this effect by adding some Fill and Stoke settings here in the Appearance palette in the very next exercise.
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