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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 final movie we'll go ahead and reassemble the shield, as well as the other layers inside this composition, in order to create this final photorealistic illustration. So the first thing we need to do is combine all the shape layers into a Smart Object. So click on the star layer to make it active, then scroll down the list and Shift+Click on the red 2 layer in order to select all the shape layers in the Layers panel. And then, assuming that your Rectangular Marquee tool is selected, right-click inside of the Image window and choose Convert to Smart Object. And that goes ahead and combines all the shape layers into a single Smart Object; so one Smart Object in Photoshop can contain multiple layers.
I'll go ahead and rename this new layer shield, because after all that's what it is. And now I'll copy the layer effects in the smart filters from the pre-existing shield layer by dragging the word effects and dropping it onto the new shield layer; and that will go ahead and move those effects as you see. You have to move the smart filters independently by dragging and dropping them as well. And then go ahead and click on the old shield layer and press the Backspace key or the Delete key on the Mac to get rid of it, because after all we're done with it. Now turn on the polish layer and click on it to make it active, and then go up to the Layer menu and choose Create Clipping Mask in order to clip it inside the shield layer.
Now let's go ahead and turn the other layers on by clicking in front of lens flare, and then click and drag in front of the brush and splash layers as well in order to bring them back. So at this point every single layer inside the composition should be turned on. Now click on the Shield layer to make it active; and the last step is to add a little bit of a glow to the shield, and I'll do that using another application of Gaussian Blur. So go up to the Filter menu, choose Blur, and then choose Gaussian Blur in order to bring up the Gaussian Blur dialog box. And dial-in Radius value of 10 pixels--you don't have to enter .0 if you don't want to--and then click OK.
Now that looks like an awful lot of blur, but you can tone it down by blending the Blur Effect with the previous version of the shield. And you do that inside of the Layers panel. Notice my list of smart filters now includes two applications of Gaussian Blur, and these smart filters are analogous to dynamic effects inside of Illustrator. The big difference is that they are stacked in a more logical way. So instead of the most recently-applied version of a dynamic effect being at the bottom of the list, the most recent application of a smart filter is at the top of the list.
So this Gaussian Blur right there is thr 10- pixel blur we just applied, and this version of Gaussian Blur down below is the 2-pixel blur that we applied a few movies ago. Now notice these two slider icons on right-hand side, they allow you to change the Blend settings. Go ahead and double-click on the top of the two slider icons in order to bring up the blending options for the most recent application of Gaussian Blur, and change the Opacity value to 25%. So another great thing about smart filters, versus dynamic effects, is that you can change their blend settings including not only an Opacity value, but you could change the Blend mode as well. And for example if I were to choose Screen, I would create a brighter effect.
That's not what I am looking for though, so I'm going to stick with Normal. So we've got the mode set to Normal and Opacity of 25%, then click OK in order to apply that effect. And that's it. Now I'll press the F key a couple of times in order to switch to the Full Screen mode, and I'll go ahead and press Ctrl++ or Command ++ a couple of times in order to zoom in; and that is the final version of the superhero shield, which you and I have managed to create from scratch by combining the powers of the two most powerful graphics programs on the planet: Illustrator and Photoshop.
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