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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.
All right, we're managing to get some pretty radical color schemes going here. Let's say you want to rein things in and you want to limit your choices to an existing color library. For example, I'll switch back over to the Swatches panel, and I'll click on the Library icon in the bottom left corner of that panel, choose Nature, and then choose Stone and Brick. And we'll see a collection of color groups, all of which provide us with more muted options. Now I could go ahead and select one of those color groups if I wanted to; but instead I am just going to close this free-floating panel and I'm going to switch back over to the Color Guide panel. And notice the word None right here, that indicates that we have no constraints whatsoever.
If you want to apply a constraint, then you click on this little Limit icon, and that will once again offer a list of the libraries that ship along with Illustrator; choose Nature and then choose that same option, Stone and Brick; and notice that we're limited to a much smaller range of colors. Now if you want to modify that range then you click on the Edit Colors button in order to bring up the Edit Colors dialog box; and notice that Stone and Brick is still active, and now you can drag your Colors around inside of the Lab wheel--albeit with these Constraints.
Now don't think just because you drag a color over a particular range of color here that that's the exact color you are going to get. Bear in mind that we're just seeing hue and saturation; we are not seeing brightness. If you want to modify the brightness you click in the brightness icon below the color wheel like so. And then you can adjust the brightness values size as you see me doing here. And you can select whatever colors you won't work with. And then if you want to once again modify saturation, you'd switch back to the saturation icon.
Now if ever you want to remove the limit, then all you need to do is click on this little icon below Stone and Brick, and choose None. And then you will no longer have any constraints. But I do want the constraints, so I'll switch back to Nature and then Stone and Brick once again. And I'll click the OK button. I want you to notice nothing is italicized here inside the Color Groups list. But if I click OK, Illustrator will still ask me, hey do you want to save your changes to the swatch group; either a new group called Color Group, or if you've been working along with me, it may ask you if you want to update 9-color pentagram.
What I recommend you do is click the Cancel button, because obviously you don't want to lose your work but you probably don't want to create a new color group called Color Group. And I'll just name this guy Stone & brick. And by the way were limited to all of the colors inside the various groups inside that Stone and Brick library. But I'll go ahead and name my new group Stone & brick like so, click on a little Group icon in order to make it, and then I'll click OK. Now there is a couple of different ways you can apply these colors. One is to return to the Swatches panel, scroll down the list or just give yourself more room by dragging the horizontal bar, and apply your colors directly from these swatches.
So I might click on this background rectangle over here in the left hand artboard, and I'll change it to the shade of reddish-brown let's say. And then I'll click on one of the yellowish shapes in order to select all of them and select this swatch right there. And then I'll click on this purplish leaf to select all the purple shapes, and I'll change them to this lower saturation brown in order to create this more muted background effect that isn't competing quite as much for my attention, so I still have a focus on the T-shirt design. The other way to work--I'll go ahead and switch over to the second artboard--is to return to the Color Guide panel. And that way you can take advantage of Shades and Tints and so forth.
I might switch back to Show Vivid/ Muted and see what I have available to me. And I'll select that background rectangle and I'll change it to this shade of brown right here so you can see already I'm getting very different results. I'll select this yellow shape, not seeing anything I want in this list so let's try out Warm/Cool and see if there's anything different there. Not really. Let's try out Tints/Shades then and go with this lightest shade of brown right there. And then I'll select this pink leaf in order to make it active and I'll change it to this sort of lightish reddish color in order to achieve this effect--although that's not giving me enough contrast, so I'll try this color right there.
And every time you do this by the way you are going to get different results, which is why I'm always sort of struggling to figure out exactly which colors I am going to apply. And you know I want these shapes right there to be a little darker, so I'll go with this color right there. That looks pretty good to me. But in any event, if I press Shift+Tab in order to hide those right side panels so that we can see both of the artboards at the same time, you can see that even though we're working inside of the confines of the exact same color library--Stone and Brick--we are achieving very different effects, depending on whether we apply the colors directly from the Swatches panel over here on the left, or from the Color Guide panel over here on the right.
That's how you constrain a harmony rule, as well as your ability to select and apply colors to an existing color library, here inside Illustrator.
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