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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 exercise, I'm going to show you how to create a text block inside of Illustrator. I have saved my progress so far as a document called Placed text.ai found inside the 08_Type folder. You can see that we have the text that we have placed in the previous exercise. I want to go ahead and select that text and what I really want to do is take That Sock, the title, and the byline, by a daddy who care, and move them into this top region here inside of a separate text block. So that the title and the story are separated from each other. So we want to start things off by selecting the text and scaling this text block, so the text fits here in the lower region of the document. So one or two ways you can work. You can click on the baseline as I was telling you in the previous exercise which is the imaginary line upon which the letters rest. You can go and click on that Baseline in order to select the text. That's a most surefire method.
You can also just go ahead and click on a word. Now, it's a little tricky clicking on a word though. For example, let's say I click a little high on the word "it" right there. If I click just a little bit above the letters, I accidentally go ahead, and select the Sock instead which is a little weird because I didn't click on the path outline. Even though that Object selection by path only check box is turned on inside the Preferences dialog box. I went ahead and selected the Sock because I clicked inside of its rotated rectangular bounding box. The reason I was able to do that is because this is a symbol, which is a special kind of object inside of Illustrator. That's great when you are repeating the same shape over and over again as I'm in the case of the Sock.
By the way, we are going to look at symbols in depth in an upcoming chapter. We'll have an entire chapter devoted to symbols inside of our future part of this series. But for now, what I would like you to do just to prevent this from happening in the future is go over to the Layers palette, and let's lock down that Cards layer by clicking in its Lock Column right there. Now, if I click off the text, I still won't select it, but at least I won't select the wrong thing. All right. Now, I'll just click on the word Look, because it's a pretty big word, select the entire text block. Now, something I should say about text blocks. That's not what Adobe calls them. Adobe calls this thing right here an Area Type Object, and you can confirm that by going up to the Type menu, and noticing Area Type Options right there.
The reason that it's Area Type is because it's type that's set inside of an area. In this case, a rectangular area, and it is an object after all as well. So you can go ahead and call these Area Type Objects if you want to. Nobody will know what you are talking about, which is why I suggest you call them Text Blocks. That's what basically everybody calls them. It's an industry standard term, and it makes sense, because we have type inside of a rectangular block. ' fits in lower region of this page. What you do inside of another application is you would drag the corner handle. Drag it down, and in this case, I end up moving the block to a new location, assuming that you have been working along with me, you will too, because you have your bounding box turned off.
That's great if you want to align, for example, the top-left corner of this text block to a point inside of your artwork or to a guideline or something along those lines. But if you want to scale the text block, here's what you've got to do, Ctrl+Z, Command+Z on the Mac to undo that modification. Go up to the View menu, and choose Show Bounding Box, or you can press Ctrl+Shift+B, Command+Shift+B on the Mac. Notice this little Fill Square right there. Watch what happens when I choose Show Bounding Box, it changes to a hollow square, thereby indicating that it's now a handle. So I'll drag that corner handle like so, and I'll scale the text block. All right, great. Now, let's take the title and byline here, That Sock and by a daddy who care, and let's extract them, cut them, and put them inside of a new text block, and we'll do that by switching over to the Type tool here inside the tool-box, or you can press the T key for type of course.
Then I'm going to select these first two lines of type. Now, I could just select them by dragging across them like so. That's one way to work. A couple of other ways to work that are going to seem like ridiculous if you have never seen them before, but they are actually better. They are actually more convenient once you come to terms with them. If you double-click on a word, watch this. one, two, double-click, you select an entire word like so. If you want to select an entire line of type, you triple-click, but you don't have to rush it. You can take it pretty easy. Watch this. one, two, three, will go ahead and select that entire line of type. All right. Once you have selected an entire line, you can press Shift+Down Arrow to add a line down or I'll press Shift+Up Arrow to go back and then press Shift+Up Arrow again to select a line above. So the Up and Down Arrow keys along with Shift to extend the selection will grab multiple lines of type.
Here's the other way to work. Now, this is the one that's going to seem ridiculous. But it's great, it's really good. It's a triple-click and drag. So on your final click, you drag. So you can also think of it as a Click-click+Drag. Like so, watch this. One, two, three, so on the three, I dragged, and I was able to select multiple lines of type as I drag. All right. So choose your poison however you want to work. I'll press Ctrl+X, or Command+X on the Mac in order to cut that text to the Clipboard. Then I'm going to go ahead and escape out of this text here, and switch back to the Black Arrow tool by the way, and I can do that from the keyboard by either pressing Ctrl+Enter here on the PC. That would be Command+Return on the Mac, and notice that not only deactivated my text, but it switched me to the Black Arrow tool just as I was saying.
Another way to work. I'll go ahead and switch back to the Type tool, make my text active again by double-clicking at it. Notice that. So I didn't have to switch to the Type tool here. It did it for me just by double-clicking inside my type. I went too far, I actually triple-clicked there accidentally. So I selected some text as well. Here's another way to work. If you want to go back to the Black Arrow tool, you press the Escape key. So Escape will also take you back. All right. Now, I want you to press Ctrl +Shift+A, or Command+Shift+A on the Mac in order to deselect your text. Then we're going to press Ctrl+V or Command+V on the Mac in order to paste that text into a new text block, and then I'll drag it up toward the top of the page.
In the next exercise, we are going to see how this new text block that we just created is very different from the one below.
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