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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.
All right gang! Here we are in the last exercise of Chapter 6 and we are looking at an almost complete version of the Tonalpohualli, 260-day Aztec calendar, which is why I have gone ahead and called this version of the document The end times.ai, found inside the 06_fill_stroke folder, because these are the end times of Chapter 6. I don't mean anything larger than that. Here is the thing. If you are still working along me inside of that Richer artwork.ai file, good for you. That is awesome news. Now we are going to do two things inside of this exercise. We are going to fix the plain blacks, turn them into rich blacks. I'm also going to show you how to hide your selection edges and what that means and how it can come back and bite you and then we are going to create a repeating fill pattern based on this nose, which sounds like a completely goofy preposition but it's actually going to look really great.
So for starters, go ahead and click on one of these objects, any one these objects inside of this group that makes up the majority of the face. And I want you to go up to the View menu, just because all of these selection edges are really getting in the way of seeing what's going on. Go up to the View menu and choose Hide Edges or you would press Ctrl+H, Command+H on the Mac, and notice that the edges go away. Now, these items are still selected; if I were to move them, they would move to a new location. We are not just seeing all the anchor points and segments anymore. So I'll go ahead and undo, Ctrl+Z, Command+Z on the Mac.
So I need to make sure my Strokes are active, which they are and then I would switch the strokes to Rich Black by clicking on Rich Black here inside of the Swatches palette and they are all better. So I'm going to zoom in one more click actually. This was before and this is after. So it's a pretty subtle different but it's going to be meaningful in print and as I say we will have no problems now with any gaps. We have trapped our gaps successfully. So that's always a good thing. All right, now I'm going to zoom out to take in more of my illustration at a time and I'm going to click on the nose and notice now that we can't see any of the selection fold I've associated with that nose. We are not seeing the anchor points, we are not seeing the segments and that's because hiding the edges is a sticky state. Meaning that the edges remain hidden from one operation to another inside of this illustration and by the way, you wouldn't be able to see highlighted text either, which can really throw you. So just remember, if you click on something and you don't see the segments and you don't see the points and you are thinking that the program is broken, it's just really a function of the fact that you need to go up to the View menu. You can choose Show Edges or of course, just get in the habit of pressing Ctrl+H, Command+H on the Mac and now we can see those edges.
All right, I'm going to go ahead and drag that selected nose and drop it into the Swatches palette and that turns the nose into a repeating pattern. All right, I'm going to go ahead and name that repeating pattern. Let's actually make our swatches even bigger here, I'm going to switch over to the Large Thumbnail View and then I'll double click on New Pattern Swatch 1 and I'll call it God's nose or something along those lines and then click OK in order to accept that new pattern. Now I have messed up my selected nose here because I just went ahead and assigned this nose pattern to the stroke and so I need to switch this stroke back to Rich Black; I didn't mean to do that at all. That was a mistake. All right, now let's go ahead and apply that nose pattern to the biggest circle in this calendar here and I'm just trying to center the illustration on screen here. I'm going to click on this shape right there so this outermost circle that is filled with the medium clay. In order to see how it's filled with medium clay, I'll press the X key in order to make my fill active and there is medium clay right there in the Swatches palette.
Okay now, drop down to the Appearance palette. Make sure that you are seeing your Appearance palette on screen and if you don't, of course, you'd go to the Window menu and choose Appearance right there. All right, I'm going to click on Fill and then I'm going to click on this little Page icon down here at the bottom of the palette, which will duplicate that selected attribute and we now have two fills. Now that may seem like a really strange think to do, especially since we have one solid fill, just covering up another solid fill, what's the point of doing that. Well, there is no point if that's all we do, but there is a point if we now apply God's nose and the thing about this God's nose pattern is that it has an opaque white fill inside the nose and no fill on the outside so it's transparent outside the nose and that means we are going to allow the medium clay to show through. So I'll go ahead and click on it and sure enough, we have a combination of this nose fill and this medium clay fill here inside of the larger circle.
I am going to go ahead and click off the shape in order to de-select it and we have now completed the calendar. We have a very nice one, I think. Muted, the colors are a little muted but that's because this is a terracotta calendar that we have managed to create and we are only in chapter 06, it just gets better and better throughout the series as we learn together how to absolutely master Illustrator CS4.
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