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In Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Mastery, the third and final part of the comprehensive Illustrator One-on-One series, author and industry expert Deke McClelland shows how to take advantage of the wide array of dynamic effects in Illustrator CS5. Deke explores Illustrator’s powerful Gradient Mesh feature, great for creating photorealistic airbrushing effects. He also covers graphic styles, the liquify tools, envelope-style distortions, the new Bristle Brushes, 3D text, and perspective drawing. Exercise files accompany the course.
Now as you know much of the engineering that's associated with Illustrator CS5 happened in India and that holds true for everything about the Perspective Grid tool. So it's perhaps fitting that we end this chapter with this incredible rendering of the Taj Mahal which has to be the most impressive and ambitious thing I've seen done with this tool. It was created by this fellow named Anil, who is a member of the Illustrator Development Team. He has kindly offered for me to allow you to take a look at this file and play with it to your heart's content. Much of it was created using perspective grid and much of it was hand-created.
In other words, designed with the help of the Pen tool and the White Arrow tool and all that jazz. Now what I am going to do, I am not going to show you how to create this entire thing. I'm just going to give you a sense of how this forward minaret was created. So if you scroll down the layers list here, you will see that most of the layers are locked and you can unlock those layers and check them out if you like. But I have locked them down just so that we don't make a mess of things in this exercise. I am going to turn off this layer called front minaret and I'm going to turn on this layer called minaret builder.
So it can show you more or less how this central tower was created. I'm going to go ahead and zoom on in here and I am going to click on this outer ellipse right there in order to select it. Now currently I've selected it with a Black Arrow tool that's not really what I want of course. What I am going to do incidentally, is go ahead and move this object up. We are going to create a copy of it at the top of the minaret so that we can create a realistic cylindrical tower in perspective. I am going to do this using another one of these top-secret tricks that's associated this time with a Perspective Selection tool.
So go ahead and click on the Perspective Grid tool just so that you can see the grid on-screen. I want you to do me a favor and right-click some place in the illustration and then choose Perspective and choose Move Plane to Match Object. That's just a precaution so that we know that the bottom plane here, the ground level is matched to the selection. So go ahead and choose that command. Nothing may happen on-screen, which means it was already in alignment. But again it's a good precaution for what we're about to do. Then you need to switch from the Perspective Grid tool to the Perspective Selection tool, because this trick only works with this one tool.
Then you've got to locate that control, that circular control that's associated with a ground level plane. So in our case it's green and double-click on it. Is this not the most mysterious trick on earth? This is the only way to get to this dialog box, it's just crazy. It's as if Adobe specifically doesn't want you to use this really awesome feature. Now go ahead and turn on Copy Selected Objects and we are going to move the plane upward to a position of 4250 points. I just happened to know that works.
I had to figure it out by trial and error, but I ultimately came up with this value, then click OK. Now go ahead and scroll upwards and you'll see that you went ahead and moved the plane upward that many points so more than 4000 points in this scaled version of the illustration. You also went ahead and created a copy of that ellipse in perspective at this new location. So now what we are going to do is zoom out and with that object selected, I want you to Shift+Click on this other object right there down at the bottom and I accidentally moved it.
That is a problem with the Perspective Selection tool. Sometimes when you're trying to Shift+Click to select a different object you end up moving it as well. So tell you what I'll go ahead and undo that maneuver and I am just going to switch to the Black Arrow tool, because it works just fine for selecting things. Then I will Shift+Click on this bottom ellipse here in order to select it as well. So both the bottom ellipse and the top ellipse are selected. Now what I want you to do is go ahead and press Ctrl+C or Command+C on the Mac to copy those objects. Then press Ctrl+3 or Command+3 on the Mac to hide them.
The reason is because we are going to edit these objects in just a moment. I want to make sure that we preserved the originals just in case we have to come back to them. Now I'll press Ctrl+F or Command+F to go ahead and paste those selected objects at the front of the stack. Here is what we are going to do, go ahead and zoom in on the illustration. We are going to take this sort of wedge-shaped thing right there and we are going to match it to the rings to those ellipses, and we are going to do that using the White Arrow tool. So no perspective stuff going on here, but it's going to work out beautifully as you will see.
So grab that White Arrow tool and I want you to select one of those corner points right there. Make sure your Smart Guides are turned on. So if not, press Ctrl+U, Command+U on the Mac and go ahead and drag this point so it aligns to the outer edge of the ellipse, the perceived outer edge right there. And if you don't get it quite right, which I didn't it's important to get this effect right. So go ahead and undo that maneuver there and try again. So I am going to drag it to that point right there, that's what I want. And then I will go ahead and grab this anchor point and drag it to the perceived outer edge as well.
So in other words, the ellipse is at an angle and I want to match that angle. All right, now we need to scroll down to the bottom here, quite quickly I guess, and I'll go ahead and drag this anchor point and I will drag it to this location to match the bottom ellipse and I will grab this bottom left anchor point and drag it to match the left side of this bottom ellipse. Now what we need to do is get rid of that edge right there. So I am just going to marquee that edge, like so, and delete it by pressing the Backspace key or the Delete key on the Mac.
Now this ellipse is in front, incidentally, and so what that means I will go ahead and select it by Alt+Clicking or Option+Clicking on it. Now I am going to switch to my Scissors tool, and if you don't see the Scissors tool then go ahead and select it from Eraser tool flyout menu. You can also get to it by pressing the C key. So we are getting old-school here. The Scissors tool has been around I think since Illustrator 1.0, that's what I want to say. And then you want to click so it aligns with the anchor point that's associated with the tower object. That object we just got done manipulating and you should see a large point appear under your cursor even though what you are really going to cut is the ellipse itself.
So go ahead and click at that point to enter a cut point and then try to find that square that's going to pop up there when you align your cursor properly. And then go ahead and click there in order to create another cut point. All right, now we can go ahead and grab this portion of the ellipse right there that outer edge and I Alt+Dragged around it with a White Arrow tool. I could have selected it with the Black Arrow tool, but who knows why I am working this way. Anyway, it works just as well. I will select that cut-away path and I will press the Backspace key or the Delete key in order to delete it.
All right, now I want to go ahead and grab this anchor point right there and drag it back so it snaps into alignment. I just want to make sure everything is exactly aligned the way it needs to be. I will grab this point and drag it back as a snap as well. Then I will go ahead and marquee these two points and I will press Ctrl+J, Command+J on the Mac in order to join them together. Marquee these two points, press Ctrl+J, or Command+J on the Mac to marquee them together as well, and actually, oops, that was a mistake. Actually I have to back up. I will press Ctrl+Z, Ctrl+Z, a couple of times here, Command+Z, Command+Z a couple times on the Mac.
I need to grab this partial path outline first. I'm going to go ahead and select it by Alt+Clicking on it Option+Clicking with the White Arrow tool and I will press Ctrl+C, and the reason I'm Alt or Option+clicking is I am trying to select the entire path. I will go ahead and press Ctrl+C or Command+C on the Mac to copy that path outline and I'll just keep it in the Clipboard for a moment. Now I will go ahead and marquee these two points again. Press Ctrl+J to join them, marquee these two points press Ctrl+J to join them as well. Scroll back up to the top of this illustration and you don't want to scroll too far, it's needless to say, because obviously you scroll beyond things.
So just keep an eye on what you are doing, but I am working in a magnified view. All right, I need to repeat those steps. So I will Alt+Click or Option+Click on this ellipse here to select it, and everything that you shouldn't be selecting is locked down. So only the path outlines that you need to modify are unlocked. So hopefully that will help you out if you're working along with me. I will grab my Scissors tool, click at this point, I should see a square to tell me that I'm getting the alignment right and I will click at this point as well. I should see a square at that point too. I'll Alt+Click or Option+Click on that partial path to select it.
Then I will press the Backspace key or the Delete key on the Mac in order to delete it. I will go ahead and drag this point and then drag it back in the place to ensure that I have a lock that is a snap. I am going to click on this segment right there to select it and press the Backspace key or the Delete key on the Mac to get rid of it. Go ahead and grab this point actually isn't it fun anymore. Yeah, I guess it is. All right, I will drag it and then I will drag it back into place. Again, I am just trying to ensure that I've got an absolute alignment so that when I apply the Join command I am fusing the two points together as opposed to creating a very tiny segment.
All right, I will go ahead and marquee those two points press Ctrl+J, Command+J on the Mac. Marquee these two points press Ctrl+J, Command+J on the Mac to join them, and then assuming that my Fill is active, which isn't, here in the Swatches panel, so I will press the X key in order to make the Fill active and I will click in White in order to fill that shape with White. All right, great! Now I am going to marquee my way down to the bottom here once again and will press Ctrl+F or Command+F on the Mac in order to paste that partial edge into place. You may wonder why in the world do we need this partial edge, because we're going to create a series of bunch of copies and we are going to do so by taking advantage of power duplication finally in the very next and last exercise.
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