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Adobe Illustrator has long been the most popular and viable vector-drawing program on the market but, for many, the learning curve is steep. In Illustrator CS3 One-on-One: The Essentials , author and leading industry expert Deke McClelland teaches the key features of Illustrator in a way that anyone can understand. He also goes beyond that, showing users how to get into the Illustrator "mindset" to make mastering Illustrator simple and easy. The training covers how to use the core drawing and shape tools, the transformation and reshaping features, text and gradients, and color management and printing features. Even if learning Illustrator has been a struggle in the past, this time it is going to make sense. Exercise files accompany the training.
Now let's say I like this terra-cotta clay color that I've created so much that I want to go ahead and save it out as a swatch and use it over and over again. So I'd go ahead and select the object that contains the color that I want to go ahead and save which happens to be cyan, magenta, yellow and black values of 0, 10, 25 and 25 respectively. Then I would go up to my Fill icon and click on it. Don't Shift -click on it this time cause we want to bring up the swatches. And I would save a new swatch by clicking on the new swatch icon right there and then I'd go ahead and name my swatch Medium Clay in this case. And I have the option of changing the color type from Process Color to Spot Color. Process Color ensures that the color will separate to independent cyan, magenta, yellow and black plates during the commercial reproduction process so that your printer can actually manufacture this color for you. If you were to choose Spot Color then you would need to find an ink, an actual industry standard ink out there that matches your color, because if you go in there without an idea of what that ink is, if you just say, Hey I invented my own new ink today, it's called Medium Clay, you're going to get laughed out of the printer because they're going to go, Well good for you.
Once you actually come to me with that ink, then I can use it for you. So you want to go ahead and stick with Process Color here. Another option though is to turn on this Global checkbox, and that's a good option. I recommend you do that. If you turn on global, you create a relationship between this new swatch that you're making and any objects to which you assign the swatch. That way, in the future if you make some modification to the CMYK values that are associated with the swatch, all of the objects that are painted with that swatch will update in kind. So you're basically creating a swatch stylesheet.
Really awesome function, so when in doubt go ahead and turn that guy on and then click OK. And notice that you get a new swatch inside of your Swatches palette and it has a little white triangle in the lower right corner and that indicates that it's a global swatch. Now I'd like to go ahead and clean up my Swatches palette cause I don't need all these other really colorful, vivid colors going on, because I'm not going to apply them to this stone tablet that I'm creating, this stone calendar here. So first I'm going to press Control+Shift+A or Command+Shift+A to deselect everything inside of the illustration. That way I don't run the risk of recoloring any of the selected objects. Then I'm going to I click on this icon again to bring up the Swatches palette. I'm going to click on this Plum color that I loaded from the Fruit palettes. I'll go ahead and click on it and Shift-click on this Magenta up here in order to select this big range of colors in between my clay color and black.
And then I'll go ahead and delete those colors by clicking on the delete swatch icon, the trash can. Illustrator will ask if I want to delete the swatches for real. I'll say, Yes, you bet baby. And there we have it, good. Now let's say I want to create a couple of variations on this swatch right there. Why, then I'd go ahead and select the swatch, and I'll click on the new swatch icon, so it brings up the last settings I had applied, the settings that are in place for this swatch anyway, the CMYK values, and I'll change this color to Light clay this time around, cause I want a lighter version.
And I'll change the Magenta value to 6, and the other two values to 12 like so. Leave cyan set to 0, click OK. Let's make an even paler version of the color still, by clicking on new swatch again. Let's call this one Pale clay this time around, and we'll take its values down to 3, 7 and 7, and notice I'm leaving Global turned on all the time. And I click OK and there are my new swatches, these are the swatches that I'll be using throughout the filling and stroking process, and they become the swatches that are saved along with the illustration the next time I choose the Save command.
This does not affect your default swatches. So your new documents will not use these swatches. Just this document right here. So all is well inside of the Aztec calendar. In the next exercise we are going to create a rich black that is going to ensure that we have no trapping problems around our strokes. Join me then, won't you?
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