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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, now we are going to go nuts and we are going to start creating some color swatches. Actually we are going to create every single color swatch we need to color this entire piece artwork, which is just three as it turns out, but still. I have gone ahead and saved my progress, my very minimal progress so far, as One shape down.ai because we have only managed to color one shape accurately inside of this illustration. I'm working on the paths layer, the calendar layer is currently hidden from view and I'm seeing my Transparency grid for what its worth. All right, so let's say we are going to use this color that we have created which is 0, 10, 25, 25 respectively for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black. We are going to use that color repeatedly throughout the illustration, so we want to save it as a Swatch. So I'm going to click this time on the Fill icon. Not Shift-click. Just click in order to bring up the Swatches palette and let's create a new swatch by clicking on this little Page icon and that will bring up the New Swatch dialog box right here.
Now I'm going to call my Medium clay. You notice, by default, it's just going ahead and showing you what the color values are. Switch out that swatch name for Medium clay. You can modify the color too if you want to at this point, change the Color Mode even. We have the option of specifying whether this is going to be a Process Color which is going to separate into its independent Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black inks during the commercial printing process or we could say no. Let's make it a Spot Color that's going to print using a single ink. If we do that, the printer is going to laugh us out of the building because they are going to say I can't print that Spot Color until you bring me a big bucket of that ink, and otherwise you've got to stick to the industry standards, meaning most likely here in the States once again the Pantone color library. So the moral of the story is don't make up your own spot colors. If you are dialing in colors, they are Process colors.
Here is a really great option right there, Global. Now when it's turned on, which I recommend you do, go ahead and turn on the Global checkbox. It ensures that there is a link between this swatch and any objects that you've colored with the colored with this swatch, so if you later decide to modify this color, all of the objects inside of your illustration that are colored with this swatch will update as well. So it turns the color into a kind of style, which is really great. All right, so when in doubt, turn Global on, and then click OK and you will see that you get this new icon here inside of your Swatches palette that has a little white wedge in its corner and that shows you you've got a global color.
All spot colors by the way are global, and there is a handful of other colors here inside the Swatches palette that are global as well. These guys are not, if they don't have the wedge, they are not global colors and changing them will not affect the objects to which you have assigned them. All right, I'm going to click off of my object to de-select it because now I want to make some modifications to the swatches that are available to us. I don't want all of these non-terracotta swatches here; I want them to go away. So I'm going to click on Pantone 268 right there, and then I'm going to Shift-click on that first Magenta swatch, and then I'm going to click on this Trashcan icon. And then Illustrator is going to alert me, hey, do you really want to delete those swatches? I'd click Yes, of course, but in my case, I'm going to click No because I want to show you another way to work, to bypass a warning, press the Alt key or the Option key on a Mac and click on that Trash icon. They all go away. You can also drag this group, for example, and drop it on the Trash Can to get rid of it. And now we are down to just the Standard set here, the standard minimum as well as my little Medium clay guy.
All right, I want to make two variations on Medium clay called Light clay and Pale clay. So I'm going to go ahead and click on this swatch right there and click on New Swatch in order to make another swatch based on that one. Now they are not going to have any kind of relationship to each other based on this Global checkbox. That Global checkbox just ensures that each color has a relationship with its objects, let's turn up by giving it a name which will be Light clay and then I'll dial-in the following values. We will leave Cyan set to 0 because we are just trying to lighten up these colors. I'll take Magenta down to 6, Yellow down to 12 and K down to 12 as well. So there is Light clay right there, click OK, click on the little Page icon again to create yet another one, this time I'll call this one Pale clay, which is going to be even lighter. So the point is I can't take Cyan any further down, that's why I keep skipping it. Then we've got Magenta 3 and we got Yellow and Black of 7 each and click OK for that one. And now we have created the swatches that we are going to be using throughout this illustration.
In the next exercise, I'm going introduce you to one of the key concepts inside of Illustrator that is really going to save your neck, and that is Rich Black.
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