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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.
In this exercise we're going to draw this little doohickey right here to the left of the vertical line, and I'm working along inside The template.ai document. Again if you've been working inside of your original Horus.ai file, that's even better. And the reason I have this little doohickey here is because that's the way it is in the original Horus design. The Egyptians drew it this way. Don't know why but I'm following their lead here and it affords us a really great opportunity. We're going to be drawing this line as a combination of two arcs that we're going to have to cut into pieces and then join together.
So really wonderful thing actually. Bless those Egyptians. They prepared us for learning how to draw inside of Illustrator just wonderfully. So I'm going to grab my Arc Tool right here. And then I'm going to draw from here on up like this, and if you need to press the F key in order to flip that arc, by all means do. I just want to make sure, it doesn't matter if you draw beyond the edge of this line here, or how far beyond the edge you draw, just as long as that first portion of the line is in place. Once it is in place to the best of your ability, or to your satisfaction, whichever comes first, then just go ahead and release the mouse button in order to draw that line. Now I'm going to draw another line from this point down like so.
And actually if I wanted to make sure that these two lines were exactly aligned with each other, I would go ahead and undo the addition of this line. Here's my thought, is that I want this guy to start at the exact horizontal position as this guy started. So might as well drag out a new guideline. I'll go ahead and grab a guideline, snap it to this position, right here. It appears on the wrong layer. It appears on the Draw here layer, so I'll move it down to the Guides layer right here. Good. Now I need to make sure that the Draw here layer is active, so that I can draw another arc. I'll grab my Arc Tool. It's already grabbed and I'll start dragging from this position here. Now I am assured that these two lines are starting from the same horizontal location, and I'll drag outward until I'm matching this arc.
Now I no longer have the proper stroke attributes going on because I was working from a guide there. So I'm going to have to grab my eyedropper and I'll go ahead and click inside of this stroke in order to lift its attributes. All right so far so good. I'm going to go ahead and zoom in on the slides a little bit here. What I need to do is cut these lines at this point, at the point where they intersect each other, and to see where that point is, you're probably going to want to go ahead and switch into Illustrator's Outline mode.
There's a couple of ways the switch into the Outline mode. One is to go to the View menu and choose the Outline command and notice if I do choose that Command or press Control+Y, Command+Y on the Mac, everything switches to the Outline mode, so we lose all of our fill and stroke attributes across the entire illustration, and we can see just our primitive paths underneath. So that's one way to work. It's a little too much maybe. So I'll press Control+Y or Command+Y on the Mac to switch back to the Preview mode and, oh I should show you. Let me go and switch back to Outline. If I go to the View menu, you can see that now I'm seeing the Preview mode right there.
So the command switches in other words to show you which mode you're going to be transitioning in to. Another way to work, if you want to switch into the Outline mode is to Control or Command click on that eyeball right there in front of the Draw here layer. Go ahead and Control or Command click on it and that switches that layer only into the Outline mode. Isn't that cool? Oh my gosh, I love that trick. Then I'm going to switch over to the Scissors Tool. Now, if you've been using Illustrator for awhile, if you used previous versions of Illustrator, you may wonder, Where in the world did the Scissors Tool go? Well, it's now available from the Eraser Tool flyout menu. The new Eraser Tool here inside Illustrator CS3 is the default occupant of that slot and you need to go into the flyout menu in order to find the Scissors Tool, but the keyboard shortcut remains C for the second letter in scissors.
All right and the great thing about the Scissors Tool is it allows you to cut a path in half. So I'm going to cut the path at this location right there. And then I'm going to get my black arrow tool, and I'm going to click on this portion right here that I want to get rid of, just to make sure that it's selected, and then I'm going to press the Backspace key or the Delete key in order to get rid of it. Now let's cut this guy at the same location, so go ahead and select this arc. And I will grab the Scissors Tool and I will cut it by clicking at this location right here.
And Illustrator's going to get mad at me. It's going to say, Please use the scissors tool on a segment or anchor point but not on an end point of a path. Which is Illustrator's way of just grumping at you. I hate this message because it's like how dumb are you Illustrator, that you don't know I'm working on the selected path? This is where it's confused. This here message it's giving you is totally a red herring. It's getting confused because it's perceiving this path over here as being in front and it thinks that you're clicking on this endpoint right there. And it's like okay. Don't say, Don't show again, because you might as well have this error message come up when Illustrator grumps at you, as opposed to just having the program ignore you, so click OK.
And then say, Oh you know what I need to do? I need to bring this guy to front. So I'll right-click on it and if you open don't have a right mouse button on the Macintosh side press the Control key and click, then choose Arrange and choose Bring to Front. Or you can take advantage of this keyboard shortcut Control+ Shift+Right Bracket or Command+Shift+Right Bracket on the Mac. That keyboard trick might not make a lot of sense, but here's the deal. It works across all of the Adobe applications. So if you just remember Control along with the bracket key moves things up and down the stack inside of a layer, then you're good to go. Anyway I'm going to go ahead and bring this object to front. Doesn't look any different of course. Now we still have the Scissors Tool. I'll click at this location. Illustrator happy, good. Me happy too.
Now I'll grab the black arrow tool, click on this item again just to make sure it's selected, press the Backspace key and I now have two arcs that are blending into each other. In order to switch back to the Preview mode so that I can see what I've wrought here, I'll go ahead and Control-click on this eyeball or Command- click on that eyeball on the Mac. And I have this nice pair of arc created with the Arc Tool, a combination of the Arc Tool and the Scissors Tool, the old-school Scissors Tool here inside Illustrator CS3.
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