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This course is the third in a four-part series devoted to mastering the premiere graphics creation application, Adobe Illustrator, version CS6. Industry pro Deke McClelland takes a project-based learning approach to the key features in Illustrator, including Recolor Artwork, transparency, masks, blend modes, strokes and fills, and dynamic effects. The course also covers techniques for creating custom gradients, designing logos, generating photorealistic neon text, and wrapping type around objects. Plus, Deke shows how to call up the most essential features by organizing your workspace and employing time-saving keyboard shortcuts, how to manage the color settings, and how to adjust a few settings to make the program work even better.
In this movie, we are going to create a roof for the engineer as well as these various circular elements such as the smokestack and the bell, and we will be creating those circular elements using a convert to shape effect. So I will go ahead and switch over to my illustration in progress. The train is selected so I can go about my merry way adding new strokes here inside the Appearance panel. I will go ahead and click on the top stroke to make it active and let's start with that engineer's roof. Now this stroke happens to be exactly the right color, so I will go ahead and duplicate it by clicking on the Page icon at the bottom of the panel.
It needs to be much thicker however, so I am going to change the line weight to 82 points, then I will go ahead and twirl open this stroke. Click on Transform. We don't need to move this object vertically at all, so I will change the Vertical Move value to 0. I am also going to turn on the left point inside the Reference Point Matrix. Turn on the Preview checkbox to see what in the world I have accomplished. And I am going to change the Move value to -4 to go ahead and scoot that roof back a little bit, and then I just went ahead and nudged up this Horizontal value until the shape looked more or less square which I figured happened at 27%.
All right, so now I'll click OK, and we need to create another similar gradient up front here, but it won't be a roof. It will be an enclosure for the engine. So I will go ahead and click on this top stroke to make it active. Click on the Page icon at the bottom of the panel to make a copy of it. Let's change the line weight to 68 points so it matches the main body. Click on Transform to bring up the dialog box. Switch the Reference Point to the right hand point here. Reduce the Horizontal Move value to zero, and then, what the heck, I might as well turn on the Preview checkbox at this point, so I can see what I am doing and in the end I took the Horizontal Scale value down to 18%. All right! Now click OK, and I will click on the stroke to make it active.
I will also go ahead and twirl it closed. All right, now we will begin work on the smokestack, and this is an entirely different kind of stroke. So I will click on the Add New Stroke icon at the bottom of the panel. In order to create a new stroke, I am going to leave the line weight value set to 68 points and I am going to change the stroke color to plain old black. Then I will drop down to the FX icon at the bottom of the panel, choose Convert to Shape and choose Ellipse. And by the way, if you ever choose a wrong kind of shape up front, you can always change your mind just by selecting a different shape from the Shape pop-up menu.
In any case I am going to change the size to Absolute so we don't end up with that big whopping ellipse. And I will take the Width and Height values down to 6 points apiece and that's why I am going to leave them for all the other circles as well. Then click OK in order to create that circle there. Now click on the top stroke in order to make it active and then press Ctrl+E or Cmd+E on the Mac in order to bring up the Transform effect dialog box and change the Horizontal Move value to 126 and then turn on the Preview checkbox in order to move the smokestack into the desired position there. Then click OK. All right! Now click on that top stroke to make it active once again. You have to keep doing that over and over, by the way, and now I am going to make a copy of the stroke by clicking on the Page icon at the bottom of the panel. I will change the line weight to 60 points and I will change the color to Wheels Grad, which ends up working just fine for me.
It's going in the wrong direction though, so I will go ahead and bring up my Gradient panel and change the Angle value to 90 degrees. Now I'll collapse the panel again so I have more room. And notice that the effects, Ellipse and Transform, work out beautifully. So we don't have to make any changes to them. Go ahead and collapse the stroke if you want, and then create another copy of it, because we need to create the hole for the smoke to come out. And this time I will change the line weight value to 30 points and I will change the color to this gradient right here, Smoke Hole, which is a radial gradient, and we end up with this effect here. All right! I want to go ahead and add a drop shadow to the main portion of the smokestack.
So I will click on it to make it active there --the 68-point stroke--and I will click on the FX icon and go ahead and choose Stylize and choose Drop Shadow. Or, if you loaded dekeKeys, you can press Ctrl+Alt+E or Cmd+Option+E on the Mac and I will dial in an Opacity value of 50%. Then I will change both X and Y Offset to 8 and I will change the Blur to 6 and turn on the Preview checkbox and we end up with this effect here. Now you will notice that your drop shadows are working a lot faster this time than they did on the big track, and that's because the track was so darn big and had so many dash patterns going on that it was a much more complicated object for Illustrator to calculate.
And you know, I want another drop shadow for the engineer's roof, which is this 82 point item right there. So I will select it and I will go up to the Effect menu and choose the second Drop Shadow command in order to bring up the Drop Shadow dialog box, and this time I will dial in an Opacity value of 75% and I will change the X, Y and Blur values all to 4 points and turn on the Preview checkbox when we end up with this effect here. All right! Now I'll click OK, and I am going twirl this guy open, because I'll need to come back to it in just a moment. Next go ahead and grab that 60-point stroke right there and Alt+Drag or Option+Drag it to the top of the stack.
And this will be the first of our caps. So I will go ahead and change the line weight value to 30 points and then I will change the color of the stroke to Black Grad. I will twirl open the stroke here; the Ellipse setting is fine. You don't need to modify it, but you do need to click on the word Transform and then dial in a new Horizontal Move value. This time we are going for -48. Then turn on the Preview checkbox and you will see the item moved to this location here. Now click OK in order to accept that change and it looks like the twirled open stroke has shifted on me, so I will go ahead and twirl this guy closed. Twirl this guy open and Alt+Drag or Option+Drag this Drop Shadow up onto the new stroke in order to create an identical drop shadow at this location.
So in other words, we are copying the drop shadow from the engineer's roof over to this cap. All right, now I'll click on the top stroke to make it active and then click on the Page icon to make a copy of it. This time I will dial in a line weight value of 10 points and I will change the stroke color to Wheels Grad, and otherwise everything is good except they don't need the drop shadow. Now you could keep the drop shadow around by the way, if you wanted to, just by clicking on its Eye icon to turn it off. But I figure given how much stuff is at work inside of this effect we might as well just get rid of it.
So I am going to click on the Trash icon at the bottom of the panel. All right! Now let's create a copy of both of our new strokes by clicking on one, Shift+Clicking on the other, and then Alt+Dragging or Option+ Dragging to the top of the stack like so, and now I will twirl this guy open and I will change its line weight to 26 points and then I will click on the word Transform and we will go ahead and move this guy over to a Horizontal value of 30 points, which places him at this location here. Then click OK. And now let's take the top stroke and change it to 8 points and then click on Transform and enter a Horizontal Move value of 30 points as well and then click OK and we end up with this effect here.
All right! All that's left is the bell and a couple of trim items. So I am going to go ahead and click on this top stroke to make it active, and I will click on the little Page icon to make a copy of it. I will change line weight this time to 16 points. Click on the color, change it to Bell Grad, which is another radial gradient as you can see here. I will twirl this new stroke open. I will click on Transform, and this time I will dial in a Horizontal Move value of 68 points and that ends up moving the bell to this location here.
We need something for the bell to hang from, so I am going to create an entirely new stroke, by clicking on the top stroke icon and then clicking on the Add New Stroke icon down here in the bottom left corner of the panel. Let's change the line weight this time around to 2 points as you can see here. And then go to the Gradient panel and select this middle sort of a brownish-orange color right there, in order to make it active, and then just press the Comma key in order to switch to a solid version of that color. All right! Now let's apply the Transform effect.
What a big surprise by pressing Ctrl+E or Cmd+E on the Mac! And I want you to dial in a Rotate value of 90 degrees. Turn on the Preview checkbox to see what's happened there and we end up with a cross stroke. Now we need to scale this stroke, and I am going to do so using the Horizontal value because Illustrator now thinks of Horizontal as having been rotated 90 degrees. And so I will change this value to 12 in order to reduce the width of that line and then I will dial in a Horizontal Move value of 68 in order to create this effect here.
And there are just a couple of more trim lines I would like to add for the heck of it. So I will go ahead and click on this top stroke to make it active, click on the Page icon in order to create a copy of it, dial in a line weight value of one point. Go ahead and change the color of this line to Dark Rail and then I am going to Multiply this guy in by twirling open the stroke, clicking on Opacity and changing the Blend mode to Multiply. And we end up with an effect that's hard to read right now, but what I am going to do here is click on Transform in order to bring up the Transform effect dialog box.
Turn on the Preview checkbox so we can se what we are doing, and I am going to change the Horizontal value to 22% this time around. I will leave the Angle value set to 90 degrees, but I'm going to reduce the Horizontal Move value to zero, and we end up with a line right there at this location. Click OK. Let's create one more copy of it by clicking on the stroke, clicking on the little Page icon at the bottom of the panel. Click on the word Transform. Turn on the Preview checkbox. Click in the Horizontal Move value and then press the Down Arrow key three times in order to scoot that line over to the left.
Then click OK in order to complete the train engine, and that's how you create the top view of a classic steam-driven locomotive, one painstaking stroke at a time in the Appearance panel.
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