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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.
All right now it's time to draw the concentric rings that make up the pupil and iris inside of Horus' eye, and if you want to catch up with me, then you'd open the illustration called Now for the iris.ai that's included inside the 03_Line_Art folder and we're going to be drawing these concentric rings using a single application of a single tool and that single tool is this guy right here the Polar Grid Tool. Notice that there's a couple of great tools available to us; the Rectangular Grid Tool and the Polar Grid Tool and the idea is that you can draw grades that you would then convert to custom guides using that Make Guide command that we saw a few exercises ago. So that's one thing you can do, but you can also draw if you want to, you can draw printable items, which is what we're going to do. So I'm going to select the Polar Grid Tool, and I can do it by clicking this final icon here inside of my little Line Tool palette.
Or I could select the tool from the Line Segment Tool flyout menu. Either way I want you to begin drawing from this guide intersection that marks the center of the concentric rings, like so. Now the tool's really set up to draw from corner to corner of the bounding box. If you press and hold the Alt key however, or the Option key as you're dragging and keep that key down then you'll draw from the center outward. You'll also want to press the Shift key, so I have the Shift and Alt keys down here, or the Shift and Option keys down on the Mac, in order to constrain the rings so that they're perfect circles.
Now I need to get rid of some concentric rings. I have too many rings going on, and I don't want those little radial lines either, so I need to press a few more keys, but truth be told I'm out of hands. I only had one extra hand to work with and you only have one extra head to work with as well, unless you're an octopus, in which case you don't have any hands, you have tentacles but I digress. What you're going to need to do is go ahead and release the keys on the keyboard for a moment, keep that mouse button down though if your working along with me because Illustrator is very forgiving, as long as you keep that mouse button down you can do whatever the heck you want. Now I'm going to press the arrow keys and notice if I press the down arrow key I get rid of concentric rings. If I press the up arrow key, I add concentric rings.
However, I get there, I just want to have three concentric rings including the outer ring. So what we see on screen is what I want. Then you can press the left and right arrow keys. So if you press the left arrow key, you'll get rid of radial lines. If you press the right arrow key, you'll add radial lines. I want to press the left arrow key until I totally get rid of all of those radial lines. Okay, now I have the right number of lines. I've still got my mouse button down folks, you should too if you're working along with me here.
Now, having gotten the right number of lines here, press the Shift and Alt keys on the PC or the Shift and Option keys on the Mac and keep those keys down. So keep Shift and Alt down. Keep Shift and Option down until you line up your lines, like so, then release your mouse button and then release the keys. Was that not cool? Admit it. I love pressing these keys while I'm using these tools, and you've got to love it too, because it's one of those things you do in Illustrator a lot. Illustrator really grooves when you're pressing keys as you're dragging with the mouse, when you're drawing inside of the program. So it's just one of those things you have to come to terms with.
All right anyway, I have my concentric rings that are all in the right place. I now need to lift the proper stroke attributes, so I'm going to grab my eyedropper, I'm going to click in the center of one of these stroked lines and there I have it. The concentric pupil and iris rings of Horus, all ready to go.
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