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Erasing stroked paths

From: Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Advanced

Video: Erasing stroked paths

In this exercise, I'm going to show you how to get rid of what I'm calling the unflattering overlaps inside of our illustration. In fact, I've gone ahead and saved my progress so far as Unflattering overlaps.ai and what I mean by unflattering overlaps is these intersecting lines that meet in an undesirable way. For example, I don't really want this forward neck path to cleave into the jaw, the way it is right now. So how do we get rid of those overlaps? Well, it's a combination of cutting and erasing as you'll see. So let's say I'll go ahead and select this far front leg right there that overlaps the near front leg and I'm going to go ahead and grab my Scissors tool which lives in the same slot as the Eraser tool, note that, and it has a keyboard shortcut of C as you may recall from way long ago.

Erasing stroked paths

In this exercise, I'm going to show you how to get rid of what I'm calling the unflattering overlaps inside of our illustration. In fact, I've gone ahead and saved my progress so far as Unflattering overlaps.ai and what I mean by unflattering overlaps is these intersecting lines that meet in an undesirable way. For example, I don't really want this forward neck path to cleave into the jaw, the way it is right now. So how do we get rid of those overlaps? Well, it's a combination of cutting and erasing as you'll see. So let's say I'll go ahead and select this far front leg right there that overlaps the near front leg and I'm going to go ahead and grab my Scissors tool which lives in the same slot as the Eraser tool, note that, and it has a keyboard shortcut of C as you may recall from way long ago.

And I'm going to click at this location right there in order to cut this part of the path away from this part of the path. The portions of the path that I want to get rid of is already selected, so I'll press the Backspace key twice to get rid of it. That would be the Delete key twice to get rid of it on the Mac. So the Scissors tool, a heck of a tool. I really like it but it's not without its faults. If you select the back path right there, the path along the creature's back, and then you click at the location where it intersects the mane, then you are going to cut the mane because it's the main that's in front.

So this Eraser tool doesn't really care who selects it. It cares who is in front. So go ahead and press Ctrl+Z, Command+ Z on the Mac to undo that modification. You could switch over to the Eraser tool, if you wanted to. Shift+E is the way to select that and you could just erase this area like so and it looks like it's going to erase it totally and the Eraser tool does work on the selected path but notice as soon as I release, what I have really done is I have cut the path in twain, right at this location here. So I went ahead and kept the area that I painted over and it got rid of all of our stylus information, so it got rid of the pressure and it got rid of the tilt and it got rid of the bearing.

That's terrible. So press Ctrl+Z or Command+ Z on the Mac to undo that bad modification. Thing is the Eraser tool, it's a good tool actually but it works on filled paths better than stroked paths. All right, so what do you do? You go over to the Pencil tool icon, you click and hold and you choose the Path Eraser tool also known as the Pencil Eraser tool, which happens to work great for stroked paths and then you drag over the portion of the path that you want to delete. And if you end up missing a little bit of garbage like that right there, the simplest thing to do in my opinion is to go back to the Black Arrow tool, Shift-click on the area that you do not want to delete and then just press the Backspace key in order to delete the portion of the line that's still selected.

All right, let's re-perform that exact same trick a couple more times. Now the Path Eraser does work on selected paths, so you want to make sure you select the thing that you want to erase first. Then go ahead and paint over the areas that you want to get rid of and just make sure that you don't leave any weird little paths behind as you work. Finally, I'm going to go ahead and select this forward path, the path that represents the neck, and paint over this area here and I got rid of everything but if I hadn't, I could continue to erase. I could deselect this big area and press the Backspace or Delete key, what have you. That's basically all there is to erasing here inside Illustrator.

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This video is part of

Image for Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Advanced
Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Advanced

149 video lessons · 21601 viewers

Deke McClelland
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 28m 41s
    1. Welcome
      1m 7s
    2. Installing the dekeKeys keyboard shortcuts
      8m 59s
    3. Resetting the Function keys on a Mac
      4m 47s
    4. Installing the CS4 color settings
      4m 20s
    5. Loading the CS4 color settings in Illustrator
      6m 3s
    6. Loading the CS4 color settings in Bridge CS4
      3m 25s
  2. 1h 53m
    1. From the simple emerges the complex
      42s
    2. Introducing Pathfinder operations
      4m 17s
    3. Editing a compound shape
      4m 39s
    4. Adding to a compound shape
      3m 11s
    5. Inserting a subpath into a compound shape
      3m 56s
    6. Expanding a compound shape
      4m 53s
    7. Assembling primitives
      4m 42s
    8. Preparing a template in Photoshop
      7m 0s
    9. Uniting paths permanently
      5m 40s
    10. Minus Front vs. Minus Back
      1m 55s
    11. Working with compound paths
      6m 49s
    12. When in doubt, divide
      3m 54s
    13. Divide and Unite
      3m 2s
    14. Open path pitfalls
      5m 35s
    15. Strokes bad, fills good
      4m 38s
    16. Advanced Divide and Unite
      8m 59s
    17. Using the Crop operation
      8m 30s
    18. Expert Divide and Unite
      8m 45s
    19. "Ghosting" shapes with Fill Opacity
      6m 45s
    20. Anticipating and troubleshooting
      8m 16s
    21. Exclude and Intersect
      7m 24s
  3. 44m 59s
    1. Familiar one moment, different the next
      1m 3s
    2. Snapping to anchor points
      5m 41s
    3. Aligning a group to the artboard
      3m 34s
    4. Distributing objects on the artboard
      4m 16s
    5. Setting the key object
      4m 54s
    6. Distributing objects by space
      3m 6s
    7. Distributing objects by selections
      3m 19s
    8. Aligning point text
      6m 7s
    9. Aligning live text vs. using outlines
      4m 58s
    10. Aligning key letters
      3m 35s
    11. Aligning to key objects
      4m 26s
  4. 1h 4m
    1. CS4’s gradient renaissance
      1m 7s
    2. Applying a gradient
      6m 0s
    3. Dragging and dropping color swatches
      2m 55s
    4. Using the Gradient palette
      6m 27s
    5. Designing a shaded gradient
      5m 9s
    6. Saving a gradient swatch and adding a texture
      4m 2s
    7. Introducing the new Gradient tool
      4m 39s
    8. Editing color stops inside a shape
      3m 26s
    9. Setting multiple gradients to the same angle
      5m 0s
    10. Adding and adjusting radial gradients
      7m 20s
    11. Making a transparent gradient
      7m 6s
    12. Adding drop shadows (a kind of gradient)
      6m 28s
    13. Blends vs. blend modes
      4m 38s
  5. 1h 17m
    1. Creating freeform color flows
      1m 0s
    2. The power of CS4's transparent gradients
      10m 25s
    3. Creating a gradient mesh
      4m 30s
    4. Expanding a gradient to a gradient mesh
      7m 40s
    5. Adding and deleting rows and columns
      6m 13s
    6. Selecting and coloring points
      6m 5s
    7. Assigning colors with the Eyedropper tool
      7m 42s
    8. Cool mesh editing techniques
      3m 56s
    9. Warping and puckering a mesh
      7m 24s
    10. Applying precise finishing touches
      5m 48s
    11. Gradient strokes
      9m 45s
    12. Gradient text
      6m 50s
  6. 55m 35s
    1. The first of the dynamic functions
      1m 4s
    2. Making a blend automatically
      5m 48s
    3. Fixing problem blends
      3m 56s
    4. Making a blend with the Blend tool
      3m 6s
    5. Cloning and coloring a blended path
      4m 37s
    6. Creating a mask
      3m 53s
    7. Blending between translucent shapes
      5m 30s
    8. Blending along a curve
      4m 34s
    9. Adjusting the speed of a blend
      2m 58s
    10. Filling and stroking a mask
      4m 36s
    11. Creating a compound clipping mask
      6m 3s
    12. Nesting one clipping mask inside another
      6m 7s
    13. Ghosting nested masks and blends
      3m 23s
  7. 1h 13m
    1. Patterns that repeat forever and ever
      51s
    2. Introducing tile patterns
      6m 36s
    3. Beginning a core design
      5m 6s
    4. Building an interlocking element
      6m 25s
    5. Achieving precise radial symmetry
      4m 46s
    6. Rotating duplicates around a common center
      3m 10s
    7. Determining how a pattern repeats
      9m 54s
    8. Coloring the core objects
      5m 0s
    9. Identifying the rectangular tile
      7m 14s
    10. Saving tile patterns
      7m 19s
    11. Applying tile patterns to a shape
      3m 25s
    12. Protecting patterns from transformations
      7m 36s
    13. Moving patterns without paths
      5m 51s
  8. 1h 19m
    1. Illustrator gets natural
      1m 15s
    2. Introducing the vector painting tools
      3m 16s
    3. Calligraphic brush options
      4m 3s
    4. Pressure sensitivity
      5m 17s
    5. Editing a calligraphic brush
      5m 53s
    6. Repainting and smoothing paths
      5m 30s
    7. Making the paintbrush behave
      6m 16s
    8. Erasing stroked paths
      3m 17s
    9. Painting with the new Blob brush
      6m 24s
    10. Refining filled paths with the Eraser
      4m 14s
    11. Painting independent paths
      3m 53s
    12. The Selection Limits Merge options
      3m 20s
    13. Applying and scaling an art brush
      6m 23s
    14. Snipping a brushed path
      4m 55s
    15. Colorizing an art brush
      4m 9s
    16. Heaping a stroke on an art brush effect
      4m 32s
    17. Creating a custom art brush
      6m 51s
  9. 1h 44m
    1. The computer art world’s dynamic duo
      1m 7s
    2. Copying and pasting pixels from Photoshop
      7m 21s
    3. Linking is efficient, embedding is not
      2m 47s
    4. Editing an image in Illustrator
      7m 30s
    5. Filtering an image in Photoshop
      6m 34s
    6. Adding a filter mask in Photoshop
      6m 25s
    7. Masking a woman from the background
      3m 49s
    8. Creating a sepia effect
      6m 37s
    9. Adding a second gradient map layer
      2m 13s
    10. Achieving a graphic effect with Levels
      8m 10s
    11. Preparing an image for use in Illustrator
      5m 46s
    12. The importance of image resolution
      9m 40s
    13. Placing and linking images
      4m 43s
    14. Managing linked images
      6m 18s
    15. Integrating an image into a design
      5m 12s
    16. A better way to wrap text
      7m 28s
    17. Previewing the trim size
      4m 25s
    18. Layer comps and editable text
      8m 42s
  10. 2h 11m
    1. Transparency is safe and fun
      1m 27s
    2. Introducing the translucent composition
      4m 39s
    3. Assigning opacity to an Appearance attribute
      3m 41s
    4. Creating a knockout group
      5m 7s
    5. Defining an opacity mask
      7m 15s
    6. Using the Clip checkbox
      2m 41s
    7. Opacity mask tips and tricks
      3m 20s
    8. The Multiply blend mode
      6m 8s
    9. Adding to an existing opacity mask
      7m 53s
    10. Blending between parallel groups
      7m 27s
    11. Creating a gradient opacity mask
      4m 54s
    12. Employing an opposing gradient mask
      7m 57s
    13. Combining Multiply and Screen
      3m 49s
    14. Blend mode roundup
      5m 24s
    15. Mixing blend modes inside a single path
      3m 48s
    16. Blend mode and transparent gradient
      3m 49s
    17. Masking an entire layer
      7m 0s
    18. Combining Screen with 100K Black
      7m 43s
    19. Knocking out a drop shadow
      5m 18s
    20. But will it print?
      3m 8s
    21. Working with the Flattener preview
      8m 44s
    22. Rasterizing an illustration in Photoshop
      9m 16s
    23. Super-rich blacks and raster effects
      3m 35s
    24. Exporting TIFF artwork from Illustrator
      7m 48s
  11. 58s
    1. Until next time
      58s

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