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In Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Advanced, author and industry expert Deke McClelland teaches how to take advantage of the wide array of dynamic features in Illustrator CS5. This course demonstrates how to apply these features to paths, groups, and editable text to create professional-quality artwork. The course covers Live Trace, Live Paint, and Live Color, as well as symbols, gradients, exporting, and integration with Photoshop. Exercise files accompany the course.
In this movie, we are going to take that Live Trace object that I created previously here inside of Illustrator and we are going to expand it into a collection of path outlines so that we can gain full control over our newly minted piece of vector-based artwork. I've saved my progress as Live Trace flag art.ai. I am going to start things off by selecting this Tracing object here inside my layers panel. So I'll go ahead and expand open the images and then I'll meatball this tracing object to make it selected. Then I'll go up to the Expand button and click on it and that goes ahead and converts the Live Trace object into a collection of static path outlines, meaning that I can't edit the Live Trace object numerically anymore but I can adjust each and every path outline to suite my exacting needs.
Now, notice that the path outlines appear inside of a group. That doesn't help me out at all. So I am going to go up to the Object menu and I am going to choose the Ungroup command or press Ctrl+Shift+G and that goes ahead and separates every single one of those path outlines. Now, what I want to do because, again, I am not sure exactly how the printing process is going to work here. We might be printing on a big white flag, and that means that the printer will apply black and red inks, or we may be printing on a red flag in the first place, so the fabric might start out red, in which case the printer is going to have to apply black and white pigment.
So I am not sure what's going to happen. I want to be prepared for either eventuality. So I am going to divide all the black paths onto one layer, and all the white paths onto another layer, and all the red paths onto still a third layer so that my printer can decide which paths they need very easily. So for starters, I'll click off the paths to deselect them. Then I'll select one of these paths. I'll click on its outline and then I'll go to the Color panel, note the fill, this must be a black path. So let's go ahead and grab all the other black paths as well by going up to this similar icon here inside the Control panel.
I could click the down-pointing arrowhead and choose All or Fill Color. Either is going to work. So I'll just go ahead and go with All this time around. Then I am going to create a new layer by pressing Ctrl+Alt+L or Cmd+Option+L on the Mac. That's the keyboard shortcut for creating layers in Illustrator. I am going to name this layer black, and I am going to leave the color set to red actually, just because that will set off the black shapes nicely. I'll click OK. We've got a new black layer to house the black objects, all of which is selected right now. I'll grab that little green square that's next to the Images layer, not next to any one of the selected paths.
So go ahead and grab that guy and drag it up into the black layer and that will move all of the black objects onto that black layer as you can see right there. All right. Now I am going to lock that layer down so that we can easily select through it and I am going to click on one of these white objects, and then I'll confirm that it's white here in the Color panel because it could be the interior of a black shape. So the black shapes, and the white shapes, and the red shapes, they all run into each other because, for example, where this eye appears, this red eye, it's not a red shape against a black background, the way you might think it is.
Instead, it's a red shape, of course, but there's also a hole clipped out of the black background that exactly matches that red shape right there. So you have to be a little careful. That's why I locked down the black layer. I grab that white object. I am just going to click on the Select Similar Objects icon this time around because it will go ahead and duplicate the last behavior. It will select all of the white objects. I'll create a new layer called white by pressing Ctrl+Alt+L, Cmd+Option+L on the Mac. I will call it white, change its color to light blue I think. We definitely don't want to leave it green because we already have a light green layer going on and I'll click OK in order to create that layer.
Now, for some reason, Illustrator's seen fit to go ahead and throw that to the back of the stack, that's not what I want. That happens every once a while. Sometimes it throws things in the wrong direction. I am going to go ahead and twirl close Images. I am going to drag white on top of it, like so. Then notice that the objects here, the white objects are still selected on the Images layer. So I'll grab that green square and I'll drag it up onto the white layer. We've now isolated all the white objects onto the white layer. Now, the red objects are a little trickier.
The reason is that there is a lot of little slivers of red all over the place. The Live Trace feature sometimes gets mixed up when it's looking at transitional colors, when it's looking at those transitional grays and it decides that they ought to be red because there is no other color to choose from. So a lot of these red objects, and you can see that there's just tons of them and we really shouldn't see that many at all. There should be a big background item and then maybe about six or seven items inside of these various sort of crevices here and then a couple for the eyes.
Instead, we have got something like maybe 30 or 40 of these path outlines, most of which we don't need. So if I clicked on one of them, if I meatball one of these guys, then I could see, oh, Look at that. This is some little red thing right next to its tooth. Well, we don't want that so I could throw it away or, this is going to sound crazy, I am going to throw away this entire layer. I don't want any of the red objects because all the work is being done now by black and white. I can just draw a big red triangle in the background and be done with it. So I am going to grab this layer and I am going to throw it in the trash and I am just going to get rid of all the red.
Then I am going to draw a new red shape in the background, but before I do, I might as well expand the size of this artwork. It shouldn't be just 12 inches wide by 8.5 inches tall; it needs to be 5 feet wide by 3 feet tall. So let's change the size of the artboard. We'll do that by dropping down to this artboard tool. You can also press Shift+L, and that goes ahead and selects the artboard in the background and I am going to go up to the Width and Height values up here in the Control panel. Make sure the chain is turned off, by the way, because I want to change these values independently, and I am going to change the Width value to 60in, because 12 inches times 5 feet is 60 inches. So 60in wide; that's a lot wider than it was before.
In fact, if I start zooming out, you'll see just how much bigger the artboard is now. I'll change the Height value to 36in, because 12 times 3 is 36, and I'll press the Enter key, or the Return key on the Mac, and that's how big our flag needs to be. Now, in order to apply my changes, I'll press the Escape key and that will take me out of that artboard mode back into the standard drawing mode. I also need a bleed, since I want the red to go all the way to the edge, assuming that I have to print red on a white flag. Again, I don't know how it's going to work but I might a well give myself a bleed.
So, I'll go up to the File menu and I'll choose the Document Setup command or you can press Ctrl+Alt+P, Cmd+ Option+P on the Mac, and make sure, there's the Bleed value right there, make sure that the chain icon is turned on and then change any one of these items to 72, which is 72 points. That's the same as 1 inch, by the way, and click OK. Now, we've got a big bleed around the entire image. I am going to create a new layer by pressing Ctrl+Alt+L, once again, Cmd+Option+L on the Mac, and I am going to call this deep red, because I am going to actually going to change the red color; I am going to make it darker.
I am going to change the color of the layer to gold and then I'll click OK, and I want this guy at the back. So I'll drag it to the bottom of the stack there. Then I am going to create a big, huge, red rectangle by grabbing my Rectangle tool, which I can get by pressing the M key, and I am going to click in this top-left corner of the bleed. That will bring up my Rectangle dialog box and these are the values I will enter, that is 62in, and then I'll press the Tab key, and 38in.
Now you may wonder why 62 and 38, because the bleed is an inch all the way around. So we have to add 2 inches to each of the other values. So that is 2+60 is 62 and 2+36 is 38. Press the Tab key in order to convert those values to points, which are the default measurements for Illustrator here in the States, and then click OK in order to create that ginormous, big, huge rectangle. Then finally, I am going to change the color of the rectangle. It's active here in the Color panel and notice that I am looking at the HSB sliders.
The Hue value is 0 for Red, the Saturation value is 100%, so fully saturated, and the Brightness value is 65.1, where that comes from I don't know, but I want it to be 45. So I am going to darken things up and we'll get this effect here. And this is the artwork so far. You may look at it and say, well, that pirate is kind of lost, even though, by the way, he does look great against this red background. So that takes care of filling in all the proper red areas. We didn't need those jillion or so paths. However, he is getting a little sort of lost in the shuffle.
He's less a piece of flag art, then a tiny little icon against this big red field. Well, obviously, we've got to scale the art, and we've got to modify it here inside of Illustrator as long as we've got the chance. And those are things that we will do in the next and final movie.
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