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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.
I saved my progress as Compound blacks.ai, so called, because I have traced my image using the Compound blacks Preset that I created at the end of the previous exercise. In this exercise, we are going to go ahead and expand this live trace object and modify the results, so that we regain the colors that were associated with all the letters. We've lost the yellow background, but everybody else is intact here. So with the live trace object selected, I'll go up to the Control panel and click on the Expand button and now we've got our individual path outlines right ready to go.
I will go ahead and twirl open the Image layer, so that you can see that we have a group going. So I will go up to the Object menu, it's just going to make things easier if I ungroup these letters by choosing the Ungroup command, or pressing Ctrl+Shift+G, Cmd+shift+G on the Mac, and then I will select the various rows and reassign their colors. So for example, the top couple of rows were already black, so we can leave them alone, but I will marquee this next row down and it should be red. But I don't have access to that red here in the Swatches panel, I went ahead and saved that off as an independent Swatches palette, and to get to that I'll go to my little folder icon down here in the bottom left corner of the Swatches panel, and I'll choose Twelve plus BW, that's Twelve plus BW.ai file that's available to you.
If you need to open it up, you can choose Other Library and navigate to that folder. I will just go ahead and choose this command though, because I've already opened it up in advance and I've also switched my display to medium thumbnail view, so that I can better see each one of my swatches here. And I am going to make my panel a little wider, I think, so that I can see every single one of the swatches in a single row. All right, with these letters selected, I will make sure that my Fill is active, which it is, here inside the Color panel, and I will click on this first swatch in this folder, which is called red type, and that will go ahead and assign the correct shade of red.
Then I'll go ahead and select the next row down and assign the blue color to that, and then I will select the next row after that and assign green, you get the idea here. This guy is a little more complicated to select, it looks like I might have got it actually. It's the three little items above the O here that are kind of hard to select without selecting something up above, but I got him. So now I will just go ahead and assign orange, and where the punctuation is concerned, I assigned this color right there, which is called violet punc, so I'll go ahead and assign that color.
And then I will grab these symbols including the ampersand, this alternate ampersand there, and I will assign purple symbols. And then all these browns are assigned to the numbers, so both 1 and 6 are colored with brown 1 or at least they should be, and then 2 and 7 should be colored with brown 2, and so forth. So we've got 3 and 8, which need to be colored with brown 3 right there, and then 4 and 9, which need to be colored with brown 4, and then I'll grab 5 and 0, and I will go ahead and assign brown 5.
Now it wasn't necessary that I assign each and every one of those colors, but that's how the artwork looked when I created it inside of Photoshop. So it's right ready to go. Now, the question at this point becomes, do you want to do anymore editing? Do you want to go into the path outlines and modify them? For example, let's check out this S right here, notice by the way that the D has come out fairly smooth, we don't have that little nick at the top of it, we don't have the nick at the bottom of the E, so somehow along the way we lost those little items, which is great. I am going to click on the outline of the S, and notice how it kind of bobs up right there? Well, you could go in there with the White Arrow tool and modify that anchor point independently of the others, or you could delete it if you wanted to.
If you just wanted to get rid of that weird anchor point, you can click on it with the Pen tool. I am going to show you another tool that's available to you. Here in the Pencil tool slot, there's this great tool on the flyout menu called the Smooth Tool, and what it allows you to do, is just drag over an area in order to smooth out any lumps inside of the path outline. And you may have to drag repeatedly along your path outline in order to smooth away the lumps that you don't want, but it's a lot easier than having to figure out what to do with your White Arrow tool and your Pen tool, because it doesn't require any thought, you just sit there and drag a bunch of times, until you get the results you are looking for.
So for example, consider the B, notice that it has this weird corner right there on the interior of the bottom outline. I am going to go ahead and select that B by Ctrl+clicking on it or Cmd+clicking, so you have to select the path outline before you smooth it. Then you just kind of drag in the general sort of direction of your smoothing, you don't have to drag exactly along the path outline, what you really do is you drag more or less along the area that you would like the smoothing to occur. Anyway, that just gives you a sense for the various things you can do to your path outlines after you get done tracing them.
What I would now recommend you to do is go to the File menu and choose the Save As command, so that you can save your artwork under a different name. That way you still have your live trace object saved inside of one illustration and then you have your static path outlines that you can edit to your heart's content saved inside of another document. In the next exercise, we are going to begin work on the Pirate Flag project.
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