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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.
I'm still working inside the Calendar face.ai document that I opened the inside of the previous exercise. Since opening the document I lowered the line weight associated with the mouth and the nose to 1 point thick, and I also went ahead and assigned rounded joins to the nose. In this exercise we need to fix the tongue. Notice that the tongue is too high to really go inside the mouth. So it looks like it's sitting on the mouth instead of going into the lips and we need to fix that problem.
Now, you may say, Gosh it's awfully subtle Deke. I mean here we are at the 2400% zoom level and we can barely see the problem. Well you would be surprised my friends, and I say this from experience, a lot of painful experience, I must say. When you print an illustration to a high resolution printer you'll be surprised the problems that show up. Basically these little teeny problems get magnified and the last thing you want is virtual egg on your face. When you see that printed document you want it to look its absolute best, right? So let's take care of the problems as we see them inside of Illustrator.
So here's what I'm going to have you do. I want you to go ahead and get the white arrow tool and I want you to click on the outline of the tongue. Now it should be selected. Why isn't it appearing selected on screen? Because I hid the edges in a previous exercise. Remember how I pressed Control+H, Command+H on a Mac and I told you that was a persistent setting, meaning it lasts from one object to the next. So you need to press Control+H or Command+H to bring those edges back. Now I can see my edges, that's good. Now I'm going to turn my attention to the Stroke palette because my stroke options are not available once again up here in the Control palette.
Notice this Align Stroke setting. Right now it's set to center, so that the stroke is centered on the path, so that half the stroke is on the inside of the path, and the other half of the stroke is on the outside of the path. You can move the stroke outside the path or inside the path using these other options. So this one moves it outside the path and this one moves it inside the path. That's one way to handle the problem because by moving the stroke inside the path, we ensure that we don't see the stroke going outside above the edge of the lip here, but I don't really like the way that the stroke moves down inside the tongue. It's not aligned with the edge of the lips the way it ought to be, so I consider this to be a bad solution, frankly. So I'm going to switch the stroke back to where it was because that looks better where the tongue and these little ornaments down at the bottom of the face are concerned.
Instead I'm going to click on this edge right there, on this line segment. Just click on it, don't Alt+click or Option-click or anything like that. Just click on it in order to make sure that that edge is selected. Then I want you to press the Backspace key or the Delete key on the Mac, in order to delete that edge. So we've changed the closed path to an open path. Now we've exposed, notice we've exposed some rounded caps right here. So let's go ahead and get rid of them by switching the caps from round caps to Butt Caps, and try not to snicker, we're all adults here.
We know that a Butt Cap means that the cap gets shaved off right here at the end of the line. All right, but and that's but, not tt. But now this line in the background is getting covered up, so I want you to grab your black arrow tool, click on that line to select it, and then press Control+ Right Bracket to move it forward. So it's covering up the tongue. Now we have a problem with the cleft of the tongue running down the center here. It's got a round cap as well. So you need to get your white arrow tool. The reason I'm having you use the white arrow tool to select these pieces of the tongue is because they're inside of a group. You may recall how we grabbed that entire group and pasted it in here.
So we're trying to select inside the group. Now you could go ahead and select, there's two paths, by the way that are making up this cleft, and the best way to select them is to press the Alt key, press and hold the Alt key or the Option key on the Mac and drag like this, right through this central portion, this area here, that way you won't select anything else, if you're careful, and so we've just selected the two lines that make up the tongue and if I now switch to the Butt Cap, I get rid of the caps down here as well, that's a problem. Boo Butt Caps. So let's switch back to the rounded cap here. So how do we deal with this? Well really all I'm going to do, all I want to do is I just want to move these points down. I could move the entire cleft down, but I don't want to. Let's say I'm totally happy with where these points are. I just want to move this point up here downward. So I could go ahead and marquee this region and I end up selecting 17, 000 items. Well several items anyway. I don't know how many.
But I'm selecting all kinds of things and I don't even know what they are. We're so far zoomed in I have no idea what I've selected. I think, based on what I'm seeing here, that I've selected the rotated, the angled rectangles. Remember them from a long time ago now. Well so what I do? They're right there on those edges. How do I select them? And they're on top of each other, so I can't like click on one and Shift-click on the other, cause they're coincident, they're right on top of each other. Well check this out, this really cool, weird function inside of Illustrator.
Go ahead and Alt drag or Option drag around this area once again just to select those two lines. Then I want to isolate them. So I'll do that by going out to the Object menu and choosing the Group command. So now they were already part of a group, but now we went ahead and grouped them together inside of that group, so they're part of a subgroup. Now we can isolate that subgroup by grabbing the Selection Tool, the black arrow tool and double-clicking on those selected items, and we now enter isolation mode. We have now isolated the entire group, the big group as it turns out, notice that, and you can see if we go ahead and zoom out. Only the black stroked items are isolated. Everything that appears grayed, and notice that we're covering up the nose. That doesn't matter, that's not really a problem. Everything that's grayed out is outside, the outer world, something that we're not going to monkey with at all, and notice now I'll get the white arrow tool and I'll drag, I'll drag over a bunch of things and I only select inside the group because we're in isolation mode, and it's a good isolation mode people. It's not like that kind of bad isolation mode, it's a good one, whatever that means.
Anyway, we decided we wanted to be isolated is what I mean by that. Now I'm going to drag around these points with my white arrow tool. I just select those two points, awesome, those two coincident points. I'm going to press the down arrow key a couple of times in order to move that point downward so that it's inside, so that this cap is fully inside of this horizontal line right there. Now I need to exit the isolation mode. Don't need to call the warden, all I need to do is go over to this left-pointing arrowhead and click on it to exit isolated group. Is that not cool? Now I have to tell you that feature was introduced in Illustrator CS2 but the way they introduced it, the way they implemented that isolation mode made it close to unusable. Now they fixed it inside Illustrator CS3, and it's really, really awesome.
Only one more exercise in this chapter to go people, and we're going to fix a little bit of a stroke problem that you may or may not see and then we're going to do this really special trick. We're going to fill something with the nose. Well you'll see, you'll see in that final exercise. Please join me, won't you?
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