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Join Justin Seeley, lynda.com staff author and design enthusiast, each week for a new 5-minute, self-contained tutorial that you can use to instantly improve your design workflow. This series covers techniques for print, digital, and web design, addressing the tools that creative professionals like you use most. Learn new ways to leverage layer styles and vector shapes in Adobe Photoshop, work more efficiently with text in Illustrator, and embed videos and even tweets in WordPress posts, and much more. Check back each week for a new installment, and a new design hack.
Hi there. Welcome back to Creative Quick Tips. My name is Justin Seeley, and this week we're going to be taking a look at something called resetting the bounding box inside of Adobe Illustrator. If I go to the File menu and create a new file here, and just hit OK. Doesn't matter how big or how small. Basically, what I am talking about is, when you draw out a shape. Let's say that I am drawing a polygon. And, I'll draw this out and I'll knock down the sides until I have three sides. I'm going to hold down the Shift key so it's a perfect polygon like so. And then I'll switch to my selection tool.
The bounding box is this area that encompasses the shape. And so when I rotate this object for instance, you may notice that the bounding box actually rotates with it. That may not be what I want to happen. Maybe I want the shape to be this direction, but I want the bounding box to be straight up and down so that I can easily scale the shape in any direction that I want. In order to do this, what you're going to do, just go to the Object menu, go down to Transform, and hit Reset Bounding Box. When you do that, you can see that the bounding box is then reset that nice square layout, making it easy for me to distort from this side, or from this side, or to even go down like that.
Makes it really simple. Same holds true for other types of shapes as well. If you want to take something like, let's take an ellipse tool. And, then let's draw out a star on top of that. And, then let's add in a polygon, somewhere like that. So there we go. We've got these three shapes. We're going to combine all those together with the shape builder tool. So, we're just going to hold down the Shift key. There you go, so there's all these shapes. And then I can rotate these around, because this is actually what I wanted to look like, something like this. But you'll notice now that the bounding box is all crooked, not exactly what I want to happen.
So just Object, Transform, and Reset the Bounding Box. Now I can scale in any direction I want, or let's undo back to there, can actually scale in proportion and keep it right there, without any worries about it being distorted in any way. So there you have it. Next time you're drawing shapes and manipulating them around inside of Adobe Illustrator, and you want just to reset that bounding box, just go up to the Object menu, choose Transform, reset it. You'll be well on your way to making sure your shapes look exactly the way you want them to.
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