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In this movie, I'll show you how to import an illustration into Photoshop as a smart object, which allows you to reference the original vector-based information; so among other things you can scale the illustrations inside of Photoshop as much as you want, and you always rendered the artwork get the full resolution of the image. And in doing so, we will be able to transform the shield from its current appearance shown here without the text, to this more credible version of the image here. Now we are going to taking advantage of a fair number of Complex options inside Photoshop, so you'll be able to follow along better if you know a thing or two about the program.
All right, so I'll go and return to Illustrator, and I am going to twirl open the new drawing layer at the top of the stack, and turn off the top most Path as well as the Clipping Group. So we have just the base star and circle shapes. Everything else is locked down, so, I'll press Ctrl+A or Command+A on a Mac in order to select the shield and its star, and then I'll go up to the Edit menu and I'll choose the copy command, or you can press Ctrl+C or Command+C on the Mac. Now we'll go ahead and switch back to Photoshop. And notice that I have this file Grungebackground.psd open, which features a photograph from the fotolia image library, about which you can learn more @fotolia.com/deke.
And I'll go up to the Edit menu and I'll choose the Paste Command, or we can press Ctrl+V or Command+V on the Mac. And Photoshop will display this dialog box, asking you how you would like to paste the Illustration. And this is a dialog box that comes up specifically when you've copied something from Illustrator. Now by default, the Paste As option is set to Smart Object, and I'll demonstrate how that works in just a moment. You also have the option of just converting the Illustration to Pixels, or pasting just the path outlines into the Path panel, which is useful when you are creating Clipping Paths inside the program--not something that we are going to explore inside of this chapter.
And then finally, you can paste the Illustration as a Shape layer, and we'll see how that works later on as well. But for now I'm going to select Pixels, because that's ultimately the worst solution in most cases, and then I'll click OK. And I'll get this little square with an X in it, which is Adobe's Universal sign for a placed object. What's happening is Photoshop is giving us the opportunity to scale the artwork before we convert it to pixels. And let's say I do the opposite of what you would normally do; I'll make it smaller, just to make a point here.
So, I'll go ahead and click on the Link icon up here in the Options bar, which is the equivalent of a control panel inside a Photoshop, and then I'll change the Width value W to 50%. And that will change the Height value as well, and then we'll press Enter or Return key on the Mac a couple of times in order to scale and place the artwork. Now I'll go and zoom into 100%, so that we can see that even though the Shield is tiny it looks great. But as soon as I zoom in past to 100% then I start to see big pixels, because after all I'm working inside Photoshop.
All right, now let's say at this point I want to scale the shield. I'll go ahead and press Ctrl+0 or Command+0 on a Mac to zoom all the way out. So many of Photoshop Keyboard Shortcuts are just like those in Illustrator. To scale the Shield, you go to the Edit menu and you choose this command right here, Free Transform. So all the Transformations--rather than being handled with tools to way there is inside illustrator--it's handled with this one command right here Free Transform, which you can also get by pressing Ctrl+T or Command+T on the Mac.
And then you'll see this bounding box surrounding the art along with the eight handles. I want to scale my artwork from the center outward. So I'll press the Alt key or the Option key on the Mac as I drag one of these corner handles. I also what to scale the shield proportionally so I'll press the Shift key. So another words have both the Shift and Alt keys down--those would be the Shift and Option keys on a Mac-- and I'll scale the art too about the size right here let's say. Now at this point we're seeing these big, huge, choppy pixels. As soon as you press the Enter key or the Return key on a Mac in order to accept the Transformation, things are going to look a little better, because a Photoshop's Anti- Aliasing. However they're not going to look great.
We have got some big, huge, choppy pixel transitions as you can see here, and that's because we converted the artwork to pixels in the first place. Let's compare that to working with the Smart Object. So, I will once again press Ctrl+0 or Command +0 on a Mac in order to zoom out; I'll go and delete the Pixel layer, we don't need it, by pressing Backspace key or the Delete key on a Mac. And then I'll go back to the Edit menu and choose the Paste command again, and this time I'll set Paste as to Smart Object, and click OK. And now let's run through those exact same steps; we are seeing the place boundary as before.
I'll go ahead and click on a Chain icon up here in the Options bar and change the Width value to 50% press, the Enter key or the return key of the Mac a couple times in order to accept that change. Let's go ahead and zoom in on the shield; it still looks like a bunch huge pixels when I zoom in to 300%. So, there is not really any reason at this point to expect things that are going to differently; but I want to see over here in Layers panel. Instead of just a Standard image thumbnail, which is what we are seeing for all the other layer. And by the way if you want to see big thumbnails like this, you want a right-click down here in an empty portion below the Layers and choose this command right there, large thumbnails.
But notice that the Smart Object layer, not only is it called Vector Smart Object, and you can change that if you want to. I'll go ahead and rename my layer shield. But it's also got this little place icon, which shows that it's a Smart Object; and what that means is we've actually embedded the Illustration inside this layer Photoshop file. Which means, among other things, that we can scale the artwork as much as we like. So I'll press Ctrl+0 or Command+0 on a Mac in order to zoom out, and then I'll return to the Edit menu, choose Free Transform once again.
And then press the Shift+Alt keys or Shift+ Option on the Mac, and drag that corner handle out to approximately where I had it before, which I believe is right about here is what I'm looking for. And you can see already things are looking better we have some choppy transitions, because Photoshop doesn't shows the Anti- Aliasing as we are transforming the object. However we don't have the big pixels. So I'll press the Enter Key or the return key on the Mac in order to apply the transformation, and you can see that we have some very, very smooth transitions here at the 100% zoom size.
Now if you zoom any farther in than 100% then you're going to start seeing pixels, that's the nature of the beast inside of Photoshop. But we are actually looking at Vector based artwork, thanks to the fact that we've pasted our Illustration as a Smart Object here inside Photoshop.
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