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In Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Mastery, the third and final part of the comprehensive Illustrator One-on-One series, author and industry expert Deke McClelland shows how to take advantage of the wide array of dynamic effects in Illustrator CS5. Deke explores Illustrator’s powerful Gradient Mesh feature, great for creating photorealistic airbrushing effects. He also covers graphic styles, the liquify tools, envelope-style distortions, the new Bristle Brushes, 3D text, and perspective drawing. Exercise files accompany the course.
In this exercise I'm going to show you how to install some custom keyboard shortcuts that I include along with this series that go by the name dekekeys. Now, I want to make something clear. Even though I've been including these keyboard shortcuts for years, they're well tested, you don't have to install them. It's not mandatory. You can totally follow along with the series whether you install the shortcuts or not, but I do recommend them, because they offer a quick access to some very common useful features inside of Illustrator. And here is the file. It's inside the exercise_files folder inside 00_setup and it's called dekekeys AIcs5 1on1.kys.
Now, you have to put it in a very specific location and here is what I'm going to do. First I'm going to tell you what that location is, but I want you to wait, because then I'm going to provide a trick for getting to that location that's hopefully going to make things easier. So here is the locations. They're included in this file right there dekekeys instructions.tif which you can open up inside of Photoshop if you want to, or just watch what I'm doing on-screen. I'm going to go ahead and switch over to Photoshop. This is the file that I was telling you about, the instructions, and I'm going to switch to the full screen mode.
Notice that it says that copy that dekekeys AIcs5 1on1.kys file to a location on your hard drive, depending on a platform. And this is a real pain in the neck, that it varies from one platform to the next, but it does. And this all assumes that you installed Illustrator in it's default location on the C drive, on the PC specifically, but if you have under Windows XP then here is where you would put that dekekeys file. You go to your C drive, go to Documents and Settings, go to user and user is your computer login name by the way.
So that's going to vary from one machine to the next of course. Application Data\Adobe\Adobe Illustrator CS5 Settings\en_US. This is for the English US version of the software by the way. Ostensibly, if you're working away in a different country on a localized version of the software then this would be something different. Anyway, it's different entirely under Windows 7 and Vista. Both work the same way. And it's going to be C, then Users then you go into the user subfolder, AppData, it's very important you go to the AppData folder.
This is another similar folder there that you don't want to go into Roaming\Adobe\Adobe Illustrator CS5 Settings\en_US. So that part is the same. Again, localized versions in other countries. This folder is going to be different. And then finally on the Mac you go to the finder level, which is the desktop level of your computer, and you choose the Home command from the Go menu and then you copy the shortcuts file to this folder which is Library/Preferences/Adobe Illustrator CS5 Settings/en_US. All right, so I just want you to know that.
I'm not suggesting for a second that you go ahead and find that folder, because among other things it's difficult to get to that folder in the PC, because it's a protected folder and so on. So it's easier to run a search and here is what I suggest you do. The easiest solution. Let's go ahead and switch over to Illustrator why don't we and I have this Welcome.ai file open just so we have something to look at on-screen. I'm going to go up to the Edit menu and I'm going to choose a keyboard Shortcuts command, which itself has a keyboard shortcut of mash your fist K.
That is Ctrl+Shift+Alt+K here on the PC, or Command+Shift+Option+K on the Mac. A note about keyboard shortcuts. You will note that I say them in the opposite order that Illustrator lists them. And that's because my convention is the more popular convention of listing either the Ctrl key on the PC, or the Command key on the Mac first then Shift and then Alt on the PC or Option on the Mac. Anyway, as I say the keyboard shortcut here would be Ctrl+Shift+Alt+K, or Command+Shift+Option+K on the Mac, brings up the Keyboard Shortcuts command.
Then what we have to do is we have to switch from Illustrator Defaults to something else, but there is nothing else to switch to and meanwhile we don't have a load button, which is crazy. I don't know why we don't, but here is what you can do. You can click the Save button. I know you haven't done anything. Click Save anyway. And let's go ahead and call this guy secret-agent-x just so it's easy to search for and in fact go ahead and select it like so after typing in the name and press Ctrl+C on the PC, or Command+C on the Mac in order to copy that name.
In that way, we can rather search for this exact same file. Now click OK. You just created a file called secret- agent-x on your hard drive. Where is it? Who knows? Let's click OK. I'll go ahead and minimize Illustrator for a moment and I'm going to bring up a different window that I've created in advance. What you want is the search window here and that's what I have got. And you can get to the search function by pressing Command+F on the Mac. You can also press F3 on the PC, or you can press the Windows key and the F key together. That works.
Anyway, however you decide to go you want to bring up a search window and then let's run a search for that file secret-agent-x, which I can paste in if necessary by pressing Ctrl +V, Command+V on the Mac. And then I'll say that I want to search in my Computer or you may be able to just press the Enter key in order to begin your search of the contents of your computer. And this should hopefully look inside all the drives that are connected at this point of time. And notice that now I have found secret- agent-x.kys here inside of this folder.
What I'm going to do is right-click on this item and I'm going to choose Open file location. So that I can go ahead and locate that file on disk and here it is inside that very same folder. I was telling you here on the PC, which is as follows, I'm looking at the contents of my C drive. I'm inside the Users folder. I'm inside that user folder which in my case is called me, and then AppData, Roaming, Adobe, finally Adobe Illustrator CS5 settings, and en_US here in the states and there is that secret-agent-x file. Notice that it ends with a KYS extension, because after all it is a keyboard shortcuts file.
All right, let's return to the 00_ setup folder here and I'm going to drag dekekeys AIcs5 1on1.kys into this folder in order to copy it. That's all there is to it. Now let's return to Illustrator once again. And by the way in case those of you who are Windows 7/Windows Vista users are wondering what in the world I'm doing the switch programs here, this is a function of pressing the Windows key and Tab at the same time. And then once you get to the desired folder or application you just go ahead and release the Windows key.
On a Mac you can switch between applications by pressing Command+Tab. All right, let's go out to the Edit menu choose the Keyboard Shortcuts command once again, or press Ctrl+Shift+Alt+K, Command+Shift+Option+K on the Mac. We no longer need secret-agent-x. It has served its purposes. Now I'm going to choose from that Set menu dekekeys AIcs5 1on1. And to confirm that everything worked go ahead and switch from Tools here to Menu Commands and I wants you to twirl open File. And by twirl open, I mean click on this little twirly triangle right there which expands the menu, so that you can see it's commands.
And then scroll down and I'm doing this using the scroll wheel on my mouse and notice the Place command right here. It should have a keyboard shortcut of Ctrl+Alt+D, or Command+Option+D on the Mac. If you see that keyboard shortcut everything is good to go. Just go ahead and click on the OK button and you have successfully loaded dekekeys my friends. In the next exercise, I'm going to show those of you who are Macintosh users and Macintosh users only how to remap your system-level keyboard shortcuts so that they don't overlap Illustrator.
Those of you who are Windows users, you can skip to the exercise after that in which I tell you how to install the best workflow color settings.
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