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Integrating with Adobe Flash Catalyst

From: Illustrator CS5 New Features

Video: Integrating with Adobe Flash Catalyst

One of the great things about Illustrator CS5 is how well it integrates with a brand-new application from Adobe called Adobe Flash Catalyst. Now, Flash Catalyst is a separate application. It's included as a part of Adobe Creative Suite, and it allows you to create Flash content without having to write any code. What's really nice about Illustrator and Flash Catalyst is not simply that you can take Illustrator artwork and bring it into Flash Catalyst. But if you need to make changes to your artwork after you've already added it into activity, you can still bring your artwork back into Illustrator and make changes.

Integrating with Adobe Flash Catalyst

One of the great things about Illustrator CS5 is how well it integrates with a brand-new application from Adobe called Adobe Flash Catalyst. Now, Flash Catalyst is a separate application. It's included as a part of Adobe Creative Suite, and it allows you to create Flash content without having to write any code. What's really nice about Illustrator and Flash Catalyst is not simply that you can take Illustrator artwork and bring it into Flash Catalyst. But if you need to make changes to your artwork after you've already added it into activity, you can still bring your artwork back into Illustrator and make changes.

Let's take a quick look at how that works. I have an Illustrator file open. It's called WaterTheFlowers. And say I want to create a cute little animation where maybe whenever you click on the can, it looks like you're watering the flowers. So, I've created some basic parts of a design. I actually have three layers in my file. I have the flowerpot on one layer, the droplets of water on a second layer and the watering can itself on a third layer. I'm going to switch to the Flash Catalyst application, and I'm going to start off by creating a new Flash Catalyst file from an Adobe Illustrator file. I'll choose this file called WaterTheFlowers.ai, the same file which I was using inside of Illustrator, and I'll click Open.

Flash Catalyst actually has the ability to read a native Illustrator file and then convert them into components. I'll click OK. Now, Flash Catalyst will translate all that information. Let me zoom in a bit here on the artwork, and you can see, if you look at my Layers panel here inside of Flash Catalyst, that it's identical to what I saw inside of Illustrator. To create the effect that I want to go for here, I'm actually going to go to my Layers panel, and click on the Watering Can layer, and hold on the Shift key, and also select the Water layer. With all these elements selected, I'll go to this floating panel here. It's called the HUD, or the Head Up Display, here inside of Flash Catalyst.

I'll choose the convert this artwork into a button component. Now I have the ability to edit the appearance of those buttons in the various states. In this case, here there will be Up, Over, Down or Disabled. I'll click on the Up button here for now. Now when the watering can is just sitting there, I don't want to see the water. So, in this state, I'm actually going to turn off the Water layer. I'll highlight the Over state, and I'll hide the Water layer there as well. Finally, in the Disabled state, I'll also hide the Water. Only in the Down state, when a person clicks on the actual button itself, will you see those droplets of water.

I'm currently in Isolation mode. I'm working directly on the button. So, I'm just going to double-click anywhere on my artboard to exit back to my regular artwork. To see what I've created, I'm going to go to the File menu, and I'm going to choose Run Project. That will launch this content into my Web browser. I can test to see if this works by just moving over to the water can and clicking on it and seeing that each time that I click, the water droplets appear. Great! It works just the way that I need it to. So, I'll close this and come back to Flash Catalyst, and maybe now I realize that I want to make some adjustments to how those water droplets appear.

Right now, the color that I'm using for those water droplets is kind of muted. I'd like to use a bright blue color instead. While there are certain types of edits that I can make inside of Flash Catalyst, it may be easier to change my artwork back in Illustrator. To do so, I'll just make sure that my button is selected on the artboard. I'll go to the Modify menu in Flash Catalyst, and I'll choose Edit in Illustrator CS5. When I do so, Flash Catalyst will automatically switch me to Illustrator. It will load this artwork into a new document and a quick glance at my layers panel reveals all the different states of that button.

Now, in this case here, I want to modify the Down state. So, I'm going to hide the Up state here. I'm going to click on the Down state and use my Selection tool to select the Water. I'll specify a much deeper blue for my color, maybe something about like that. Let's see how that looks. Oh! That looks much better! Now, I'll click on the checkmark over here to let me know that I'm done. The way that Illustrator and Flash Catalyst communicate with each other is through a format called FXG. In reality, I don't care much about the technical details about how this happens. I just click OK to return back to Flash Catalyst.

At this point, my change has already been made inside of Flash Catalyst. All I have to do is go to the File menu and choose to run that project again. I'll see that now, when I go ahead and I click on that watering can, the actual droplets of water are the new blue color that I specified. So, if you are a designer looking to create cool Flash content, and you already know how to use Illustrator, you might want to take a close look at Flash Catalyst. Both Illustrator and Flash Catalyst work really great together.

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This video is part of

Image for Illustrator CS5 New Features
Illustrator CS5 New Features

30 video lessons · 19632 viewers

Mordy Golding
Author

 
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  1. 9m 0s
    1. Welcome
      1m 21s
    2. Comparing Illustrator CS4 and Illustrator CS5
      7m 39s
  2. 27m 2s
    1. Defining perspective grids
      7m 48s
    2. Drawing artwork in perspective
      8m 46s
    3. Mapping flat artwork to perspective grids
      10m 28s
  3. 15m 36s
    1. Creating variable-width strokes
      4m 26s
    2. Using variable-width profiles
      4m 26s
    3. Creating perfect dashed lines
      3m 30s
    4. Easily adding arrowheads to strokes
      3m 14s
  4. 16m 8s
    1. Simulating real brush strokes with the Bristle brush
      11m 46s
    2. Using enhanced art and pattern brushes
      2m 55s
    3. Applying variable-width settings to brushstrokes
      1m 27s
  5. 12m 10s
    1. Drawing Behind and Draw Inside Drawing modes
      4m 17s
    2. Creating complex art easily with the Shape Builder tool
      6m 5s
    3. Easily joining multiple paths
      1m 48s
  6. 11m 25s
    1. Working with symbols more easily
      6m 56s
    2. Using 9-slice scaling options with symbols
      4m 29s
  7. 7m 55s
    1. Using the new Artboards panel
      4m 13s
    2. Setting individual artboard rulers
      2m 35s
    3. Printing artboards more easily
      1m 7s
  8. 11m 47s
    1. Creating pixel-perfect web graphics
      3m 43s
    2. Creating crisp readable text for the web
      1m 58s
    3. Quickly exporting individual slices
      1m 50s
    4. Integrating with Adobe Flash Catalyst
      4m 16s
  9. 10m 11s
    1. Select artwork through other objects
      2m 36s
    2. Using new paste commands
      1m 57s
    3. Applying resolution-independent raster effects
      2m 55s
    4. Specifying transparency within gradient mesh
      1m 8s
    5. Creating editable trim marks
      1m 35s
  10. 17s
    1. Goodbye
      17s

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