Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Mastery
Illustration by John Hersey

Making 3D droplets in Photoshop


Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Mastery

with Deke McClelland

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Video: Making 3D droplets in Photoshop

I've saved my progress as Masked stem.psd here inside Photoshop incidentally. I am going to switch back to my Rectangular Marquee tool because that Arrow tool, that Black Arrow tool is only useful when you are working with path outlines. And now I am going to turn on this layer, near the top of the layers panel that's called droplets, and I created these little droplets that are going to end up looking really great with highlights and shadows and the whole number, they'll look translucent. But I've originally created them as custom shapes, and the way that you do that incidentally, I will go ahead and click on that droplets layer to make it active.
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  1. 37m 22s
    1. Welcome
    2. Linking AI and EPS files to Illustrator
      6m 34s
    3. Installing the dekeKeys keyboard shortcuts
      7m 43s
    4. Remapping Mac OS shortcuts
      6m 56s
    5. Installing the Best Workflow color settings
      4m 56s
    6. The color settings explained
      7m 4s
    7. Preserve Numbers vs. embedded profiles
      3m 24s
  2. 1h 35m
    1. My favorite features in all of Illustrator
      1m 21s
    2. Introducing the Transform effect
      5m 30s
    3. Repeating the last effect you applied
      4m 52s
    4. Applying multiple passes of a single effect
      5m 21s
    5. The wonders of editing dynamic artwork
      7m 13s
    6. Applying effects inside effects
      5m 11s
    7. Assigning an effect to an entire layer
      5m 42s
    8. Building a complex bevel effect
      5m 44s
    9. Placing artwork as a Photoshop Smart Object
      4m 55s
    10. Editing that Smart Object in Illustrator
      4m 21s
    11. Rotating continuously overlapping objects
      5m 34s
    12. Adjusting a dynamic transformation origin
      6m 22s
    13. Vector vs. raster effects
      5m 46s
    14. Introducing the Scribble effect
      5m 23s
    15. Copying effects between layers
      4m 20s
    16. Introducing Graphic Styles
      6m 50s
    17. Controlling the Filter Gallery preview
      2m 28s
    18. Document Raster Effects Settings
      4m 31s
    19. Combining and saving styles
      4m 32s
  3. 1h 25m
    1. Airbrushing with points and handles
      1m 45s
    2. Introducing the gradient mesh
      6m 10s
    3. Working with the Mesh tool
      6m 12s
    4. Lifting colors from a tracing template
      5m 47s
    5. Finessing the colors of mesh points
      4m 17s
    6. Creating a mesh with the Mesh tool
      7m 19s
    7. Adding a gradient mesh to a circle
      4m 37s
    8. Adding a gradient mesh to a slender shape
      8m 7s
    9. Creating soft and sharp transitions
      6m 56s
    10. Converting a linear gradient to a mesh
      7m 29s
    11. Editing a linear gradient mesh
      5m 6s
    12. Converting a radial gradient to a mesh
      8m 19s
    13. Editing a radial gradient mesh
      8m 15s
    14. Creating credible cast shadows
      5m 32s
  4. 1h 15m
    1. The best of static and dynamic adjustments
    2. Adding wings to a horse in Photoshop
      6m 52s
    3. Introducing the Warp tool
      6m 29s
    4. Brush size, Detail, and Simplify
      8m 24s
    5. The Twirl, Pucker, and Bloat tools
      6m 13s
    6. The Scallop, Crystallize, and Wrinkle tools
      5m 55s
    7. Creating a mind-blowing custom starburst
      4m 29s
    8. Introducing Envelope Distort
      5m 21s
    9. Editing the contents of an envelope
      5m 20s
    10. Warping an envelope mesh
      5m 20s
    11. Liquifying the contents of an envelope
      7m 7s
    12. Creating and editing an envelope mesh
      7m 59s
    13. Blending an envelope into a background
      4m 35s
  5. 2h 1m
    1. Outlines along a path
      1m 13s
    2. Weaving a pattern throughout an illustration
      6m 24s
    3. Introducing the Brushes panel
      4m 21s
    4. Applying and editing a calligraphic brush
      8m 28s
    5. Applying and scaling art brushes
      6m 6s
    6. Applying and editing a scatter brush
      5m 29s
    7. Formatting and scaling brushed text
      5m 40s
    8. Editing the path outlines of an art brush
      6m 2s
    9. Replacing an existing art brush
      6m 46s
    10. Creating and refining an art brush
      8m 3s
    11. Tiling pattern vs. pattern brushes
      5m 12s
    12. Creating a pattern brush
      8m 20s
    13. Designing the perfect side pattern
      7m 1s
    14. Start, end, and corner tiles
      8m 58s
    15. Expanding and filling brush outlines
      6m 49s
    16. Text brushes vs. type on a path
      6m 55s
    17. Combining a text brush with the Width tool
      8m 43s
    18. Introducing the bristle brushes
      5m 43s
    19. Adjusting the hairs in a bristle brush
      5m 24s
  6. 1h 32m
    1. Charts can be beautiful
      1m 17s
    2. Adding a gradient mesh to a complex path
      8m 9s
    3. Importing and graphing data
      5m 22s
    4. Switching between the kinds of graphs
      6m 8s
    5. Changing the Graph Type settings
      8m 7s
    6. Correcting and editing data
      6m 51s
    7. Selecting and coloring graph elements
      6m 29s
    8. Making nuanced changes to a graph
      8m 6s
    9. The pitfalls of manual adjustments
      8m 45s
    10. Creating and applying graph designs
      6m 28s
    11. Making a basic pictograph
      6m 47s
    12. Assembling sliding graph designs
      8m 33s
    13. Making last-minute tweaks and edits
      5m 37s
    14. Composing and customizing a graph
      5m 44s
  7. 2h 6m
    1. Perspective is all about real life
      1m 44s
    2. Assembling an isometric projection
      8m 5s
    3. Introducing Illustrator's Perspective Grid
      6m 8s
    4. Drawing a basic perspective cube
      8m 1s
    5. One-point, two-point, and three-point perspective
      8m 25s
    6. Creating automatically scaling box labels
      4m 41s
    7. Setting up a Perspective Grid
      6m 45s
    8. Perspective Grid tips and tricks
      6m 39s
    9. Drawing and editing a perspective shape
      5m 20s
    10. Shifting between planes on the fly
      5m 24s
    11. Creating a freeform shape in perspective
      7m 8s
    12. Working with perspective symbols
      8m 57s
    13. Matching perspective with the Shear tool
      2m 50s
    14. Rendering an off-plane path in perspective
      5m 7s
    15. Replicating symbols in perspective
      8m 12s
    16. Mass-modifying perspective instances
      2m 56s
    17. Adding and editing perspective text
      5m 37s
    18. Duplicating perpendicular shapes
      7m 17s
    19. Adjusting multiple shapes on a single plane
      4m 48s
    20. Creating a perspective column
      9m 23s
    21. Duplicating a series of perspective paths
      3m 20s
  8. 1h 25m
    1. Just another dynamic effect
      1m 10s
    2. Introducing the 3D Revolve effect
      5m 1s
    3. The 3D Revolve settings
      7m 24s
    4. Fixing 3D rendering problems
      6m 32s
    5. Establishing symbols for 3D art
      6m 50s
    6. Mapping symbols onto 3D surfaces
      6m 14s
    7. Adjusting shading and light
      6m 25s
    8. Toning down 3D art in Photoshop
      5m 43s
    9. Adding a photographic texture
      7m 36s
    10. Converting from Illustrator paths to Photoshop masks
      4m 50s
    11. Making 3D droplets in Photoshop
      5m 58s
    12. Unifying textures with Smart Filters
      5m 48s
    13. Creating 3D type with Extrude & Bevel
      6m 44s
    14. Coloring and correcting extruded edges
      9m 15s
  9. 1h 3m
    1. Take action today, save effort tomorrow
    2. Introducing the Actions panel
      4m 16s
    3. Initiating a new action
      5m 33s
    4. Recording a practical action
      4m 56s
    5. Four ways to play an action
      4m 27s
    6. Streamlining by disabling dialog boxes
      5m 48s
    7. Editing an action set in a text editor
      7m 20s
    8. Inserting an unresponsive menu item
      6m 16s
    9. Match-processing a folder of files
      5m 42s
    10. Recording a transformation sequence
      6m 11s
    11. Editing and troubleshooting an action
      5m 6s
    12. Recording actions within actions
      7m 21s
  10. 1m 36s
    1. See Ya
      1m 36s

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Watch the Online Video Course Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Mastery
13h 5m Advanced Jan 28, 2011

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

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.

Topics include:
  • Working with dynamic effects
  • Placing artwork as a Photoshop Smart Object
  • Creating and editing a Gradient Mesh
  • Distorting artwork with an Envelope Mesh
  • Using the Calligraphic, Art, and Scatter Brushes
  • Creating an intricate Pattern Brush
  • Importing and graphing data
  • Creating a complex pictograph
  • Drawing and editing a perspective shape
  • Working with the new Perspective Grid tool
  • Using the 3D Revolve effect
  • Creating 3D type with Extrude & Bevel
  • Recording and playing automated actions
Deke McClelland

Making 3D droplets in Photoshop

I've saved my progress as Masked stem.psd here inside Photoshop incidentally. I am going to switch back to my Rectangular Marquee tool because that Arrow tool, that Black Arrow tool is only useful when you are working with path outlines. And now I am going to turn on this layer, near the top of the layers panel that's called droplets, and I created these little droplets that are going to end up looking really great with highlights and shadows and the whole number, they'll look translucent. But I've originally created them as custom shapes, and the way that you do that incidentally, I will go ahead and click on that droplets layer to make it active.

Don't click on that thumbnail, because if you do you'll see these little edges around your drop shadow, they are not really there, they are just the path outlines. And if you do end up seeing them, just click on that thumbnail again, that vector mask thumbnail in order to turn those outlines off and you get to the droplets. You can actually just draw them in Photoshop by switching to the Custom Shape tool. So by default, you'll see the Rectangle tool, you go ahead and choose the Custom Shape tool from the Fly-out menu and then you go up to this shape area right there. You click the down pointing arrowhead and you'll see this list of custom shapes that ships along with Photoshop.

Now you might not see that many, you might just see, I will go ahead and reset the shapes here and click OK, you might just see this default bunch right here and they don't include the droplet. To get to the droplet and many of the other ones, you go ahead and click this right pointing arrowhead and you choose All. And then when you get this alert message, say OK, don't they Append because you will have a bunch of repeats. Just say OK and then you'll have this big ginormous list. And close to the top is this one called Raindrop, and that's the one that I used, and then I drew three droplets as you can see here.

All right, well they don't look good at all right now. They don't look like droplets, but they will once we go ahead and add a few layer effects. Now I've added those layer effects in advance. To see them, click this down pointing arrowhead next to the fx icon and you'll see that there's a Drop Shadow, Inner Shadow, Bevel and Emboss and Color Overlay. But before you can see what they do, you need to go ahead and reduce what's known as the Fill Opacity value right here, and I want you to take that value down to 5%. Now, the thing about the Fill-Opacity value, even though it's just called fill, it really means fill opacity.

The idea is that reduces the opacity of those drops to 5% but it has no effect on the layer effects, so the layer effects will continue to show up nicely. So we are just changing the opacity of this blackness. All right, now turn on the Drop Shadow, so you can see we have just these little subtle drop shadows in back of the drops, but of course, does not make them look any moister than they were before, it just looks ridiculous at this point. Go ahead and add in the Inner Shadow this time, which is an effect you don't get inside of Illustrator, I wish, we had an Inner Shadow in Illustrator, it would be very useful, and that goes ahead and creates a shadow inside the drop, so things are looking better, not best but better.

I also have this little bit of Color Overlay here and it's just a tiny hint of color infusion. And if you double-click on that, you can double-click on any of these to see the settings that I applied, but if you double-click in Color Overlay, you'll see that I went ahead and selected a blue color. I set the Blend mode to Linear Light, one of those blend modes that is not shared between Photoshop and Illustrator, but it's basically and even harsher contrast mode than Hard Light, which we've seen in the past. And then I reduce the Opacity value to 5%, so it's very, very low indeed.

If I were to crank up the Opacity value, we would get some very bright droplets. Obviously, we don't want that, so go ahead and crank it back down to 5%. Then the other effect that I have already assigned in advance is Bevel and Emboss. So if you go ahead and click on Bevel and Emboss, you'll see the settings that I've applied and you'll see what they look like. You'll see the effects of those settings out here in the Image window and this is the effect that really turns these droplets into something that looks like water droplets. And so you can sift through these settings, check them out, go ahead and adjust them if you want to, to get a sense of how they work.

Here is where the action is really happening. I set the Highlight mode, which is set to white. I set it to the most aggressive lighting mode inside of Illustrator, so you have got those same lightening modes that we saw back in Illustrator that is Lighten, Screen and Color Dodge. But you also have this one that's much more useful than Color Dodge called Linear Dodge that ends up creating a higher impact highlight effect, which is what we're looking for. Linear Burn is the equivalent in the darkness arena, so in addition to the standard darkening modes of Dark and Multiply and Color Burn that we have in Illustrator, you have this higher impact better than Color Burn mode called Linear Burn.

And I went ahead and crank the Opacity down quite a bit. You can see that the color of this darkness is kind of a dark brown. This is the most important option of although, the Gloss Contour. By default, it set to this guy right there, Linear and that gives you these kind of lightweight water droplets, which isn't exactly what I'm looking for. They don't look that bad but they don't look that great either. I went ahead and shifted to Ring, which is this guy right there and then I went ahead and modify the Ring settings, like so. I clicked off and then I clicked instead of on the down pointing arrowhead, I clicked on this little sort of Contour icon right there, and that brings up the Contour Editor and then I grab this top point and just dragged it over until the Input value changes to 96 %, and that's all I did.

Then click OK and you can see how that increases the sharpness of the highlights. Notice the top highlights on those drops. If I drag that backward, it used to be that point, then we lose those top highlights and when I drag it over to 96%, we get the highlights back. If I were to go too far like so, we'd have ridiculous highlights. So any way 96% is what I am looking for. Click OK and we are done. I will click OK and those are our water droplets inside of the Apple. I think they look pretty darn good and they will render out very nicely.

If you were to print this image or down sample it for the web or what have you. In the next exercise, we are going to perform the final step inside of Photoshop and that is to add a paper texture across our entire artwork.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Illustrator CS5 One-on-One: Mastery .

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Q: The instructions for installing the dekeKeys don't work on my computer (which is running Mac OS X Lion). Is there an update to these?
A: The dekeKeys distributed with this course will still work for Lion. You just need to add them to a slightly different folder than in previous versions of OS X.

Open a new Finder window and choose Go > Go to Folder. Type the following file path exactly as written below. Copying and pasting may result in an error.

~/Library/Preferences/Adobe Illustrator CS5 Settings/en_US

Move and/or copy/paste the dekeKeys to this folder and follow the rest of the instructions as outlined in the video, "Installing the dekeKeys keyboard shortcuts."
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