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Adobe Illustrator has long been a popular vector–based drawing program, but for many the learning curve is steep. In Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals, author and leading industry expert Deke McClelland shows users how to get in to the Illustrator mindset and overcome this learning curve. He covers the application's key features in a new way, making it simple and easy to master Illustrator. Deke teaches viewers how to use the core drawing and shape tools, the transformation and reshaping features, text, and the Pen tool. He also explains how to export and print. Even if learning Illustrator has been a struggle in the past, this training can help make sense of it. Exercise files accompany the course.
In this exercise I'm going to show you a few ways to navigate around the Bridge so that you feel comfortable working inside of the interface. Now, you may recall, I'm looking at the contents of this Sample Art folder. That's inside the Cool Extras folder that shifts along with Illustrator CS4. You can get to folders inside of this Folder panel, or if you prefer, some folks call it a folder tree, because you are exposing branches of folders inside folders inside folders, and you can actually reveal the contents of folders just by clicking on one of these triangles here, these little twirly triangles, which if you go ahead and twirl the folder open, then you can see the sub-folders therein and hunt your way through the hierarchy of folders on your hard drive.
Another thing you can do. If you are finding it sort of a big pain in the neck to sort of find your way into a folder that's buried very, very deep on your hard drive, another thing you could do is I'll go ahead and restore down the size of my Bridge for a moment. I have already got open a different folder here inside of the Windows Vista desktop. So this happens to be the Sample Art folder for Adobe Illustrator CS3. I managed to open it up, and I have already gone through all the work of finding this darn folder. I don't want to have to then turn around and go, okay, go in here, here, here, take forever to work that out.
So what you can do is just drag that little folder icon right there. See that guy, that little folder icon? It's there on the Mac too, which is blue and it has different orientation. But you can just go and grab that little folder and you drag it into the Preview area; not into the Content area, because if you drag it into the Content area, you will move that folder, but if you drag it into the Preview area, then you go back here and you will see that you have actually gone into that folder here inside the folder's view. I'll go ahead and maximize my view of the Bridge again, and we have a totally different collection of illustrations now. These are the ones, as I say they shift with Illustrator CS3. So it's just a way to get around.
Now, let's say I look at one of these and I go, oh, Bedlam Ballroom, with the Squirrel Nut Zippers, oh, they are so great. I want to bring -- they are a band by the way, from way back, I want to bring this drawing right here into the Sample Art folder for Illustrator CS4. So I could either just move it, like so, I could just drag it in there to move it, or I could copy it by holding the Ctrl key on the PC or the Option key on the Mac. Then after I release, having held down Ctrl or Option, then I would have performed a copy.
Now I'll go back to the Sample Art folder, which I can do just by clicking on it, or got this handy go back arrow right there, just go and click on it, and you will go back, and there is Bedlam Ballroom, Squirrel Nut Zippers, everything, along with all these other weird illustration, like this guy with this dead dragon or something. I don't know what's going on there. So that's a little bit of how to get around. You can also notice this little icon there, which reveals the Recent Files or Folders. So you can see all your Recent Folders listed right there. You can also see the Recent Files that you have opened, such as these Illustrator files and these Photoshop files. I just have Photoshop and Illustrator installed on this machine right now.
If for whatever reason, no questions from me, you want to clear that information, you can, just go ahead and clear the Recent Files or Clear the Recent Folders, in case you don't, whatever, your life is your life. Then right there, Reveal All Recent Files. This is trippy. I love this command, because it will just go ahead and reveal these files that are in totally different folders, as you can see here; these are these recent files that I opened up. What's my story, what the heck am I up to here? These are the files that I have been opening up recently, and I can see them all. There are all 60, whatever, files which it was just showing me a moment ago.
Now, notice, the folder, its just showing me Recent Files, its not showing me a real folder full of files at this point. This is something that I just manage to generate on the fly. It's ultimately along the lines of what is called a smart collection, which is a group of files from, as I say from different folders. All right. So those are a few navigation techniques. In the next exercise, I'm going to show you some great ways to preview your illustrations here inside the Bridge in CS4.
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