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Adobe Illustrator has long been the most popular and viable vector-drawing program on the market but, for many, the learning curve is steep. In Illustrator CS3 One-on-One: The Essentials , author and leading industry expert Deke McClelland teaches the key features of Illustrator in a way that anyone can understand. He also goes beyond that, showing users how to get into the Illustrator "mindset" to make mastering Illustrator simple and easy. The training covers how to use the core drawing and shape tools, the transformation and reshaping features, text and gradients, and color management and printing features. Even if learning Illustrator has been a struggle in the past, this time it is going to make sense. Exercise files accompany the training.
All right now that we've seen how docking panes work, let's move on to palettes and I hope I've made it clear. I really love this new interface, even though you know, I was railing against that whole OWL thing, not cause I don't like owls, I love owls. If I were to rank birds for some reason, I haven't done that lately, but I know owls would be really close to the top. Right below something like pterodactyls, which aren't birds but anyway. But I love this new interface. It's totally awesome, but I don't like, just cause I know you're trying to keep track of my opinion on every topic on Earth.
I'm not really a big fan of the way that the palettes are organized by default. I am a big fan of the way that you can change the organization of the palettes, so let's check it out. I'm going to show you how I like to organize my palettes, which again, you know another opinion thing there, you can organize yours differently, but just know that this is the way the palettes are going to be organized throughout the rest of this series. So if you decide to go your own way, we're going to have a few differences. If you want to exactly match what I'm doing for the sake of simplicity, then here's your chance right now, and you're going to learn all kinds of cool stuff along the way by the way, because all this stuff, almost all the stuff is totally new to Illustrator CS3.
You can drag a palette by its tab, like so. You've been able to do that for long time now inside of Illustrator. So this one's not super new. I'm going to go ahead and drag this tab up into this other cluster of palettes here that includes Coloring and Color Guide and I'm going to drop. Now I should say that I'm using my own terminology. When I talk about clusters, I call these things palette clusters right here, because you've got multiple clusters that are going on inside of a given pane. Illustrator tends to call these individual palettes panels.
The implication being, because it doesn't really come out and say this anywhere, that the panels are combined into palettes, but Illustrator, insofaras I can tell is alone in this regard. Photoshop doesn't call them this and Photoshop uses the exact same interface. So I'm going to use this term clusters because other terms like groups and sets are used for other things. I'm just telling you that just so you know what the heck I'm talking about. Let's say you want to move an entire cluster as long as we're talking about clusters. Like I want to move Brushes and Symbols out of this main docking pane here.
And if you want to move an entire cluster at a time, just drag somewhere in this empty gray region that's above and to the right of the tabs and that moves the entire cluster like so. That's new to Illustrator CS3. And if you drop them in the middle of nowhere like this, you get a free floating palette, totally free range palette here, no preservatives whatsoever. Now I don't really want that because it's going to sort of interfere with my ability to see my illustration, but that is something you can do, if you want to. What if you want to create a new docking pane? Well that you can do too, just go ahead and drag that cluster bar there.
In any location where you see a blue bar, a blue vertical bar like we're seeing right now, which you'd see here or over on the right side of the palette, so either the right or left side of the existing pane, or you could drag over here to the right side of the toolbox. You could even if you're crazy, put them over here on the left side of the toolbox. So anywhere you want actually, you can start a new pane. Isn't that wild? All right I'm going to put it right there, because I think that's really the only sensible thing to do. And when you drop, new docking pane, awesome. All right let's move a few other things around. I'm going to move Graphic Styles.
This palette and only this palette by dragging it's tab and dropping it into the new pane, actually into this cluster because these three guys all go together. They're all collectors, you know, you can create libraries of brushes and symbols and graphic styles, as you'll learn in future chapters of course. But check this out, let's say you want Graphic Styles first before Brushes or Symbols. You can drag the tab back and forth. You haven't been able to do that inside of any Adobe application in the past. Such a great function. Just a little thing that makes such a big difference.
Now I'm going to take Transparency, move it down here with Appearance. I think my Swatches palette is too tall, so I'll drag it up by dragging this border that occurs between the palettes, and Stroke and Gradient are fine the way they are. Let's check out Appearance. It's a little bit too tall also. So I'll drag that up as well. Now my Layer thumbnails are too small in my opinion. This is the default size for the thumbnails and I just think it's too wee, you know you can't like, oh what are those things? So let's make them bigger and you do that by going to the Palette menu. See this little thing right there. That's the Palette menu. Go ahead and click on it and then choose Panel, see there's that term of Illustrator's, Panel Options in order to bring up the options for the Layers palette. And I'm going to switch to Other and I'm going to change that value to 50 pixels as I've done in the past there and I'm going to click OK. Now this is the one thing I've shown you that's not part of the workspace. This will not be saved with the workspace when we save the workspace in the next exercise. Instead the size of your layer thumbnails is actually saved along with the illustration file. So you can have one illustration file that has teeny ones and another one that has big ones, whatever you want to do.
But there they are, looking glorious. You can even that's a V. That is the big V-man. All right, so let's set some other ones because we need more palettes on screen, I mean there are like 100,000 palettes inside of Illustrator, and there's a few that we rely on pretty heavily inside the program that are not visible by default. Such palettes as Align, that would be great to have the Align palette up. And there it is of the bottom of the screen and Pathfinder and Transform are also included. Let's also bring up Magic Wand.
That's a good palette. Now you may sit there and think, Hey I didn't even know Illustrator had a Magic Wand function, how does that work? Not now, please. Hold your questions. We will be talking about all of these functions in later chapters in context, my friend. Believe me. We will get to Magic Wand and we will all have a merry time. Now I'm going to move Pathfinder up to join the Magic Wand, just so that we have a couple of palettes inside of this cluster that don't really bear much of a relationship to each other. And I'm going to move Align to before Transform and I'm going to drag this cluster up so it docks to the bottom of Magic Wand.
So we have this ubercluster going on, now. I don't even have a word for it. Now I'm going to go to the Window menu, choose Type and I'm going to choose Character in order to bring up a cluster of three Type palettes right there. And I'm going to go to the Type menu and choose Glyphs to bring up a big palette right there, this guy's a big one. And I'll dock it to the bottom of Character, Paragraph and OpenType and then I'll dock these guys to the bottom of that. Now things are getting a little massive over here inside this ubercluster, so I'm going to move it over.
I'm going to move this entire cluster by dragging this cluster bar here, and I'm going to move it into this dock. See how I've got a horizontal blue line at the top of the dock? As soon as I release, these palettes get added to this pane right here. Now it looks like this is so incredibly, unspeakably massive that I wouldn't want to work this way at all. You'll see method to my madness. You'll see. Now I'm going to go to the Window menu, and I'm going to choose the Attributes command and then I'm going to go to the Window menu, and I'm going to choose the Info command.
Now these guys are sort of grouped wrong in my opinion. Navigator should be combined with Document Info because they're bold document level functions and Info should be combined with Attributes because these are both object level functions. And I actually want Info first right there and then I'm going to dock those guys together and then I'm going to grab the entire ubergroup and drop it at the top of this pane like so, so that we have all of these palettes grouped together, and then I'm going to do the only sensible thing I could do at this point, and I'm going to collapse that docking pane.
And notice now when you collapse a docking pane, the first time you do it you're going to see not only the icons but also the names of the palettes displayed there. If you just want to see the icons, which is all I want to see, then just go ahead and drag the left side of that pane over to the right and you will collapse the pane down to just the icons, and now if you expand it, you'll see the palettes and if you collapse it, you'll see just the icons by themselves. Now, remember that you can identify an icon by hovering over it. And as you learn how these palettes work, these icons will become more and more recognizable. Some of them though, never are. Like this one I don't think really make sense for Graphic Styles, but there it is anyway.
So we have gone ahead and customized the holy heck out of our interface. Oh look at the toolbox. It's double wide, I wanted it to be single wide. All right, now I've got everything exactly the way and that I want it to be. If you decide to go your own way all the better. It's great, no problems, no worries man. In the next exercise we're going to learn how to save what we've done as a workspace.
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