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This course is the third in a four-part series devoted to mastering the premiere graphics creation application, Adobe Illustrator, version CS6. Industry pro Deke McClelland takes a project-based learning approach to the key features in Illustrator, including Recolor Artwork, transparency, masks, blend modes, strokes and fills, and dynamic effects. The course also covers techniques for creating custom gradients, designing logos, generating photorealistic neon text, and wrapping type around objects. Plus, Deke shows how to call up the most essential features by organizing your workspace and employing time-saving keyboard shortcuts, how to manage the color settings, and how to adjust a few settings to make the program work even better.
All that's left to finish off this project is to more clearly distinguish the train from its environment and create smoke billowing out of the smokestack in order to achieve this final effect here. Now, we'll accomplish the former--that is drawing a stroke around the entire train-- by expanding its appearance and converting the strokes to path outlines and then uniting all those path outlines together and then we'll create the smoke as a compound shape. So I'll go ahead and switch back over to my train shape here and I'll click on it to make it active. Now, as you've seen over the course of the previous three movies, we've heaped a ton of Transform effects onto this train, which means I can't grab the Rotate tool and rotate this guy into a different position, but you can do something else.
You can apply a Dynamic Rotation if you want to. So, you would just need to make sure here in the Appearance panel that the path is active and not one of the strokes. And then you would drop down to the FX icon, choose Distort & Transform and choose the Transform command, and dial in a Rotate value, such as let's say 35 degrees. And go ahead and click the Preview button, and notice that not only rotates all the strokes, but it also rotates all the Transform operations along with it. So the moral of the story is, if you start things off inside the Appearance panel, you should stick with it; you should keep applying Dynamic effects.
Anyway, I'm going to cancel out, because I'm happy with my horizontal train, but in order to apply a stroke all the way around it, at least to do so successfully, I need to go ahead and expand it. So I'll switch back over to the Layers panel and I'll twirl open the Train layer and I'll go ahead and press Ctrl+C or Cmd+C on the Mac in order to copy the selected train and I'll press Ctrl+F or Cmd+F on the Mac to paste that copy in front. Then I'll turn the copy off. We'll come back to it in a moment, and I'll go ahead and meatball the original train, which is the one we'll expand.
Now, I don't want to expand everything about it. We should get rid of a few things first, including all these strokes at top. So I've switched over to the Appearance panel. I'll click on the top stroke, Shift+Click on the 60 point stroke down here--the one just above the smokestack--and I'll click on the Trashcan in order to get rid of all those. We're just trying to simplify things at this point. Then I'll twirl open that smokestack stroke and I'll turn off its Drop Shadow; we don't need to worry about throwing it away. Next, I'll go ahead and scroll down to these strokes that make up the cowcatcher. So I'll click on the top 2-point one and Shift+Click on the 7-point one; you want to leave the 8-point one in there, and then click on the Trashcan icon to get rid of those.
And then finally we want to remove a couple of more Drop Shadows here. There is the Drop Shadow that's associated with the engineer's roof, which I believe is this one right there, and I'll go ahead and turn off that Drop Shadow- the one associated with the 82-point stroke. And then there's a 74-point stroke right there; that's the front element that's holding the cowcatcher. So I'll go ahead and twirl it open as well and turn off its Drop Shadow and we end up with these few remaining shapes. And there's one more thing. I don't want those levers that are popping out of these engine elements here, so I'll go ahead and select the bottommost stroke, --the 4-point stroke--and I'll Shift+Click on the top 2-point stroke there and I'll click on the Trashcan to get rid of those as well. All right! Now that we've distilled this thing down to its most fundamental elements, I'll go up to the Object menu and choose Expand Appearance, and then I'll return to the Object menu, choose Path, and then choose Outline Stroke in order to convert all of those strokes to filled path outlines like so. All right! Now let's combine them together.
What we've got at this point is a group obviously, but there is a group inside that group. So what you need to do is go up to the Object menu and choose the Ungroup command twice, or press Ctrl+Shift+G or Cmd+ Shift+G on the Mac twice in a row. And then just to make sure everything has worked, you can switch back to the Layers panel. With the Train layer open, just scroll through the list of items to make sure there's no arrowheads in front of them, in which case you're good to go. Then go to the Window menu and choose the Pathfinder command in order to bring up the Pathfinder panel and click on the Unite icon in order to unite all those paths outlines together.
All right! Now I just want to make sure that everything worked according to plan here. I have a feeling there's a tiny problem. I'm going to turn off the Tracks layer in order to hide it, and then I'll press Ctrl+Spacebar or Cmd+Spacebar on the Mac to get the Zoom tool and I'll marquee around this corner right here; very tiny marquee as you can see, and sure enough I've a little bit of an arrowhead here that I don't want. So I'll press the P key to switch to my Pen tool and I'll click on this top point in order to subtract it. And now I could keep scrolling over like this, but that would take forever, so I'll go ahead and bring up the Navigator panel and move down to the tip here, although this might not be the most efficient solution either.
Why don't I just go ahead and zoom out a little bit so I can see what I'm doing? I'm in totally the wrong location. What I wanted to do was check this point right there and make sure it's just one point at the nose of the train, and sure enough it is. So I'll zoom out once again, and then I'll go ahead and Ctrl+Spacebar or Cmd+Spacebar, zoom around this corner and click on this point with a Pen tool to subtract it. All right, that's great! Now I can zoom back out to normal zoom level and I can bring back the background elements like so, as well as the train, so I can better see what I'm doing.
I'll press Ctrl+H or Cmd+H on the Mac to hide my selection outlines. United Path is still selected, so I'll switch over to the Appearance panel. I've got a Fill, but I don't have a Stroke, so I'll go ahead and change the line weight value to 2 points in order to create the appearance of a 1-point stroke around the entire train. And now let's add a Drop Shadow by going up to the Effect menu, choosing Stylize, and choosing the Drop Shadow command, or you can take advantage of my keyboard shortcut, Ctrl+Alt+E or Cmd+Option+E on the Mac. These are the settings I want to apply; an Opacity value of 100%, deep black is my color.
So, 000 for the RGB values, both the X and Y Offset are set to 8 points; the Blur is set to 6 points. I'll turn on the Preview checkbox, and why in the world does it look like that? This should be this really super dark shadow. Well, I'll show you what happened though. Click the OK button in order to apply the effect, and sure enough I went ahead and applied it to the stroke instead of the path. But that's not a problem, you can just grab the Drop Shadow and drag and drop it below the Fill like so, in order to assign it to the path instead of the stroke and we end up with this very meaty dark Drop Shadow. All right! I'll go ahead and press the V key to switch back to the Black Arrow tool.
Switch back over to the Layers panel and notice this hidden item in the Train layer. Go ahead and turn it on. And what it is, is a group of a bunch of replicated circles; every single one of these guys is a circle. I'll click on one of them. I've hidden my selection edges, so I'll press Ctrl+H or Cmd+H on the Mac to bring them back. Now, I've gone ahead and grouped all these circles together. Before we can join them into a stream of smoke, we need to Ungroup them. So go up to the Object menu and choose the Ungroup command. And next, before you deselect any of these circles, because that would be a disaster, go ahead and return to the Pathfinder panel, and instead of clicking on the Unite icon, press the Alt key or the Option key on the Mac and click on the icon. And that way you fuse the paths together into a compound shape, which means that you can change your mind later and move the circles around and do whatever you like. All right! Now I'll press Ctrl+H or Cmd+H on the Mac again in order to hide the selection edges, and I'll switch back to the Appearance panel.
And as you can see, I've got a Stroke; I don't have a Fill. I actually want the opposite, so I'll press Shift+X in order to swap those guys with each other. And then I'll go ahead and swap out the fill from black to this final gradient swatch which is called Smoke. And all it is is a dark shad of gray; it's actually the Shadow Rail gray, set to 100% Opacity on one side and 0% Opacity on the other side, with the midpoint skew that's set at a Location of 25%, and we end up with this effect here.
Now, that looks terrible. When is the last time you saw opaque smoke like that? Well, the problem is that we have the Blend mode set to Normal. What we need is to twirl open the Fill, click on the word Opacity there, and change the Blend mode to Multiply, and that ends up producing this rich smoky effect right here. And that's how you finish off the train by adding a stroke around the entire thing, along with the Drop Shadow and some billowing smoke.
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