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Illustrator can be used to accomplish many different design tasks. For this reason, Illustrator CS4 Essential Training teaches core concepts and techniques that can be applied to any workflow for print, the web, or assets that will find their way into other applications. Mordy Golding explains the elements that make up vector graphics—paths, strokes, and fills—and shows how to use each of Illustrator's drawing tools. He demonstrates how to combine and clean up paths, and organize them into groups and layers. Mordy also covers text editing, working with color, expressive brush drawing, effects, and much more. Exercise files accompany the course.
It's true Illustrator is a vector based application. However there are many times you may need to integrate photographic content, pixel based content into your artwork inside of Illustrator. So let's take a moment to discuss some of the basics of integrating pixel base content and photograph into your layout inside of Illustrator. The way that you place a photograph into your document is to go to the File menu, choose Place and then choose a photograph. Now if you have access to the exercise files, in the chapter 15 folder, you will find the range of Photoshop files. They are all PSD files. Now, naturally, you could also place other images like EPS images, TIFF images, JPEG, GIF so on and so forth. But for here I'm going to be using Photoshop images or native that .psd files. Also I choose one of here called surf_walk. Now before I go ahead and I actually place this.
Let's take a look at some of the options that appear here at the bottom of this dialog box. First of all there is a checkbox here called Link. That's because there are two types of workflows that exits when dealing with images inside of Illustrator itself. You can either place a photograph into Illustrator as a linked image. When you do so the file itself resides outside of Illustrator meaning that the photograph itself leaves and the separate file than the actual Illustrator document and the Illustrator files simply references that external file. Now anytime with that external Photoshop file gets updated, the update also happens inside of Illustrator's files. The alternative is to actually place an image inside of Illustrator and you embed that particular image. When you embed a file, which means that if you then apply some kind of edit to the external file, it does not update or make any change to the Illustrator document itself.
Obviously, by embedding a photograph into an Illustrator document, your Illustrator file size will grow to include whatever size that image is. There are benefits to both of these works flows. Obviously, working with the linked workflow where the image is external from the Illustrator file. That means the Illustrator files themselves are smaller, but that also means if you ever send your Illustrator file off to somebody else, I have to print to different designer. They would need to access to that image as well. So you would either need to send alone that image or that image would need to reside on a server or public location where they can access it. Otherwise we will not be able to view or print that particular document.
However, if you embed a particular image into a file, then you could send that file along to somebody else, or to printer or to a friend and they have all the information that they need to work with and to print that file. Now if you have the same image that may be placed into several of the documents and then you need to make and update to that particular image, it's obviously a lot easier if you have a linked image, then you simply update that external files once and it automatically update and all the Illustrator files that you've used that image with. Naturally, as with anything else inside of Illustrator, every single design task will dictate it's own needs and workflows. For now I'm going to place this image with the Link box check. That means that there will be this external link to the file. You also have the ability to choose Template, which will automatically turn that particular image into a Template layer as you place it then you can trace over it. But I'm not going to choose that one in this option right here. So I'm going to go ahead and choose Place and that places that image right on to my screen right here. A quick way to easily identify an image as linked is this X that appears to it. You can also look up in the upper left hand corner of your Control panel, where it says Object Type, which currently identifies it as a Linked File. If you click on this, it also opens up the Links panel, which we will talk about in a later movie in this particular chapter.
I'm going to go ahead and scale this. I'll just going to hold down the Shift key while I scale this image to be a little bit smaller. I want to place a few more images on the file so we can take a look at how other images can be placed. I'm going to choose File; I'm going to choose Place again. Let's choose one of these other images for example surf_dude_2. In this example I'm going to uncheck the Link option. That means when now I'll Place it, Illustrator is going to include that into the file. I notice that X is no longer here. This image is now included and embedded into this Illustrator document. If I go ahead and I scale this down over here, I can now position this over here as well. Let's place one more image. I'll go to the File menu here, choose Place and that same folder. Let's choose another one here. Let's call this one surf_sign.
I'm now going to go ahead and choose to link that particular one. It's important to realize by the way as you are working that the settings that are here on the Place dialog box are sticky. Meaning that the setting that you have chosen stays that way until you change it otherwise. So if you unlink a particular document, when you are placing it and then you go ahead and you place a few more images, those will be unlinked unless you check it back on again. I do find that sometimes people don't realize they are embedding how much images thinking that they have linked, not realizing that they didn't check their box back on again. I'm going to choose Place, one more time this image will now come in here. I'll scale this went down a little bit.
I just want to let you know that once you actually apply or you bring a linked image into your layout, if you click on it, you can see that there is a button here called Embed in the Control panel. This allows you to decide hey, if you want to embed the image now inside of Illustrator, doing so now makes it part of the Illustrator files. It is now no longer linked. It's now part of Illustrator files. One of the benefits of using an embedded image inside of Illustrator is also that you can now include that image into a symbol definition. Linked images cannot included into a symbol.
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