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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.
Oh man, you should have seen the previous exercise. We took a bunch of circles here and we mutilated them. Dude. If that sounds like circle mutilation is something you think you might be into, then get ye to the previous exercise pronto. Meanwhile, if you want to catch up with me, I'm working inside of this document called Twisted circles.ai that resides inside the 08_select_enhance folder, and it contains my thoroughly mutilated circles. We've got one circle left to abuse however.
We want to take this outer circle here in scallop its edges, do this little sort of dinky dink effect right there. So I'm going to grab my black arrow tool from the toolbox and I'm going to click on this outer circle. This time around we don't need to copy it because we're not going to paste it back in. We're just going to edit it once and only once here. Now these scallops occur between anchor points, so we need many more anchor points in this shape. Right now we just have four anchor points at 90-degree increments along the circle. So go up to the Object menu, choose Path and choose Add Anchor Points.
That doubles the number of anchor points, so that we have an anchor point at each of 45-degrees along the circle. That's not enough. We need to double that, so go back to the Object menu, choose Path and choose Add Anchor Points again to double the number of anchor points again so that we have 16 anchor points in all. Next I want you to go up to the Filter menu. The Filter menu provides you access to static effects inside of Illustrator. And I want you to choose Distort, and I want you to choose this guy right here: Pucker & Bloat.
And what Pucker & Bloat does is it allows you to twist path segments inward and outward. Check it out here. I'm going to turn on the Preview checkbox and then I'll drag negative with this value, which goes into Pucker territory and you'll see what happens. That is perhaps too much Pucker to figure out what's going on. We go ahead and scallop the edges inward as you can see here. It creates this nice sunshine effect, and that's the effect of puckering a circle that has lots and lots of anchor points.
It you Bloat, you go the other direction and you get an outer scalloping effect. In this case we get something resembling a flower. Isn't that nice? Well that's too much, so let's take this value down to 10% and it looks like this kind of scalloping right here. It looks delightful. Click OK in order to accept that effect. So we've got our core lace lines in place ready to go. Now notice that every single one of these lines has a double stroke effect, but all of the double strokes are overlapping each other. We want them to merge together. We want to merge those strokes, so what do we do? We'll combine them into a compound path. So I'm going to Alt-click or Option-click on the layer, on the Just circles layer, to select all of the paths on this layer. Then I'm going to go up to the Object menu. I'm going to choose Compound Path and I'm going to choose Make.
And that will make these items, that will combine these items into a single compound path. Believe it or not Illustrator believes this now to be a single path, and you can see that if you twirl open the Just circles layer, you will see, I'll go ahead and make the Layers palette a little wider so that we can see this. You can see a single item called Compound Path. I can't even twirl it open. You can get the individual path if you want to using the white arrow tool, but you can't twirl them open inside the Layers palette. That's how convinced Illustrator is that these are all one path when combined together. Isn't that amazing? All right, and that's why it's gone ahead and stroked the path as if it were one path. Awesome, Okay so we're done. So deselect the path, turn on One shy so that we can see the entire completed effect on screen.
It's amazing what you can do by just selecting things inside of Illustrator we've seen how to select paths, we've seen how to select points, we've seen how to select segments, we've seen how to select up and down the stack, and along the way we learned some other things. We saw the Transform Each command. We learned how to apply multiple strokes. We learned how to make a compound path. And that's just the beginning of what we learned. We learned how to start an amazing corporate marketing campaign all built around a horrible character like Uzz. We learned so much inside of these exercises, and I hope really legitimately you enjoyed yourself, and if you thought that was fine, you have got to check out Pathfinder operations in the very next chapter.
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