Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member

Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals

From: Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals

Video: Saving a high-contrast GIF graphic

Now let's take a look at a graphic that's better suited to the GIF file format. I'm still looking at my file, Goodbye overprints.ai, found inside the 12_exporting folder. I'm going to switch to Page 2 of this graphic, artboard number 2 that contains the skateboard and the surfboard, and I'm going to go up to the File menu and choose the Save for Web & Devices command. I invite you to do the same and that's going to display the big dialog box for us and we are going to see the original view of the graphic over here on the left hand side and the Optimized View is a JPEG image because that's the last file format we selected.

Saving a high-contrast GIF graphic

Now let's take a look at a graphic that's better suited to the GIF file format. I'm still looking at my file, Goodbye overprints.ai, found inside the 12_exporting folder. I'm going to switch to Page 2 of this graphic, artboard number 2 that contains the skateboard and the surfboard, and I'm going to go up to the File menu and choose the Save for Web & Devices command. I invite you to do the same and that's going to display the big dialog box for us and we are going to see the original view of the graphic over here on the left hand side and the Optimized View is a JPEG image because that's the last file format we selected.

You are always going to see your last applied settings there. Notice over here on the left hand side that we are seeing this checkerboard transparency pattern. That indicate areas that we have no graphic coverage going on. So they are exposed white paper, if we are going to print, and they are transparency when we are sharing the file between different applications. Now when we are working with the JPEG graphic, JPEG does not support Transparency. So the Transparency has to be filled with something and presumably that would be white. But you can change that color if you want to.

One way to change the color incidentally is get your Eyedropper and then you would click on the color you want to lift. For example, I'll go ahead and eye-drop inside of this left hand graphic, here at the Original, I'll eye-drop this green, and then you would switch over to your Optimized view just by clicking inside of it, and it would change Matte from White to Eyedropper Color, and then it would become green instead. So anyway, that's what would happen with the JPEG. We are not going to work with the JPEG, because JPEG as I was telling you is great for continuous tone, photographic imagery, or illustrations that contained lots and lots of gradients or blends or fountain fills, however, it's not so great when we have these flat fills, as we do inside the skateboard and the surfboard.

So we have very few discrete colors going on which are best served by GIF of the two file formats between JPEG and GIF. So I'm going to switch over here to GIF like so. Now GIF does support Transparency as you are seeing right here. So you can go ahead and preserve the transparency if you want to. I don't however, and I'll tell you why. The Transparency is either off or on, so you don't have continual gradual transparency. You don't have anything resembling for example, translucency. It's just either opaque or transparent, and that's it, and as a result, we are seeing our drop shadows is turned green because green is currently our Matte color. So for starters, I'm going to change the Matte color back to White and I'm going to get rid of the Eyedropper here. I'll just switch back to the Hand tool, and then we are going to turn- off Transparency because look at that.

That's looking pretty terrible as well. We will turn off Transparency so that the entire graphic is opaque. By the way, my graphic dropped in size. It was originally here. I'll show you what the JPEG looked like. The JPEG image was 74K and by switching it over to GIF, we have dropped the size of the graphic down to 51.3K, if Transparency is turned on, I'll turn it off, and it jumps up a little bit to 51.62. Now I can make it even smaller however, by reducing the number of colors inside the image. So let's go ahead and zoom in on the skateboard right there, and what is this keep, I know, why it keeps going on because I just press the Spacebar and its active here under Windows. So we want that off however, as I say.

I am going to reduce the number of colors down to something along the lines of 32, and my illustration still looks really great. That didn't really affect the appearance of the illustration. We are seeing a few weird color pixels showing up like these reds, right in this location of the gray and some green spot showing up in this gray right there. But it's nothing that I think is going to adversely affect the appearance of the graphic at a normal distance, and the GIF image is now dropping to 37K approximately, which is absolutely great. We are simulating different colors using a Diffusion Dither. That's the best kind of Dither for an illustration. You don't want Pattern because that's going to be a regular rectilinear pattern. That's going to look weird and Noise is better suited to imagery typically. Or you could say No Dither.

Now if you get rid of the Dither entirely, you won't have any of these dot patterns show up, and we can try out that No Dither setting. It also makes the file slightly smaller. So let's try out No Dither. It drops down to 35K, so we lose a couple of K there and we lose a couple of the spots that were looking weird but then we have some sort of aberrant green lines inside of this small yellow Shenbop right there. And I'm not sure if that's going to be a problem or not and we have some sort of chunkier transitions inside of this drop shadow. So here is the drop shadow at No Dither, and here is the drop shadow at Diffusion Dither. Diffusion is going to look a little better, a little more granular as you can see. You can also reduce the amount of dithering using this Dither percentage option, which is going to reduce the amount of dithering and reduce the file size slightly.

So that I took it down to 35K as well at to 50 % Dither and we still have some dither pattern going on inside the graphics. So that might be a nice sort of trade-off. You also have the option of introducing Lossy compression to your illustration if you want to. I don't advice that you go that route. Leave that set to zero. And you can switch palettes if you want to. You can try different palettes to see what's going to work best. Typically though, for a low color illustration like this one, Selective is going to be your best path. The other option is to try out Adaptive and see how that fairs. But in our case, Selective is definitely producing the best result.

You don't want Restrictive. That's going to boil things down to the very limited Web palette. You want to be able to select from any colors in the 16,800,000 color continuum. Anyway, Selective is the way to go for this graphic. Let's go ahead and zoom out by Ctrl+Alt+Spacebar-clicking or Command+Option+Spacebar-clicking on the Mac and this is what the image looks like at regular size, which is pretty great. I'm not seeing any problems inside of these areas even at 32 colors, and you could even, if you want to, you can try going smaller and see what happens at 16. And that does take the graphic down to 29.3K but the drop shadows are falling apart and some other details are too. So I don't suggest we go down that low.

Let's stick with 32. Now you can enter colors in between but these are the bit level. So this is 1 bit graphic and this is a 2 bit graphic, and a 3 bit graphic, and 4 bit, so you are not going to save yourself too much by just shaving off a few colors here and there. So you probably just want to select the preset, I'll go with 32 colors. Click on the Save button in order to save out that graphic, and I'll have created a 35K version of these boards. Click the Save button in order to actually save that graphic out and we are done. In the next exercise, I'm going to show you how to save a PNG graphic.

If you are more interested in quality then compression, PNG is the way to go.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals
Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals

182 video lessons · 38252 viewers

Deke McClelland

Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 42m 7s
    1. Welcome to One-on-One
      1m 58s
    2. The Welcome screen
      3m 2s
    3. Creating a new document
      5m 6s
    4. Advanced document controls
      4m 43s
    5. Saving a custom New Document Profile
      8m 46s
    6. Changing the document setup
      4m 21s
    7. Special artboard controls
      4m 58s
    8. Accepting artboard changes
      2m 19s
    9. Saving a document
      4m 33s
    10. Closing a document
      2m 21s
  2. 1h 0m
    1. Adobe Bridge
    2. Opening an illustration
      4m 45s
    3. Modifying an illustration
      6m 27s
    4. Saving changes
      4m 58s
    5. Introducing Adobe Bridge
      8m 41s
    6. The all-important file type associations
      3m 20s
    7. Navigating inside Bridge
      4m 23s
    8. Previewing and collecting
      5m 55s
    9. Using workspaces
      6m 41s
    10. Customizing a workspace
      6m 14s
    11. Cool Bridge tricks
      8m 17s
  3. 1h 4m
    1. Preferences, color settings, and workspaces
    2. Keyboard increments
      5m 12s
    3. Scratch disks
      3m 48s
    4. Changing the user interface and setting Appearance of Black
      4m 14s
    5. Best workflow color settings
      9m 17s
    6. Synchronizing settings across CS4
      3m 2s
    7. Working inside tabbed windows
      7m 14s
    8. Organizing palettes
      5m 4s
    9. Saving a custom workspace
      4m 12s
    10. Zooming and panning
      4m 19s
    11. Using the Zoom tool
      3m 3s
    12. Navigating the artboards
      5m 5s
    13. Nudging the screen image
      3m 3s
    14. Scroll-wheel tricks
      2m 8s
    15. Cycling between screen modes
      4m 39s
  4. 1h 22m
    1. The Wedjat (or Eye of Horus)
    2. The line tools
      2m 57s
    3. Introducing layers
      5m 10s
    4. Creating ruler guides
      6m 18s
    5. Creating custom guides
      5m 16s
    6. Snap-to points
      5m 25s
    7. Organizing guides
      5m 43s
    8. Making a tracing template
      3m 42s
    9. Drawing a line segment
      4m 29s
    10. Drawing a continuous arc
      5m 28s
    11. Drawing a looping spiral
      6m 5s
    12. Cutting lines with the Scissors tool
      6m 20s
    13. Joining open paths
      7m 31s
    14. Aligning and joining points
      6m 34s
    15. Drawing concentric circles
      4m 41s
    16. Cleaning up overlapping segments
      5m 34s
  5. 1h 4m
    1. The anatomy of a shape
      1m 1s
    2. Meet the shape tools
      3m 5s
    3. The traceable Tonalpohualli
      2m 52s
    4. Drawing circles
      4m 38s
    5. Enhanced Smart Guides
      4m 1s
    6. Aligning to a key object
      4m 29s
    7. Creating polygons and stars
      5m 4s
    8. Using the Measure tool
      3m 47s
    9. The Select Similar and Arrange commands
      3m 56s
    10. Rectangles and rounded rectangles
      6m 8s
    11. The amazing constraint axes
      5m 26s
    12. Grouping and ungrouping
      3m 35s
    13. Flipping and duplicating
      4m 12s
    14. Combining simple shapes into complex ones
      5m 24s
    15. Cutting and connecting with Scissors and Join
      3m 31s
    16. Tilde-key goofiness
      2m 53s
  6. 1h 41m
    1. The ingredients of life
    2. Fill and Stroke settings
      4m 22s
    3. Transparency grid and paper color
      5m 47s
    4. The None attribute
      5m 4s
    5. Color libraries and sliders
      3m 39s
    6. Industry-standard colors
      4m 38s
    7. Using CMYK for commercial output
      6m 39s
    8. Using RGB for the web
      7m 23s
    9. Color palette tips and tricks
      7m 18s
    10. Creating and saving color swatches
      4m 35s
    11. Trapping gaps with rich blacks
      6m 46s
    12. Filling and stacking shapes
      5m 38s
    13. Dragging and dropping swatches
      5m 0s
    14. Paste in Front, Paste in Back
      4m 54s
    15. Filling shapes inside groups
      5m 28s
    16. Pasting between layers
      4m 41s
    17. Joins, caps, and dashes
      6m 50s
    18. Fixing strokes and isolating edits
      7m 12s
    19. Creating a pattern fill
      4m 57s
  7. 1h 50m
    1. The power of transformations
      1m 20s
    2. From primitive to polished art
      2m 42s
    3. Using the Blob brush
      5m 46s
    4. Resizing the brush and erasing
      4m 15s
    5. Selection limits and methods of merging
      6m 39s
    6. Cloning and auto-duplicating
      6m 45s
    7. Customizing keyboard shortcuts
      3m 7s
    8. Moving by the numbers
      5m 15s
    9. Using the Reshape tool
      7m 47s
    10. Modifying, aligning, and uniting paths
      7m 14s
    11. Using the Offset Path command
      4m 43s
    12. Styling and eyedropping
      5m 28s
    13. Making a black-and-white template
      2m 27s
    14. Scale and clone
      4m 57s
    15. Enlarge and stack
      5m 46s
    16. Positioning the origin point
      6m 59s
    17. Using the Rotate tool
      3m 55s
    18. Using the Reflect tool
      4m 15s
    19. Series rotation (aka power duplication)
      6m 48s
    20. Rotating by the numbers
      6m 12s
    21. Transforming the tile patterns
      7m 52s
  8. 2h 4m
    1. Next-generation text wrangling
    2. Placing a text document
      5m 38s
    3. Creating a new text block
      6m 1s
    4. Working with point text
      3m 57s
    5. Selecting the perfect typeface
      5m 48s
    6. Scaling and positioning type
      8m 57s
    7. Leading, tracking, and lots of shortcuts
      5m 54s
    8. Adjusting pair kerning
      6m 55s
    9. Eyedropping formatting attributes
      3m 54s
    10. Flowing text from one block to another
      8m 28s
    11. Creating and applying a paragraph style
      7m 39s
    12. Rendering the text in graphite
      5m 55s
    13. Creating a scribbly drop shadow
      5m 17s
    14. Advanced formatting and bullets
      7m 43s
    15. Setting Area Type options
      4m 57s
    16. Justification and the Every-line Composer
      5m 52s
    17. OpenType and ligatures
      7m 19s
    18. Fractions, numerals, and ordinals
      9m 7s
    19. Swashes and small caps
      5m 40s
    20. The amazing Glyphs palette
      8m 12s
  9. 1h 18m
    1. Points are boys, handles are girls
      1m 20s
    2. Placing an image as a tracing template
      6m 56s
    3. Drawing a straight-sided path
      6m 8s
    4. Moving, adding, and deleting points
      6m 50s
    5. Drawing spline curves with Round Corners
      9m 7s
    6. Smooth points and Bézier curves
      8m 29s
    7. Defining a cusp between two curves
      6m 59s
    8. Replicating and reshaping segments
      8m 30s
    9. Converting anchor points
      7m 55s
    10. Deleting stray anchor points
      5m 1s
    11. Separating and closing paths
      5m 43s
    12. Eyedropping template colors
      5m 55s
  10. 1h 40m
    1. Paths never rest
      1m 34s
    2. Exploring the Appearance palette
      9m 54s
    3. Snip and Spin
      8m 3s
    4. Adding a center point
      4m 12s
    5. Keeping shape intersections
      3m 42s
    6. Lifting fills and selecting through shapes
      5m 54s
    7. Saving and recalling selections
      6m 20s
    8. Rotating is a circular operation
      8m 32s
    9. Lassoing and scaling points
      5m 28s
    10. Using the Transform Each command
      4m 11s
    11. Using the Magic Wand tool
      8m 1s
    12. Eyedropping live effects
      9m 58s
    13. Merging strokes with a compound path
      6m 50s
    14. Selecting and scaling independent segments
      7m 59s
    15. Scalloped edges with Pucker & Bloat
      5m 16s
    16. Expand before you merge
      4m 17s
  11. 1h 26m
    1. The new pleasures of printing
    2. Outlines and artboards in CS4
      7m 35s
    3. Setting trim size and bleed
      7m 17s
    4. Creating custom dynamic crop marks
      3m 41s
    5. Working with the Separations Preview palette
      7m 42s
    6. Trapping an object with an overprint stroke
      8m 20s
    7. Placing multiple artboards into InDesign
      5m 17s
    8. Working with the Print Tiling tool
      4m 55s
    9. Setting the General Print options
      6m 9s
    10. Setting printer marks
      5m 16s
    11. PostScript-only output and graphics
      9m 10s
    12. The Color Management options
      6m 56s
    13. Adjusting the Flattener settings
      7m 32s
    14. Setting the Raster Effects resolution
      5m 32s
  12. 1h 32m
    1. Illustrator does pixels
    2. Illustrator, PDF, and Save As formats
      8m 15s
    3. Saving an illustration for the web
      6m 13s
    4. Saving a continuous-tone JPEG image
      10m 1s
    5. Saving a high-contrast GIF graphic
      6m 26s
    6. The versatile PNG format
      4m 45s
    7. Saving a scaleable Flash (SWF) graphic
      11m 0s
    8. Opening and placing an Illustrator file in Photoshop
      12m 44s
    9. Exporting a layered PSD from Illustrator
      12m 57s
    10. Exporting to Microsoft Office and PowerPoint
      7m 24s
    11. Sharing with InDesign, Flash, and Photoshop
      12m 12s
  13. 1m 4s
    1. Until next time
      1m 4s

Start learning today

Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.

Become a member
Sometimes @lynda teaches me how to use a program and sometimes Lynda.com changes my life forever. @JosefShutter
@lynda lynda.com is an absolute life saver when it comes to learning todays software. Definitely recommend it! #higherlearning @Michael_Caraway
@lynda The best thing online! Your database of courses is great! To the mark and very helpful. Thanks! @ru22more
Got to create something yesterday I never thought I could do. #thanks @lynda @Ngventurella
I really do love @lynda as a learning platform. Never stop learning and developing, it’s probably our greatest gift as a species! @soundslikedavid
@lynda just subscribed to lynda.com all I can say its brilliant join now trust me @ButchSamurai
@lynda is an awesome resource. The membership is priceless if you take advantage of it. @diabetic_techie
One of the best decision I made this year. Buy a 1yr subscription to @lynda @cybercaptive
guys lynda.com (@lynda) is the best. So far I’ve learned Java, principles of OO programming, and now learning about MS project @lucasmitchell
Signed back up to @lynda dot com. I’ve missed it!! Proper geeking out right now! #timetolearn #geek @JayGodbold
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.

Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ .

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Join now Already a member? Log in

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.

Mark all as unwatched Cancel


You have completed Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.

Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member ?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferences from the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Learn more, save more. Upgrade today!

Get our Annual Premium Membership at our best savings yet.

Upgrade to our Annual Premium Membership today and get even more value from your lynda.com subscription:

“In a way, I feel like you are rooting for me. Like you are really invested in my experience, and want me to get as much out of these courses as possible this is the best place to start on your journey to learning new material.”— Nadine H.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.