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Saving for the web

From: Illustrator CS6 Essential Training

Video: Saving for the web

Although Illustrator is mainly used in a print production workflow, in conjunction with applications like Adobe InDesign, it can also be used as a Web design tool as well. As a matter of fact, I design a lot of graphics inside of Illustrator that go on the Web, and in this movie, I am going to show you how to take the graphics you design in Illustrator, and save them out in a Web-friendly format. Now, there are a lot of ways that you can do this, and you can exactly split up the graphics into multiple parts by utilizing something called slicing, but I just want to take you through the basics of saving for the Web.

Saving for the web

Although Illustrator is mainly used in a print production workflow, in conjunction with applications like Adobe InDesign, it can also be used as a Web design tool as well. As a matter of fact, I design a lot of graphics inside of Illustrator that go on the Web, and in this movie, I am going to show you how to take the graphics you design in Illustrator, and save them out in a Web-friendly format. Now, there are a lot of ways that you can do this, and you can exactly split up the graphics into multiple parts by utilizing something called slicing, but I just want to take you through the basics of saving for the Web.

So let's say, for instance, I created this banner for a blog, and I want to save this out as a single image. I am going to go up the File menu, and I'm going to choose Save for Web. You can also hold down almost the entire left side of your keyboard, and hit the letter S to get this to come up. The actual keyboard shortcut is Alt+ Shift+Control, or Option+Shift+Command on the Mac, and pressing the letter S. That's a whole lot of letters, so I usually just go to the File menu, and choose Save for web. If you've used previous versions of Illustrator, you may be used to that saying Save for web and devices.

It's now been simplified to simply Save for web. Once you open up the Save for web dialog box, you'll see that you're able to view your file as the Original, as an Optimized version, and also in a 2-Up display. The 2-Up display gives you a representation of the original file on the left, and then the optimized version over here on the right. This is going to be great for judging the amount of quality degradation that you experience when you're compressing things for going out on the Web. In this case, we are not going to see a whole lot, because this is a pretty simple graphic, but I'll go through some of the changes and you can look between the two to see if you notice anything as we go along.

So I've got my original file on the left; my optimized on the right. The optimization settings right now are set to GIF. In my opinion, GIF is not the preferred format for a big graphic like this. Also, since this has a gradient, GIF is probably not the best idea either. When you're dealing with complex effects, like gradients, drop shadows, and things like that, you want to make sure that you're using one of two things: either a JPEG, or a PNG file. In this case, I'm going to come up here and drop this down, and I'm going to select JPEG. Once I select JPEG, you're not going to notice too much of a quality difference here, but underneath, I have the ability to adjust the quality with these settings.

For instance, I can choose whether or not I want it to be a Low, Medium, Very High, or Maximum resolution JPEG. By default, it's set to just High, but watch the file size if I jump from High to Medium. You can look at the file size right down here; right now it's 39.31K. If I jump to Medium, it knocks off almost 19K. But you will also notice right here that I get some serious pixelation, and artifacts happening inside the graphic. Watch the difference. Keep your eyes right here on the R. I'll switch from Medium to High.

Did you see it clear up? Again, Medium, pixelated; High, not so pixelated. So I think I'm willing to sacrifice that extra 19K. You can also adjust the Quality setting. This sacrifices image quality for better compression. So if you happened to drag this to the left, you're compressing it more, and turning back the quality. If you drag this to the right, you're compressing it less, maintaining the quality, but you're also increasing the file size. You can also choose whether or not you want to blur to reduce some artifacts in the image.

So if you start to see those little pixelated things in there, you can actually turn up the Blur a little bit to eliminate them. The problem is, you will also blur things like text. That's not good. You can also choose whether or not it's a Progressive download. That basically means that you're going to download the image in multiple passes. So instead of the graphic loading all at once online, it will actually load in steps. In this case, I am just going to leave it unchecked. Directly underneath here, you can adjust the size. Now chances are, you've designed your Web banner or Web graphic to be the correct size right off the bat, but if you're repurposing some artwork that might have been used for print, for instance, you may want to come down here and rework this.

In order to change the size, all you have to do is enter in new Width, or a new Height value. It's automatically linked to each other, so changing one automatically changes the other in proportion. You can also scale it based on a percentage. Over to the right, it will always tell you the original size, so you can always get back to it if you need to. Finally, down at the bottom, you can click Save, and it will bring you to the Save as dialog box. I will just simply pick my Desktop, and I'll call this Save for web, and I'll hit Save.

Once I do that, the graphic is now saved out in a JPEG format, low-resolution, of course, because we are taking it out on the Web, and I can then use it in any of my projects, like take it into Dreamweaver, or even put it into a DPS document inside of InDesign for use on a tablet, or a mobile device.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Illustrator CS6 Essential Training
Illustrator CS6 Essential Training

116 video lessons · 71190 viewers

Justin Seeley
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 1m 15s
    1. What is Illustrator?
      1m 15s
  2. 2m 17s
    1. Welcome
      58s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 19s
  3. 41m 25s
    1. Understanding vector graphics
      5m 0s
    2. Setting preferences
      9m 24s
    3. Touring the interface
      9m 41s
    4. Exploring the panels
      6m 54s
    5. Working with the Control panel
      4m 25s
    6. Creating and saving workspaces
      6m 1s
  4. 43m 42s
    1. Creating files for print
      4m 42s
    2. Creating files for the web
      3m 36s
    3. Managing multiple documents
      3m 25s
    4. Navigating within a document
      5m 21s
    5. Using rulers, guides, and grids
      6m 59s
    6. Changing units of measurement
      1m 50s
    7. Using preview modes
      3m 10s
    8. Creating and using custom views
      3m 12s
    9. Locking and hiding artwork
      3m 43s
    10. Creating and using artboards
      7m 44s
  5. 1h 1m
    1. Setting your selection preferences
      5m 57s
    2. Using the Direct Selection and Group Selection tools
      4m 6s
    3. Using the Magic Wand tool
      5m 45s
    4. Using the Lasso tool
      4m 9s
    5. Selecting objects by attribute
      6m 48s
    6. Grouping objects
      3m 7s
    7. Using isolation mode
      4m 48s
    8. Resizing your artwork
      3m 55s
    9. Rotating objects
      2m 10s
    10. Distorting and transforming objects
      6m 26s
    11. Repeating transformations
      5m 6s
    12. Reflecting and skewing objects
      4m 54s
    13. Aligning and distributing objects
      4m 38s
  6. 29m 27s
    1. RGB vs. CMYK
      1m 46s
    2. Adjusting Illustrator color settings
      5m 10s
    3. Process vs. global swatches
      5m 6s
    4. Creating spot colors
      3m 40s
    5. Using the swatch groups
      2m 33s
    6. Working with color libraries
      3m 17s
    7. Importing swatches
      4m 4s
    8. Using the Color Guide panel
      3m 51s
  7. 57m 36s
    1. Understanding fills and strokes
      4m 18s
    2. Working with fills
      4m 58s
    3. Working with strokes
      8m 46s
    4. Creating dashes and arrows
      8m 1s
    5. Creating variable-width strokes
      4m 3s
    6. Using width profiles
      3m 31s
    7. Outlining strokes
      3m 51s
    8. Creating and editing gradients
      5m 45s
    9. Applying gradients to strokes
      3m 8s
    10. Applying and editing pattern fills
      4m 52s
    11. Creating your own pattern fill
      6m 23s
  8. 20m 20s
    1. Understanding paths
      2m 41s
    2. Understanding anchor points
      4m 20s
    3. Working with open and closed paths
      5m 28s
    4. Joining and averaging paths
      4m 9s
    5. Using the Scissors tool and the Knife tool
      3m 42s
  9. 37m 56s
    1. Understanding drawing modes
      4m 23s
    2. Creating compound paths
      5m 15s
    3. Creating compound shapes
      4m 11s
    4. Working with the Shape Builder tool
      6m 32s
    5. Working with the Blob Brush and Eraser tools
      5m 26s
    6. Working with the Paintbrush and Pencil tools
      7m 8s
    7. Smoothing and erasing paths
      5m 1s
  10. 35m 53s
    1. Exploring the Pen tool
      2m 39s
    2. Drawing straight lines
      5m 12s
    3. Drawing simple curves
      5m 23s
    4. Understanding the many faces of the Pen tool
      6m 10s
    5. Converting corners and curves
      1m 46s
    6. Your keyboard is your friend
      2m 14s
    7. Tracing artwork with the Pen tool
      12m 29s
  11. 35m 33s
    1. Adjusting your type settings
      4m 10s
    2. Creating point and area text
      3m 36s
    3. Basic text editing
      2m 14s
    4. Creating threaded text
      4m 59s
    5. Using the type panels
      9m 48s
    6. Creating text on a path
      5m 11s
    7. Converting text into paths
      1m 43s
    8. Saving time with keyboard shortcuts
      3m 52s
  12. 27m 25s
    1. Exploring the Appearance panel
      4m 44s
    2. Explaining attribute stacking order
      1m 40s
    3. Applying multiple fills
      3m 1s
    4. Applying multiple strokes
      4m 20s
    5. Adjusting appearance with live effects
      4m 46s
    6. Saving appearances as graphic styles
      8m 54s
  13. 20m 44s
    1. Exploring the Layers panel
      4m 18s
    2. Creating and editing layers
      3m 27s
    3. Targeting objects in the Layers panel
      3m 3s
    4. Working with sublayers
      3m 0s
    5. Hiding, locking, and deleting layers
      4m 14s
    6. Using the Layers panel menu
      2m 42s
  14. 46m 0s
    1. Placing images into Illustrator
      2m 53s
    2. Working with the Links panel
      6m 5s
    3. Embedding images into Illustrator
      3m 12s
    4. Cropping images with a mask
      5m 8s
    5. Exploring the Image Trace panel
      12m 14s
    6. Tracing photographs
      8m 6s
    7. Tracing line art
      4m 33s
    8. Converting pixels to paths
      3m 49s
  15. 19m 21s
    1. What are symbols?
      2m 45s
    2. Using prebuilt symbols
      3m 3s
    3. Using the Symbol Sprayer tool
      4m 19s
    4. Creating new symbols
      3m 50s
    5. Breaking the symbol link
      3m 19s
    6. Redefining symbols
      2m 5s
  16. 12m 9s
    1. Defining a perspective grid
      4m 29s
    2. Drawing artwork in perspective
      3m 49s
    3. Applying artwork to the grid
      3m 51s
  17. 35m 7s
    1. Printing your artwork
      6m 16s
    2. Saving your artwork
      2m 2s
    3. Saving in legacy formats
      3m 0s
    4. Saving templates
      4m 18s
    5. Creating PDF files
      5m 23s
    6. Saving for the web
      4m 46s
    7. Creating high-res bitmap images
      3m 58s
    8. Using Illustrator files in Photoshop and InDesign
      5m 24s
  18. 56s
    1. Next steps
      56s

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