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Scaling objects

From: Illustrator CS4 Essential Training

Video: Scaling objects

A function you will find yourself doing quite often is scaling artwork inside of Illustrator; either making things larger or smaller. As with many things that we have seen until this point there are really two ways to do something inside of Illustrator, you can either do things precisely by the numbers, or you can eyeball it on the screen. We have already seen that when you have the bounding box option turned on inside of Illustrator you can click on any object. With the Regular Selection tool you will see a bounding box appear and you can click on any corner and drag it to resize that object. You can either do it non-proportionally or hold down the Shift key to constrain that it is always going to be proportional.

Scaling objects

A function you will find yourself doing quite often is scaling artwork inside of Illustrator; either making things larger or smaller. As with many things that we have seen until this point there are really two ways to do something inside of Illustrator, you can either do things precisely by the numbers, or you can eyeball it on the screen. We have already seen that when you have the bounding box option turned on inside of Illustrator you can click on any object. With the Regular Selection tool you will see a bounding box appear and you can click on any corner and drag it to resize that object. You can either do it non-proportionally or hold down the Shift key to constrain that it is always going to be proportional.

However, you will notice that when you go ahead and you scale things that way it's always scaling from one place. For example, if I click and drag on this corner here I'm scaling up from this lower right hand corner. If I click and drag in the upper right hand corner I'm now scaling it from this particular part of the object as well. I'm going to press Command+Z or Ctrl+Z to undo that. We will now focus on using a specific tool inside of Illustrator called the Scale tool. When you use the Scale tool you have far more options available to you on how you want to scale your artwork. For this exercise we will go ahead and we will zoom in on the Flip Box that's right here. So I'll go ahead and I'll just simply marquee, select an area here that I want to zoom in on. I'll select it. I'll come over here to the tools panel and click the Scale tool.

The first thing you will notice right now is that there is an icon that appears right here in the center; it almost looks like a little cross hairs. That is something that's called the Origin Point. Whenever you scale an object, the object gets scaled from a certain point, that's where the scale originates from; we call that the Origin Point. By default, Illustrator places the Origin Point in the center of your selection. However, you could change the position of that Origin Point at any time. For now, we will leave the Origin Point in the center in its default location. The way to use the Scale tool is you want to move your cursor away from that particular Origin Point. I'm not clicking down the mouse button right now; I'm simply moving my cursor round on the page.

Basically, the way that you think about it, imagine if you had this artwork right now as a regular piece of paper and you stuck a pin right there in the middle. So now this part does not move. So what you can do is you can drag somewhere outside of the edge of the paper and pull it to basically stretch it if you want to, and it will stretch from that point of the artwork. Obviously, if you grab something that's too close to the Origin Point you don't have a lot of leverage to work with. So what you want to do is move your cursor away from that. So for example, I'll click over here and start dragging. I'm not holding down the Shift key, so what I'm able to do is actually scale this non-proportionately. But you can see what I'm doing is, see how its scaling out from the center. If I hold down the Shift key as I do this I'm now basically forced to scale this in a proportional manner. Now when I release the mouse I have scaled it up in size.

I'm going to press Ctrl+Z or Command+Z just to undo that for a moment here. I also want to let you know that if I start doing the exact same thing of holding down the Shift key, I'm also going to add the Alt key or the Option key as I drag. Notice, now you see that double cursor again. This means that I'm not scaling the original artwork; I'm actually scaling a copy of the artwork. So when I release the mouse I'll now have the original plus the copy that's here. I'll undo that one more time, because I want to show you how you can actually change the position of that Origin Point. You could simply click on it and reposition it elsewhere. For example, if I wanted to scale from this part of the artwork right over here, I can now click and drag and it scales from that point, or let me undo, move the Origin Point to let's say over here and now scale from here as well.

Based in the needs for every design task, you may want to position that Origin Point where it makes the most sense. It's also possible to scale artwork numerically. To do so, come over to the Scale tool and simply double click on it. That brings up the Scale dialog box. Here you can enter either an uniform scale number or a non-uniform, meaning different numbers for horizontal and vertical. You could choose to scale the strokes add effects. For example, if you had 1-point stroke on your object and you choose to uncheck, no matter how large you make your object it will always have 1-point stroke. However, if you have 1-point stroke and you turn the setting on and you enlarge it let's say 200%, your stroke will now be 2 points in weight.

As we had discussed in the last chapter, you also have the ability to choose to scale your objects, your patterns, or both. Of coarse, you can choose to scale or copy here by clicking on this button, but I'm going to click Cancel to go back to where I was before. Finally, there may be times when you want to scale something numerically but you also want to specify where the Origin Point should be. To do that, simply select your Scale tool and Option Click in a location from where you want that Origin Point to be. Now, it's important to note that the Origin Point doesn't have to be in the artwork itself, it could really be anywhere. I can scale it from let's say this point right here, by Option Clicking here I get the dialog box and I also get the ability to specify an Origin Point right over here.

It may not be as evident of why it would be important to position the Origin Point so far away from the object when using the Scale tool, but in the next movie we are going to explore using the Rotate tool inside of Illustrator, and there are many uses for actually positioning the Origin Point far away from the object when rotating objects.

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This video is part of

Image for Illustrator CS4 Essential Training
Illustrator CS4 Essential Training

116 video lessons · 48483 viewers

Mordy Golding
Author

 
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  1. 59s
    1. Welcome
      59s
  2. 33m 17s
    1. Why use Illustrator?
      2m 22s
    2. What are vector graphics?
      8m 4s
    3. Understanding paths
      4m 13s
    4. Fill and Stroke attributes
      5m 32s
    5. Selections and stacking order
      8m 31s
    6. Isolation mode
      4m 35s
  3. 23m 43s
    1. The Welcome screen
      1m 11s
    2. New Document Profiles
      4m 36s
    3. Using multiple artboards
      7m 17s
    4. Libraries and content
      3m 52s
    5. Illustrator templates
      2m 56s
    6. Adding XMP metadata
      3m 51s
  4. 43m 55s
    1. Exploring panels
      4m 18s
    2. Using the Control panel
      5m 25s
    3. Navigating within a document
      5m 27s
    4. Using rulers and guides
      5m 23s
    5. Using grids
      2m 12s
    6. Utilizing the bounding box
      3m 3s
    7. Using Smart Guides
      4m 59s
    8. The Hide Edges command
      3m 31s
    9. Preview and Outline modes
      2m 18s
    10. Using workspaces
      7m 19s
  5. 38m 3s
    1. The importance of modifier keys
      1m 9s
    2. Drawing closed-path primitives
      7m 15s
    3. Drawing open-path primitives
      5m 5s
    4. Simple drawing with the Pen tool
      7m 28s
    5. Advanced drawing with the Pen tool
      10m 33s
    6. Drawing with the Pencil tool
      6m 33s
  6. 46m 37s
    1. Editing anchor points
      13m 7s
    2. Creating compound shapes
      5m 55s
    3. Utilizing Pathfinder functions
      5m 11s
    4. Joining and averaging paths
      5m 37s
    5. Outlining strokes
      3m 24s
    6. Simplifying paths
      5m 41s
    7. Using Offset Path
      2m 43s
    8. Dividing an object into a grid
      1m 41s
    9. Cleaning up errant paths
      3m 18s
  7. 35m 23s
    1. Creating point text
      4m 4s
    2. Creating area text
      4m 19s
    3. Applying basic character settings
      6m 27s
    4. Applying basic paragraph settings
      4m 4s
    5. Creating text threads
      5m 28s
    6. Creating text on open paths
      5m 18s
    7. Creating text on closed paths
      3m 57s
    8. Converting text to outlines
      1m 46s
  8. 20m 15s
    1. Using the basic selection tools
      7m 53s
    2. Using the Magic Wand and Lasso tools
      6m 34s
    3. Selecting objects by attribute
      2m 38s
    4. Saving and reusing selections
      3m 10s
  9. 40m 35s
    1. Using the Appearance panel
      6m 48s
    2. Targeting object attributes
      3m 26s
    3. Adding multiple attributes
      7m 6s
    4. Applying Live Effects
      8m 9s
    5. Expanding appearances
      4m 48s
    6. Appearance panel settings
      6m 51s
    7. Copying appearances
      3m 27s
  10. 37m 15s
    1. Defining groups
      7m 2s
    2. Editing groups
      5m 28s
    3. Working with layers
      8m 10s
    4. Layer and object hierarchy
      6m 57s
    5. Creating template layers
      2m 3s
    6. Object, group, and layer attributes
      7m 35s
  11. 44m 4s
    1. Applying colors
      3m 18s
    2. Creating solid color swatches
      4m 48s
    3. Creating global process swatches
      5m 1s
    4. Using spot color swatches
      4m 27s
    5. Creating swatch groups and libraries
      6m 50s
    6. Working with linear gradient fills
      6m 34s
    7. Working with radial gradient fills
      2m 19s
    8. Applying and manipulating pattern fills
      4m 51s
    9. Defining simple patterns
      5m 56s
  12. 22m 43s
    1. Moving and copying objects
      2m 1s
    2. Scaling objects
      4m 49s
    3. Rotating objects
      3m 14s
    4. Reflecting and skewing objects
      2m 27s
    5. Using the Free Transform tool
      2m 9s
    6. Aligning objects
      5m 15s
    7. Distributing objects
      2m 48s
  13. 25m 13s
    1. Using a pressure-sensitive tablet
      1m 38s
    2. Using the Calligraphic brush
      6m 10s
    3. Using the Scatter brush
      4m 0s
    4. Using the Art brush
      2m 26s
    5. Using the Pattern brush
      3m 21s
    6. Using the Paintbrush tool
      1m 41s
    7. Using the Blob Brush tool
      3m 42s
    8. Using the Eraser tool
      2m 15s
  14. 16m 36s
    1. Using symbols
      3m 9s
    2. Defining your own symbols
      2m 1s
    3. Editing symbols
      4m 4s
    4. Using the Symbol Sprayer tool
      2m 32s
    5. Using the Symbolism toolset
      4m 50s
  15. 35m 37s
    1. Minding your resolution settings
      6m 15s
    2. Applying basic 3D extrusions
      6m 43s
    3. Applying basic 3D revolves
      2m 31s
    4. Basic artwork mapping
      5m 9s
    5. Using the Stylize effects
      5m 35s
    6. Using the Scribble effect
      5m 43s
    7. Using the Warp effect
      3m 41s
  16. 21m 37s
    1. Placing images
      4m 51s
    2. Using the Links panel
      2m 47s
    3. The Edit Original workflow
      2m 0s
    4. Converting images to vectors with Live Trace
      5m 29s
    5. Rasterizing artwork
      1m 55s
    6. Cropping images with a mask
      4m 35s
  17. 10m 35s
    1. Saving your Illustrator document
      8m 18s
    2. Printing your Illustrator document
      2m 17s
  18. 6m 25s
    1. Exporting files for use in QuarkXPress
      1m 8s
    2. Exporting files for use in InDesign
      39s
    3. Exporting files for use in Word/Excel/PowerPoint
      45s
    4. Exporting files for use in Photoshop
      1m 25s
    5. Exporting files for use in Flash
      1m 15s
    6. Exporting files for use in After Effects
      19s
    7. Migrating from FreeHand
      54s
  19. 2m 23s
    1. Finding additional help
      2m 0s
    2. Goodbye
      23s

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