Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals
Illustration by Don Barnett

Scaling and positioning type


Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals

with Deke McClelland

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Video: Scaling and positioning type

In this exercise, I'm going to show you how to scale and position type inside of Illustrator, and along the way I'm going to impart a lot of different keyboard and mouse tricks that I think you'll find very helpful if you can keep track of them. Now, they do make a lot of sense, once you come to terms with them and they do allow you to keep your focus on your type without having to runoff and grab different tools and different options in the Control palette and so forth. I am working inside that same document we opened in the previous exercise which is called Plain old found inside of the 08_type folder. Now I want to change the Typeface and the Size associated with the title, That Sock, independently the byline. So that means I need to select that title independently the byline with the Type tool.
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  1. 42m 8s
    1. Welcome to One-on-One
      1m 58s
    2. The Welcome screen
      3m 3s
    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 6s
    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 35s
  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 44s
    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 39s
    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 29s
    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 44s
    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 31s
    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 56s
    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 33s
  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 2s
    5. Saving a high-contrast GIF graphic
      6m 27s
    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

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Watch the Online Video Course Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals
16h 48m Beginner Feb 06, 2009

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Adobe Illustrator has long been a popular vector–based drawing program, but for many the learning curve is steep. In Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals, author and leading industry expert Deke McClelland shows users how to get in to the Illustrator mindset and overcome this learning curve. He covers the application's key features in a new way, making it simple and easy to master Illustrator. Deke teaches viewers how to use the core drawing and shape tools, the transformation and reshaping features, text, and the Pen tool. He also explains how to export and print. Even if learning Illustrator has been a struggle in the past, this training can help make sense of it. Exercise files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Creating continuous arcs and looping spirals
  • Building with geometric shapes
  • Selecting, placing, and scaling type
  • Creating spine curves with round corners
  • Using the new Blob brush to quickly draw and merge paths
  • Working with flattener and raster effects
  • Saving illustrations for the web
Deke McClelland

Scaling and positioning type

In this exercise, I'm going to show you how to scale and position type inside of Illustrator, and along the way I'm going to impart a lot of different keyboard and mouse tricks that I think you'll find very helpful if you can keep track of them. Now, they do make a lot of sense, once you come to terms with them and they do allow you to keep your focus on your type without having to runoff and grab different tools and different options in the Control palette and so forth. I am working inside that same document we opened in the previous exercise which is called Plain old found inside of the 08_type folder. Now I want to change the Typeface and the Size associated with the title, That Sock, independently the byline. So that means I need to select that title independently the byline with the Type tool.

Now it's telling you how you can switch over to the Type tool by double-clicking, if the Black Arrow is active double-clicking there inside of your type that sets the blinking insertion marker and switches you over to the Type tool here. But there is another way to work, watch this. I'll press the Escape key to switch back to the Black Arrow tool and if I triple-click on my type 1, 2, 3, that not only switches me over to the Type tool, but it also goes ahead and selects that entire first line of type. All right, now I'm going to go up to my Font option here and click inside of it, and I want to switch to Trajan Pro, which is one of those fonts I was telling you is available to you automatically if you installed the Design Premium version of CS4.

If you have some other version, you can't find Trajan Pro then try out any font you like. But I'm going to go ahead and enter Tra, and that's going to switch me to Trajan Pro and then I'm going to press the Enter key or the Return key on the Mac, and notice that I all of a sudden get All Cap type. And it's not really All Cap it's actually small caps. If you notice here, we've got a big T and then a little HAT, but they are capital letters, and that just happens to be how Trajan works. So some typefaces have all caps, some have lowercase characters, some have all kinds of different wacky characters inside of them. All right, now let's say I want to change the Size of this type, but it's too small of course, so I'll go up here to the Size value, click in it in order to select it, and I could say you know, I want 37.42 as my Type Size and press the Enter key or the Return key on the Mac, and that's totally fine, you can enter Type Size value that's accurate to a hundredth of a point if you want, and the only reason I'm showing you that, not because it's semi-reasonable or anything like that, just so that you can see that your type, no matter what value you enter is going to look perfectly smooth on screen and it's going to print perfectly smoothly as well.

Now if you click on this down pointing arrow-head, you will see some other common type sizes listed, for example, we jump from 36 to 48 point here, and that may imply to you that Adobe is somehow recommending these type sizes 36 point and 48 point over my 37.42 point. There is no implication like that going on. These are leftovers from the old days, these used to be screen size values. So back in the old days, really old days, 36 point did look better than 37.42, but that's not the case anymore. So you can enter whatever you want. Having said that I'm going to switch to 36 point, just so that we have a round value to work from here, as I show you a few other tricks that are available to you.

Now the first trick I'm going to start with this is notice that this text is off the screen to the right, think that's fairly obvious, so I want to scroll rightward. It's tempting to press-and- hold the Spacebar in order to access the Hand tool on the fly, but if you do that then you are going to go ahead and replace your text with a space. So that's no good, what do you do? Go ahead and undo, Ctrl+Z, Command+Z on the Mac. Well, you could resort to the scrollbar down here at the bottom of the illustration window, or even better, take advantage of one of those scroll wheel tricks I was telling you about long, long ago, when we were discussing Navigation. So if you press-and-hold the Ctrl key or the Command key on the Mac and then scroll down with the scroll wheel on your mouse, you are going to move things over to the right, like so, and of course, if you have a mighty mouse on the Mac you can just scroll to the right without pressing any special key.

All right, now we can see the entirety of That Sock. What if you want to be able to nudge the size of your text incrementally? Without having to worry about what this specific type size value as well? You have that option from the keyboard here inside of Illustrator, let's go ahead and zoom out so that we can see more of our text at a time. You can press Ctrl+Shift+Period or Command+Shift+ Period to make your text incrementally larger, and Ctrl+Shift+Comma or Command+ Shift+Comma on the Mac to make the text incrementally smaller. Now why Period and Comma? Because those are the same keys that share the greater than sign. This is Ctrl+ Shift+>, Command+Shift+> on the Mac or Ctrl+Shift+<, Command+Shift+< on the Mac to make the text smaller.

So American keyboards have the Less Than and Greater Than signs on the same keys as the Comma and Period keys respectively. All right, so that's it. I'm going to increase my text quite a bit, and as I increase the size of my text by pressing Ctrl+Shift+> or Command+Shift+> on the Mac, you will notice this value here raises in two-point increments. So notice that we are getting these galumphing bigger sizes here, and if you want better control, which I think you do, I certainly do, then you want to change your keyboard increments inside the Preferences dialog box, so here's how. I'm going to press Ctrl+K or Command+K on the Mac in order to bring up the Preferences dialog box and switch from General to Type. And then notice these first three numerical values, they all affect different formatting keyboard tricks that are available to you here inside of Illustrator. So the first one is Size/Leading. Size of course being type size, Leading being the distance between lines of type, and we will be discussing Leading in the very next exercise.

It's set to 2 points. That's way too big in my opinion, I would rather have 0.5 points, so half a point which is a- quarter of the value we have before. That's good control. And if you are thinking that's too small, wait, you will see that there is a way to make it bigger again. You can always go up; you can't go down except here from the Preferences dialog box. And then Tracking. Tracking is the horizontal distance between characters of type. It's measured in thousandths of an em space. Now an em space is a space that is as wide as the type size is tall, so it's a relative space. So in our case, we've got 50-point type, so it's going to be a space that's exactly 50 points wide. If we are changing things in thousandths of an em, that is great.

That's an amazing level of control. That's 0.05 point, so half of the tenth of a point, which might seem like a crazy level of control. Why change it? We are operating in twenty thousandths of an em. If you divide 1000 by 20, you get 50. So if you divide 50 by 50, which is what this would be here, then that single point controls. So tracking of 20, 1000s at 50 points is single point increments, which is huge when you are adjusting type. So what we want to do is take this down too. I'm going to change this value to a-quarter of what it was to 5. So a- quarter of what this was, a-quarter of what this was, and not surprising a-quarter of this value too. So Baseline Shift, I'm going to take down to 0.5 points as well.

Baseline Shift by the way is the distance between the bottom of the text and the baseline. So you can either raise the text or lower it. If you want to. And we'll see that in the later exercise as well. Click OK in order to accept that modification and now notice if I press, for example, Ctrl+Shift+< or Command+Shift+< on the Mac, I take this value down to 49.5 and this is much better control as you can see. So we are making slower progress but we are also making a more fine-tuned edit. Now if that's going too slowly for some reason and typically you will grab your type, you will select your type here and then you make big changes at first and then make smaller changes as you get closer to your goal.

If you want to make those big changes, you add Alt to the mix or Option on the Mac. So this is Ctrl+Shift+Alt+< or Command+Shift+Option+< on the Mac, and every time you press Alt or Option with that keyboard shortcut, you increase the increment by 5. So in our case we are changing the type by 2.5 points at a time when we do that. In my case, I want to take this type just so that we have something to work from here so that we can get the same results. I want this type to be 44 point. So I'm going to press Ctrl+ Shift+Alt+Period. That would be Command+Shift+Option+Period on the Mac. In order to raise that type in my case to 43.5 point and now we are very close. So now I would press Ctrl+Shift+Period without the Alt key, Command+Shift+ Period on the Mac in order to make my type 44 points in size.

All right, let's zoom out one more increment there and I'll press the Control key and scroll up with my scroll wheel in order to move over to the left, and then I'll also scroll down, and that's without the Control key or the Command key obviously. The final thing we are going to do inside this exercise is move this text into the right place. I could do that by switching back to the Black Arrow tool, but let's say for whatever reason you don't want to. You want to keep the Type tool active, you would press-and-hold the Control key or the Command key on the Mac in order to get the Black Arrow on the fly and then you can drag your text to the location where you want it, like so, then drop it in a place and then as soon as you release your key there, the Control key or the Command key, you will switch back to the Type tool cursor and then you can select your text once again or what have you.

All right, in the next exercise, we are going to begin work on this byline and we are going to change the Leading, the Tracking and lot more.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals .

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Q: Adobe Bridge CS4 is not previewing files in the same way for me as it is in the tutorial. All I am seeing is a low-quality thumbnail of the image, not previews of each artboard.  Why is there a difference between the tutorial and what I am seeing?
A: There is a different view in the tutorial because the author used a beta version of Bridge during the recording. The final release of Bridge CS4 displays thumbnails as you describe.
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