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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.
In this exercise we are going to actually begin printing or at least we are going to choose the Print command, whether you decide to let rip, it's up to you. Let's go up to the File menu and choose the Print command or press Ctrl+P, Command+P on the Mac in order to initiate the Print process. Now everything you need to print is located inside of this multi-paneled ginormous dialog box here, including which printer you want to print to. So if you have multiple printers on your network, then you can select between them here, these first three printers are actual printers in the Lynda.com facility.
So you can switch printers. You could also, if you are working with a PostScript device, you could specify a PostScript Printer Description right here. It's a good idea to keep your PostScript Printer Description up-to-date. If need be, if in doubt, go ahead and check with your printer's website to see if they have something more recent. I am going to the next dropdown to the Copies option. You can specify multiple copies if you want to. You can also specify the page range now that we have multiple artboards. Illustrator is savvy to the fact that you want to print each one to a different piece of paper. So I could say you know what? I don't want to print pages 1-3, I just want to go ahead and print pages 2-3. Notice what happens down here in this Preview.
When I press the Tab key to accept that, it goes ahead and takes me to page 2 as if to acknowledge you don't want page 1 anymore, it's just 1 of 2 that I'm going to be printing. This is page 1 now and this here is page 2, the T-shirt. But you could also say you know what, I want a non-adjacent range. So I'm going to do page 1 and page 3 as indicated by that comma, and then it's saying, okay there is your first page and then if I click this right arrowhead, there is my second page and the middle page is ruled out. I want all of them though so I'll go ahead and turn on All. I'm going to dropdown here to the Media for a moment. Notice that Size is set to Defined by Driver, by default, which means that the driver is telling the Printer Driver which is a piece of software that's installed on your computer. The Printer Driver is keeping track of what paper is loaded into the printer and which tray is active and that kind of thing. Presumably, it's an 8.5x11 page. It is. I can tell that because I just happened to know that 612 points is 8.5 inches wide, 792 points is 11 inches tall.
You can change the page orientation right here if you want to, you don't have to resort to a Page Setup dialog box. You can also specify the placement of your artwork on the page, so you don't have to use that Print Tiling tool that we saw on the previous exercise. You can change the Print Tiling right here inside the Printer dialog box if you want to. So for example, I could drag this guy down into the right and that's going to affect the other artboards as well. If I want to restore their original placement centered on the page, I would either double-click inside of this preview or I go over to this Placement icon and I would click right in the center of it. That works too.
These values right here, 36 points and 54 points, they are not saying that the artboard has somehow moved one way or the other, 36 points and 54 points from the center point, they are saying that's the location of the top left corner of the artboard with respect to the page. You also have the option of scaling your artwork, so I could say Fit to Page for example, to make it incrementally larger. This is going to be applied to all of the artboards by the exact same amount. So it's going to be determined by the biggest artboard. You can see that this one is the one that's scaling to fit or you can apply a Custom Scale. You could say you know what, I want to scale this to 200% and because the Chain icon is on that's going to affect the W and H, the Width and Height values by the same amount, and you could tile your artwork as well.
If it was too super massive to fit on a single piece paper then you could try to tile it to multiple pieces of paper right there. Then you also have the option of printing the visible and printable layers, so even as a printable layer, which you can specify by double- clicking on a layer and selecting the Print option inside the dialog box. Both the visible and printable layers will print. So printable layers will print whether they are visible or not, in other words, or you just want to print the visible layers or you want to print all layers in the document no matter how they are specified. Now something else I want to show you here is this guy right there, Ignore Artboards, and what that allows you to do is completely ignore the artifice of the artboards inside of your illustration and print around them. Try to print everything at the same time, in other words.
So I'll turn on Ignore Artboards and now notice that my artwork is super ginormous and this is one I could specify gosh, you know what? I want to tile it in some arbitrary manner. Look at that. Wouldn't that work great? You tile it over the course of what would that be 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 pages, so 12 pages in all, and you are going to try to what? Tape those together? That will look just delightful. That's why I don't really recommend you play with the Tile option very much. What you would do is you would send this to a commercial printer who had the resources to print it on one big massive piece of paper, which is what you would want.
Instead, in my case, I'm going to do a Fit to Page and you know what I'm going to say? I'm going to override this whole Defined by Driver thing and I'm going to go down here to an 11x17 page, so a big tabloid page. I'll make it wide instead of tall so we'll do one of these numbers here, change the Orientation like so. Now we have scaled everything inside the artwork down to just below 70% in order to squish it all on to this one single piece of paper. So that's an option. It doesn't happen to be the option I'm going to take advantage of. We are not going to ignore the artboards; we are not going to scale our artwork. We are not going to rotate it on its side and we are going to stick with the paper that's defined by the driver.
It does happen to be a Letter size page. That was defined by the driver in the first place, 612x792. That's 8.5x11 inches. Then presumably, you would click on the Print button or if you just wanted to say I'm done for now, I just want to go ahead and save these print settings along with my document, you would click on the Done button instead. That would take you back out to your illustration. Notice the change has been made because I have got this little asterisk right next door to the .ai, which is telling me that I have made changes to my artwork since I last saved it. The only changes I made were inside the Print dialog box, so those do get saved along with the illustration, if you click the Done button.
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