Viewers: in countries Watching now:
Knowing the fundamentals of drawing and reshaping paths is only part of the story. In Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Advanced, the second of the popular One-on-One series, computer graphics expert Deke McClelland covers some of Illustrator's most powerful and least understood features. He shows how to merge simple shapes to create complex ones with the Pathfinder palette, as well as align paths to create schematic illustrations. Deke explains how to paint fluid, multicolor fills with blends, and the new and improved gradient tool. He explores seamlessly repeating tile patterns, blobs and brushes, and imported images. He also dives into one of the deepest features in all of Illustrator, transparency. Exercise files accompany the tutorial.
Recommended prerequisite: Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals.
Download Deke's customized keyboard layouts and color settings for Illustrator from the Exercise Files tab.
In this exercise I'm going to show you how to distribute with respect to a Key Object inside of Illustrator and this is one of the wackiest features in all of Illustrator, just works totally different than any other program and I'll show you what's up shortly. Now, I have gone ahead and restore the original version of One group aligned.ai, which has the one group in the center aligned to the Artboard. Everybody else is out of alignment. Now, we were able to distribute to everybody with respect to the Artboard. It worked out great in the previous exercise because the Artboard and the checkers are scaled to fit each other. But let's say that wasn't the case. Let's say I was to go over to this Artboard tool here and I'll change the size of the Artboard to just something random, let's say 1000 points wide by 1000 points tall.
So, it's much bigger than it was before. I'll go ahead and zoom out, press the V key to switch back to the Black Arrow tool so that I'd leave that Artboard mode. And now let's say I decided to go ahead and distribute the objects inside of this illustration with respect to the Artboard. I'll check that my Align To option is set to Align to Artboard as it is and then I'll go ahead and select this row like so and click this Horizontal Distribution option and I'll select this row and click and I'll select this row and click and so on. And you get a sense of what's happening here. I don't really need to narrate it too much.
You can see how Illustrator is doing a beautiful of job of aligning the checkers to the Artboard. The problem is the checkers and the Artboard don't fit each other in this case. So, we end up with this effect here which is nice in everything but it's not what I'm looking for. Let's say I want to align the checkers, the ones that are positioned properly so that they fit inside that 640 by 640 point space regardless of the dimensions of the Artboard. So let's go ahead and press Ctrl+Z or Command+Z on the Mac as many times as it takes to get these checkers back where they were, like so and I'm going to leave the Artboard big as it is. So I'll just go up to the Edit menu and just make sure that Undo is set to Scale Artboard, just so that I have managed to undo all of the aligns that I have applied so far just to make sure that I have properly undone all the alignment that I have applied so far, which I have.
All right so this time around I'm going to go ahead and select this row of checkers right here, the third tan checker down the list, the central group of four and the third violet checker as well. And now I'm going to change Align To from Align to Artboard to Align to Selection, which is your Standard Distribution Method inside of other applications that are out there on the market. And you usually align into the selection, but if you align to the selection then it is the extreme in this case, left and right objects that can remain in position and everything else is going to move in between.
So for example, in this case if I click on Horizontal Distribute Center, it's essential group of four that will move so that it is centered with respect to the position of the extreme objects. Does that make sense? That's not what I want of course because this guy used to be exactly where I wanted him to be. So I'll go ahead and press Ctrl+Z or Command+Z on the Mac to undo that modification. So for example, if I were to select this group before down here at the bottom it would be the right one and the left one that would stay in place and the two in the middle would get distributed. So I'll go ahead and click on that icon so you can see what I mean. So anyway that's not what we want. What we want instead is to distribute with respect to a Key Object. So I'm going to go ahead and select these guys like so and to set a Key Object in another application what you would do is you would go ahead and lock down this center object like in InDesign this is the way it works and in lot of other applications too. You would lock down the object that you don't want to see move and then that would fix the position of that object and the other objects would move accordingly.
Problem is if you do that inside of Illustrator, like if I go ahead and twirl open this checkers layer here and I search for the group of four there and I lock it by clicking to bring up its little lock icon right there, then I deselect the object as well and then if I try to Shift-click on it or something like that, I can't get it and that's because locked objects inside of Illustrator cannot be selected. So there is no aligning to a locked object because you can't select or do anything. So I'll go ahead and turn off that lock icon right there and then I'll Shift-click on the group once again to make it active. What you do instead is you set the Key Object and you do that by clicking on a selected object the second time and when you do that notice that you get this heavy border and that indicates that you now have a Key Object and if you look at your little Align icon here in the Align palette notice it has a little Key inside of it and that sets this option to Align to Key Object automatically. All right and we have got a little Key icon up here in the Control palette as well.
Now if I click on the Horizontal Distribute Center option I get this effect right here which is absolutely wrong. I have shown you everything you don't do so far what in the world do you do and let's go ahead and press Ctrl+Z or Command+Z on the Mac. You apply this Distribute Spacing option right there and I'll show you how that function work, a very useful function here inside Illustrator in the next exercise.
Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Advanced .
Here are the FAQs that matched your search "" :
Sorry, there are no matches for your search "" —to search again, type in another word or phrase and click search.
Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.
Search within course videos and transcripts, and jump right to the results.
Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.
Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.
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.