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In this installment of Illustrator Insider Training, author Mordy Golding shows how to create type that’s both beautiful and communicative, whether it’s destined for logos, brochures, signs, infographics, or simple documents. This course covers core typography concepts, such as working with Unicode and OpenType fonts, applying character and paragraph settings, managing text with styles and text threads, placing text along a path, and wrapping text around graphics.
Okay, so after the first few chapters in this course, we know a lot more about how type works. Let's start applying that knowledge to a real project. I have here this flyer. It's called Hansel_Flyer_Final, and it's simply a legal-size flyer right here, and we're going to create this. We're going to start adding some text to a document in order to get to this final result. I want you to see what it looks like now so that as we start to go through the process, we have a better idea about what we're going to end up with. More importantly, I've kind of gone through the step of actually sketching this out on paper beforehand, so I have an idea of where I want to use Point Text and where I want to use Area Text, just to make things a little bit easier for me as I work.
Of course, at any time we can always copy and paste text from a Point Text object to an Area Type object. But if I know in advance how I'm going to be working with my document, I can make those decisions earlier on in the process. So now that we know what we're going to end up with, let's kind of start from scratch and see how we go from there. I'm going to create a brand-new document in Illustrator. Command+N or Ctrl+N to create this new document. Now this is going to actually be a print-based document. I'm going to use Print here just as a basic profile. But we'll see we're going to change some of these settings here as well.
For example, I know this is going to be a legal-size sheet of paper, and that's because I really want it to be like just a regular letter-size flyer actually, but I want there to be a section in the bottom that people can tear off and use maybe as an order form. I prefer to work in inches, so I'm going to switch my Units here to Inches, but again, you're free to use whatever you like. And I'm also going to specify a bleed in my document. Now because I want to have a background color throughout the entire document here and I actually want this image to kind of print all the way to the edge my paper, I'm going to want to make sure that I have a bleed.
I'm going to specify here .125 or an eighth of an inch and hit the Tab key, and since this icon over here is turned on, I'm now going to have this exact same Bleed set for the top, bottom, left, and right sides of my artboard. Don't worry about any of the information here in Advanced. Because we chose a print profile, everything we need is there for us automatically. And I'm simply going to click OK to create this document. Great! Now like I said before, we really want this to be mainly just like a letter-size sheet, which is the top half or 8.5x11, but I want to have the bottom here part be some kind of a tear-off that people can use as an order form.
Now I could start to work with guides here. I'm going to press Ctrl+R or Command+R to turn on my rulers inside of Illustrator so I can see the different measurements here. But rather than struggle with trying to get my guides to snap exactly to a certain point on the ruler, I prefer to set up my guides by drawing regular objects and then converting them to guides later. Let me show you what I mean by that. I'm just going to use my regular Line tool here. I just want to create a line here inside of my document. Now I'm going to go to my Transform panel. I'm going to click on the word Transform over here to temporally open up my Transform panel.
But of course, if you have your Transform panel open otherwise, for example, I can go over here and open up my Transform panel, or you can always find all panels here inside the Window menu by choosing Transform. But I'm going to choose over here where it says Transform. I have the upper left-hand corner here. What I really care about is the Y coordinate. I'm actually going to set that to 0 and then hit the Tab key, and that's going to snap right to the top of the document. I'm going to switch here to my regular Selection tool here. I'm going to Option+Drag or Alt+Drag this down all the way to the bottom while holding down the Shift key.
And you could see that because my Smart Guides is turned on right now, you can see how it says the word intersect snaps to the bottom part of my artboard. Now again, as I was dragging, I was holding down the Option and Shift keys, which made a copy of that and dragged it straight down. So now I have one line over here and one line over here. So now let me come back up to this top line over here. I'm going to select it, and once again click and start to drag while holding down the Option and the Shift keys. And again, on Windows that would be the Alt and the Shift keys. That again allows me to make a copy.
You can see my Double Arrow, and it also allows you me to constrain it straight down. I'm just going to create one copy here, and then I'm going to press Command+D or Ctrl+D so now I have a second one that I've created and then one more, one more time, Ctrl+D or Command+D to create a copy. So if you look at it right now, I have created five different lines inside of my document and I have one, two, three, four kind of empty areas that you might see between all of those. So now if I press Command+A or Ctrl+A to select all these, I can now use the Align tools inside of Illustrator to distribute those evenly.
So, for example, I can click on this icon right here called the Vertical Distribute Center and now they're all evenly distributed along my page. With all these selected, I can now press Command+5 or Ctrl+5 to turn these into a guide. And just to show you where you'd also find that, you go to the View menu, you can choose Guides, and then you could choose over here Make Guides. See the keyboard shortcut here is Command+5 or Ctrl+5 .In doing so, I now have guides set up in the exact positions that I need them to, without worrying about kind of dragging them out of the rulers and trying to get them to go to the right spot.
The reason why this is such an important feature and such a great way of working is because many times when you're creating these brochures that fold, or you need to have different segments or panels in some kind of layout that you're doing, they may not always be set to the same size. For example, if this were meant to be folded as some kind of brochure, I may have some of the panels be shorter than others so they fold i ncorrectly. You have something called a short- fold brochure or maybe a third page is a little bit shorter than some of the other pages so that there is room for it to fold in.
By just using my regular drawing tools and my powerful Transform panel inside of Illustrator, I could position regular artwork here. I was just working with regular paths. But then when I'm done, simply convert them into guides and now they are in the exact location where I need them to be. Okay, so we have our guides set up. Now let's bring some text into this document. You don't need the Transform panel here, so I'm just going to go ahead and close that. And I'm going to switch over to Microsoft Word. Now I'm using Word on my computer right now, but you can actually work with any text editor whatsoever.
I'm simply going to choose File > Open over here. I'm going to go to the Chapter 03 folder inside of the exercise files, and I have here a file called Flyer_Text.doc. That's the native Microsoft Word file. But again, if you have any other text editor, be it a word processor or even Notepad or TextEdit inside of your basic operating system, you can go ahead and work with the .txt file, which would work just about anywhere. I'm going to open that up, and now I'll see the text that my client has provided for me for this particular flyer.
So I have here what their headline is going to be, what the body copy is going to be, and I'm going to start to bring this text now into Illustrator. One thing that I've learned having worked in this industry for a very, very long time is that anytime that I need to retype some text, it just means there is that much more chance for me to introduce my own errors and typos into my document. So I want to avoid that if at all possible. So I'm going to start here by working with the headline. I'm going to click and drag to just select this headline that's right here, but I'll tell you that many times I find that people struggle with clicking and dragging to select things.
So I'll show you a little shortcut here. If you double-click on a word inside of just about any text editor, especially Microsoft Word, the entire word becomes highlighted. If you triple-click, however, you'll see that the entire line or even paragraph becomes selected. And it's just so much easier to know that you've gotten that entire sentence or that entire paragraph in your selection simply by triple-clicking on it. Sometimes you may find that triple- click selects just one line and a quadruple-click selects entire paragraph. But inside of Microsoft Word, a triple- click will always select a paragraph, just making it easier to select that text.
So now with this text selected, I'm going to hit Command+C or Ctrl+C to copy this. I'll switch over to Illustrator, and I'll use my Type tool to click once over here and get an insertion point. Now I'm going to press Command+V or Ctrl+V to paste and now that text has come in here. Now remember, because I'm using Copy and Paste here, the formatting is completely stripped out of the file. So the text comes in using the native default settings for text here inside of Illustrator. So notice over here my text is set to Myriad Pro, Regular, at 12 point.
That's totally fine because we're going to go ahead and work with this text anyway. But the first thing I want you to do is put to headline here as Point Text. And I'll take a moment here to tell you that when I'm working inside of Illustrator and I have some kind of a headline where I know I'm going to start tweaking and working with the text and get it to look just right, nine times out of ten I'm going to be using Point Text for this. It's just going to be easier for me to work with. Now let's go back over here to Microsoft Word and I now want to select the body copy, so I'm going to triple-click again anywhere inside a paragraph. That's now going to select the entire paragraph, and I'll press Command+C or Ctrl+C to copy.
Let's switch back now into Illustrator. And in this case here, I don't want to have my body copy set as Point Text because I want it to wrap or flow easily as to decide how it's going to fall within the exact document. So I have my Type tool selected, but I also have an insertion point right now inside of this text, which means that right now, Illustrator has this text object in focus. I'm almost like inside of this text object right now. So I have no way to get out of it, unless I switch tools.
Well, here's a shortcut that can be very important when working with text. Remember that just about anywhere inside of Illustrator, I can always hold down the Command key and Illustrator will give me the last-used Selection tool. Again, if you're on Windows, that would be the Ctrl key. So now I have my Type tool selected, I'm currently inside of a text object, but I want to create a new text object. So I'm going to press Command, click on the screen somewhere to now deselect that object. Now I'm going to release the Command key. Now I'm back to a new Type tool.
Now I want to create an Area Type object, so remember, the way to do that is to click and drag to create a frame, and then I'll release the mouse. Now I have a blinking cursor inside of that frame. And now if I press Command+V and Ctrl+V to go ahead and paste that text, I've pasted that text as Area Text inside of that frame. So at this point, we've gotten our headline and we've gotten our body copy here inside of Illustrator. Let's go ahead and bring the remaining text here into our document. I'm going to go back into Microsoft Word. I'm going to triple-click over here on the tagline, copy, come back to Illustrator.
Again, I want this tagline to actually be Point Text. It's going to be easier for me to work with it in this case. I'm going to press Command. Again, this gives me my Selection tool. Click on a blank area of the screen to deselect that text object. Now let go the Command key, click once to create a Point Text object, and then press Command+V to paste that text here. Let's go back to Microsoft Word. Here I can go ahead and I can triple- click on this, but I only get now the first paragraph, but I want this other information to also be included in my selection.
Here is another great tip. Instead of worrying about trying to scroll or to make sure that everything is selected by clicking and dragging, I'm simply going to go ahead now and kind of scroll down over here, hold down the Shift key on my keyboard, and click anywhere after the last word that I want to be included in that selection. Notice now that all that became selected. I'm going to press Command+C to copy that text. Let's jump back into Illustrator, Command, click on the artboard, release, go ahead now and maybe click and drag to get a frame somewhere over here at the bottom right-hand part of the order form area.
I'm going to choose Command+ V to paste the text in there. Now let's go back to Word, go ahead now and take "Perfect for" and then these four different bullet points. Copy that. Let's switch back to Illustrator. I'm going to Command+Click to deselect that text object, let go of my Command key, click here on the artboard. Now I get a Point Text object. Choose Command+V. And now I have that Point Text object here inside of my document. Great! We now have all the text that we need to work with here inside of this document.
Now again, I could've placed all the text at once and then copied and pasted inside of Illustrator, and you may choose to do that. But this is one way where if I already know in my head where things are basically going to go onto the page and whether certain things are going to be Point Text objects or Area Text objects, this is a way for me to get there.
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