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In Illustrator CS5 New Features, author Mordy Golding discusses noteworthy features and improvements in the latest upgrade of Adobe's vector graphics editor and drawing program. This course includes overviews of perspective drawing, expressive bristle brushes, and variable-width strokes, as well as anti-aliasing features for web design, a new Artboards panel, improvements to symbols and drawing modes, and integration with Adobe Flash Catalyst. Exercise files are included with the course.
With the use of the Gradient Mesh tool inside of Illustrator, you can achieve some really wonderful results. For example, take a look at this flower here on this artboard. These elements here were created using Gradient Mesh. Now in Illustrator CS4, Adobe added the capability to add transparency to any stop in a regular gradient. Now in Illustrator CS5, Adobe adds that same capability, being able to specify Opacity for an individual point or a stop in a gradient for Gradient Mesh. For example, I'm going to zoom in a little bit closeer here on this part of the flower right here, and I'll use my Direct Selection tool to select some of these points here.
For example, I'm going to go ahead and click on this anchor point right here and this one right here. If I wanted to create a smooth transition from this color into this part of the flower over here, with these two anchor points right now selected and highlighted, I can simply adjust my Opacity to zero and now see how that very nicely fades directly into that element. This adds just yet another dimension to the power of Gradient Mesh. Not only can you have colors blend smoothly across a shape, you can even adjust the Opacity within individual mesh points inside of the Gradient Mesh as well.
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