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Styling and updating graphs

From: Illustrator CS4 Beyond the Basics

Video: Styling and updating graphs

As you already know, when Illustrator plots graphs and charts, it does so using just values of gray. The main point here is simply to actually plot information and then you can style it the way that you need to using Illustrator's full range of tools. There are really two ways to go by doing this. I can either ungroup my entire graph so that the elements are just regular paths inside of Illustrator and I'm free to do with them as I please. However I then loose by ability to update that data once they ungroup the graph. So instead, I would like to work with the graph leaving it intact and then using a variety of both paragraph styles and graphic styles to actually apply a look to my chart.

Styling and updating graphs

As you already know, when Illustrator plots graphs and charts, it does so using just values of gray. The main point here is simply to actually plot information and then you can style it the way that you need to using Illustrator's full range of tools. There are really two ways to go by doing this. I can either ungroup my entire graph so that the elements are just regular paths inside of Illustrator and I'm free to do with them as I please. However I then loose by ability to update that data once they ungroup the graph. So instead, I would like to work with the graph leaving it intact and then using a variety of both paragraph styles and graphic styles to actually apply a look to my chart.

For example, on this document over here, I can see that if I go to my Graphic Styles panel, I have a style called California and one called Hawaii. Let me zoom at this little bit so we can see this better on the screen and in addition, if I go to the Window menu and I choose Type and I go to Paragraph Styles, I'll see that I have also created two paragraph styles in this document, one called Graph values and one called Legend values. Now because Illustrator actually builds a graph out of multiple nested groups, it does make it easy for me to select these areas of a group to easily format them. Now I can either use the Group Selection tool to this or if I want you could really use the regular plain Direct Selection tool. You will notice that when you are working with the Direct Selection tool, holding down the Option key on the Mac or the Alt key on Windows actually converts it to the Group Selection tool. So I basically now have the ability to use my regular Direct Selection tool and let's say I want to format Hawaii first for example. I'll click over here once, I'm holding down the Option key or the Alt key to select it once and I'll click one more time now to select that entire data series and I'll come to where it says Graphic Styles and I'll simply click once on the graphic style called Hawaii to style it accordingly.

I will move back to the artboard here again holding down the Option key or Alt key on the Windows. Click on a blank area to deselect everything and then again click twice on this region right here to select the California data series. Now, I'll apply this graphic style called California. So now it comes to actually style in the text itself. Again, these are set up as groups, so I can us the Option key to click and then click again. Don't click too fast because otherwise your cursor will actually change to the Type tool because Illustrator will think you want to actually edit the text itself. With these two type objects selected, I'll now go over here to where it says Legend values and click on that particular graphic style.

Now it's important to realize inside of Illustrator, whenever I apply a particular style, I get a plus sign here which means that it's simply adding that particular style there but actually want to replace that entire type object with this particular style. So what I'll do is again I'll use that Option key. In this particular case here, the Option key is going to be used a lot or the Alt key on Windows and simply Option-click or Alt-click on the word, Legend values. Again with the Option or the Alt key still to press, then I'm actually going to go ahead and click once on one text object, click again to select all those and then Option-click on the Graph Value option and I can do the same here. Click once, again click again to select the entire particular data series and then Option-click where it says Graph Values. So with just a few clicks of a mouse, I can very easily style a chart to make it look just the way that I want to, especially if I'm doing many of different charts and I want them to all match the same in appearance. The beautiful thing about working in this way is that I do not need to actually ungroup my graph at all.

So the data is still intact. If I now get a last minute change from a client and we know that is going to happen, I could simply open up the Graph data dialog box to that particular graph, change the information, it will update automatically once I apply it. Now of course you don't need to use graphic styles or paragraph styles for that matter, but it just makes life so much more easier when you do so. Let me show you one of the possible ways to stylize the chart pretty quickly and easily, for example, adding 3D effects. In fact, I'll just create a really quick Pie chart right here. I'm going to go ahead and choose the Pie Graph tool. Let me just go ahead and draw a shape right over here.

Let's type in values that we did before around 25, 30 and then 45. It will accept those particular values. We actually want to change some of the colors here. I don't want to work with it this way. First, what I'm going to do is I want to get rid of the stroke on this. So, I'm actually going to go ahead and choose to get rid of the strokes, set that to None. Now I'll use my Direct Selection tool to select individual parts of this chart, maybe I have to see range of these colors right here just to make it a little bit easier to work with. Do kind of little monochromatic type of look to this particular chart. Now, I'll go ahead and I'll select it with my Regular Selection tool. Now again remember that a graph inside of Illustrator is a group. So if I apply any kind of live effect inside of Illustrator to that object, it's being applied to the group level. So if I want to have a 3D appearance to this Pie chart, I can simply go to the Effect menu, I could choose 3D Extrude & Bevel. Let's move it to the side over here. Click on the Preview button. I can actually rotate that and see that I have created a 3D Pie chart, pretty cool. Let me adjust Extrude depth to make it around 30 point, let me get the angle to be just about something like this and now I'll click OK to apply that 3D effect.

So now, I get the 3D appearance, I get the shading, remember just regular artwork inside of Illustrator, it's still a graph. I have not ungrouped it so I could fill Update the Data at any time. But I can make other modifications as well. Fro example, sometimes you have seen these things like exploded Pie charts, where you want to call out one particular part of the data in that chart. Well here is how you can do it. I'm actually going to switch to my Direct Selection tool and I'll deselect this. I'm going to go to View menu. I'm going to turn on my Smart Guides. It just makes it easier to see artwork when you actually overlap those areas. So you see how these read as now highlight and remember this is applied as a live effect. So because this is a group, I can just click in that area right there and drag it outward just a little bit to pull it away from the center of that Pie chart. In doing so, I now create that exploded look with that particular Pie chart. Again the 3D is actually still live, I can still modify the way that the 3D looks and the data in the chart is also live so if I need to, I can always go back to the Graph Data window, update the data and make a change. So using a combination of graphic styles, of paragraph styles and live effects inside of Illustrator, you can quickly get just the look that you want for your charts without giving a benefit of editability.

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This video is part of

Image for Illustrator CS4 Beyond the Basics
Illustrator CS4 Beyond the Basics

137 video lessons · 29047 viewers

Mordy Golding
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 2m 4s
    1. Welcome
      1m 41s
    2. Using the exercise files
      23s
  2. 33m 20s
    1. Introducing Live Paint
      38s
    2. Drawing in Illustrator
      4m 21s
    3. Creating a Live Paint group
      2m 54s
    4. Using the Live Paint Bucket tool
      3m 17s
    5. Using Live Paint with open paths
      2m 29s
    6. Detecting gaps in Live Paint groups
      4m 17s
    7. Adding paths to a Live Paint group
      3m 41s
    8. Using the Live Paint Selection tool
      5m 44s
    9. Releasing and expanding Live Paint groups
      2m 55s
    10. Understanding how Live Paint groups work
      3m 4s
  3. 49m 36s
    1. Introducing the trace options
      39s
    2. Setting expectations: Live Trace
      2m 26s
    3. Using the Live Trace feature
      1m 51s
    4. Understanding how Live Trace works
      5m 41s
    5. Making raster-based adjustments
      5m 52s
    6. Tracing with fills, strokes, or both
      2m 55s
    7. Making vector-based adjustments
      6m 12s
    8. Adjusting colors in Live Trace
      4m 39s
    9. Using Photoshop with Live Trace
      5m 22s
    10. Releasing and expanding Live Trace artwork
      2m 58s
    11. Saving and exporting Live Trace presets
      2m 36s
    12. Tracing in Batch mode with Adobe Bridge
      1m 35s
    13. Turning an image into mosaic tiles
      2m 28s
    14. Tracing an image manually
      4m 22s
  4. 1h 24m
    1. Introducing 3D
      33s
    2. Setting expectations: 3D in Illustrator
      2m 53s
    3. How fills and strokes affect 3D artwork
      4m 43s
    4. Applying the 3D Extrude & Bevel effect
      6m 25s
    5. Applying a bevel
      5m 40s
    6. Showing the hidden faces of a 3D object
      4m 49s
    7. Applying the 3D Revolve effect
      5m 22s
    8. Visualizing the revolve axis
      3m 5s
    9. Applying the 3D Rotate effect
      1m 35s
    10. Adjusting surface settings
      9m 33s
    11. Understanding the importance of 3D and groups
      3m 24s
    12. Preparing art for mapping
      10m 19s
    13. Mapping artwork to a 3D surface
      14m 21s
    14. Hiding geometry with 3D artwork mapping
      4m 0s
    15. Extending the use of 3D in Illustrator
      8m 7s
  5. 44m 37s
    1. Introducing transformations and effects
      32s
    2. Using the Transform panel
      12m 37s
    3. Repeating transformations
      5m 23s
    4. Using the Transform Each function
      3m 48s
    5. Using the Convert to Shape effects
      5m 49s
    6. Using the Distort & Transform effects
      5m 12s
    7. Using the Path effects
      6m 58s
    8. Using the Pathfinder effects
      4m 18s
  6. 28m 23s
    1. Introducing graphic styles
      33s
    2. Applying graphic styles
      10m 8s
    3. Defining graphic styles
      8m 46s
    4. Previewing graphic styles
      2m 10s
    5. Modifying graphic styles
      3m 30s
    6. Understanding graphic styles for text
      3m 16s
  7. 22m 49s
    1. Introducing advanced masking techniques
      32s
    2. Understanding clipping masks
      7m 15s
    3. Using layer clipping masks
      6m 30s
    4. Creating opacity masks
      8m 32s
  8. 1h 6m
    1. Introducing color
      40s
    2. Considering three types of color swatches
      7m 7s
    3. Managing color groups
      2m 58s
    4. Understanding the HSB color wheel
      3m 57s
    5. Understanding color harmonies
      2m 57s
    6. Using the color guide
      3m 54s
    7. Limiting the color guide
      3m 17s
    8. Modifying color with the Recolor Artwork feature
      6m 25s
    9. Using the Edit tab to adjust color
      5m 44s
    10. Using the Assign tab to replace colors
      8m 37s
    11. Making global color adjustments
      2m 17s
    12. Using Recolor options
      7m 3s
    13. Converting artwork to grayscale
      3m 23s
    14. Simulating artwork on different devices
      3m 18s
    15. Accessing Kuler directly from Illustrator
      2m 7s
    16. Ensuring high contrast for color-blind people
      2m 42s
  9. 53m 19s
    1. Introducing transparency
      40s
    2. Understanding transparency flattening
      2m 31s
    3. Exercising the two rules of transparency flattening
      10m 53s
    4. Understanding complex regions in transparency flattening
      4m 50s
    5. Exploring the transparency flattener settings
      8m 37s
    6. Using transparency flattening and object stacking order
      6m 39s
    7. Using the Flattener Preview panel
      6m 31s
    8. Creating and sharing Transparency Flattener presets
      2m 25s
    9. Working within an EPS workflow
      5m 3s
    10. Understanding the Illustrator and InDesign workflow
      5m 10s
  10. 50m 1s
    1. Introducing prepress and output
      23s
    2. Understanding resolutions
      8m 27s
    3. Discovering RGB and CMYK "gotchas"
      5m 42s
    4. Using Overprints and Overprint Preview
      7m 43s
    5. Understanding "book color" and proofing spot colors
      8m 1s
    6. Collecting vital information with Document Info
      2m 28s
    7. Previewing color separations onscreen
      1m 12s
    8. Making 3D artwork look good
      2m 16s
    9. Seeing white lines and knowing what to do about them
      2m 41s
    10. Creating "bulletproof" press-ready PDF files
      3m 45s
    11. Protecting content with secure PDFs
      2m 48s
    12. Using PDF presets
      2m 47s
    13. Moving forward: The Adobe PDF Print Engine
      1m 48s
  11. 35m 43s
    1. Introducing distortions
      27s
    2. Using the Warp effect
      4m 20s
    3. The Warp effect vs. envelope distortion
      3m 48s
    4. Applying the Make with Warp envelope distortion
      2m 45s
    5. Applying the Make with Mesh envelope distortion
      2m 41s
    6. Applying the Make with Top Object envelope distortion
      3m 45s
    7. Editing envelopes
      5m 0s
    8. Adjusting envelope settings
      4m 2s
    9. Releasing and expanding envelope distortions
      1m 44s
    10. Applying envelope distortions to text
      1m 27s
    11. Using the liquify distortion tools
      3m 5s
    12. Customizing the liquify tools
      2m 39s
  12. 28m 56s
    1. Introducing blends
      32s
    2. Blending two objects
      6m 18s
    3. Adjusting blend options
      5m 47s
    4. Blending anchor points
      5m 36s
    5. Blending three or more objects
      2m 9s
    6. Replacing the spine of a blend
      4m 32s
    7. Reversing the direction of a blend
      2m 15s
    8. Releasing and expanding a blend
      1m 47s
  13. 46m 54s
    1. Introducing charts and graphs
      35s
    2. Setting expectations: Graphs in Illustrator
      3m 19s
    3. Creating a chart
      8m 2s
    4. Importing data
      3m 34s
    5. Formatting data
      5m 1s
    6. Customizing a chart
      10m 21s
    7. Combining chart types
      2m 40s
    8. Creating graph designs
      6m 0s
    9. Styling and updating graphs
      5m 33s
    10. Ungrouping graphs
      1m 49s
  14. 26m 36s
    1. Introducing Gradient Mesh
      23s
    2. Understanding the Gradient Mesh feature
      9m 34s
    3. Using Gradient Mesh to add contoured shading
      6m 14s
    4. Using Gradient Mesh to create photorealistic effects
      10m 25s
  15. 8m 18s
    1. Introducing flare effects
      25s
    2. Drawing a lens flare
      3m 28s
    3. Modifying a lens flare
      1m 27s
    4. Using a mask with lens flares
      2m 58s
  16. 29s
    1. Goodbye
      29s

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