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This course is the third in a four-part series devoted to mastering the premiere graphics creation application, Adobe Illustrator, version CS6. Industry pro Deke McClelland takes a project-based learning approach to the key features in Illustrator, including Recolor Artwork, transparency, masks, blend modes, strokes and fills, and dynamic effects. The course also covers techniques for creating custom gradients, designing logos, generating photorealistic neon text, and wrapping type around objects. Plus, Deke shows how to call up the most essential features by organizing your workspace and employing time-saving keyboard shortcuts, how to manage the color settings, and how to adjust a few settings to make the program work even better.
Another great use for an art brush is creating text on a path; which is particularly useful if you want to distort the text along a path, as in the case of the stacks at the very top and the bottom of the illustration; or when you just want to auto fit the text to the path. That's something that art brushes take care of on their own, however you have got to do all kinds of custom fitting when you're creating type on a path. So what we're going to do in this movie, I'll show you how we might pull off this effect using standard type on a path, and then in the next movie I'll show you how to express text as an art brush.
So I'll go ahead and switch over to my illustration in progress, and notice that I do have text on the path up here at the top and the bottom of the illustration. If you're working along with me, twirl open the path-type layer here inside the Layers panel. And notice that just the bottom two objects on this layer are currently visible. Go ahead and make them invisible by turning off their eyes. And then turn on these other four formerly invisible objects by dragging down the eyeball column like so. So you should have two lines of type; this one is a little hard to see, so I'll drag it up here.
Two lines of white type expressed as point text and then we have two invisible paths as well. So I'm going to go ahead and affix this bottom text first, and I'm not seeing any kind of selection here because my edges are hidden. So I'll press Ctrl+H or Command+H on the Mac in order to bring them back. So click on the baseline for the bottom text, then go up to the Edit menu and choose the Copy command or press Ctrl+ C or Command+C on the Mac. Then go ahead and meatball the bottom of the two crazy paths here, that's what they are called here inside the Layers panel, and that's just the easiest way to get to them because after all they are invisible.
And press the T key in order to switch to the Type tool, and then click somewhere along the path. And I'm just going to click right there in the center because my text is currently center aligned, so you would think when I go up to the Edit menu and choose the Paste command or press Ctrl+V or Command+V on the Mac, that everything would work out great. But it doesn't, as usual. So I'll go ahead and switch to the Black Arrow tool. And it's just, I have to say, that text on the path can be maddening at times to work with. So if you feel the same way, I share your pain. I'm going to go ahead and drag this first bar all the way over here to the left-hand side and drag this last bar here all the way to the right-hand side; but unfortunately we still have overflow text.
So with the text selected, I'll go ahead and bring up my Character panel, which I can get by pressing Ctrl+T or Command+T on the Mac. And I'm going to change this Vertical Scale value to 110% and then I'll take the Horizontal Scale value down to 90%. Then I'll go ahead and press the Enter key or the Return key on the Mac and that should take care of things with the exception of the fact that we have some weird spacing problems here and there, especially right there in the center. The F and T are not resolving properly, and the only way I would get them to resolve properly is to smooth out this transition.
But what we've got is a corner point at this location, a cusp point actually. And that never goes well when you're working with text on a path. All right! Now let's do the top text. I'll go ahead and click on the baseline for that text to select it. Then I'll press Ctrl+C or Command+ C on the Mac in order to copy it. I'll meatball the only remaining crazy path item here inside the Layers panel, because the other one got renamed to the text along the path. And with this path selected I'll go ahead and switch to the Type tool again, by now maybe I've learned my lesson, I'll click on the first anchor point in order to set the insertion marker at that location and I'll press Ctrl+ V or Command+V on the Mac, in order to Paste the text.
Then I'll switch back to my Black Arrow tool; looks like the first bar is in place but second bar needs to be moved over a little bit. We have got overflow text again, so we need to do some copy fitting. I'll bring up my Character panel. Change that Vertical Scale value to 110%, change Horizontal Scale to 90%. And I also need to move the text down, so I'll go up to the Type menu, choose Type on a path, and then choose Type on a Path Options. And I'll change Align to Path from Baseline to Ascender, Turn on the Preview checkbox, and it looks like that. Which isn't really precisely what I want.
I want the top of those capital letters to be aligned with a path, so I'll click OK and I'll change my Baseline Shift value here, which raises the baseline upward. And I just happened to know that a value of 6.5 pt. works for this text here, and I end up getting this final effect. But it's no good, because again we have the spacing problems right there, most obviously in the word FOR. But you can find spacing problems elsewhere as well. And of course, we're not going to be able to create the distortion effect that I'm looking for either. So in the case like this, you're much better off going with an art brush.
So let me show you how that works. The only bit of bad news associated with text expressed as an art brush is that you've to convert the text outlines. You can't work with live text. So you need to make sure that all of your copy editing is done, everything spelled properly and so on. Then you want to select your text objects, so I'll select both of these guys right here-- that is the point text objects, not the path text. And then I would normally recommend that you copy this text just so you keep the original editable text handy. However, we're going to live dangerously here.
So I'm just going to go up to Type menu and choose Create Outlines or you can press Ctrl+Shift+O or Command+Shift+O on the Mac. And now we've path outlines where formerly we had point text. All right, now I'll click off the text to deselect it and I'll click on the top letters to select them, and I'll bring up my Brushes panel and I'll just go ahead and drag and drop these path outlines into the Brushes panel. Obviously we want an Art Brush, the Scatter Brush wouldn't make any sense because that would just scatter different versions of this row of characters around. And a Pattern Brush of course would repeat them.
So we just want a nice fluid art brush. Go ahead and click OK, and then I'm going to name this guy different strokes. And that's it; you don't even need to change the colorization method because the text is going to remain white. So everything else is already done, just go ahead and click OK. And now grab this bottom text right there and drag it and drop it into place and set it as an Art Brush, click OK. The toughest part is naming this art brush, especially because I'm not a particularly good typist. And I believe it's curiously handcrafted.
That's all I have to do, just name it, click OK. And you can see now these lines of white texts, they are very squished inside of the Brushes panel. But the great thing is that there are appearing now inside Illustrator CS6 against a light gray background, so we can actually make them out when they're set to white. And if you were to stretch the panel horizontally then the text is going to stretch as well, and that's because art brushes always fit their paths, which is such a great thing.
And in fact, I'm going to show you exactly how to fit the art brushes to the paths in the next movie.
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