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Covering a wide range of topics, from advanced masking to chart creation, Illustrator CS4 Beyond the Basics reveals a whole new level of power, creativity, and efficiency with Illustrator. Instructor Mordy Golding explores how to work with Live Paint groups, get the most out of the Live Trace feature, and take advantage of Illustrator’s wide range of effects. He also discusses advanced transformation techniques, powerful 3D functionality, and important color concepts. Exercise files accompany the course.
We know that we can create groups inside of Illustrator for our swatches that allows us to basically organize the colors that we see here in our Swatches panel, but in reality, there is another benefit to creating a color group because it allows us to edit the colors in a different way than just working with the Color panel here. For example, I'm going to create a color group of all the colors that currently exist in my document. I'll click on this particular swatch right here. I'll hold down the Shift key and then click on this swatch to select them all. Then I'll click on this button over here, New Color Group, to turn them on to a color group. I'll call this one flowers for now.
Now I see that I have created basically a single group that contains all these colors. Now I know that I can click on any of these individual colors and double-click on them and bring up the Swatch Options dialog box where I could actually modify the colors here, but I also have the ability to modify the group as a whole. So take a look at this. I'm going to click on the Cancel button. I'm now going to double-click on the actual folder icon right here. In doing so, the Edit Colors dialog box comes up. Right now, you can see if I click on this little twirl down, all that colors that exist in that group and they are all now mapped on to this color wheel.
Now there is also a tremendous amount of information going on inside of this dialog box but for this movie, I want to focus specifically on the wheel itself. You will notice that each of the colors that exist right here are little circles and they are basically telling us the position of where those colors lie on this color wheel which is using the HSB method for displaying color. HSB standing for Hue, Saturation, and Brightness. Now you will also see that there are lines that connect each of these particular colors to the center. That means that the relationship between all these colors is now locked. In other words, if I click and I drag and I move one of these colors around, the other colors move with it.
But if I want to move these colors around independently, what I could do is I could simply click on this button to unlock them. Notice now I have dash lines between them and now I can easily move these colors around independently of each other. In fact, what I'm doing right now is I'm actually modifying this color in the group the same way that if I would actually double-click on it and change its sliders but now I'm actually modifying the color in a visual way. Now as I said before, the color wheel itself uses the Hue, Saturation, and Brightness method for displaying color. Once you understand how the color wheel works, you will find it easy to modify the colors on the wheel.
Now the wheel itself displays the visual spectrum of color in a clockwise or counter-clockwise way around the wheel. For example, if I grab this color and as I start to move it in this particular direction, I'm adjusting the hue of my particular color. For example, going from reds to blues to greens to yellows and so on and so forth. So I'm moving my color in this way. In fact, if I move my cursor just over the dotted line here, I would be forced to adjust only the Hue value. Notice over here this slider on the bottom. Right now, where I have Hue/Saturation and Brightness, as I click over here and drag, I'm only adjusting the Hue value of my color.
As I bring my color towards the center or towards the outer edge of this circle, I'm adjusting the saturation of that color. The center is completely desaturated, so I'd only have values of whites, blacks, and grays. As I move my color out towards the edge of the circle, I have fully saturated colors. Finally, this slider here that appears beneath the wheel controls the brightness of the wheel. As I go ahead and I adjust this, I'll be getting darker colors or brighter colors. An additional way to modify colors that appear mapped on to the wheel is simply to double-click on them. In doing so, the Color Picker shows up and you can actually move these particular colors around here as well. Let me click Cancel here to go back to the color wheel itself. It's really important to get familiar and comfortable with the color wheel because as we are going to find out, there are a lot of features inside of Illustrator that take advantage of working with this wheel.
Now I have modified the colors inside of my group right now. So I can do one of two things; I can either click OK to actually accept the changes to this group or if I really want to keep my original group but I want to now save these changes as a new group, I can come over here to the top of this dialog box and click on this button to create a new color group. In doing so, when I click OK, I now see that I have basically started out with one group, modified some colors and created a completely new group in the process.
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