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When in doubt, divide

From: Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Advanced

Video: When in doubt, divide

In this exercise I'm going to introduce you to the Divide operation. One of the most useful Pathfinder operations here inside of Illustrator. I've gone ahead and saved off my progress so far as Post donuts.ai found inside the 13_pathfinder_ops folder. So called, because we were creating donuts and now we are done. Hence, post. I am going to zoom into the mouth, and notice that the mouth is a combination of fairly easily to draw path outline. I do them all using the Pen tool, but they don't have many points associate with him, just four points each, I believe. And what I really want to have happened, I've got one path upstairs for the top dentures and then down here, I've got the bottom dentures, but I want the top and bottom dentures to be inside the mouth, not out here in the nether regions.

When in doubt, divide

In this exercise I'm going to introduce you to the Divide operation. One of the most useful Pathfinder operations here inside of Illustrator. I've gone ahead and saved off my progress so far as Post donuts.ai found inside the 13_pathfinder_ops folder. So called, because we were creating donuts and now we are done. Hence, post. I am going to zoom into the mouth, and notice that the mouth is a combination of fairly easily to draw path outline. I do them all using the Pen tool, but they don't have many points associate with him, just four points each, I believe. And what I really want to have happened, I've got one path upstairs for the top dentures and then down here, I've got the bottom dentures, but I want the top and bottom dentures to be inside the mouth, not out here in the nether regions.

And that's not something I'm going to be able to do. I can't just somehow take these three paths to manufacture a mouth using the Unite option or Minus Front or Intersect or Exclude or even Minus Back. So what we need to do instead is take advantage of a different Pathfinder operation, and here is my rule of thumb, if you know a Pathfinder operation is going to do what you want it to do, but you don't know which one is going to do it. Because it's obviously not an add or subtract or something like that. Then when in doubt, try out Divide, and that's what we are going to do.

So I'm going to go ahead and select all three of these shapes like so and then go to the very first icon in the bottom row and that's Divide, and it really is truly a wonderful function. When I click on it. It's not going to look like anything happened, we sort of saw some new anchor points form on screen there. But what's really happened is Illustrator has divided the paths according to where they intersect. So any point where paths intersect they are now divided into independent paths, and I'm going to show you something here. Let's go ahead and scroll to the top of the list here inside of the Layers palette and I'm going to collapse this Compound Shape right there and I'm going to press Ctrl+Shift+Right Bracket or Command+ Shift+Right Bracket to bring this group of shapes to the top, and you'll see that it is a group. It's not a Compound Path this time or a Compound Shape or anything like that. It's simply a group that contains a bunch of different paths as you'll see right there.

All right, now what we need to do is get rid of the paths we don't want. And you do that by going to the White Arrow tool, then I'll click off the Paths to deselect them. I'm going to Alt-click or Option-click on this bottom path right here. I don't want it. Notice that it is an independent path that you can see. It goes ahead and curves around the mouth outline there. I'll press the Backspace key or the Delete key on the Mac to get rid of it, then I'll Alt-click or Option-click on this leftover bit of path. It would be covered up by the lips of course, this portion of the teeth. So I could drag it to a different location, if I want to just to see what it looks like, but really what I want to do is press Backspace or Delete to get rid of it.

Then there is one more path that we need to care of, and it's this guy right here that has this very thin outline associate with this. It lives right there. Notice if I hover my cursor over this location, I can see there is a path outline there. It does not have a fill and it does not have a stroke as you can see, because both Fill and Stroke are set to None. But it is an artifact of the Divide operation, because it's an area of intersection, don't you know? So I'll go ahead and Alt-click on it or Option-click on the Mac and press Backspace or Delete to get rid of it, and we now have the mouth that we're looking for, which if looked at properly looks like a very short guy with a bellybutton up here and two those stumpy legs wearing bicycle pants, and speaking of which, I want those bicycle pants to be a different color.

So I'm going to go ahead and Alt-click or Option-click on this outline here. I'll press the I key to get the Eyedropper, and I'm going to click on the outline of this elliptical shape right there in order to fill those bicycle pants or the mouth area of course with blue. Now if he was the human being, I'd fill with pink or red or something like that, but he is a robot, God bless him! So his interior is blue. In the next exercise, I'm going to show you how to combine Divide along with Unite to create still more Pathfinder wonders.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Advanced
Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Advanced

149 video lessons · 21463 viewers

Deke McClelland
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 28m 41s
    1. Welcome
      1m 7s
    2. Installing the dekeKeys keyboard shortcuts
      8m 59s
    3. Resetting the Function keys on a Mac
      4m 47s
    4. Installing the CS4 color settings
      4m 20s
    5. Loading the CS4 color settings in Illustrator
      6m 3s
    6. Loading the CS4 color settings in Bridge CS4
      3m 25s
  2. 1h 53m
    1. From the simple emerges the complex
      42s
    2. Introducing Pathfinder operations
      4m 17s
    3. Editing a compound shape
      4m 39s
    4. Adding to a compound shape
      3m 11s
    5. Inserting a subpath into a compound shape
      3m 56s
    6. Expanding a compound shape
      4m 53s
    7. Assembling primitives
      4m 42s
    8. Preparing a template in Photoshop
      7m 0s
    9. Uniting paths permanently
      5m 40s
    10. Minus Front vs. Minus Back
      1m 55s
    11. Working with compound paths
      6m 49s
    12. When in doubt, divide
      3m 54s
    13. Divide and Unite
      3m 2s
    14. Open path pitfalls
      5m 35s
    15. Strokes bad, fills good
      4m 38s
    16. Advanced Divide and Unite
      8m 59s
    17. Using the Crop operation
      8m 30s
    18. Expert Divide and Unite
      8m 45s
    19. "Ghosting" shapes with Fill Opacity
      6m 45s
    20. Anticipating and troubleshooting
      8m 16s
    21. Exclude and Intersect
      7m 24s
  3. 44m 59s
    1. Familiar one moment, different the next
      1m 3s
    2. Snapping to anchor points
      5m 41s
    3. Aligning a group to the artboard
      3m 34s
    4. Distributing objects on the artboard
      4m 16s
    5. Setting the key object
      4m 54s
    6. Distributing objects by space
      3m 6s
    7. Distributing objects by selections
      3m 19s
    8. Aligning point text
      6m 7s
    9. Aligning live text vs. using outlines
      4m 58s
    10. Aligning key letters
      3m 35s
    11. Aligning to key objects
      4m 26s
  4. 1h 4m
    1. CS4’s gradient renaissance
      1m 7s
    2. Applying a gradient
      6m 0s
    3. Dragging and dropping color swatches
      2m 55s
    4. Using the Gradient palette
      6m 27s
    5. Designing a shaded gradient
      5m 9s
    6. Saving a gradient swatch and adding a texture
      4m 2s
    7. Introducing the new Gradient tool
      4m 39s
    8. Editing color stops inside a shape
      3m 26s
    9. Setting multiple gradients to the same angle
      5m 0s
    10. Adding and adjusting radial gradients
      7m 20s
    11. Making a transparent gradient
      7m 6s
    12. Adding drop shadows (a kind of gradient)
      6m 28s
    13. Blends vs. blend modes
      4m 38s
  5. 1h 17m
    1. Creating freeform color flows
      1m 0s
    2. The power of CS4's transparent gradients
      10m 25s
    3. Creating a gradient mesh
      4m 30s
    4. Expanding a gradient to a gradient mesh
      7m 40s
    5. Adding and deleting rows and columns
      6m 13s
    6. Selecting and coloring points
      6m 5s
    7. Assigning colors with the Eyedropper tool
      7m 42s
    8. Cool mesh editing techniques
      3m 56s
    9. Warping and puckering a mesh
      7m 24s
    10. Applying precise finishing touches
      5m 48s
    11. Gradient strokes
      9m 45s
    12. Gradient text
      6m 50s
  6. 55m 35s
    1. The first of the dynamic functions
      1m 4s
    2. Making a blend automatically
      5m 48s
    3. Fixing problem blends
      3m 56s
    4. Making a blend with the Blend tool
      3m 6s
    5. Cloning and coloring a blended path
      4m 37s
    6. Creating a mask
      3m 53s
    7. Blending between translucent shapes
      5m 30s
    8. Blending along a curve
      4m 34s
    9. Adjusting the speed of a blend
      2m 58s
    10. Filling and stroking a mask
      4m 36s
    11. Creating a compound clipping mask
      6m 3s
    12. Nesting one clipping mask inside another
      6m 7s
    13. Ghosting nested masks and blends
      3m 23s
  7. 1h 13m
    1. Patterns that repeat forever and ever
      51s
    2. Introducing tile patterns
      6m 36s
    3. Beginning a core design
      5m 6s
    4. Building an interlocking element
      6m 25s
    5. Achieving precise radial symmetry
      4m 46s
    6. Rotating duplicates around a common center
      3m 10s
    7. Determining how a pattern repeats
      9m 54s
    8. Coloring the core objects
      5m 0s
    9. Identifying the rectangular tile
      7m 14s
    10. Saving tile patterns
      7m 19s
    11. Applying tile patterns to a shape
      3m 25s
    12. Protecting patterns from transformations
      7m 36s
    13. Moving patterns without paths
      5m 51s
  8. 1h 19m
    1. Illustrator gets natural
      1m 15s
    2. Introducing the vector painting tools
      3m 16s
    3. Calligraphic brush options
      4m 3s
    4. Pressure sensitivity
      5m 17s
    5. Editing a calligraphic brush
      5m 53s
    6. Repainting and smoothing paths
      5m 30s
    7. Making the paintbrush behave
      6m 16s
    8. Erasing stroked paths
      3m 17s
    9. Painting with the new Blob brush
      6m 24s
    10. Refining filled paths with the Eraser
      4m 14s
    11. Painting independent paths
      3m 53s
    12. The Selection Limits Merge options
      3m 20s
    13. Applying and scaling an art brush
      6m 23s
    14. Snipping a brushed path
      4m 55s
    15. Colorizing an art brush
      4m 9s
    16. Heaping a stroke on an art brush effect
      4m 32s
    17. Creating a custom art brush
      6m 51s
  9. 1h 44m
    1. The computer art world’s dynamic duo
      1m 7s
    2. Copying and pasting pixels from Photoshop
      7m 21s
    3. Linking is efficient, embedding is not
      2m 47s
    4. Editing an image in Illustrator
      7m 30s
    5. Filtering an image in Photoshop
      6m 34s
    6. Adding a filter mask in Photoshop
      6m 25s
    7. Masking a woman from the background
      3m 49s
    8. Creating a sepia effect
      6m 37s
    9. Adding a second gradient map layer
      2m 13s
    10. Achieving a graphic effect with Levels
      8m 10s
    11. Preparing an image for use in Illustrator
      5m 46s
    12. The importance of image resolution
      9m 40s
    13. Placing and linking images
      4m 43s
    14. Managing linked images
      6m 18s
    15. Integrating an image into a design
      5m 12s
    16. A better way to wrap text
      7m 28s
    17. Previewing the trim size
      4m 25s
    18. Layer comps and editable text
      8m 42s
  10. 2h 11m
    1. Transparency is safe and fun
      1m 27s
    2. Introducing the translucent composition
      4m 39s
    3. Assigning opacity to an Appearance attribute
      3m 41s
    4. Creating a knockout group
      5m 7s
    5. Defining an opacity mask
      7m 15s
    6. Using the Clip checkbox
      2m 41s
    7. Opacity mask tips and tricks
      3m 20s
    8. The Multiply blend mode
      6m 8s
    9. Adding to an existing opacity mask
      7m 53s
    10. Blending between parallel groups
      7m 27s
    11. Creating a gradient opacity mask
      4m 54s
    12. Employing an opposing gradient mask
      7m 57s
    13. Combining Multiply and Screen
      3m 49s
    14. Blend mode roundup
      5m 24s
    15. Mixing blend modes inside a single path
      3m 48s
    16. Blend mode and transparent gradient
      3m 49s
    17. Masking an entire layer
      7m 0s
    18. Combining Screen with 100K Black
      7m 43s
    19. Knocking out a drop shadow
      5m 18s
    20. But will it print?
      3m 8s
    21. Working with the Flattener preview
      8m 44s
    22. Rasterizing an illustration in Photoshop
      9m 16s
    23. Super-rich blacks and raster effects
      3m 35s
    24. Exporting TIFF artwork from Illustrator
      7m 48s
  11. 58s
    1. Until next time
      58s

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