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Working with compound paths

Working with compound paths provides you with in-depth training on Design. Taught by Deke McClelland… Show More

Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Advanced

with Deke McClelland

Video: Working with compound paths

Working with compound paths provides you with in-depth training on Design. Taught by Deke McClelland as part of the Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Advanced
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  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
    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
    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

please wait ...
Working with compound paths
Video duration: 6m 49s 12h 54m Intermediate


Working with compound paths provides you with in-depth training on Design. Taught by Deke McClelland as part of the Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Advanced


Working with compound paths

In this exercise I'm going to introduce you to donuts, which are special varieties of compound paths inside of Illustrator. I'm still working inside the document called A donut is any shape in which one path cuts a hole in another path. So one small path cuts a hole in a larger path. And that would be what I'm looking for where these two paths here are concerned. I want to go ahead and create a ring effect essentially where this inner path is not filled with white, but rather filled with transparency, cutting a hole in that sort of pale orange path and back of that salmon colored path.

Go in and click on one, Shift-click on the other to select them both with the Black Arrow and then I'll have you'll have go up to your Shape Mode. And instead of clicking on the Minus Front option, I want you to Alt-click or Option-click on it so that we are creating a Compound Shape, and just to confirm that we have a Compound Shape, let's go ahead and twirl open my pathfinders. And you know what? This guy is some place mired in this huge list of paths. Why don't we go to ahead and bring him to the top of the list here by pressing Ctrl+Shift+Right Bracket or Command+Shift+Right Bracket on the Mac? There is nothing that needs to be in front of it.

So that works out perfectly fine. There it is. There our Compound Shape, which includes of course one big path in back and a smaller path in front of it that's cutting a hole. Now we could of course change the behavior or the relationship between these two paths if we wanted to by clicking on the forward path. When you're trying to change a relationship inside of a Compound Shape, you want to go ahead and click in one of the forward paths, as we have here. So I'm meatballing it so that it and only it is selected here inside the illustration window. Then I'm going to drag it only to a different location so that you can see that it is cutting a hole that's creating a crescent at this point.

Now we could go ahead and Alt-click or Option-click, very important if your going to change Shape Modes here inside of Illustrator CS4, you have to press the Alt or Option key when at clicking one of these top four icons. So if I Alt-clicked or Option- clicked and Unite, I'll create this sort of splitting cell effect right there. If I Alt-click or Option-click on Intersect, then I'll just keep the area in which these two paths intersect each other. So anywhere they don't intersect will be transparent as we are seeing right there. And if I Alt-click or Option-click on Exclude, then I'll get the exact opposite effect of Intersect.

The area where the paths intersect will turn transparent and the areas where the paths do not will become opaque as we are seeing there. I'm going to leave that the way that we are seeing for just a moment so that we can compare that to the behavior of a Compound Path. So I'm going to go ahead and click and Shift-click on these two circles right there. We want another donut out of these guys. I can't bring this one in front. So we are going to actually have to find it in the list. So I'm going to go ahead and drag down the list. I'm looking for a couple of blue squares to indicate that these guys are the selected paths. All right, great! Then as opposed to Alt-clicking or Option-clicking, I'm going to click on Minus Front and I get a Compound Path.

I can twirl it open. We've seen this guy before, but let me show now how a Compound Path behaves. If I go to my White Arrow tool, which I'll need in order to select the inner shape, click off the paths, then Alt- click or Option-click on the innermost path in order to select the entire thing independently of the outer path and drag it to a different location. Notice that I always get that exclusion behavior right there. So it's as if I apply the Exclude Mode, and that's because one path was completely surrounded by another when I applied the Minus Front mode.

Now you might think, well, gosh! You must be able to change the behavior by Alt- clicking or Option-clicking on one these guys. So if I were to Alt-click, for example on Unite or Option-click on the Unite icon on the Mac, I'll create nothing. Actually nothing happened that time. Sometimes what you get instead is you will see that the Compound Path is now inside of a Compound Shape, but in our case nothing happened whatsoever. So go ahead and undo that modification, because it's just a silly modification, nothing occurred at this point. So that's Ctrl+Z, Command+Z on a Mac. And I'll actually press Ctrl+Z or Command +Z again in order to move the path back to its original location.

Let's go and grab this guy too and put him where he belongs. I should get a snap right there where I'm snapping one center point onto the other, because I'm dragging the path by its center point, because it was created as a circle in the first place. That's why it has a default center point. What about these guys? We have rings for the hands too. I just want to show you different ways to create Compound Paths inside Illustrator, and I'll tell you something. Compound Paths do have an advantage over Compound Shapes. I was telling you Compound Shapes, they are very versatile. You keep all of your original path outlines intact.

You can change their behavior by Alt- clicking in one of the Shape Mode icons and so on. The advantage, however, to working with a more simple Compound Path is that Compound Paths are fully compatible with postscript. So you're not going to have any problem with printing errors and that kind of thing. It's rare that you can have problems with Compound Shapes, quite frankly. But that is the advantage of Compound Paths. They are old school. I'm going to go ahead and switch back to my Black Arrow tool by pressing the V key. I click on one of the paths, Shift-click on the other. Now I can go up to the Object menu, this will accomplish the exact same donut effect, and choose Compound Path and then choose Make, like so.

That will make a Compound Path and again the same behavior as before. So if I go ahead and switch to my White Arrow tool, I Alt-click or Option-click on the innermost path, drag it to a different location, we get an Exclusion Effect. You always get an Exclusion Effect out of Compound Paths. Now we only get the Subtract Effect. It's still an Exclusion Effect. The reason it looks like a Subtract Effect is because one path is completely enclosed by the other. So that's why the excluded area falls entirely inside of the larger path and you get of course the donut.

I'm going to go to the over to this other path right here inside of the right hand. His left, I suppose. I'll press the V key to get the Black Arrow tool, click on one path, Shift-click on the other. Here's one more way to work. In case you like keyboard shortcuts, it's Ctrl+8 or Command+8 on the Mac in order to create a Compound Path where one path cuts a hole in the other. Now you may wonder, well, how do you remember 8? Well, this is how you remember 8. Check this out. I'll go ahead and drag this guy over here press Alt key or the Option key on the Mac in order to clone it. Then I'll drag this guy down like so and press Alt or Option again in order to clone it.

Then I'll select these two paths and I'll go over to the Unite icon and click on it, and we've got an 8. An 8 is a classic Compound Path, because it has two holes cut inside of it. So it's actually one donut sitting on top of the other. So that's how you remember that keyboard shortcut Ctrl+8. It goes ahead and creates a Compound Path. Ctrl+Shift+Alt+8 or Command+Shift+Option +8 on a Mac goes ahead and busts up the Compound Path and releases it into, in this case, three separate path outlines. In the next exercise I'll show you how to use the Divide operation here inside of Illustrator.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Illustrator CS4 One-on-One: Advanced .

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Q: In the lesson on pressure sensitivity, exactly what kind of Wacom tablet is the instructor using?
A: The instructor is using a Wacom Intuos 3 tablet





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