Working with drop shadows
Video: Working with drop shadowsNow that we've seen the layout of the Stylism panel. Let's see how to use the controls that are attached to objects in the document. We'll start with Drop Shadow. To apply a drop shadow effect to this star with stylism, I'll first select the star, and then click the Drop Shadow button in the Stylism panel. This automatically switches me to the Stylism tool, and applies the default drop shadow. The same thing I get by choosing Effect> Stylize > Drop Shadow. But the key difference is that with Stylism, I have these intuitive controls right on the object that I can use to adjust the effect instead of these numbers in the dialog box.
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Want to be more precise, more efficient, and more creative with Illustrator? Learn how the Astute Graphics plugins can revolutionize the way you draw and edit artwork in Adobe Illustrator. Mike Rankin covers drawing and editing with VectorScribe and InkScribe, aligning and arranging objects with ColliderScribe, creating beautiful symmetry with MirrorMe, adjusting color with Phantasm, and the tools in DynamicSketch and WidthScribe that make drawing with a tablet even more natural and intuitive.
- Working with dynamic corners and shapes
- Editing paths with PathScribe
- Connecting and straightening objects
- Drawing circles and arcs
- Using the Snap to and the Rotate at Collision tools
- Mirroring text and images
- Creating vector halftones
- Editing path segments with InkScribe
- Using DynamicSketch
- Working with the WidthScribe brush tools
Working with drop shadows
Now that we've seen the layout of the Stylism panel. Let's see how to use the controls that are attached to objects in the document. We'll start with Drop Shadow. To apply a drop shadow effect to this star with stylism, I'll first select the star, and then click the Drop Shadow button in the Stylism panel. This automatically switches me to the Stylism tool, and applies the default drop shadow. The same thing I get by choosing Effect> Stylize > Drop Shadow. But the key difference is that with Stylism, I have these intuitive controls right on the object that I can use to adjust the effect instead of these numbers in the dialog box.
But you have all the same things that are in the dialog box. So for example, here's the Blend Mode control, currently set to Multiply. Here's the Opacity control, the Offset, the Blur, and the Color. So, let's use these Stylism controls. I'll cancel out of the dialogue box, and as I move my cursor over any of these controls, I can see the current value. So, if I go near the Opacity control, I can see that it's currently set to 75%. I can see the Offset is seven pixels, and the Blur is five pixels.
And to adjust the Blur and Opacity, I simply drag the slider between the end points here and here. And as I drag, I can see the value changing. And when I release, I see the effect change. I can drag the Blur all the way to the maximum value of 144 pixels. Or all the way down to zero for no blur at all and a really crisp drop shadow. Likewise I can drag the opacity anywhere from zero to 100%. If I hold the Shift key as I drag, the values are constrained to whole numbers in the case of Blur, and 10% increments in the case of Opacity.
If I want to get a really specific value, I can use a feature called Slow Drag where the numbers change very slowly as I drag. To use this, click and hold on the slider and press and hold the Cmd or Ctrl key. Then as I drag I can see those numbers changing very slowly. Just in tenths of a percent now. I can also simply click anywhere along a line to make the slider snap to that position. To change the color of the Drop Shadow, I just click on the color square and I get the standard Color Picker. Or I can press Opt or Alt, and click on the square to switch to the Darkness mode.
Now clicking on the square brings up the dialog box, where I can set a specific darkness value. And in fact double clicking on any of the Stylism controls will bring up a dialog box where you can set specific numerical values. So I can double-click and open the Blur, the Offset and the Opacity. To change the Offset of the Drop Shadow, I can click and drag the other control, and place this Drop Shadow wherever I want. If you want to see the Offset in terms of distance and angle, just hold Opt or Alt and click on the dot at the end of the line. To switch back to pixels, hold Opt or Alt and click again.
Now it's great to have all these controls so convenient and easy to use right on my star. But what if I want to get a look at the star without all the controls in the way? Well simple, just hold Cmd or Ctrl to temporarily hide the Stylism controls. And when you release, the controls come back. There's one more thing that you can do with Drop Shadows and Stylism, and that's to use the Curve Controls in the panel to tweak the effect, right here. These controls are available only if you also have another Astute Graphics plug-in called Phantasm installed.
To use the Curves, I can click and drag anywhere along the line to increase or decrease the intensity of the effect. I can draw on the graph with the pencil tool to create special effects, like this w shaped curve. And I can click on the Curves button below the graph to create one continuous smooth curve that I can continue to edit. I can also Shift+Click this button to revert back to the default. And I have four buttons over here on the right side for saving my favorite curves. So if I create a custom curve that I like and I want to reuse it, I can hold Opt or Alt and click on one of these buttons.
Then I could reapply this just by clicking it once more. So, I'll go back to the default, and then apply my favorite. In this movie, we took a look at how to work with Drop Shadow effects with Astute Graphic Stylism. Next, we'll continue with a look at Feathering.
Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Up and Running with Astute Graphics for Illustrator .
Here are the FAQs that matched your search "" :
- Q: This course was updated on 5/23/2014. What changed?
- A: The author added a new chapter (Using Stylism) featuring eight new movies, on working with effects like drop shadow, feathering, inner and outer glow, and more.
- Q: This course was updated on 04/15/2015. What changed?
- A: The author added new movies on WidthScribe and Autosaviour Pro, and updated two movies describing the abilities of the entire suite of plugins and the process of installing them.
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