Draw Better and Faster with Illustrator CC
Illustration by John Hersey
Watching:

The new Anchor Point tool


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Draw Better and Faster with Illustrator CC

with Deke McClelland

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Video: The new Anchor Point tool

In this movie, I'll introduce you to the new anchor point tool, which allows you to bend straight segments in Illustrator. I'm going to start off by selecting the polygon tool from the shape tool fly out menu. And then I'll draw a polygon from the center out, just the way it always works. And this just happens to be a hexagon, which is fine for my purposes. And I'll go ahead and press the shift key as well so that it's upright. And then I'll release my mouse button, and I'll increase the line weight lets say this time to four points.
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Watch the Online Video Course Draw Better and Faster with Illustrator CC
1h 52m Appropriate for all Apr 02, 2014

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Illustrator CC does something that few updates to the program have done: It promises to change the fundamental way that you draw. Yes, there was the Pen tool in Illustrator 1, Pathfinder operations in Illustrator 5, and dynamic effects in Illustrator 9. But Illustrator CC changes the entire nature of the game. Deke's not exaggerating; the things he's about to show you are that big. Learn about the "new" Pencil tool, on-the-fly corner rounding, and freeform curve bending. 3 features in 3 short chapters that will change the way you see Illustrator. Then Deke shows how to combine them all in a real-world Illustrator project that proves his thesis: drawing has never been faster, better, or easier than this.

Topics include:
  • Drawing effortless arcs, paths, and lines with the Pen tool
  • Selectively and dynamically rounding corners
  • Drawing complex shapes with round corners
  • Bending segments with the Pen tool
  • Beveling and enhancing artwork
  • Drawing multiple lines at the same time
Subject:
Design
Software:
Illustrator
Author:
Deke McClelland

The new Anchor Point tool

In this movie, I'll introduce you to the new anchor point tool, which allows you to bend straight segments in Illustrator. I'm going to start off by selecting the polygon tool from the shape tool fly out menu. And then I'll draw a polygon from the center out, just the way it always works. And this just happens to be a hexagon, which is fine for my purposes. And I'll go ahead and press the shift key as well so that it's upright. And then I'll release my mouse button, and I'll increase the line weight lets say this time to four points.

And now, I'm going to go to the pen tool, click and hold on it, and drop down to the anchor point tool here in the fly out menu. So, it's basically a reinvention of the old convert point tool. And notice that it has that same keyboard shortcut as that tool did in the past, which is shift + c. And now notice that I can hover my cursor over a straight segment. And it doesn't even have to be selected incidentally. If I press ctrl+shift+a or command+shift+a on a Mac, to deselect the shape and then hover my cursor over a segment you'll see that I get a little black arrow head along with this little curved segment next to it, which is telling me that as soon as I drag this segment I'm going to add curvature to it.

So yet another way to round off polygons inside of Illustrator. So I'll go ahead and move this guy downwards. I might move this one downward, as well. You can only work on individual segments at a time. Really, the only trick that's available to you is the shift key. And if you Shift drag on a segment, you'll see that you're going to drag out these constrained control handles that are going to be perpendicular to the segment itself. So in the case of this one, we've got these vertical control handles, but if I shift drag this guy, they're going to go out perpendicular to the original angle of that segment, so I'll go ahead and shift drag that one out, and I'll shift drag this one out like that as well.

And meanwhile, all the other functions that were previously associated with the old convert point tools still work. If you drag on a point, you're going to convert it to a smooth point. If you drag a control handle, you're going to break the symmetry of the control handles, which produces a cusp point. And then if you click on a point, you're going to get rid of the control handles entirely. And that's how you work with the revamped anchor point tool here inside Illustrator CC.

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