When working in Illustrator we tend to think of our vector shapes in terms of the points, or nodes, that make up each shape. However, each shape is a combination of the both the points and the segments that join them. Because our control system (the Beziér Handles) stem from the points it’s easy to forget that we can in fact select and edit via the segments.
In the previous post we looked at using Shape Builder to control how 2D vector objects overlap. We used a Celtic Knot design where two different motifs were ‘threaded’ to give the impression of passing in front of and behind one another. Now lets look at a similar concept using Live Paint.
In two related posts over the next week I want to look at ways of controlling how flat 2D objects appear to overlap in vector graphics.
Drawing and editing symmetrical shapes in Illustrator is relatively straightforward when working with simple forms like ellipses and rectangles. However, things get more challenging as shapes become more complex. One option is to use the Reflect Tool but this means creating a reflected copy each time an edit is made and deleting the previously flipped version.
Illustrator’s Gradient Tool is perhaps the best available in the current Adobe line-up when compared with InDesign and Photoshop’s gradient functions and gives us a lot of control over how the gradient is positioned and scaled within an object. That said, it can still sometimes be challenging to get colours to sit exactly where you want them.
As good as Adobe products are there has always been a thriving market in plugins that extend the functionality of the basic product. Typically a plugin will either add a function the software doesn’t have or optimize and improve an existing function.
Whilst doing some research the other day I came across a thread on a related issue on the Adobe forums. The poster of the problem happened to mention ‘pasting’ some Illustrator artwork into InDesign and was advised that you should always ‘place’ into InDesign.