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Create a Detailed Surveillance Camera Illustration

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In the following Adobe Illustrator tutorial you will learn how to create a detailed surveillance camera illustration. Discover how to use professional vector build methods, pixel based highlighting, and vector effects to design this artwork.


Step 1

Hit Command + N to create a new document. Enter 600 in the width and height boxes then click on the Advanced button. Select RGB, Screen (72ppi) and make sure that the "Align New Objects to Pixel Grid" box is unchecked before you click OK. Now, turn on the Grid (View > Grid) and the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid).

Next, you'll need a grid every 5px. Go to Edit > Preferences > Guides & Grid, enter 5 in the Gridline every box and 1 in the Subdivisions box. You can also open the Info panel (Window > Info) for a live preview with the size and position of your shapes. Do not forget to set the unit of measurement to pixels from Edit > Preferences > Unit > General. All these options will significantly increase your work speed.


Step 2

Pick the Rectangle Tool (M) and create a 360 by 60px shape. Fill it with a random color and make sure that you remove the color from the stroke. Switch to the Direct Selection Tool (A), select the bottom, right anchor point and move it 70px to the left. Now your shape should look like the second image shown. Reselect it and go to Effect > Warp > Arc Lower. Enter the data shown below, click OK and go to Object > Expand Appearance.


Step 3

Pick the Rectangle Tool, create a 50 by 60px shape and place it as shown in the first image. Again, fill it with a random color and make sure that you have no color set for the stroke. Next, you'll need the Round Any Corner script. You can find it in the Vectortuts+ article 20 Free and Useful Adobe Illustrator Scripts. Save it to your hard drive, return to Illustrator and grab the Direct Selection Tool (A).

Select the left anchor points highlighted in the first image and go to File > Scripts > Other Script. Open the Round Any Corner Script, enter a 5px Radius and click OK. In the end your shapes should look like the second image shown.


Step 4

Disable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid), then go to Edit > Preferences > General and make sure that the Keyboard Increment is set at 1px. Select the shape created in the previous step and make two copies in front (Command + C > Command + F + Command + F). Select the top copy and hit the left arrow once. Reselect both copies, open the Pathfinder panel (Window > Pathfinder) and click on the Minus Front button.

Fill the resulting shape with R=93 G=94 B=97 and lower its Opacity to 60%. Again, select the shape created in the previous step and make two new copies in front. Select the top copy and this time hit the left arrow twice. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with R=230 G=231 B=232 and lower its Opacity to 70%.


Step 5

Re-enable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid). Select the two large shapes created so far and duplicate them (Command + C > Command + F). Select these copies and click on the Unite button from the Pathfinder panel. Next, you will need a grid every 1px. So, go to Edit > Preferences > Guides & Grid and enter 1 in the Gridline every box.

Pick the Rectangle Tool (M), create a 420 by 1px shape, fill it with R=116 G=118 B=120 and place it as shown in the third image. Select this thin shape along with the other newly created shape and click on the Intersect button from the Pathfinder panel. Select the resulting shape and go to Effect > Stylize > Drop Shadow. Enter the data shown in the final image and click OK.


Step 6

Focus on the dark, thin shape created in the fourth step. Select it, pick the Add Anchor Point Tool (+) and add two new anchor points as shown in the first image. The Snap to Grid should ease your work. Switch to the Direct Selection Tool (A), select the top anchor points and move them 3px to the right. Again, the Snap to Grid will come in handy.


Step 7

Focus on the other shape created in the fourth step. Again, use the Add Anchor Point Tool (+) and add two new anchor points as shown in the first image. Switch to the Direct Selection Tool (A), select the top anchor points and move them 3px to the right.


Step 8

Reselect the shape created in the second step and focus on the Appearance panel. First, replace the flat fill color with the linear gradient shown below. The white numbers from the gradient image stand for Location percentage. Next, you need to add a second for this shape.

Make sure that it is still selected and simply click on the Add New Fill button. It's the little, white square located at the bottom of the Appearance panel. Select this new fill, make it black, lower its Opacity to 3%, change its blending mode to Multiply and go to Effect > Artistic > Film Grain. Enter the data shown below and click OK. Move to the shape created in the third step, select it and add the same properties.


Step 9

Return to "Gridline every 5px". This means that you need to go again to Edit > Preferences > Guides & Grid and enter 5 in the Gridline every box. Pick the Ellipse Tool, create a 5px circle and place it as shown in the first image. Fill it with the radial gradient shown below then add a second fill.

Select it from the Appearance panel, set its color at R=109 G=110 B=113 and go to Effect > Path > Offset Path. Enter a -1.5px Offset, click OK then go to Effect > Distort & Transform > Pucker & Bloat. Drag the slider to -50% and click OK. Continue to the Appearance panel and add a simple stroke. Set its color at R=88 G=89 B=91 and make it 0.5pt wide.

Reselect this circle, make sure that no fill or stroke is selected (in the Appearance panel) and go to Effect > Stylize > Drop Shadow. Enter the data shown below and click OK. In the end your circle should look like in the first image. It's a simple screw illustration. Make a copy of this shape and move it to the right as shown in the second image.


Step 10

Select all the shapes created so far and group them (Command + G).


Step 11

Pick the Rectangle Tool (M), create a 290 by 70px shape and place it as shown in the first image. Fill it with a random color and make sure that there's no color set for the stroke. Again, you will need the Round Any Corner script.

Grab the Direct Selection Tool (A), select the bottom, right anchor point and go to File > Scripts > Other Script. Open the Round Any Corner Script, enter a 5px Radius and click OK. Next, replace the flat color with the linear gradient shown below. In the end your shapes should look like the second image shown.


Step 12

Pick the Rectangle Tool (M), create a 40 by 70px shape and place it as shown in the first image. Fill it with a random color and and make sure that there's no color set for the stroke. Switch to the Direct Selection Tool (A), select the bottom, left anchor point and move it 10px to the right.

Once again, you will need the Round Any Corner script. Grab the Direct Selection Tool (A) again, select the bottom, left anchor point and go to File > Scripts > Other Script. Open the Round Any Corner Script, enter a 5px Radius and click OK. In the end your shapes should look like the third image shown.


Step 13

Disable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid). Select the shape created in the previous step and make two copies in front (Command + C > Command + F + Command + F). Select the top copy and hit the left arrow once. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with R=93 G=94 B=97 and lower its Opacity to 70%.

Again, select the shape created in the previous step and make two new copies in front. Select the top copy and this time hit the left arrow twice. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with R=230 G=231 B=232, lower its Opacity to 70% and change its blending mode to Overlay.


Step 14

Reselect the shape created in the twelfth step and focus on the Appearance panel. First, replace the flat color with the linear gradient shown below. Next, add a new fill. Select it from the Appearance panel, make it black, lower its Opacity to 5%, change its blending mode to Multiply and go to Effect > Artistic > Film Grain. Enter the data shown below and click OK.


Step 15

Re-enable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid). Pick the Ellipse Tool (L), create a 5px circle and place it as shown in the first image. Fill it with the radial gradient shown below and add a 0.5pt, black stroke. Add a second fill for this shape and select it from the Appearance panel. Set its color at R=189 G=255 B=63 and go to Effect > Path > Offset Path. Enter a -1.5px Offset and click OK.

Reselect this circle, make sure that no fill or stroke is selected (in the Appearance panel) and go to Effect > Stylize > Drop Shadow. Enter the data shown below, click OK then go to Effect > Stylize > Outer Glow. Again, enter the data shown below and click OK.


Step 16

Pick the Rectangle Tool (M), create a 30 by 80px shape and place it as shown in the first image. Fill it with a random color, make sure that there's no color set for the stroke and go to Effect > Stylize > Rounded Corners. Enter a 5px radius, click OK and go to Object > Expand Appearance. Select the resulting shape and make a copy in front (Command + C > Command + F).


Step 17

Switch to "Gridline every 1px", pick the Rectangle Tool (M) and create a 30 by 1px shape. Fill it with black and place it as shown in the first image. Select this new rectangle and go to Effect > Distort & Transform > Transform. Enter the data shown below, click OK and go to Object > Expand Appearance. Select the resulting group of shapes and go to Object > Compound Path > Make.


Step 18

Select the compound path created in the previous step, along with the copy created in the sixteenth step and click on the Intersect button from the Pathfinder panel. Again, turn the resulting group of shapes into a compound path, make sure that it's filled with black and lower its Opacity to 50%.


Step 19

Select the rounded rectangle created in the sixteenth step and make two copies in front (Command + C > Command + F + Command + F). Select the top copy and hit the left arrow once. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with R=15, G=15, B=15.

Again, select the rounded rectangle created in the sixteenth step and make two new copies in front. Select the top copy and this time hit the left arrow twice. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with the linear gradient shown below.


Step 20

Reselect the two shapes created in the previous step, group them (Command + G) and bring the group to front (Shift + Command + ] ). Reselect the rounded rectangle created in the sixteenth step and replace the flat color with the linear gradient shown below.


Step 21

Select all the shapes created in the last five steps, group them (Command + G) and send the group to back. Go to the Layers panel and open this new group. Select the rounded rectangle, duplicate it and bring the copy to front (Shift + Command + ] ).


Step 22

Select the two gray shapes highlighted in the first image and duplicate them. Drag these copies to the top of the Layers panel then Unite them. Fill the resulting shape with black and lower its Opacity to 20%.


Step 23

Select the shape created in the previous step and hit the right arrow and the down arrow three times. Now, select it along with the copy created in step 21 and click on the Intersect button from the Pathfinder panel. Move the Layers panel and drag the resulting shape inside the group created in step 21.


Step 24

Switch back to "Gridline every 5px" Pick the Rectangle Tool (M), create a 30 by 60px shape and place it as shown in the first image. Fill it with a random color, make sure that there's no color set for the stroke, and go to Effect > Stylize > Rounded Corners. Enter a 5px radius, click OK and go to Object > Expand Appearance. Select the resulting shape and make a copy in front (Command + C > Command + F).


Step 25

Switch to "Gridline every 1px", pick the Rectangle Tool (M) and create a 30 by 1px shape. Fill it with black and place it as shown in the first image. Select this new rectangle and go to Effect > Distort & Transform > Transform. Enter the data shown below, click OK and go to Object > Expand Appearance. Select the resulting group of shapes and go to Object > Compound Path > Make.


Step 26

Select the compound path created in the previous step, along with the copy created in step 24, and click on the Intersect button from the Pathfinder panel. Again, turn the resulting group of shapes into a compound path and lower its Opacity to 50%.


Step 27

Select the rounded rectangle created in step 24 and make two copies in front (Command + C > Command + F + Command + F). Select the top copy and hit the left arrow once. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with R=15, G=15, B=15.

Again, select the rounded rectangle created in step 24 and make two new copies in front. Select the top copy and this time hit the left arrow twice. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with the linear gradient shown below.


Step 28

Reselect the two shapes created in the previous step, group them (Command + G) and bring the group to front (Shift + Command + ] ). Reselect the rounded rectangle created in step 24 and replace the flat color with the linear gradient shown below.


Step 29

Select all the shapes created in the last five steps, group them (Command + G) and send the group to back. Go to the Layers panel and open this new group. Select the rounded rectangle, duplicate it and bring the copy to front (Shift + Command + ] ).


Step 30

Select the 3 shapes highlighted in the first image and duplicate them. Drag these copies to the top of the Layers panel then Unite them. Fill the resulting shape with black and lower its Opacity to 20%.


Step 31

Select the shape created in the previous step, and hit the right arrow and the down arrow three times. Now, select it, along with the copy created in step 29, and click on the Intersect button from the Pathfinder panel. Move the Layers panel and drag the resulting shape inside the group created in step 29.


Step 32

Switch back to "Gridline every 5px". Pick the Rectangle Tool (M), create a 100 by 70px shape and place it as shown in the first image. Fill it with a random color, make sure that there's no color set for the stroke and grab the Direct Selection Tool (A).

Select the bottom anchor points and go to Object > Path > Average. Check the Both button and click OK. This should turn your rectangle into a triangle. Select it and go to Effect > Stylize > Rounded Corners. Enter a 10px radius, click OK and go to Object > Expand Appearance.


Step 33

Disable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid). Select the rounded triangle created in the previous step and make two copies in front (Command + C > Command + F + Command + F). Select the top copy and hit the up arrow once. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with R=116, G=118, B=120.

Again, select the rounded triangle created in the previous step and make two new copies in front. Select the top copy and this time hit the up arrow twice. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with the linear gradient shown below.


Step 34

Reselect the rounded triangle and focus on the Appearance panel. First, replace the flat color with the linear gradient shown below. Next, add a new fill. Select it from the Appearance panel, make it black, lower its Opacity to 3%, change its blending mode to Multiply and go to Effect > Artistic > Film Grain. Enter the data shown below and click OK.


Step 35

Re-enable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid). Pick the Ellipse Tool (L), create a 5px circle and place it as shown in the first image. Fill it with the radial gradient shown below and add a 1pt stroke. Align it to inside, and set its color to R=209 G=211 B=212, then add a second stroke using the Add New Stroke button. It's the little, black square icon from the bottom of the Appearance panel.

Select this new stroke, set its color at R=88, G=89, B=91, make it 0.5pt wide and align it to inside. Reselect this circle, make sure that no fill or stroke is selected (in the Appearance panel) and go to Effect > Stylize > Drop Shadow. Enter the data shown below and click OK.


Step 36

Select all the shapes created in the last four steps, group them (Command + G) and send the group to back.


Step 37

Pick the Rectangle Tool (M), create a 20 by 70px and a 20 by 30px shape, then place them as shown below. Fill them with a random color and make sure that there's no color set for the stroke. Select the bottom rectangle and go to Effect > Warp > Arc Lower. Enter the data shown below, click OK and go to Object > Expand Appearance.


Step 38

Disable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid). Select the bottom shape created in the previous step and make two copies in front (Command + C > Command + F + Command + F). Select the top copy and hit the up arrow once. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with R=116, G=118, B=120.

Again, select the bottom shape created in the previous step and make two new copies in front. Select the top copy and this time hit the up arrow twice. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with R=230, G=231, B=232.

Once again, select the bottom shape created in the previous step and make two new copies in front. Select the top copy and this time hit the down arrow three times. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with black and lower its Opacity to 10%.


Step 39

Select the top rectangle created in step 37 and make two copies in front (Command + C > Command + F + Command + F). Select the top copy and hit the up arrow three times. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with black and lower its Opacity to 10%.

Reselect the top rectangle created in step 37 and make a new copy in front (Command + C > Command + F). Select the rounded triangle, make a copy in front (Command + C > Command + F), drag it outside the group and bring it to front (Shift + Command + ] ). Select this triangle copy, along with the other copy, and click on the Intersect button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with black and lower its Opacity to 10%.


Step 40

Next you need to edit the shapes created in step 37. Select both shapes and focus on the Appearance panel. First, replace the flat color with the linear gradient shown below. Next, add a new fill. Select it from the Appearance panel, make it black, lower its Opacity to 3%, change its blending mode to Multiply and go to Effect > Artistic > Film Grain. Enter the data shown below and click OK.


Step 41

Reselect the shapes created and edited in the last four steps, group them (Command + G) and send the group to back (Shift + Command + [ ).


Step 42

Re-enable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid). Pick the Rectangle Tool (M), create a 150 by 20px shape and place it as shown below. Fill it with a random color and make sure that there's no color set for the stroke. Reselect it and go to Effect > Warp > Arc Lower. Enter the data shown below, click OK and go to Object > Expand Appearance.


Step 43

Disable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid). Select the shape created in the previous step and make two copies in front (Command + C > Command + F + Command + F). Select the top copy and hit the left arrow once. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with R=116, G=118, B=120.

Again, select the shape created in the previous step and make two new copies in front. Select the top copy and this time hit the left arrow twice. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with R=230, G=231, B=232.

Once again, select the shape created in the previous step and make two new copies in front. Select the top copy and this time hit the right arrow three times. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with black and lower its Opacity to 10%.


Step 44

Reselect the shape created in step 42 and focus on the Appearance panel. First, replace the flat color with the linear gradient shown below. Next, add a new fill. Select it from the Appearance panel, make it black, lower its Opacity to 3%, change its blending mode to Multiply and go to Effect > Artistic > Film Grain. Enter the data shown below and click OK.


Step 45

Re-enable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid). Duplicate the circle created in step 35 and move the copy as shown in the following image.


Step 46

Pick the Rectangle Tool (M) and create a 25 by 120px shape. Fill it with R=35 G=31 B=32, place it as shown in the first image and go to Object > Path > Add Anchor Points. Switch to the Direct Selection, select the top, right anchor point and move it 50px down, then select the bottom, right anchor point and move it 50px up. In the end your shape should look like the third image.


Step 47

Disable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid). Select the shape created in the previous step and make two copies in front (Command + C > Command + F + Command + F). Select the top copy and hit the left arrow once. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with black.


Step 48

Select the shape created in step 46 and make two new copies in front. Select the top copy and hit the left arrow twice. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with R=109, G=110, B=113. Add a second fill for the shape created in step 46 and use the linear gradient shown below. The yellow zero from the gradient image stands for opacity percentage.


Step 49

Re-enable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid). Pick the Rectangle Tool (M), create a 25px square, fill it with R=65 G=64 B=66 and place it as shown in the first image. Switch to the Direct Selection Tool (A), select the bottom, left anchor point and move it 5px to the right, then select the bottom, right anchor point and move it 5px to the left.

Now, your shape should look like the second image shown. Continue with the Direct Selection Tool (A), select the bottom anchor points and go to File > Scripts > Other Script.

Open the Round Any Corner Script, enter a 1px Radius and click OK. In the end your shapes should look like in the third image. Reselect it and go to Object > Path > Offset Path. Enter a -1px Offset and click OK. Fill the resulting shape with R=35, G=31, B=32.


Step 50

Switch to "Gridline every 1px". Pick the Rectangle Tool (M), create a 20 by 1px shape, fill it with black and place it as shown in the first image. Switch to the Ellipse Tool (L), create a 2px circle, fill it with black and place it as shown in the first image. Reselect the rectangle and go to Effect > Distort & Transform > Transform. Enter the data shown below, click OK and apply Object > Expand Appearance.


Step 51

Select the shapes created in the previous step, along with the second shape created in step 49, and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Select the resulting group of shapes, turn it into a compound path, and make sure that it is filled with R=35, G=31, B=32.


Step 52

Reselect the shape created in step 49 and add a first stroke. Make it black, align it to outside and set the size at 2pt. Add a second stroke for this shape, make it 1pt wide, align it to outside and set the color at R=109, G=110, B=113.


Step 53

Disable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid). Pick the Pen Tool (P) and draw a simple path as shown in the following image. Remove the color from the fill, but add a 3pt stroke. Set its color at R=28 G=117 B=188, then go to Object > Path > Outline Stroke.


Step 54

Select the shape created in the previous step and make two copies in front (Command + C > Command + F + Command + F). Select the top copy and hit the right arrow and the down arrow once. Reselect both copies and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting group of shapes with R=138 G=194 B=255 and turn them into a compound path.


Step 55

Reselect the shapes created and edited in the last six steps, group them (Command + G) and send the group to back (Shift + Command + [ ).


Step 56

Re-enable the Snap to Grid (View > Snap to Grid). Pick the Ellipse Tool (L), create a 10 by 58px shape, fill it with R=138 G=194 B=255 and place it as shown in the following image. Make sure that this shape is still selected, focus on the Appearance panel and add a first stroke. Make it 0.9pt wide, align it to outside and set its color at R=28 G=117 B=188. Add a second stroke for this shape and send it to back (Shift + Command + [ ). Make it 0.5pt wide, set its color at R=186 G=219 B=255 and align it to center.


Step 57

Pick the Rectangle Tool (M), create a 130 by 360px shape and place it as shown in the following image. Fill it with the radial gradient shown below, send it to back (Shift + Command + [ ) and go to Effect > Blur > Gaussian Blur. Enter a 1px radius and click OK.


Step 58

Pick the Rectangle Tool (M), create a 50 by 120px shape and place it as shown in the following image. Fill it with the linear gradient shown below, send it to back (Shift + Command + [ ) and lower its Opacity to 15%.


Step 59

Finally, the background. Pick the Rectangle Tool (M), create a shape the size of your artboard, fill it with white and send it to back (Shift + Command + [ ).


Conclusion

Now your work is done. Here is how it should look.

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