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How to Illustrate a Screw-bolt and a Nut with 3D Effects in Illustrator

by
Gift

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In today's tutorial, I'm going to show you how to create a screw-bolt and a nut in Adobe Illustrator. Open the Illustrator program, create there the new document and let's begin...


Step 1

Take the Polygon Tool and illustrate a path shown below. Fill it with gray, and change the Stroke to None.

Go to Effect > 3D > Extrude & Bevel. Choose bevel shape Tall-Round, Light Intensities and Size – 100%. You need to do this because the screw is a metallic detail. So it must have contrast in light distribution. Follow the helpful image below.

You need to achieve the following result after this manipulation.


Step 2

Copy this path and Paste it in Front (Command + C then Command + F). Go to the Appearance panel, click 3D Extrude & Bevel link to edit the effect, and Specify a rendering style to No Shading (indicated with an arrow in the picture below).

You will receive the next picture of the Copy of the path.


Step 3

Go to Object > Expand Appearance.


Step 4

We need to find the center of the top part of the screw cap. Thus, select the path indicated above, change the Fill color of it for your convenience...

...and delete all the other paths made after expanding the copy of 3D object. Follow the helpful image below.


Step 5

Go to Object > Transform > Scale and increase the path slightly as shown.

Grab the Selection Tool (V), and go to View > Rulers > Show Rulers (Command + R).


Step 6

Now you need to drag the Guide-lines from the rulers and drop them on the image so as to make them intersect the centers of the Bounding Box. See the image below for reference and do this.

The point indicated with an arrow in the image above will be the approximate center of the crimson path.


Step 7

Make the crimson path invisible in the Layers panel.

Take now the Pen Tool (P), and draw a triangle filled with white. The one of the triangle's angles should coincide with the center indicated with Guide-lines. The coincidence may be approximate. See the image below.

Illustrate the next white triangle shown below.


Step 8

Both triangles are shown below now.

Change the Opacity of the first triangle to 0.


Step 9

Go to Object > Blend > Blend Options, set the Spacing to Specified Steps and the number of steps to about 25.

Select both triangles and go to Object > Blend > Make (Command + Alt + B).

Illustrate the next Blend by going to Object > Transform > Reflect.

Repeat these actions in order to achieve the following result.


Step 10

Select the crimson path (after making it visible again as you understand it), Copy it and Paste in Front (Command + C then Command + F).

Select this path and four Blends...

...and go to Object > Clipping Mask > Make (Command + 7).


Step 11

Now we need to make four blends more exact. Take the Lasso Tool (Q), and select all the inner anchor points of the Blends. See the image below.

Then go to Object > Transform > Scale, and set the values in the opened dialog box that you can see in the image below.

You will receive the next result.


Step 12

Decrease the Opacities of the Blends, and make the Guidelines invisible.


Step 13

Create another inclined Guide-line shown below. You can drag and drop the Guide-line from the ruler and then rotate it by going to Object > Transform > Rotate.

Copy it and Paste in Front (Command + C then Command + F). Move it upwards on any number of pixels by going to Object > Transform > Move. You should achieve the next result.

Copy it and Paste in Back (Command + C then Command + B). Move it downwards now on the same quantity of pixels. Your image after these manipulations should be like this.

And illustrate the revolving part of the screw shown below. Do it by yourself if you know how to achieve this. But if not, read carefully the continuation of the tutorial.


Step 14

Grab the Ellipse Tool (L), and create a circle where the center coincides with the central Guide-line. Fill the circle with gray. Follow the image below.

Illustrate the next circle shown below the same way. Fill it with crimson.


Step 15

Go to Effect > 3D > Extrude & Bevel and create a disc from the first circle.

Do the same with the crimson circle.


Step 16

Send the gray disc to Back.

And decrease the Opacity of the crimson path.


Step 17

This step is important. Select the behind gray 3D path, and go to Effect > Distort & Transform > Transform, and try the indicated values or choose your own values in your own artwork so as to create an appropriate revolving part of the screw-bolt. The end of this part should coincide (approximately) with the 3D crimson semitransparent path. The horizontal and vertical scalings can be equal to each other. In other words, your action in this step is to fit the necessary values in the opened dialog box. Follow the picture below.


Step 18

The crimson path may be deleted now.

The gray path may be expanded by going to Object > Expand Appearance.


Step 19

Take the Polygon Tool and illustrate a path shown below. Fill it with gray, and change the Stroke to None. The center of the path should be located on the central Guide-line.

Grab the Ellipse Tool (L) and create a circle in the center of it.

Select both paths and go to Object > Compound Path > Make (Command + 8).


Step 20

Go to Effect > 3D > Extrude & Bevel.


Step 21

Fill the top part of the nut with four Blends as you did it before with the top part of the screw. Do you remember it? If not, go back in this tutorial and read carefully the first steps of it again. Because up to this point you already know how to achieve this, do it by yourself without assistance.

Crop this Blends with the corresponding Compound Clipping Path.


Step 22

In order to continue the creating of a nut model, we will need to create an Art Brush for the shading. Using the Ellipse Tool (L), draw an elongated elliptical path filled with black.

Copy it and Paste in Front (Command + C then Command + F). Go to Object > Transform > Scale and decrease the ellipse copy twice as small. In other words, set the percentage to 50%.

Change the Opacity of the largest ellipse to 0%.

Go to Object > Blend > Blend Options and set the values in the dialog box as shown.

Select both ellipses and go to Object > Blend > Make (Command + Alt + B).


Step 23

Drag and drop this blend into the Brushes panel, and choose the Art Brush option in the opened dialog box.

Specify the options for the brush in the second dialog box. Name this brush "Black brush". Change the Colorization Method of it to Hue Shift.


Step 24

Take the Ellipse Tool (L) and draw an elliptical path over the nut's hole as you can see it in the image below.

Take the Scissors Tool (C) and click in the indicated anchor point in the image above with it in order to divide the ellipse. Then apply the "Black brush" to the path.

Decrease the Stroke Weight of the path.


Step 25

Copy the path and Paste it in Front (Command + C then Command + F). Move the copy slightly as shown below, change the Stroke color to white and the Stroke Weight if necessary. See the image.

Decrease the Opacity of the path if necessary.

Select both paths and go to Object > Group (Command + G). Change the Opacity again if it needs in your own artwork.


Step 26

Copy this group and Paste it in Front (Command + C then Command + F). Move the copy along the central Guide-line as it is shown below.

Go to Object > Blend > Blend Options.

Select both groups of the nut, and go to Object > Blend > Make (Command + Alt + B).


Step 27

Something is wrong in the image below...

I think that the space between notches in the nut's hole is wrong. Do you agree with me? If yes, how to fix this? I advise you to select the Blend again...

...and to go to Object > Blend > Blend Options, and to fit the number of Specified Steps to satisfy the necessary space.


Conclusion

The final image is below. Use the techniques you've learned here in your own artworks. I hope you've enjoyed this tutorial.

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