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Best of the Vector Web – December 2010


As you know, each month, we search the web for the best vector-related content and showcase it here for you all to enjoy. This month, we found some high quality tutorials on creating vector characters, shading your vector graphics, using InDesign to create dynamically folded leaflets, and more. This month has loads of tutorials, in addition to inspiring articles, resources, and useful freebies. December was another vector month with interesting material to dig into and a great way to close out 2010. Happy New Year everyone and have an Exciting 2011!

Vector Tutorials

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    Classic Illustrator Tutorial: Yupyland Character Art

    Meni Tzima of the famed online site Yupyland, shows us her workflow for creating a cute vector character. She has created art for children’s books, clothes and products – and her characters are increasingly finding a home in corporate work. She covers her character creation process from sketch to vector, while giving tips along the way.

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    Print Your Own Tees

    Having founded his Andwot brand last year, Cav Bunkhall explains how to get your fledgling operation off the ground by screen printing at home, which is a great way to test the t-shirt printing waters and save costs as you dip your toes into this field of design. This project gives a start-to-finish guide on printing your own tees from home.

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    Create a Folded Flyer with a Twist

    Jo Gulliver shows us how to create a dynamic folded leaflet in InDesign. Learn to make the most of limited assets and a two-color print job. She covers the process from paper mockup to final design, as well as proper setup for printing.

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    Illustrator Tutorial: Add Depth to Your Art with Expert Shading Techniques

    In this tutorial, Bristol-based artist Ben Steers shows us how he uses gradient effects, opacity masks, gaussian blur, and other simple techniques to shade his work. He takes us through how he created his piece, "Gone Karting," which is a fun character based piece set in a woodland nature scene.

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    Create a Snowflake in Illustrator

    Veerle shows us how to create a snowflake in Illustrator, step by step, as well as how she incorporated this into a holiday card she designed. This is a great beginner tutorial that covers utilizing transformations to create objects.

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    Create Grainy Textures

    This intermediate level tutorial illustrator from Rype is awesome. If you're looking to add texture in a retro style to your illustrations, then definitely check out this tutorial. He covers a handful of workflows for using grain textures to shad his work, which gives it a vintage look. While the tutorial is short, there is plenty of detail to get you started experimenting with this technique.

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    How To Create Detailed Gothic Linework Typography

    Chris Spooner shows us how to take a blackletter font and customize it in this intermediate level Illustrator tutorial. He adds various black and white elements that create a range of tones with detailed linework. He also adds flourishes and other elements that give this custom, gothic style typography design a great final look that would be fitting for a dark apparel brand or heavy metal band.

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    Design Process: How to Draw the Super-Villain Megamind in Illustrator

    This brilliant intermediate level tutorial from Designious shows the process from sketch to vector for creating a professional character design. The vector process uses brush work for the lines and gives details on adding color, shading, and highlights. The sketch process is covered in multiple steps and detail, which will aid those working to improve their character creation skills. Tips on giving your villain character are covered as well.

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Vector Inspiration, Articles, and Resources

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    Interview with Clayton Junior

    Veerle interviews Clayton Junior - a freelance illustrator from London. He applies colors in an interesting way and creates quirky character based illustrations that have a hand drawn quality to them, though after sketching he does turn them into vector shapes. Learn a bit about his inspiration and working process, and take a stroll through his colorful work.

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    Master Hand-Drawn Art

    This article looks at how traditional and experimental drawing skills have enhanced numerous illustrator's work. It notes observation, touch of pencil to paper, playfulness and other attributes unique to drawing that the artists utilize. There are some fun mixed media pieces displayed as well.

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    10 Ways to Boost Your Skills Using InDesign and Illustrator

    This article brings an assortment of random tips that are sure to speed up your Illustrator and InDesign workflow. Learn to Super Step and Repeat in InDesign, Learn to Align Pixels to the Grid in Illustrator, and more.

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    Weekly Vector Inspiration #101

    Ryan Putnam of Vectips delivers another assortment of vector wonder and excitement. He has a great eye for awesome vector work. If you’re looking for inspiration, then check out this roundup, with artwork on colorful vector characters, vector lettering, and more.

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    Stylish Illustrations by Chris Gall

    Chris Gall's sophisticated, yet playful, engravings are a wonder to view. Abduzeedo showcases quite a few of them in this article, as well as some quotes from the author and a bit of backstory on his work. He's created children's books as well as beautiful works of art.

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    Over on the GoMediaZine George Coghill reviews Scriptographer, which is an open source Illustrator Plugin that allows for you to write your own Javascript based scripts. There is a collection of community contributed scripts as well available on the Scriptographer website that have multiple abilities you can tap into, if you're not comfortable with coding your own.

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(FREE!) Vector Downloads

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    Best of 2010: Freebies

    To end the year Vectips put together quite a few best of 2010 posts on vector tutorials, tips, tricks, articles, inspiration, and in this case freebies. This post is featuring vector and Illustrator freebies. There are some great vector icons, templates, and other useful Illustrator resources listed in this article.

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    30 Top Best Free Fonts From 2010

    Their was a huge amount of great free fonts released this year. Creative Nerds shares with us their selection of the top 30 best fonts released into the design community within 2010. If you're looking to boost your font collection, without spending any month, then check this post out.

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    Font Collection: 10 Free Bold and Beautiful Script Fonts

    Script fonts are designed to mimic the fluidity and irregularities of handwriting. They appear to have an organic aesthetic when compared to the precise characteristics of traditional sans-serifs. The free script fonts in this collection are strong, powerful and ready for professional use. This collection of fonts is layed out so well by Jacob Gube, you’re able to quickly see what distinguishes each of these and pick the ones you'd like to download for free.

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    Here Comes the 2011

    2011 comes big, colorful, happy, nice and lovely with these free vector designed by Vector Open Stock are licensed for personal or commercial use. Jump over to Vecteezy to download them.

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    Tattoo Vector

    Grab these free vectors designed by the Tshirt-Factory and available on Qvectors. These vector samples feature a wicked skull and horrific eyeball from the upcoming Pinup and Freaks packs they are putting together.

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