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3.1 Q&A

In this video I address a collection of user questions from the live version of the course. There’s a good chance any questions you have at this point will be answered too!

3.1 Q&A

[MUSIC] Okay, Chris asks, isn't there a heart shape? Not to my knowledge in Illustrator. But if there is one, please feel free to let me know. But for me personally, I like to learn how to create different types of hearts. And as you saw in the beginning of this stream, we really had a lot of flexibility, as well, as to kind of, we could control the angle here, the curvature. We could control the dip and how much this did dip or didn't dip. So when you learn how to do it yourself, and you need to draw a heart in future, you have a whole different bunch of hearts that you can create, whether it's a straight edged one or a bit more curvy. So then there will be heart icon features somewhere hidden away in Illustrator. But for me personally, it's something I like to do myself from scratch. Lillian asks if we have Adobe Illustrator CS6, could we follow this tutorial? So of these, yes. Some of these, you would need Illustrator CC. So being able to select certain corners and round them off quickly like this, you would need Illustrator CC unfortunately. But then some of the other ones, like playing around with brushes and gradient logos, all of that you can do in many of the previous versions of Illustrator. Gert asks, where can we download the start files, please? So what I do is at the end of the stream, I will upload the files together with the course. So once the course is all complete and everything, I'll package up these files and we can get those up. So you guys can download what we've created here and start having a play. Barry asks are you using a stylus or a mouse? Barry, I'm using a stylus. I do have a mouse on standby [LAUGH]. For me, I used a mouse for a large part of my career. And then, once I started using a Wacom tablet, this is a Wacom Intuos Pro, I found it difficult to move back. Now, the biggest thing that I love about a Wacom tablet is that you can control curves a lot better in Illustrator. When drawing shapes, brushes and things, to grab the brush tool is much easier for me to draw this. I don't know what this is. But to do it with a tablet, it's just a much more natural movement. Especially if you're someone who likes to draw, or you have drawn a lot before. And I think generally, a lot of us, we grew up using pencils and pens so having a tablet stylus feels very familiar, as well. And you get the control of something like pen pressure, as well, so, You can set up your stylus and everything, so when you're working in things like Photoshop and Illustrator, if you press a bit harder, the line of the brush that you're using will be more pronounced. And if you press lighter, it will be smaller or perhaps fainter. So you get much more artistic control over what you're creating. Now, this tablet has a ton of features. I don't use them, I got them all turned off. Literally, those are the two reasons [LAUGH] that I love using this. And I find it difficult to go back to a mouse after using it. Hopefully, that's helpful. That's a very long answer to your question. I could have just said yes. Do you prefer Adobe Illustrator or Sketch for designing logos? For me, it's Adobe Illustrator. I'm not sure which version of Sketch you mean. If you're referring to Sketch app, which I think is a lot more for UI design, or if there's another program called Sketch. But for me personally, I'm a fan of the Adobe Creative Cloud, the Photoshop Illustrator, InDesign. I've used a lot of them for a number of years now. And the thing that I like is they all play nice together, but all the tools are familiar as well. So if I'm working in Photoshop, I've got a pen tool. I've got the add anchor point, delete anchor point tools. If I'm in Illustrator, I've got that, as well. If I'm in InDesign, I've got it. If I'm in XD, I've got a pen tool. So there's a lot of shapes and icons that represent shapes, like a lot of these shapes as well, that you can find in other apps. So if you're someone that uses lots of different apps, there's a lot of familiarity between them, if that make sense. I mean, I've been using Illustrator for years. And some of the tools that we've added, particularly things like the width tool that we demonstrated and the shape builder tool as well, that just make the process of creating things like logos incredibly easy. Well, not incredibly easy, but much easier, much quicker. So for me, it's got to be Adobe Illustrator, personally. So Kitten asks so is it better to use Photoshop for illustration? I'm confused, it depends entirely what you're trying to create. Now, the advantage, the main difference between Photoshop and Illustrator, apart from the tools and other obvious things, is that Photoshop is raster-based software. So it's pixel-based. If you create something in Photoshop at a certain size, you can scale it down. And, It may change as you scale it down. The image might become blurred because it's packing all of those pixels together into a smaller space. Conversely, if you scale it up in Photoshop larger than its original size it was created at, it's going to pixelate. You're gonna get a loss in quality. Whereas in Illustrator, everything that you create in Illustrator is vector-based. So what that means is that it's made up of all of these different anchor points. So in Photoshop, you can work with anchor points, and you can work with vector shapes. But most of what you create, things like photos, any kind of graphics that you put in there, JPEGs, PNGs, they're not vector-based because they're not made up of these anchor points. Because this is a shape that I've created with anchor points, I could scale this up to any size. And no matter how far I zoom in, it's always going to be super, super clean, super crisp. So it depends on the type of illustration that you're creating. If it's gonna be something that is gonna be a lot cleaner, potentially, and you're not going to use as much texture as you might in Photoshop. It depends what you're tying to create. Yeah, I think if your illustration is going to be much more like a painting, or something that involves using loads of different brushes and different opacities, then it's definitely worth working on a large canvas in Photoshop. If you're gonna be doing something like logo design, or perhaps UI design, or illustration, Then Illustrator is a good bet. It depends kind of what you want to use it for, what you're looking to do with it. Hopefully that's helpful. Matt Burton asks, what's the best practice for adding textures to an Illustrator file? Wow. Okay, so if you want to add texture to Illustrator, something I like to do is grab images of texture online. Whether it's something on Google for practice, or stock imagery, you can grab things with wood texture, metal texture, any kind of texture. And you can drop it into Illustrator and then there's an option called Image Trace, there we go, Image Trace in the later versions. And you can trace it and it will trace that photo of a texture into black and white. And then you can simply select it, go Object > Expand, and then you will have that texture in there. And if you have a shape, for example, you just set the texture to white. In fact, I can try and do this with another tool. So we have the symbol sprayer tool. I did this the other day, let's have a look. So if we go to the symbols panel, click the menu icon, we can open a symbol library, artistic textures, here we go. Here we go, I've opened up another can of worms. We can click this one here and you can use that symbol sprayer to spray loads of texture, and you can go on for as long as you'd like. And then you go Object > Expand. So again, whether you do Image Trace or you use this symbol sprayer tool, you just expand it, expand it again And this may take a fair bit of computing power. Just go over everything, and just group it all together. If it is already grouped, fine, fantastic. And just change that color. There we go, so we have a blue texture. Let's bring our star down, and we can apply the blue texture over the red star. And of course, we're going to change this to white now, so our texture matches the background, so it's texturizing that star. Of course, if we did try and add a colored background behind it, that would be no good because we can see the texture on the background. So if we just select that texture, for me I like to go to Pathfinder > Unite, and then Object. This may take a moment depending on your computer's power. I think my poor laptop is going to not like me very much after this. So it may take a moment. And then we can go Object > Compound Path > Make. What that does is it will take all of these individual little speckles of texture that we've created and just group them together so Illustrator will then treat all of this as one shape. And the reason that that's really good is because if we select our star and we then hold Shift and select our white texture, we can now go to the Pathfinder panel and select Subtract. That's this option here. And it should subtract that white texture from the red star, effectively just knocking through the star, and it will allow this green background to show through. Either that or my computer will die [LAUGH]. There we go. So we can see the background through. And we now have a complete textured star. So if I drag this over here, you can see that we've done it correctly. We have white showing through here and green showing through here. So there we go. There is a couple of ways you can add texture in Illustrator. Image trace or using the symbol sprayer tool and grabbing the Symbols panel up here from the Window menu. Hopefully that was helpful. Okay, let's do a few more. I'm not sure of the name, but someone asks, why not use CorelDRAW? I've not used CorelDRAW in quite a few years now, I did use it at the beginning of my career. There's nothing wrong with CorelDRAW. I couldn't say what I've added since then, but for me, I started learning Photoshop when I was what, 16? Something like that. [LAUGH] Such a long time ago. I started learning Photoshop and because I became familiar with Photoshop, again, it's what I talked about earlier with that familiarity. I then moved into Illustrator, there were some similarities, so for me, it wasn't like learning a completely new bit of software. So I did use CorelDRAW for my second job. And I worked a small design and print studio. But when I moved on from that job, I went back to Adobe. And I still did use Adobe because I just used all of their different pieces of graphics software for different things. They all integrate really easily with each other and yeah, it just had that familiarity about it. But I'm sure CorelDRAW nowadays, I'm sure it's had a bunch of features added to it. So there's no reason why you couldn't use CorelDRAW. I mean at the end of the day, if you have an idea in your mind and a bit of software that lets you create it, then whatever you prefer to use. Again, so yeah, what's the difference between CorelDRAW and Illustrator? It just depends on the tools. To my knowledge, CorelDRAW allows you to create vector shapes and draw all sorts of things in it as well. It just depends, different pieces of software, different companies making them, different tools. Like they've both got pen tools, they've both got shape tools and text tools. So there's a lot of similarities, but things like mesh tools and perspective tools and maybe shape builder tools. I don't know if CorelDRAW does or doesn't have those, but again, it's just different pieces of software and different features coming from them. Kitten asks, what's the difference between expand and expand appearance? So, if I draw a square, and a square has a stroke, And I'll draw another square, And let's go and distort this. So we'll distort it using free distort. So the main difference between these is that expand appearance refers to the appearance panel. So at the moment, you can see I've got a free distort effect listed. If I go into Outline mode, Cmd or Ctrl+Y, it's still the same square. It just has this distort effect masked over it. It's just like showing that effect. If we actually want our shape to be the shape that we're seeing and then edit the anchor points from that We do need to go object expand. Now you can see that we can grab all these points, the shape, is the shape. [LAUGH] It's exactly what we see even in outline mode, but has expanded that appearance. So whereas before it was listed here, now it's no longer listed. So we can't go and edit that free distort anymore, but it does mean that we can do other things like combine these two shapes together. If you try and do these kind of pathfinder shape combinations with shapes that haven't been expanded. It doesn't always work very well. So for me, I like to go an expand any appearances or anything just before I start combining one shape with another. Now if you have a stroke on your shape, like this one here, you will get the Expand option. So sometimes, if you have a shape with an effect and a stroke, you'll have to go Expand Appearance, then go Expand. So we just click Expand, and we want to expand our Fill and our Stroke. So now this just looks like this. Now of course this shape didn't actually have a fill, but if it did it would be expanded and it would be a color that we could then go and select. The best advice I can give is, if you've created something, and it's got strokes, and it's got effects, whatever it's got on it, what I often do is I just go Object, and I just keep selecting whichever one is available. Just Object, Expand, Expand, Expand Appearance, Expand. Until it's fully expanded and then I can just go okay, I can't expand it any more, now I'm ready to move forward. That's probably the best advice I can give, because I mean, the difference between these, I didn't actually realize that until sometime last year. I just didn't connect appearance, the word appearance here, with the apparent panel. I just didn't connect it and it was never an issue for me. I just usually go and pick whatever one I could, and just expand it over and over again until it wouldn't let me do it anymore. So hopefully that's helpful. Tutu asks what color mode should we use, CMYK or RGB for logo design in Illustrator? So for me, it depends where your logo is going to be used. What I like to do personally, is I like to always work in RGB to begin with, just because the RGB spectrum has many more colors than CMYK does. Obviously, RGB is red, green, blue. It relates to the colors that make up your screen display. And CMYK stands for cyan, magenta, yellow, and black. And those are the four different inks that I use if you're doing like a full color print run. And a CMYK or the colors that can be generated on a computer screen. There are many millions more, I believe, than what CMYK ink can reproduce. So oftentimes, if you create a logo with your document set to RGB, if you use something, let's try this now. So we'll use something like a crazy bright green. Now, unless it's a specialist ink or maybe like a, I don't know, a panther and all something. CMYK, which would be able to print this is too bright and crazy. So if I change my Document Color Mode, You can see it finds the closest match and it dolls it down. And of course if I eyedropper this with a color picker, you can see there that it can recreate this. So we have 46% cyan, and 100% yellow, and it can recreate that. If we change the document mode back to RGB, and I try to eye dropper this again, if you'll let me eye dropper it. Okay, in this instance, it's saying that those are the values there and it can create that. But this kinda green just can't be printed with CMYK ink. So sometimes in there or whether you kind of go into, let's go into the swatch panel. See, I have my RGB values here. If I change it to CMYK, you get this. You get 62.66. Now if you get a decimal point in your CMYK, it can't be printed. So if we change that to 62. Again, as you can see, we've got that dulled down or similar color to that dulled down color that we got before. So if you create your logo in RGB and you've got all of your swatches and you want it to be CMYK, firstly change your document color mode type. But then load up the swatches, go to CMYK and find the closest match. So maybe 0.66 if I bring that up. If I round it up to 63, so I then know that this can be printed. Because if you send something to print with this kind of crazy bright green, it's going to print very differently the other end. So it's always good to just check any design work or artwork before you send it off to print. Now back to your question, for logo design I like to design full RGB, so I get maximum, maximum creativity. Of course, if the logo is going to be printed somewhere, then this is something that I do tend to consider. If I know it's going to be printed on the side of a van or signage, or a poster, or a business card, then it's honestly easier to work in CMYK from the start. So you're not picking all these bright colors, showing the client the bright colors, and then going sorry, we have to dull this down now for these reasons. So just start in CMYK if that's where it's going to be used. If it's going to be an app, or on a website, on on-screen display predominantly, or with just personal work. And you want access to more colors, more vibrant colors, stick with RGB. Or you could stick with RGB, but just find something that works within the CMYK spectrum. So the RGB spectrum has all the CMYK colors and then some. It has many, many more, so If you're working in RGB, and it needs to be printed, just try not to create a color that cannot be printed. Just to limitations of science, is probably my best advice. Alice Owens, ha ha, I remember you. Hey, love your videos, man. Thank you so much, Ellis, I appreciate it. Okay, a few more questions. Ken asks, when should you use symbols instead of regular shapes? It's entirely up to you, to be honest. You have the symbols panel from window at the top. Again with the brushes, you can open the symbol library, and you've got lots and lots of stuff here. And you can of course go other library and install some more. So it depends if you want to create it from scratch, you can create it from scratch. If you want to come and throw in some of these shapes here, and use this to go into create a frame. I'm just gonna do this really quickly. So just select black as the color and bump up that stroke weight. I'm just reflecting this. And rotating it around. Of course I'm sure what you create will be infinitely better than this, but you could use this to create a frame. So if you find a symbol that you like or you have a symbols library specifically that you like using, then that's awesome. If you want to work from a symbol, again, we're gonna do the whole expanding thing, and now this is just a shape in Illustrator. It's not a symbol anymore. I've expanded that symbol, and I can then go in. And let's see. No. We can't use the width at all because it's not a stroke, but we can go in and we can edit these anchor points, or we can go in and adjust color. So again, if you do get anything like this, if you try and apply color to a shape, I'm picking a green and it's just looking gray. Don't worry, just go to the color guide panel or the swatches panel, pick something that has color. And once you've done that, Illustrator will recognize it's got color and then you can change it. I don't know why this happens, but if you ever get that, you're picking a color, it comes out gray. Just use either the Color Guide, or the Swatches panel. Give it a color and then you can go and pick one from the color picker. But this is a great way that you can use symbols as a starting point, and then just expand them, and then go and customize them, build on them, whatever you like, as you like.

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