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2.1 Illustrator Interface

Lesson number one I can only imagine was pretty easy. Let's open up Illustrator and get started on Lesson number two, the interface. Okay. We already looked at this once, and this is not necessarily something that we're familiar with, especially if you've never used an Adobe program before. People who have used Photoshop can probably take some comfort on the left-hand side of this interface. Now, when you see what I'm about to show you, you will probably say, oh my God, I'm never gonna learn this program. Each of these little tool bars up here have a little arrow, and that expands the palette. In this case on the left, it just makes it a two-column instead of a one- column, and that's kind of nice. If you have a big screen like me, then you probably want it tall. And then over here on the right, when I expand these you are seeing a lot of new things. Now, understanding all of these palettes we're gonna get to them. In week two and week three we're really going to own all of these pallets, especially in week three. But, just know that illustrator has a bunch of tools, all they are is stored in pallets, and you want to, once you've used illustrator a lot, maybe move away from its default interface. Now, up in the top right of illustrator, you can see the ESSENTIALS button. The ESSENTIALS button is what layout we're currently in. You can click on it, and you can see, oh, make it look like Photoshop or make it look like InDesign. Now, that doesn't mean it's gonna change the tools that you have, it just means that what's hidden and what's shown by default is different and what you see. You can see here I have two different layouts for myself, the Ryan Q one is the one I always use, and people go, whoa that's a lot of different pallets up at the same time. Well that's kinda what I like to see. I like to have everything in my control, being a control freak, when I use illustrator. Now, the interface also has some different things. If you're on a Mac, you may see no big grey background. Well, that's called the Application Frame. Windows people have it by default, but if you don't have it or you want it, you can go to Window, and then Application Frame. I have it checked off, I'll show you what it looks like by default on Mac, you can kind of see things in the background, drag them in, open up files. To me, I like to really focus when I'm in Illustrator, so I turn on my application frame, but Illustrator's interface is really controlled by this Windows menu. So if you look in the window menu, you can see we can arrange things, we can adjust the work space, there's extensions you can install, there's so much stuff, and there's also all of these different palettes. Now, you can see, all the ones that are checked off, are ones that I can see currently. It's not necessarily ones that I just have access to, too, right? So if we look at Info right here, that's not checked off. But I'm gonna zoom my screen over and you can see next to my navigator, Info is visible. So this is not necessarily a foolproof way of saying what do I have access to? But this is your window. So when we say hey, in the Artboards palette or in the gradient palette, if you don't see it on your screen, come to the windows section, turn it on. For instance, I want to see my Graphic Styles. When I click on that, you can see graphic styles pops up over here. Now, all of these are blank because we don't really have a document, but the next lesson will be opening a document. So, Illustrator's interface, again, is movable, it's customizable. You can select these things, drag them around, and really make it your own. You can even pull them apart and make them floating. That tends to drive me crazy and I don't like it. But hidden, showable, it also has this toolbar at the top. We're gonna see all these things moving and what not, but know that the interface is what you make it, and whatever tools you use most. And when you're six months, a year down in learning Illustrator, you're going to know exactly what tools you want. But for now, we're just going to stay with the essentials interface. That's all we need. In the next lesson we're going to be setting up our first Illustrator document, so stay tuned for that.

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