In this tutorial, you will learn how to use the Mesh Tool and
Gradient Tool in Adobe Illustrator to create a beautiful red rose, and you'll also learn how to recolor it!
If you want to skip the tutorial and just use this rose in your work, you can purchase the Happy Valentines Day Background Single Red Rose Vector from GraphicRiver!
1. How to Create Leaves
Let's start by creating leaves around the rose! This will make it easier to create the rose afterwards.
Create a dark green
#415414 rectangle, and then delete its right upper node to create a triangle. Take the Mesh Tool (U) and place a node in the middle of the shape, and then bend the other nodes to resemble the leaf in the picture below.
We will be using the Mesh Tool a lot because it makes the shaping and coloring of different elements so much easier!
With the Lasso Tool (Q) or the Direct Selection Tool (A), select the tip and the left side of the leaf, and color it with
Select the top middle node of the leaf and color it with
#6C7A33. Make a copy of this part, reflect it vertically, and put it aside for a while.
With the Mesh Tool (U), add a node on the left side of the leaf, and then shape the rest of it so it looks more natural.
Continue coloring the leaf with the instructions below.
Grab the copy you made in Step 3, and continue coloring it according to the picture below.
Move on to creating another leaf. This one involves just making a long rectangle, coloring its top part a darker color, and then shaping it with the help of the Mesh Tool.
Move on to coloring the leaf shape.
Create a copy of the shape we made in the last step, and then right-click and Transform > Reflect it Horizontally.
Use Effect > Warp > Flag on the reflected copy with 20% Bend.
Select the shape and go to Object > Expand Appearance.
Bend the expanded shape to make it look like the second step in the image below.
Put all the parts together! It's already starting to look good!
We are done with the leaves!
2. How to Create the Flower
Out of a red rectangle, create a petal shape. Using the Mesh Tool, create a lot of nodes in the middle of the petal and shape it accordingly.
Continue by coloring the petal.
Create a dark red rectangle and shape it with the Mesh Tool.
Color the petal, following the steps below.
Just three petals remain! Try to shape this one as accurately as possible.
Color the resulting shape.
Bend this rectangle as accurately as possible.
Then, color it.
Finally, bend and color one final petal and you're done!
Assemble the rose under the leaves!
3. How to Make the Rest of the Flower
Create the stalk, following the steps below.
Similarly, make the shape that will be connecting the leaves to the stalk.
Let's move on to creating the mesh for the leaf.
For the rest of the leaf, head on to my tutorial on creating spring flowers.
Follow Steps 3-6 in Section 3 of the tutorial, using the mesh we created above.
Add your finished leaves to the shape we made before!
And now assemble the whole rose! We're almost done!
4. How to Create the Shadows
Let's create the shadow for the rose! Draw two narrow rectangles, the lighter rectangle a bit wider than the second one.
Turn the lighter rectangle completely transparent by going to the Transparency options and setting the Opacity to 0%.
Move the brown shape on top of the transparent one, and then go to Object > Blend > Blend Options, setting the mode to Specified Steps and its amount to 30.
After confirming the setting, select both objects and proceed to Object > Blend > Make.
Set the transparency mode of the resulting object to Multiply.
Add the shadow to the rose, just under and to the right of its stalk.
Create another type of shadow by applying a beige to white Radial Gradient to an ellipse.
Modify its shape by dragging the gradient with the Gradient Tool (G) to follow the shape of the ellipse.
Create lots of copies of the result and add them together to mirror the shape of the actual rose.
Now, add them behind the flower!
Quickly create the paper background for the rose.
Place the rose with the shadow onto the new background! We're done!!
5. How to Recolor the Roses
In this final section, I'll teach you how to recolor our finished rose and show you a few sample variants.
First, select the petals of the flower and turn them into black and white by going to Edit > Edit Colors > Convert to Grayscale.
Lighten the rose by going to Edit > Edit Colors > Adjust Colors and setting the Black slider to -55%.
Now, after going to Edit > Edit Colors > Saturate, set the Intensity to 78%.
Create six copies of this rose. If you want to try all of the colors, I'm going to show you. Alternatively, you can try making your own colors by experimenting with Edit > Edit Colors > Adjust Colors. In the window, switch to the RGB tab and tick Convert.
- Red: 24%
- Green: -35%
- Blue: -22%
- Red: 43%
- Green: 5%
- Blue: 10%
- Red: 31%
- Green: 14%
- Blue: -64%
- Red: 35%
- Green: 29%
- Blue: 23%
- Red: 26%
- Green: -23%
- Blue: -31%
- Black: 30%
- Red: 43%
- Green: 5%
- Blue: 10%
Now that we have all the different colors, we can create a beautiful bouquet of roses just like this:
Awesome Work, You're Done!
Thank you for following along, and please
feel welcome to post your result in the comments. I'll be looking
forward to seeing it!
In this tutorial, you learned how to
create a beautiful photo-realistic rose from scratch, using the Mesh Tool and the Gradient Tool.
hope you've enjoyed this tutorial and learned how to use some useful
tools for the future! Check out some of my other vector tutorials on my instructor profile.