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  2. Illustration

Quick Tip: How to Create the New Smart Phone Lightning Connector


The 30-pin smart phone connector we have grown to love has finally bit the dust. Its replacement, The Lightning Connector, is quite different and a fair bit smaller than its predecessor. Let's take a closer look as we recreate this new Lightning Connector in Adobe Illustrator.

Step 1

Start by creating a New document and drawing three Rectangles (M) and ten Rounded Rectangles. The sizes below are just approximations, they don't have to be perfect. The smallest Rounded Rectangles have a Corner Radius of 2 px, the medium has a Radius of 5 px and the largest 7 px.

Step 2

Next, with the Pen Tool (P), add four points along the top and bottom sides of the largest rounded rectangle and indent them slightly. Then select all of the small rounded rectangles and Unite them with the Pathfinder panel.

Step 3

Now duplicate the two smaller regular rectangles giving you a total of five. Then give each of them the designated gradient shown below. The two newest rectangles should have their gradients set to 0° while the rest should be set to -90°. Set the Opacity of the two newest rectangles to 10%.

Note: The percentages indicate Opacity, not position and the black strokes are only there to indicate the shapes full size and should not be included in the final design.

Step 4

Next, add gradient 1 to the large rounded rectangle shown below with an angle of -90°. Duplicate the shape and change its gradient to gradient 2 with a 0° angle. Now create a path resembling shape 3 seen in the example. It should be slightly smaller then shapes 1 and 2 so that it fits within them. Apply gradient 3 to shape 3 and Blur (Effect > Blur) the shape slightly. Now layer all the shapes on top of one another.

Step 5

Duplicate the large rounded rectangle once again placing it between shapes 2 and 3 from the previous example. Then apply some Grain to the shape (Effect > Texture > Grain). Use the settings shown below. Then set its Transparency to Multiply and Opacity to 30%.

Step 6

Now give the medium rounded rectangle we created in Step 1 a color slightly darker then white and a Drop Shadow (Effect > Stylize > Drop Shadow) using the settings below. Finally, give the combined shape form Step 2 the gradient shown below with an angle of -90°.

Final Image

Put all the pieces together and there you have it. The New Smart phone Lightning Dock Connector. Enjoy.

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