Posts filed under ‘Illustrator Tutorials’

Compound Shape in Illustrator

This is another trick I’ve been asked about quite a few times as well. This tutorial is about creating a compound shape in Illustrator. It is a very useful trick. I would say it is one of the foundations of many projects I have worked on in Illustrator.

Step 1: Create a new Illustrator file and draw a square on the canvas with the shape tool. It can be any color.

Step 2: Now, draw a star and make it any color you want as long as it is a different color from the square. You can honestly use any shape you want here.

Step 3: Now, place the star in the middle of the pink square like below.

Step 4: Now go to Object > Compound Path > Make.

Step 5: Your square should now look like the one below. It should have the star shaped cut out in the center.

I hope this was helpful. Let me know if you have any questions below.

May 19, 2008 at 6:53 pm Leave a comment

Spreadshirt Plot-Printing Requirements Tutorial

I have been a very busy lady this past week. I have been trying to get our store up and our products ready for sale. We decided to use the Spreadshirt’s store front this first year, but I was having a few problems with customization. I immediately hit the forums trying to find solutions. Thankfully, I quickly found the answers I was looking for, but while browsing the forums I realized there were quite a few store owners that were having a large amount of trouble getting their designs approved for plot printing. I looked around and noticed there weren’t many visual tutorials out there to help these guys out so we decided to make one. I hope this helps.

This tutorial uses Illustrator. First, we have to make sure that our design is no bigger than 11.8 inches wide and 11.8 inches high. Make sure to get your design as big as you can without making it bigger than 11.8 by 11.8 inches. Furthermore, make sure that your design has only one, two or three colors. Do not exceed three colors. The illustration below uses 1 color. Additionally, this tutorial assumes that you created your artwork in Illustrator, or that your brought in vector artwork into Illustrator.

Step 1: Open up your design in Illustrator and select it.

Step 2: Next go to Object > Flatten Transparency. When the Flatten Transparency window shows up make sure to select the settings shown below. After you make sure the settings are accurate click OK.

Step 3: Now we are going to want to open the Pathfinder tab so we can merge the object. To open the Pathfinder tab go to Window > Pathfinder. You will see the Pathfinder tab pop up. With your design still selected, go to the Pathfinder tab and press the Merge button. It is the one shown in the Illustration below.

Step 4: Once your design has been merged you are going to want to use the clean up option. Essentially, this gets rid of any extra vector points you don’t need. With your design still selected go to Object > Path > Clean Up.

Step 5: The Clean Up window should be on your screen now. Make sure to have all three options selected. Press Ok.

Step 6: Now your design is ready to save. You will need to save it as a .eps file. To do that just go to File > Save As. The Save As window should be on your screen now. Name the design anything you want. I decided to call mine logo.eps. After you have named your document go to the Format drop down list and choose Illustrator EPS. Click Save. After you click Save the EPS Options window pops up. I just leave these settings at their default and click OK.

There you have it. I hope this helps some of you out. I know this can be a frustrating process, but if you follow these steps you shouldn’t have issues getting your designs accepted for Plot-Printing. Please let me know if anything is unclear, or if you have any other solutions or advice for this issue.

April 11, 2008 at 11:01 am Leave a comment

Glassy Orb in Illustrator

I recently learned how to create a glassy effect in Illustrator, and I know this will be incredibly helpful to quite a few of my friends. Most of us, including myself until recently, were under the impression that you could only make a glassy effect in Photoshop. Well, now we can make our glassy effects in a vector format for easy resizing.

Step 1. Select the ellipse tool and create a circle with no stroke.


Step 2. Fill the circle in with the following color (#999933). You will be able to substitute this color for any of your choosing once you get the hang of the effect.


Step 3. Create a smaller circle and place it inside the larger circle like the image below illustrates. Select the smaller circle and fill it with the following color (#CCCC33)

*You will be able to substitute this color as well. You typically want to choose a color that is a lighter version of the larger circle’s color. It will be the highlight.


Step 4. Now, select both circles and go to Object>Blend>Make. You should now have a circle like the one below.


Step 5. Now, create an oval similar to the one below and fill it in with a black and grey gradient like so. Make sure that the grey is on top and the black is on the bottom.

Step 6. Select the gradient oval, go to the Transparency Tab, and choose the Screen setting.



There you are. You have your easy, flexible and resizable glassy effect in Illustrator. I hope this was helpful.

April 1, 2008 at 10:36 am Leave a comment



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