Feb 14th: Illustrator Basics

In-Class Assignment

1) Download the pentool1.pdf and the pentoolpractice.ai and complete the pen tool practice.

2) Google image search the term “real monster creature”. Open that photograph in Illustrator and trace it to make your own illustration



Also, notice that sometimes when you open raster images, and sometimes PDF files via Illustrator, the files open without any of the stock libraries. This is because the files don’t contain the information about the stock libraries, including the swatch library.

To load the default swatches:

  • From the Swatch Panel menu choose open swatch library> default library> RGB


Getting Started

The following dialogue box is what you’ll see when you create a new document by going to File>New

Screen Shot 2015-09-28 at 5.37.26 PM

One thing that you’ll notice is that you can choose varying numbers of Artboards. Also, notice that when you select print your color mode is automatically set to CMYK.

Here is an explanation on the difference between points, pixels, and picas

You’ll also notice under the Advanced module, that a ppi (point per inch) is assigned. Remember that ppi is something that is used in raster based software programs, like photoshop, and not in vector based programs like illustrator. This setting comes into play when you needed to rasterize your illustrator document, for example, if you wanted to incorporate graphics you made in illustrator into a photo. Here is a reminder about raster vs vector

If you are confused about setting up a new doc in illustrator, check out this tutorial

Illustrator fundamentals, The Pen Tool, and Direct Selection

click here for the ins and outs of the pen tool

click here for a comprehensive guide to pen tool

Remember: To leave the path open, Ctrl-click (Windows) or Command-click (Mac OS) anywhere away from all objects.

Screen Shot 2015-09-29 at 10.15.37 AM

click here to learn more about the difference between selection and direct selection

click here for info on how to use the free transform tool

How to deal with overlapping objects, grouping, arranging, locking and visibility

For a review of group and ungroup click here

For a review of object arrangement click here

For a review of locking and visibility click here