Andy’s Top 10 Tips for Adobe Illustrator

Adobe Illustrator is a powerful vector graphics software program that allows you to create vector art and illustrations using a variety of tools and features. In our Adobe Illustrator CC training course, instructor and Illustrator expert Andy Anderson shares 10 of his favourite and most-used features to help you get the most out of this impressive Adobe software program.


Andy’s Top 10 Tips for Illustrator Users:
  1. Custom Toolbars – ┬áthe toolbar is packed with tools, many of which you might not even use. Why not create a toolbar with JUSt the tools you need to work with? To do this, go to Window>Tools>Custom, then simply drag the tools you want from the original toolbar into the new toolbar you’ve created, then collapse the original toolbar and replace it with the new one.
  2. Pathfinder Options – this is a great tool for taking simple objects and making them into something more complex with just the click of a button in the pathfinder panel!
  3. The Width Tool – this tool allows you to take things like a stroke, and turn it into a stroke with multiple widths. You can then convert that into an object and anything you want with it.
  4. New Features for Ruler Guides – with this tool, you can now double click to instantly make guides. Plus, if you go to the corner point (which Andy calls the genesis point), you can drag it down to change two guides at the same time.
  5. Duplicate Last Function – this dynamic tool allows you to duplicate the last thing you did by using the shortcut Control D (Command D on a Mac). For example, if you want to copy an object and duplicate it across the page, simply select the object and click Control D (or Command D), then keep clicking it as many times as you want the object to duplicate.
  6. Gradient Mesh – this tool allows you to create almost realistic images. It can help you take a 2D image and create an effect to make the image appear 3D.
  7. Touch Type Tool (new) – you can find this new tool under the Text tool options, and can use it to manipulate the effects of just one letter.
  8. Appearance Panel – this handy tool gives you total control over whatever you’re doing, and is key to keep in your display.
  9. Image Trace – otherwise known as Live Trace, you can convert an image you have into vector to work with it as a vector object. Simply select the image and click the Image Trace button at the top of the document.
  10. Live Paint – to use this tool, you need to convert your image into vector by selecting it and clicking the Image Trace button. Next, select the live paint bucket tool and begin clicking and painting individual selections in your image.

If you’d like to watch Andy demonstrate exactly how to use these key Adobe Illustrator tools and features, check out the videos below!

Working with Live Corners:

New Tricks with Guides:





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