Artists through the ages have pushed the limits and innovated new mediums to communicate to the world. Color has always played a huge roll of how art was received. In this chapter in the Illustrating with Illustrator series, we will discuss color and the different ways to apply color to our work.
Color schemes are two or more colors that are used to identify a message or reinforce a brand. A color scheme normally consists of at least a primary and secondary color. Not to be confused with a painter’s primary colors red, yellow and blue, a primary color is the dominant color in the color scheme and can be any color.
There are many methods to developing strong color schemes, from collecting paint chips at the local hardware store to using applications such as Adobe Kuler. Most of the time we are given a brand identity that contains a complete color scheme or becomes a starting point for developing a new one. Illustrator’s Color Panel is a great tool to create limitless combinations of hue and saturation providing the perfect mood and tone of our message.
more color ideas @ http://dynamicgraphics.com/.
Illustrating in Illustrator Better Faster, The Happy Frog – taterboy
July 27th, 2009 | Filed under: Digital Art, Illustrator, Tutorials
Here is my first screen cast with an introduction to illustrating in Illustrator. Included are some very important tips in creating great illustrations in less time as well as an overview of the illustration process. We will create a Happy Frog character almost completely using the ellipse tool.
There are 5 rules to Illustrating in Illustrator, Better Faster. They are mentioned in more detail here, including four reasons for cleaning up strokes in your final artwork.
Read More »
Can you believe Photoshop is almost 20 years old? It was initially distributed as scanner software by a company called BarneyScan in 1988 and Adobe officially released Photoshop 1.0 in 1990. A tear comes to my eye as I think about all we have been through and how much Photoshop has evolved over the years. “Our baby is all grown up! sniff, sniff.” With each new release came new features, some highly anticipated while others I still wonder what they are used for. As an artist though, is it really about the features? The art is created inside you, we use the photoshop as a tool to express our creations to the world. It was just a lot more barebones back then. I guess this is my version of the famous story, “Walking To School Barefooted, Uphill Both Ways”. That’s right, when I was a young man, we didn’t have a Navigator Palette and all those fancy Layer Effects. We still made art, and it was good. So, what if our our monitors only had 8 bit color at 640 x 480 resolution. That’s what it means to be old school! (Not to take anything away from all those really old school individuals who endured 1bit color.)
I started using Photoshop at version 2.5, though I have not adopted all the features that have come out over the years, I have learned a few things. I remember scoffing when Layer Styles appeared in version 6, everything new just seemed to be focused on filters and effects. I can do a perfectly good drop shadow from scratch, I thought; maybe even faster then it took someone to open the Layer Styles palette and enter in their settings. I did come around though and appreciate how all the styles are non destructive and adjustable.
Read More »
Wether I am illustrating an imaginary device or something I use everyday, it is good to understand how the object is or should be constructed. Other information like functionality, and how these objects are interacted with are very important in making our illustrations more convincing.
Questions you could ask yourself are how much heft and mass does this object possess, What kids of materials are used to build this object? How does this information effect how light reflects/refracts off the object. These evaluations help us understand how the details should be rendered.
The object could be steel, but is it built assembled with welds, bolts or both? The object could be made from concrete, Styrofoam, wood, glass or plastic molds. Each material is assembled differently with different types of joints. The time when an object is built also will give us a clue as to the type of assembly would have been used. We should carry that information or hints of that information into our illustration.
Read More »
This series will cover the basics of illustrating with Adobe Illustrator from start to finish, geared more toward novice Illustrator users with a few intermediate tips along the way. Some of the principles discussed are applicable to most illustration programs and illustration in general.
This collection of posts will be based on a philosophy of illustrating Quick, Clean and Correct. Discussing time saving tips, preparing your artwork so that it can be easily used by others for web and print, and how to achieve consistent results based on your style. Everyone who reads this post has their own unique illustration style. I am in no way trying to convert people to my personal style, but hope that what is shown here can be incorporated to refine that style and produce beautiful graphics in a more efficient way.
Read More »
There is a huge buzz around the new iPhone SDK, at least in some circles. Here is a collection of a few iPhone interface objects, in vector (Illustrator CS3), for anyone wanting to design an interface for the iPhone or an iPhone look-a-like app.
…and The Most Important:
Learn as many keyboard shortcuts you can. This is not an illustrator only tip. As with any app that you work in and expect to be proficient at, you should learn the key-board short cuts. In the manuals that come with the box, there is normally shortcut charts. If you did the download, you can find them online. Most Adobe apps have the ability to re-assign key-board short cuts as well. I would suggest against it, unless it is necessary, because if you ever go to work at a different location, or have to show someone something on a different computer, it helps if the shortcuts are the same. Some reasons we have had to change shortcuts in the past are, In Illustrator CS2 and previous, The shortcut for switching between the hollow and solid arrow selection tools, was Command + Tab (Ctrl + Tab on PC). On a mac, all the way back to OS 8, would instead toggle the application switcher. So instead of getting the hollow arrow selection tool, you would get a web browser or other open app instead.
In Photoshop CS2 and before, Command + Option + D (Ctrl + Alt + D on PC)was the short – cut for Feather Selection. On a Mac since the introduction on the dock, that shortcut was used to toggle the dock to appear and disappear. Both of these shortcuts were easily fixed by customizing the shortcuts to require and extra Key. That way Command + Option + Tab to toggle the selection Arrows in Illustrator and Command + Option + Shift + D to get the Feather section dialog box.
I believe Illustrator CS3 now comes pre-modified? (I seriously can not remember if I had to change that or not and I can not find any documentation on the Toggle Selection Arrow short cut as it this post). But Photoshop CS3 has done away with the Feather Selection dialog box and replaced it with Refine Edge which is Command + Option + R (Ctrl + Alt + R on PC).
Here is a resource for keyboard shortcuts. They are not complete, but in a easier format to print.
Also for Photoshop Only Shortcuts :
Official Adobe help docs:
With the nature of vectors being smaller than bitmap images in file size, I typically try to illustrate everything I do for Flash in Illustrator first. I love Illustrator as an illustration tool. Although Flash has made some great progress it’s illustration tool set, it just does not come close to the power and features of Illustrator. I also find Illustrator really fast for laying out design projects and more illustrative graphics then modeling and detailing in photoshop. Like any relationship, my affection for illustrator is not without frustration and we have to learn to accept some of the faults, if you can pardon my Dr. Phil type metaphor, to make it work. So here are some workarounds for some illustrator issues and a couple tips to help you work better with this great tool.