Illustrator Tutorial – Vector Sign

Learn how to create a sign inside Illustrator covering topics as pathfinder functions, opacity masks, gradients, and envelop distort.

Start drawing a simple rectangle inside Illustrator in which you will add rounded corners.

▶ Illustrator Pathfinder
Window Menu, Pathfinder to combine shapes and make new ones.

▶ Compound Shapes
Compound shapes let you combine multiple objects and specify how you want each object to interact with the other objects.

▶ Compound Paths
Compound paths let you use an object to cut a hole in another object.

▶ Pathfinder Shape Modes:

Add To Shape Area. Adds the area of the component to the underlying geometry.

Subtract from Shape Area. Cuts out the area of the component from the underlying geometry.

Intersect Shape Areas. Uses the area of the component to clip the underlying geometry as a mask would.

Exclude Overlapping Shape Areas. Uses the area of the component to invert the underlying geometry, turning filled regions into holes and vice versa.

▶ Summary of Pathfinder effects
Add, Intersect, Exclude, Subtract, Minus Back, Divide, Trim, Merge, Crop, Outline, Hard Mix, Soft Mix.

▶ Use Opacity Masks to Create Transparency
You use an opacity mask and a masking object to alter the transparency of artwork. The opacity mask provides the shape through which other objects show. The masking object defines which areas are transparent and the degree of transparency. You can use any colored object or raster image as the masking object. Illustrator uses the grayscale equivalents of the colors in the masking object for the opacity levels in the mask. Where the opacity mask is white, the artwork is fully visible. Where the opacity mask is black, the artwork is hidden. Shades of gray in the mask result in varying degrees of transparency in the artwork.

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