How To Make A Low Poly Effect Using The Pen Tool in Adobe Illustrator | Dawid Tuminski | Skillshare

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How To Make A Low Poly Effect Using The Pen Tool in Adobe Illustrator

teacher avatar Dawid Tuminski

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

8 Lessons (28m)
    • 1. Low Poly Haloween Pumpkin proper

    • 2. 1Low Poly Pumpkin Let's Understand a Few Things

    • 3. 2Let's Create the Outline

    • 4. 3Let's Finish The Polygons

    • 5. 4Let's Start Adding Colors To our Pumpkin

    • 6. 5Let's Add Colors To The Stem

    • 7. 6Let's Add The Eyes And Te Mouth

    • 8. Your Class Project

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About This Class

Low poly style art has been really popular recently. You can see it in posters, murals, paintings…

It’s definitely one of the most eye-catchy effects in the design world recently.

Originally it was a technique for 3D modelling, but here in this class you will learn how to imitate this style from a photo, using Illustrator.

The process is extremely easy: all you need is the basic knowledge of the pen tool and some simple transformations.

But there is one secret to creating works in this style and it is working from the best reference photos.

Since it’s Halloween season coming, in this class we are going to

  • take a photo of a pumpkin
  • grab the pen tool and trace the pumpkin in matter of minutes
  • and then we’ll create the polygons that we are going to fill with colors

This illustration may seem like it’s extremely complicated to create, but trust me, it’s only the Halloween pumpkin that is the only scary element of this class.

The process is easy and you can reuse it to create other gorgeous low poly artwork.

So if you want to do something different this Halloween, do a low poly Halloween pumpkin.

Enroll now and I will see you inside.

Meet Your Teacher

Designer, coder and educational entrepreneur.
Adobe Certified Expert in Illustrator whose courses were listed in the Udemy's TOP 10 best reviewed courses.

Creating online courses on design tools like Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Photoshop, logo design, web design, graphic design freelancing, online teaching and digital marketing .

Teaching +30k students in 160 countries worldwide.

Loves the freedom of creating courses and prides in his teaching method, which is straight to the point and with a smile.

His motto: Boring instructors are worse than boring topics!

His students value his courses for their conciseness, professionalism and actionable tips and techniques they can apply in their day-to-day design tasks and online education businesses.

See full profile

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1. Low Poly Haloween Pumpkin proper: Hi there. My name is David Tomaszewski, and I wanted to thank you for choosing this course. I know that there's a lot, of course, is out there. That is why I am so grateful that you chose this one. Low police style Art has been really popular recently. You can see it in posters, euros, paintings. It's definitely one of the most eye catching effects in the design world recently. Originally, it was a technique for three D modeling, but here in this class you will learn how to imitate this style from a photo using illustrator. Now the process is extremely easy. All you need is the basic knowledge of the mental and some simple transformations, Since it's how in season common in this class, we're going to grab a photo of a pumpkin, grab the mental and trace the pumpkin in a matter of minutes, and then we'll create the polygons that we're going to fill worth colors. How this illustration may seem like it's extremely complicated to create, but trust me, it's only the Halloween pumpkin that is the only scary element off this class on. The process is easy, and you can re use it to create other gorgeous, low poli artwork. So if you want to do something different this Halloween, do a low poli Halloween pumpkin. So thanks again for choosing this course in role now and let's get started. 2. 1Low Poly Pumpkin Let's Understand a Few Things: before we jump into the process off, creating this low poli effect, pumpkin, there's a few things we need to understand. 1st 1st of all will be using the pan tal a lot and I mean a lot. Actually, this will be our main tool. But we are also going to be using that selection tool and the eyedropper tool. So I think this is essential that we first understand if you thought a few concepts about using these tools. So the process is the most effective on the quickest and the results are the best. So when creating this low, PolitiFact will be using the mantle to create first the outline of our pumpkin and then all these polygons and in the process off, especially creating the polygons, we will be adding some anchor points and path segments to our initial path. If you've seen my other pencil the classes, you probably already know how the pencil behaves when you want to add anchor points to two . Well, two other anchor points if you want to start your path on already created anchor point or two different paths. If I just start clicking to create a path just like So And then let's say that I want to create an ah well pad that is going to stretch from this stop left ankle point images, Amanda. But the stop left ankle point to this bottom ankle point. You can see that my panel is temporarily switching to remove anchor point. And if I just click right now, I'm going to subtract an ankle point, and this is not what I want. So there are two ways off dealing with this problem. One is temporary and one is permanent. And it's gonna be up to you Which one you want to use ultimately. So, first of all, if if we hover over an anchor point and now if I just present hold on the shift key, you can see that I'm temporarily switching back Teoh a normal toe standard to a pencil. And if I now just click and then click, you can see that I've added an ankle point on. But I didn't remove any ankle point just like I would if I just clicked like so on my ankle point. So if I just present hold on the shift key, I'm going to temporarily switch this, um, that this option off automatically in the removing or adding anchor points and like so And if you want to turn this functionality off like permanently, all going to go to you need to do is to go to the edit menu preferences and General, and you can see this option right here. Disabled auto added elite. If you're on a Mac, just goto illustrator preferences and then general preferences and you should see this option right here. Disable, auto, add delete, just like so if I just If I just check it, you can see that right now I am not able to add or subtract ankle poor inside. Just switch this this file functionality off permanently. Now I think I'm going to be using the shift shortcut for my trees because I wanna have the flexibility off sometimes well off the flexibility of flexible switching between the removal anchor points and just adding paths just like so and another way. Another thing that we need to understand is that after we are done with the creating our polygons, we're going to be adding colors to them and we are going to be picking them from the underlying image and Of course, the best way to pick a color is, too, by using the color picker, but in order to make the whole process smooth. First we're going to be switching temporal to the selection tool and then using the the eyedropper tool. So I would strongly advise you to use the shortcut home, which is suppressing and holding down the control or command key in order to temporarily switch to last year's selection to. And I would also advise you to use the selection tool because if you want to go with the direct selection told you probably will just choose most of the time you will select them simple, simple paths instead of groups of paths. And, of course, you could use the group selection tool. But in order to make the process smooth, you would have to press and hold on the control, plus the old or command an option. If you're on a Mac and then click on a certain path. So what? I would strongly advise you to make them a selection toe active first. If it's not active, the first and then if you're using the eyedropper tool, just present. Hold on the control key to select a polygon that we are going to create and then pick up him to pick up the color. Now that we know all these prerequisites, we can actually start creating the low poli pumpkin. And we are going to do it first by tracing this pumpkin right here and we are going to trace it, not with the pencil. Told that with a life image trace, we're going to trace it with the mental. But this is something that we are going to do in the next video. 3. 2Let's Create the Outline: Also, if you want, you can dip this bumpkin image on. We can do it by double clicking on the image layer and click in this dim images to 50%. Or you can enter your own value right here if you want to. But I don't think I don't think I'm gonna do it. I mean, and this this trace will be extremely simple, so I don't think that's necessary. But if you want to, you can do it. And one more thing. I want to do it. And one more thing. I'm going to create another in the layer for myself, and I'm going to call It may be Low, Polly, just like so and before I click. OK, there is one important thing that we need to also pay attention to if we're using the smart guys and I strongly advise you to use smart guys when tracing these the what? These kinds of images for the low politifact. If we're tracing them and using smart guides, the collar of our layer is actually going to be pretty important because the color of the smart guides is going to correspond with the color off our layers, so if our pumpkin in this case well is mostly orange. I don't think that we should go with the orange color. We should go with something that is, like, really contrast ing. Well, that's that. That's going to be a really visible against this orange background. So I think that in this case, the green would be fine, saying we could also be good, but I'm going to go with Green and I'm just going to click. OK, so now what we can do is we can actually start tracing our pumpkin. And I don't want any Phil. Of course, we've got just the mental and I think I'm gonna go with maybe this orange color, this pink color. So just you can see everything better, so I'm simply going to maybe increased the size just so you see everything better. And maybe I will just love the underlying layer. This guy as well. Maybe I will live in switches visibility off. Okay, so what we have to do right now is they simply have to trace our pumpkin and mind that our trace won't be won't include any and any curved, curved paths. It all has to be straight path segments. I'm just clicking and clicking and clicking and clicking. And of course, the more clicks, the more the more will path segments we actually add, the more complex our low poli effect is going to be in the end. So of course it will depend if you want to try this effect on different images will depend on the image as well. But, um, the general rule is that the more the more path segments the mawr anchor points, the more maybe I'm going to click this guy right here. The more clicks you actually, you actually create them. And the more complex, the more faithful, so to speak to the original your trace is going to be so I'm just going to quickly finish click in summer here. And in the case of this pumpkin, we could trace it down here if we wanted to. Or we could simply finish the effect and click somewhere here to finish this trace. And I think I'm gonna do it like that because right now we are going to trace this. I think it's a stem. I'm not really sure. Forgive me if you're a passion, Gardiner and I just I just made a stupid mistake. But I'm just going to trace this guy like so. And this time I think I'm going to focus a bit more on these curves. Right here. Maybe. Like so. Like, so. Like, so like, so Like so And like So? So now if I just switched the visibility of the image off, just like so this is what we get. Nothing too fancy. Nothing to write home about. But actually, this is our base that we're going to be using later before creating our low poli effect. And we're going to take it up one level in the next video. 4. 3Let's Finish The Polygons: So in this video, we're going to start adding the polygons to our trace. And I think that it will be easier for us to understand the whole process if we start with the with this with this stamp. So what we have to do is we have to connect these anchor points together. So I'm simply going to click on an article anchor point like so and then on an ankle point . Maybe on this anchor point And maybe then on this ankle point on this ankle point, maybe on this anchor point, maybe Then on this anchor point, if I can find it here just like so then maybe on this anchor point and maybe on this one and maybe this one. You can see that right now, our now we're remove selected ankle point tool is switching temporarily. Honest. I'm just going toe, hold down the shift key, just like so and create 11 like that and maybe here and that's gonna be just a bit too small. Maybe this guy right here and maybe up here and that's going to be small him as well. Now, if you want, you don't necessarily have to connect ankle points. It just might be easier for you to create polygons if you want. You can click him on a path just like that later when we when we create our our will, probably gonna affect it's going to look all the right even though don't quit on an anchor point. However, you can see now that this market is actually going through go going out off our stem. So I think I'm not going to to click here. I'm just going to leave it up to if you want to play war with some with some more polygons . Maybe I'm just going to click somewhere here and finish this effect right here. Now we don't have to worry about these spikes right here. These are just well, the result off what we have active as our stroke option. I mean, if we go to the stroke panel, we can see that we have this corner set to matter. If we do something else you can see like the round or bevel, you can see that we are now well, reducing this pie. But I wouldn't worry completely about because ultimately our traces and going to have any stroke is just going to have heavy filled. So right now we can move. Right now, we can move to our bigger pumpkin. So I'm gonna grab the pencil and start maybe somewhere here and find the anchor point. Just see if I can click on it. I think this is going to be that the anchor point. So the whole process is not difficult, but it's quite long. It's It's really laborious, and I think that it's good if you start with the creating. Well, the biggest polygons, if you're if you're clicks, are pretty far away from each other. Like in this case, maybe let's find the ankle point. Maybe there, then somewhere here. And I think that you can already see now what? What I meant when I said that The more the more anchor points, the more path segments you create, the more the more will complex your your trace is going to be. So you can say we have a wide a lot off quite a lot off ankle points, quite a lot of corners right here. That's why our trace can be pretty, pretty complex. So maybe I'm going to go up somewhere here just like. So maybe then down here on and somewhere here. And you know what? Let's leave it like that. I think this should be fine. So now that we have our trace complete, you can see that it looks quite complex. Where we have to do right now is we have to grab all these guys go to the Pathfinder panel . And by the way, if you don't have it up, just go to the window menu Pathfinder. Or you can simply press shift control F nine or if you're on a Mac shift command F nine and what we wanted shoes right here is them. Is the divide option like so? So if I just click on divide, you can see that we have a deal, that we have a huge, huge group right here. So I'm just going toe on group it by President control shift gear on my keyboard. And now you can see we have lots and lots and lots of different different polygons, just like so you can also see that from time to time we are going to have, like, the really, really small polygons right here. But I wouldn't worry about these. We can fix them later on. So now really, what we would have to do is to simply bring back our image just like so. And now you can see how how our polygon traced looks against our image. So the next thing to do would be to simply just start adding colors to our pumpkin. But this is something that we're going to do in the next video. 5. 4Let's Start Adding Colors To our Pumpkin: in this year, we are going to start adding collars to our pumpkin. And by the way, if you have your image dimmed to 50% or to any other opacity value, it's a good idea now to simply bring it back toe 100% capacity or to just uncheck this dim images to option. Because right now we're going to be sampling the colors from our from our original image. And it's important that we are assembling images. There are 100% opaque, so to speak. So we are not just sampling some shades off Well, in this case, orange. But we are actually sampling the right orange and from our pumpkin. So I'm just going to start by maybe clicking on this on this, probably going right here. And I'm going to initialize that the eyedropper tool by pressing the I key on my keyboard. And I am not going to touch that the selection toe anymore well anymore, because right now we can simply just go rab that the selection well, the publican by president holding down the control key, you can see that we're temporarily switching to the control key and yet we still have the eyedropper tool ready for us. It's well, it's the primary tool is being active. And if I just click Meghan this darker orange, just like so you can see that I am, that I'm picking up the colors that I want and I am just president holding down the selection tool in order to temporarily temporarily switch to them to the selection tool toe pick up two to select and the Polygon. And then I am simply sampling this guy like So maybe this guy like that, this guy like that, this guy like that and you can see that it's just a matter off sampling the colors. It's just a matter of picking the right and picking the right to polygon and then just sampling the color just like so. Sometimes you might not click on them and on the right polygon because, well, it depends on which which path was created first in the process of creating this trace and like this is like in this case, you can see that I can't I can't really click on this medal on this medal, a polygon and thats well, then it's a good idea to simply remember about the shortcut, which is Controller Command Blast two, which will temporarily lock our selection. So if you can just select a polygon right here, just press control or command plus two just like so then on this guy as well. And now you will be able to target this this polygon that is apparently underline that is apparently being beneath both this polygon and this polygons. I'm just going to click on this guy that a select maybe these guys that is gonna be this going that is gonna be this guy and maybe this guy, you know, I think that I will maybe speed the process happen, and I will simply Well, I don't want I think you already understand what I'm trying to achieve here. And I don't want to bore you with them. Well, with, you know, the the clicking process. So in this case again, we need to log these guys and maybe select this guy just like so and pick up the color. Okay, So let me just speed up the process and I will go and we will continue when I've done in selecting and clicking at in colors to all these guys Okay, so we are mostly done with our with our pumpkin. However, you can see that we got this cluster off some strange polygons right here, and you might come across the Willis situation like that. But not to worry. It's all flexible. Mainly it will be like extremely, extremely small polygon small triangles. There are simply, well, too small for us to to see them distinctly. And it's well, they look this this way because they usually have a big, big a stroke. If you if you follow along, they might have big stroke simply apply to them. So what we can do is we can simply reduce the stroke on them to some smaller, smaller, well proportions. Well, smart of smaller values. And we can be well, well, we will be able to see them a bit more distinctly so to speak. So I'm simply going to start maybe selecting some of these guys and add and add the will colors to them. Maybe I'm just going to zoom and really close right here and try to try to select these guys and again, we're going to probably have to lock some of them like like like in this case, Maybe let's do it. Something like that. Let's lock this guy. And I love this guy, too. Let's select maybe Disney. These guys in a bulk. Why not? We can do it. Let's look these guys and let's add colors to this is to do to this guy. Unless just maybe so Let these guys so we can see what is going on the right here. I think it's this guy right here. And there we go. So if I just zoom back out, you can see that we got our pumpkin traced. So the next thing to do would be to trace the steps and the processes is Well, well, the same it can. It can be different off course. We're going to be picking the colors up from this stem, not from the pumpkin. But this is something that we are going to do in the next video 6. 5Let's Add Colors To The Stem: in this video, we're going to finish the pumpkin shape and we're going to create the low polio factor using this this stem. So, as I said, the process is pretty much the same. All we need to do is to pick pick the colors from the Stam, just like so add the colors. You can see the They are mainly, well, shades off, shaves off black. I think, Um, I thought that they would be more green, but apparently they are more black than than than they are green. So let me just grab this guy or not. This guy. There's gonna be a lot off a lot off the past that are going to be locked ultimately and then I'll and then unlocked. So let me just quickly click on these guys off course whenever you see me. And whenever you see me selecting an object, you can be sure that I'm simply pressing and holding down the president holding down the control, my keyboard. So I am temporarily switching to the selection tool just like so and also noticed that, as we mentioned in the previous well in one of the previous videos, that once we once we add on Li the film to our to our polygon? Well, miraculously, all these strange looking, strange looking strokes or spikes and well, they are going. It's because we are removing the fill were, well, kind of like removing the stroke. And we are just adding, adding the Phyllis idea, I'm just going to sample this color like so And maybe this collar and this color as well that is going to beat this collar. I'm going toe. Look, I wanted to lock it, so I'm going to lock it, lock this guy and select this guy just like so And then this guy, maybe this guy just like that Why not? It can be a bit orange. Let's look this guy and let's look this guy So weaken target the bigger one. Just like that saying for this guy I know it's a lot of clicking. I hope I'm not boring, but I just want you to I just want to show you, show you the process of off creating this this low, Polly, in fact, and how it actually what it actually looks like when when you are doing it. I mean, I don't wanna I want to surprise you with some with some finished effect. And I don't want you to be left wondering where something where something that came from. It's all just a matter off, targeting specific, specific polygons and clicking them correctly. And sometimes it is difficult. That's why you need Teoh. Well, if you want to make the might make the process speedy. That's why you need to learn about these shortcuts. And there we go. We got we got to the stem at this time created. So this is what our bumpkin low poli pumpkin looks like. And in the next video, we are simply going to add to the ice because if we just take a look at the original just like so we got to the eyes of the pumpkin, we got the nose and we got semi laughing, semi scary, semi scary lips or mouth right here. And this is what we are going to do in the next video and notice that there is no low poli affect to these to these eyes. You can go with that if you want to, but I think that for this and for this particular project for this particular image, It just looks better if it stays one color just like so. So we're going toe. Enter the eyes, nose and the mouth in the next video. 7. 6Let's Add The Eyes And Te Mouth: okay, Before I start creating the what? The face of our pumpkin, I'm just going to make sure that every each and every single one of these of these publicans is unlocked. So I'm simply going to go with the shortcut of control all plus t o on a Mac, You go with Commander Option plus Dio. And now, since they are all unloved, I'm simply going to group them just like so So later When I am when I am creating my mouth , I want to be sure that all these guys will aligned properly. So I'm just gonna grab the pen tal just like so. And I think I'm going to give it a black stroke. I don't go to start at in the eyes that are going to look, uh, maybe something like this. Just like so now I'm going to create I'm going to add the film at a stroke. Maybe I'm going Teoh make it just a bit bigger. Just like so. I'm going to initialize Thea, Reflect told by president the okay on my keyboard and on for now I'm just going to click anywhere, Anywhere will closely to the center. I want one the reflection to vertical, of course. And I'm simply going to hit copy, just like so Now I'm going to add the knows that it's going to be looking more or less like that, Just like so, just like that. And I'm gonna end the mouth that is going to look something like that. Of course you can. Even though it's it's the pendulum, it kinda looks really freehand. And there is now no right or wrong technique here. It all depends on how you want to this look. Well, how you want this pumpkin toe ultimately look just like so. So now if you are, maybe I'm just going to change the way this looks right here because I don't think I like it. I'm going to bring it just like that. That should be fine. So now that we that we grouped all these guys, you can see this is a group right now, Weaken group, this guy, this guy and we can simply then group that maybe this guy as well, and then we are going to simply group them and make sure that all these guys, all these guys, are aligned properly. So I'm going to go to a line panel aligned to selection, and I'm simply going to align them to the center, just like so. And there you go, this. This is what our pumpkin will looks like. Of course, we can play around with the eyes going play around with the mouth, and we can play around with it all day long. But the most important thing that I wanted to understand that one should understand. Here is how to create this low police effect. So remember that well, there's just a few prerequisites when you are creating this kind of fact. They're simply remember that you're going to be using the Penta a lot, and you're going to be adding a lot of past segments and anchor points a lot. So it's important to understand how the pencil works with in that respect. And, of course, remember that it's a good idea to simply will keep your selection tool handy by pressing the control, the on your keyboard or command. If you're on a Mac to select the proper proper polygons and then pick the colors up from there from the underlying image. So there you go. This is how you can create in this pumpkin effect, of course, a weekend and put it against a background, maybe a dark background, maybe some black background, I think is going to look just a bit batter, just like so. Now it looks really, really scary. I think that I should stop looking at it, but that's it's so scary. So there you go. I hope you really like the class, and I hope that you will submit your class project. And if you like the class, please give it a thumb's up. It'll was hell helps me and well, makes me it makes me want to create more glasses for you. So again, thanks again for watching, and my name is David Tyminski and have a nice design. 8. Your Class Project: no for the class project. I would like it to do one simple thin. Simply grab her this this pumpkin image right here and redo the whole process. Grabbed the pen tal, create the polygons at collars to them, and then share your pumpkin with the community off course. If you don't want to trace this particular pumpkin, you can grab your own. Maybe you'll like some other pumpkins, Halloween pumpkins. Or maybe you'd like to trace a mother. Halloween decorations will create polygon effects from them off course that if you want to go, go that road. Just be my guest. But we'll primarily What I would like you to different A class project is to simply create the polygon effect using this pumpkin. And if you are done, share with the community. I love to watch your projects, and I really hope that you will have fun creating this glass project.