Meandering Hexagon Pattern in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class | Helen Bradley | Skillshare

Meandering Hexagon Pattern in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

Helen Bradley, Graphic Design for Lunch™

Meandering Hexagon Pattern in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

Helen Bradley, Graphic Design for Lunch™

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5 Lessons (19m)
    • 1. Meandering Hexagon Pattern Introduction A Graphic Design for Lunch Class

      1:23
    • 2. Pt 1 - Make the hexagons

      3:37
    • 3. Pt 2 - Add the Line

      3:47
    • 4. Pt 3 - Duplicate the Objects

      4:18
    • 5. Pt 4 - Reveal the Pattern

      5:55
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About This Class

Graphic Design for Lunch™ is a series of short video courses you can study in bite size pieces such as at lunchtime. In this course you'll learn to make a meandering hexagon pattern that looks a lot simpler to make than it really is! The design can be created in ALL VERSIONS OF ILLUSTRATOR. This is the pattern that we will make - notice how the hexagons are all joined to each other:

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4 Exotic Patterns in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

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4 Illustrator Shading Techniques in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

5 Cool Text Effects in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

5 Hexagon Patterns in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

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Cutout Text Effects in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

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Meet Your Teacher

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Helen Bradley

Graphic Design for Lunch™

Top Teacher

Helen teaches the popular Graphic Design for Lunch™ courses which focus on teaching Adobe® Photoshop®, Adobe® Illustrator®, Procreate®, and other graphic design and photo editing applications. Each course is short enough to take over a lunch break and is packed with useful and fun techniques. Class projects reinforce what is taught so they too can be easily completed over a lunch hour or two.

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Transcripts

1. Meandering Hexagon Pattern Introduction A Graphic Design for Lunch Class: Hello, I'm Helen Bradley. Welcome to this Graphic Design for Lunch class, meandering hexagon pattern in Adobe Illustrator. Graphic Design for Lunch is a series of classes that teach a range of tips and techniques for creating designs and for working in applications such as Illustrator, Photoshop, and Procreate. Today we're going to create a pattern of hexagons where they're actually linked together. Now this is probably one of the most tricky patterns that I've ever worked on. But I think that you'll really like it. It looks simple, but actually putting it together is anything but simple. Now, this has been designed so you can do it with any version of Illustrator. As you're watching these videos, you will see a prompt which lets you recommend this class to others. Please, if you're enjoying the class, do two things for me. Firstly, give it a thumbs up, and secondly, write in just a few words why you're enjoying this class. Recommendations like this help other students at Skillshare to see that this is a class that they too might enjoy. If you'd like to leave a comment or a question for me, please do so. I read and I respond to all of your comments and questions, and I look at and respond to all of your class projects. If you're ready now let's get started on our meandering hexagon pattern. 2. Pt 1 - Make the hexagons: For this pattern, we're going to create a new document that's 700 pixels by 700 pixels in size, RGB color mode, and I have disabled align new objects to pixel grid. I'll click "Okay." If you're familiar with my videos, you'll know that I practically never tell you how big to make things. This pattern is so critical that size is going to be really important, so I suggest that you make it to the exact same size as I'm going to. I'm going to turn off this stroke and just select a fill color. This is going to be for the line that's going to go through the pattern, so I'm using our green hear. I'm going to click to select the polygon tool, and I'm going to click once in the middle of the document. My first polygon is going to be 100 pixels, that's 100 px in radius, and it has six sides, that's a hexagon, I'll click "Okay." I'm going go click again. I'm going to make one that's 90 pixels, and it's going to be blue. I'll click again, and make one that's 60. It'll be the same, green. I'll click again, and make one that's 50, and it's going to be the blue. Then we're going to make one that's 20 pixels, this is the one in the middle. Now, to allow us some flexibility in the pattern later on, I suggest that you color this one a different color, I'm going to color it pink. I'm going through the selection tool, I'm going to select either all of these five shapes. I'm going to the alignment panel here, and I've got my align options visible, but if yours aren't visible, just open up this little flyout menu and choose "Show Options." Because you need to set this to align to selection, it should not be set to align to artboard. If it's set to align to selection, I'm going to click here on horizontal align center, and click here on vertical align center, and that just aligned all these shapes over the top of each other. If you're working in a lighter version of Illustrator, you're going to need to expand the shapes, so you're going to choose "Object," "Shape," "Expands shape." If you're working in, I think it's Illustrator that says six or all, you probably won't have that option, so just ignore that step, it's not important to do it. Then we'll rotate the shape 30 degrees, "Object," "Transform," "Rotate." I'll type 30 degrees in here and just click "Okay." Now, you may notice that your bounding box is out of alignment at this point. To reset it, choose "Object," "Transform," "Reset bounding box." Next up, we're going to select all of these shapes and we're going to use the Pathfinder option. So I'm going to open my Pathfinder, if you don't see yours, choose "Window," and then "Pathfinder," and we're going to use Divide. That divides these shapes up. If we have a look in the layers palette, seem to have lost mine, so I'm going choose Window layers to display it. We're going to say that we have a group with shapes on it. I'm just going to make mine bigger so you can seen what's going on here. We have a group with all of these shapes in it. I need to ungroup these at this point, so I'm going to choose "Object ungroup." My layer here has these five shapes on it. We're going to continue in the next video to put together the pieces for our pattern. At this point, you just may want to save your work to date. 3. Pt 2 - Add the Line: For this next step, you're going to want to have your layers palette open so that you can see what you're doing. I'm going to lock the first five shapes here, and I'm going to turn them off. So I want to focus on this shape, but what I want to be really careful of is that I don't move this shape. That's really important. I'm going to zoom into it so I can see it more clearly. I'm going to get the rectangle tool and I'm going to drag out a rectangle here. I'm going to adjust its opacity down so I can see through it. That's important because you need to see what you're doing. Again, I'm going to zoom in a little bit closer still. I'm going to select the rectangle I just drew, and I'm going to move it down, and I'm just doing that using the down arrow key because I want to place it right at the bend in this hexagon above. So I've got my rectangle here and I've got my compound paths. I'm going to make sure I have selected my rectangle, hold the Shift key, and click on this Compound paths. I've got two shapes selected. I'm going back to my pathfinder and I'm going to select Minus front, because what we're going to do is use the rectangle to cut the bottom piece off this hexagon. Now I'll press Control Zero to zoom back out. Again, I'm not moving this shape at all and that's critical that you don't move it. Let's bring the other shapes back and let's turn their lock icons off. If you zoom in, you shouldn't see anything around the inside edge of this green shape, because it should not have moved. At this point, you can select either all of the shapes and group them. Just choose object Group. That's a nice way to make sure that they stay together and that they don't get separated. I'm going to press Control or Command Zero to zoom back out. We need a line, so we're going through the line segment tool, and you want to draw a line that is pretty much the length of one of the sides of this hexagon. You're going to hold the Shift key as you do it because it needs to be perfectly vertical. You're going to bring up the stroke here, and the stroke color is going to be the exact same color as you're using for these thinner lines in your hexagon pattern. So that's our green color. Then we're going to set the stroke width to nine. You might have thought that it should be 10, but in actual fact, nine is going to give you a better result. I'm going to move this into position now. So I'm going to grab it and just position it over the bottom end of this hexagon here. Let's just zoom in to seen it. This is where our line is. I'm going to select the line and I'm going to expand it. So I'll choose object, expand. I don't want to expand the fill because there is no fill in this anyway, I just want to expand the stroke, so I'll click Okay. In the last pallet, you'll see that you've got a group right now. Choose Object and Group. So you've got a path and a group. So you're going to drag and drop the path into this groups. So it's going to become part of the group that we're working with. Inside your group, click on your path and also click on this compound path, the only green path you've got that's a hollow in the center. So Shift click on it. So these two shapes are now selected and what we're going to do, is we're going to join them. So we're going back to the pathfinder and click Unite. So this is the fundamental shape that we're going to be working with. 4. Pt 3 - Duplicate the Objects: At this stage, we are ready to duplicate this shape to build up our pattern's watch. I'm going to select over the shape and I'll choose Object> Transform> Rotate because this allows me to not only rotate the shape but also make a copy of it at the same time. I'm going to type 180 degrees so that my shape is pointing the opposite direction to the original and I'll click Copy. I'm just going to move this one out of the way. Now, at this stage we need to go back to this original shape with the bar pointing downwards and we need to remove this green line, just comes off of this particular shape. You can see that it's selected in the Layers palette. We're going to open up this group. We're going to locate the piece that we want to get rid of, which is this piece here and select it but nothing else. Now, we can just drag and drop it onto the trash can and it's going to be removed from that shape but everything's still in the group so everything's neat and tidy. Now, let's go and get this shape and we're going to move it into position. It's going to give the shape underneath the green edge. Now, the reason why I went to the trouble of doing this is that my experience with this pattern is I got some really bad fracture lines when I left that green line in place. I think this is a better way of producing the result we're looking at. I'm going to grab the Zoom tool and zoom in so I can see what's happening in here. I made this shape roughly in this position but I need a second one over here. I'm just going to hold down the Alt option key as I drag I duplicated this shape away. Then I'm just going to overlap them. They need to overlap so that they're sharing this line. Once you've got them overlapped, you can just check it with the arrow keys to make sure it's overlapped nicely. Select both of these and go back to your Alignment panel and you're going to Select this option Vertical Aligned Center. That's just going to make sure that they're aligned perfectly to each other. As soon as they are, you want to group them. Object, group. Those two are now going to travel together. Wherever they go, they are going to travel as a pair. Now, you'll select everything and click on the Horizontal Aligned Center, because that's going to center the group and this shape with each other.I'm going back to my group at the top and I'm just going to zoom in here again so I can see everything really clearly. I'm just going to move it up until I say white space. When I say white space, I'm going to bring it down just so that it's in position. This is perfect. I'll press Control Zero to zoom back out. Now, I want to duplicate off my group. I'm going to grab my group and I'm going to drag and drop it on to the new icon here and that makes a duplicate of it. I can lock one copy down so it doesn't move and go and select the other copy and move it. It's going down. I'm just going to pull it down here so we can talk about what's going to happen with it. Let's just zoom in here. What's going to happen with this group of objects here is that this blue bar and this blue bar are going to be the same. We need to move this set of objects up so that this line, lines up here. This is the tricky bit of the pattern, is to work out exactly where everything needs to end up. Again, we're going to zoom in really close to make sure that we've got these aligned perfectly. Move it down until we see the blue starting to come through and then just push it back up. Control or Command Zero to zoom back out. Select over everything. Again, just hit this Horizontal Aligned Centre, just to make sure everything is neatly aligned. At this point, you should save the file because the next step is going to be to create the noFill, noStroke rectangles so that we can create our pattern. 5. Pt 4 - Reveal the Pattern: The final step for this pattern is to create a no fill, no stroke rectangle. I'm going to click on the Rectangle tool. I'm going to make sure I start off with no fill and no stroke, so nothing's going to get in my way here. I'm going to hover here to pick up the center of this hexagon. Now if you haven't already got them turned on, you should have smart guides turned on because you need to snap to these objects and snap to point will also help. I don't recommend snap to grid. That's probably not going to help you at all. Let's go back out of there. Let's zoom in a little bit so we can see the area that we're going to use for our no fill, no stroke rectangle. It's going to start here in the middle of this shape. It's going to go all the way out to the middle of this shape, and then it's going to come down to the middle of the shapes at the bottom. You should be able to eyeball at pretty accurately. Having got it in position, you should then double-check it. Again, zooming in even closer this time. Just drag on this rectangle to make sure it's snapping into position. Check to make sure that it's halfway through this line here, and then double-check at the bottom to make sure it's snapping correctly into position. There's a snap point there. You should be able to feel it. Let's go to our last palette and you'll see that there are no fill, no stroke rectangle is at the top of the layer. Well, it needs to be at the bottom. I'm going to move it all the way to the bottom. I'm also going to unlock this group. I'm going to press Control or Command 0 to zoom back out. I'm going to select over everything, and I'm going to drag and drop the whole selection into the swatches panel as my pattern. Now I'm going to create a rectangle for my pattern out here. It doesn't have to be on the art board. I want to keep my original pattern paste just in case it needs finessing. You certainly wouldn't want to delete this until you're sure that your pattern is working well. I have my fill at the four here, so I'm just going to click on my pattern pace. I can scale it by choosing object transform scale. I'll turn off transform objects and then just adjust the scale of the pattern. Sometimes you might need to do that to get rid of the fracture lines in the pattern if you have any fracture lines. I'm seeing a slight fracture line here. I'm going to click "Okay". Let's just zoom in. As I zoom in, the fracture line is disappearing. There was a small line here in the middle of this upright, but it's disappearing. There's another one there too, but again, if you zoom in close enough, it's disappearing too. If you're having a lot of trouble with these fracture lines, and if they don't appear where the patronages were, you can try turning off anti-alias artwork, choose edit preferences on a mark that would be illustrator and preferences. Go to the general area and disable anti-alias artwork and click "Okay". That will let you say if those fracture lines are actually in the pattern and typically it's an illustrated display problem, not yours. There's our pattern. At first glance, it looks quite simple, but when you really look at it in depth, you'll see that it has a certain amount of complexity to it in how everything moves through the pattern. Now when I create the pattern, you'll remember that I made the middle a different color. That was because I wanted the flexibility of being able to have a three color pattern. But say I want a two-color pattern. Well, let's see how we'll do that. I'll select on this shape, and I'm going to click on re-color artwork. What I want to do is I want to make this pink, this green. I'm going to double-click on the pink. I'm going to choose "Color swatches", and I'm going to go and select the same green as I was using for the rest of the shape, and I'll click "Okay". That just remaps the pink to green. If I click "Okay", you'll notice that in the pattern palette, I've still got my original pattern and I've got my recolored one. This is the recolored one and this is the original. So we've got two versions of the pattern. But taking the time when I was setting up to make the middle hexagon a different color has given me a lot of flexibility in re-coloring this pattern later on, because I can do anything with it. Of course, I can go to the edit tool here and just recolor this way. Your project for this class is going to be to create this pattern. Step through it. Take care when you're putting the pieces together. Make sure everything lines up and create your pattern. Post an image of your completed pattern in the class project area. I hope that you've enjoyed this class and that you've learned something about making complex patterns in Illustrator. As you were watching these videos, you will have seen a prompt which let you recommend this class to others. Please, if you're enjoying the class, do two things for me. Firstly, give it a thumbs up and secondly, write in in just a few words why you enjoyed this class. Recommendations like this help other students to say that this is a class that they too might enjoy. If you'd like to leave a comment or a question, please do so. I read and respond to all of your comments and questions, and I look at and respond to all of your class projects. My name's Helen Bradley. Thank you so much for joining me for this episode of graphic design for Lunch. I look forward to seeing you in an upcoming episode soon.