Rainbow Gradient Shape & Text Effects in Illustrator - an Illustrator for Lunch™ class | Helen Bradley | Skillshare

Rainbow Gradient Shape & Text Effects in Illustrator - an Illustrator for Lunch™ class

Helen Bradley, Illustrator for Lunch™ & Photoshop for Lunch™

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11 Lessons (39m)
    • 1. Introduction to Colorful Gradient Shape and Text Effects - an Illustrator for Lunch™ class

    • 2. Pt 1 Create a Template Swatches File

    • 3. Pt 2 Make a Shape using the Gradient Mesh tool

    • 4. Pt 3 Twirl and Recolor Your Shape

    • 5. Pt 4 Add Colors Using a Freeform Gradient

    • 6. Pt 5 Save a Freeform Gradient

    • 7. Pt 6 Recoloring a Freefrom gradient

    • 8. Pt 7 Freeform Gradients and text

    • 9. Pt 8 Gradient Mesh and Text

    • 10. Pt 9 Some Additional Techniques

    • 11. Project and Wrapup


About This Class

In this class, you will learn to make colorful rainbow gradient filled shapes and text in Illustrator. This effect is one that Shutterstock promotes as one of its 2019 rising design trends. We'll look at using the Gradient Mesh tool which has been in Illustrator for years and also the Freeform Gradient new in Illustrator CC2019.

You will learn some techniques for creating, editing, manipulating, and saving the designs as well as how to create and use a template for storing colors. The techniques demonstrated in this class will help extend your Illustrator skills with tools and techniques you can use every day. 

If you liked this class then you may enjoy these other classes of mine:

4 Illustrator Shading Techniques - An Illustrator for Lunch™ class - Simple Highlights & Shadows

5 Hexagon Patterns in Illustrator - an Illustrator for Lunch? course

Create Color Schemes in Illustrator for Using, Sharing & Selling - An Illustrator for Lunch? Class

Create Patterns in Adobe Capture for Illustrator & Photoshop

Create Wreaths & Other Floral Designs - An Illustrator for Lunch™ Class

Designing with Spirals - An Illustrator for Lunch™ Class

Doodle Flower Design & Pattern in Illustrator - An Illustrator for Lunch™ Class

Draw a Hot Air Balloon in Illustrator - Fun with 3D! 

Illustrator - Design in Black and White - Create Positive/negative images

Illustrator for Lunch? - 10 Interface and Setup tips too Speed your Workflow

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 10 in 10 - 10 Align tips in 10 minutes or less 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 10 in 10 - 10 Type Tips in 10 minutes (or less) 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 10 in 10 - Ten Top Illustrator Tips in 10 Minutes 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 10 Layer Tips in 10 minutes

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 10 Pattern tips in 10 Minutes 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 10 Pen tool and Path Tips in 10 Minutes or Less 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 20 Appearance Panel Tips in 20 minutes or less

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 20 Color tips in 20 Minutes

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 20 Gradient tips in 20 minutes

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 20 Pathfinder, Crop and Cutout tips in 20 minutes or less

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 20 Recolor Artwork tips in (around) 20 minutes

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 20 Reflect and Rotate tips in 20 minutes or less

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 20 Things New Illustrator Users Need to Know

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 3D Extrusion Effects - Text, Shapes, 3D

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 3D Perspective Cube design and Bonus 3D star

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 4 Exotic Patterns - Quatrefoils, Moroccan Trellis, and Layered Diamond 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 4 Handy Patterns - Diagonals, Plaid, Colorful Dots, Chevron

Illustrator for Lunch™ - 5 Cool Text Effects

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Abstract Ombre Background - Color Scheme, Blend, Transform 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - All you need to know about Brushes in Illustrator

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Backgrounds for your projects - Sunbursts, Halftone, Blends & Brushes 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Banner and Award Badges - Appearance Panel, Masks, Warp 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Blends and Gradients - Blends, Blend Modes, Gradients 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Braids, Rick Rack and More

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Circle Based Patterns - Rotate, Blend, Multi-Color Dots

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Clipping Masks, Opacity Masks & Layer Masks

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Complex Block and Half Drop Repeat patterns

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Complex Rotated Repeating Patterns Made Easy - Using MadPattern templates 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create a Floral Alphabet character

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create a Nighttime Cityscape Image

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create a Plaid or Tartan Pattern

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create a Range of Triangle Patterns

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create a Retro Landscape Illustration

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create a Textured Dot Pattern - Transform, Vector Texture, Patterns 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create a Wave Pattern 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create a Whimsical Tree

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create an Ikat Inspired Pattern

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create an Isometric Cube Pattern - Shape Builder, Align, Pattern Make

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create Complex Art in the Appearance Panel

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create Diamond, Harlequin and Argyle Patterns

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create Guilloche Effects

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create Hi-Tech HUD rings

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create Perfectly Overlapped Rotated Shapes

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create Seasonal Ornaments - Learn new skills while making seasonal art

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create Stitches and Sewing Elements

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Create with bends and blends - techniques for icons, logos and more

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Creative Half tone Effects

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Custom Corner Tiles for Pattern Brushes

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Cute Furry Creatures

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Cutout Text Effects - Photos, Pathfinder & Text

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Designing with Symmetry

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Doodle-Style Heart - DIY Brushes and Nested Shapes

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Draw a Retro TV - Shapes, Texture & Sunburst

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Draw a Vintage Birdcage - Shapes, Transform, Texture

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Faux Tissue Paper Collage - Blending, Texture, Transparency 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Flat and Dimensional drawing techniques

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Fun Effects with Graphic Styles - Appearances, Brushes, Styles 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Fun with Scripts - Download, Install, Run

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Get Creative with Blends and Brushes

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Get Export File Sizes and Resolution Correct

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Going in Circles - Brushes, Blends & Transformations

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Gradient Background Effects - Find, Adapt, Create & Use

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Houndstooth & Rose - Vector Halftone Tracing & Houndstooth Pattern 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Illustrating Cacti with Custom Made Brushes

Illustrator for Lunch™ - I'm Seeing Stars - Fill, Warp, Clip & Crop Shapes

Illustrator for Lunch™ - In the Frame - Shapes, Fills, Strokes & Color

Illustrator for Lunch™ - In the Kitchen - Cartoon Art with Live Paint 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - In Your Face - Pen Tool Practice 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Layered Paper Style Collage - Gradients, Graphic Styles, Transform 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Let's Go Steampunk! - Shapes, Rotation, Textures 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Make a 2017 Calendar from Scratch - Grids, Layouts, Text, Patterns & More 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Make a 3D Y Shape Pattern - from paper illustration to digital design

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Make a Lace Pattern Brush - Stroke, Blends, Pattern Tiles, Rotation 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Make an Organic Spiral Pattern

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Make Art Brushes - Configure, Color & Scale

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Make Art Using Other People's Art 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Make Custom Organic Patterns - Transform, Scissors, Align, Pattern Swatch 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Make Retro Shapes - Pathfinder, Scripts, Rotation

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Make Scrapbook Papers to Sell - Patterns, File Formats, Marketing Materials 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Make to Sell Printables - Stripes, Grid, Lines & Isometric Grid

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Mastering Live Trace - Turn Bitmaps to Vectors

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Meandering Hexagon Pattern

Illustrator for Lunch™ - More fun with Scripts - Text to code, more scripts, more fun (trees too!)

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Multi-Color Faux Pattern - Patterns, Transform, Expand 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Neon Effect - Appearances, Graphic Styles, Fonts

Illustrator for Lunch™ - On (a pattern making) Safari - Repeating Patterns 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - One Design Concept - Many Variations 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Pattern in a Pattern - Achieving the Impossible in Illustrator 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Pattern in Pattern & Irregular Repeating Patterns

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Pattern Know-how - Install, Transform, Recolor

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Pattern of Lines and Dots

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Pop Art Style Star Pattern 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Real Time Mandala Design

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Real Time Mirror Drawing - Symmetrical drawing

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Road Trip - Custom Brushes and Live Paint

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Roaming Square Pattern

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Seamless Repeating Texture Patterns

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Season's Greetings - Shapes, Brushes, Texture 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Semi Transparent Flowers - Scatter Brushes, Opacity, Blend Modes 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Sharing and archiving files - troubleshooting the pitfalls

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Sketchy Image Effect - Image Trace, Swatches, Sketchy Effect

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Something's Fishy - Appearance Panel Tips & Tricks 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Stipple Texture Effect - Grain, Gradients, Blends 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - String Art Inspired Designs

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Stylish Doodles to Make and Sell

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Type on a Path - Type, Paths, Shapes

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Using & Troubleshooting Bounding Boxes

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Using Photoshop Objects in Illustrator - Images, Shapes, Patterns and more

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Vector Textures - Vectors, Clipping Masks, Pathfinder

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Warp Shapes & Text - Envelope Distort, Warp, Gradients 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Watercolor Magic - Type, Downloaded Patterns & Brushes 

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Watercolor stripe seamless repeating pattern

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Whimsical diagonal line patterns

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Whimsical Scrapbook Paper Designs to Sell or Share

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Whimsical Text Effects

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Whimsical Textured Drawings Using Hand Drawn Brushes

Illustrator for Lunch™ - Zentangle® Inspired Pattern Brushes - Shapes, Effects, Brushes

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1. Introduction to Colorful Gradient Shape and Text Effects - an Illustrator for Lunch™ class: Hello and welcome to this course on creating glowing gradient effects in Illustrator. My name is Helen Bradley and I'm a Skillshare top teacher. I have over 200 courses here on Skillshare and over 95,000 student enrollments. In this class. I'll show you how to create glowing gradient effects in Illustrator in two ways. You'll learn to use the gradient mesh tool, which has been around in Illustrator for years. The new free-form gradient tall, which was new in Illustrator CC 2019. Not only will you learn to use both tools for shapes and type, as well as lots of handy tips and tricks that you can use in your artwork every day. But you will also see how to create a reusable illustrated template file. There's lots of fun and useful things to learn in this class. Let's get started creating glowing gradient effects in Illustrator. 2. Pt 1 Create a Template Swatches File: Before we start creating our first gradient [inaudible] herein illustrated, we're going to create a document we can use repeatedly. It's going to be a template. I'll choose file and then new, I'm going to select a size for my document, in this case 1920 by 1080 pixels. You can make yours any size that you like. Now, I want to add some colors for my documents, I'm going to start with the rectangle tool and just drag out a small square. I'm holding the shift key as I do that. I'm going to fill it with a solid color and I'm going to remove the stroke. Just a solid color-filled rectangle or square. I'll hold the auto option k as I drag a duplicate away, and if I add the shift k, then I'm constrained to dragging and either a horizontal or a vertical direction, so that does line things up really neatly. With the shape still selected, I'll press Control d three more times. That would be command d on the mac, and that just gives me five little boxes for the colors I plan to use in this project. Now if you don't have colored that you already know you want to use, you can go to the internet and get them, choose window, and then color themes. When you open the color themes dialogue, it connects automatically to the web, and then you can choose words that you want to look up. Now I've looked up the word pastel because I want to grab some pastel style colors. If you find an entire color scheme that you'd like, just click here on the three dots and choose add to swatches. I'm not finding an entire color scheme. I say little bits and pieces that I might want, and so I'm going to grab a couple of days and just paste them together from that. I think that will do me. I'll open up the swatches panel in these last two other color schemes that I just pulled from the adobe themes. Well, I'm going to click this one and remove it because I don't want that particular swatch. I'm going to drag down any other swatches I want. I'm going to build this up in here, so by moving some colors around, I now have the five colors I want to use. For each of them, I'm going to double-click on them to open the swatch options. I'm going to set them to global swatches. This is going to allow me to change the colors in the final art really easily later on. But you do want to preset it, so you want to set it up before you do anything with it. Because otherwise, if you change the colors to global, later on, it's too late and you would need to actually apply the global colors to your documents. That's just a little bit more difficult. But you select each of these rectangles or these squares in turn and apply one of my global colors to them. Now I've created the color scheme I'm going to use for this class. I'm going to save this file as an Illustrator template file. I'm just going to place it in my class resources. That's going to be an easy place for me to find it. I'll choose File, and then Save. I'm in my gradient shapes class here, so I'm going to select IIT as the file format, and I'll call this color swatches and click save. It's important when I get back to illustrate the dielectric close this file. Because the benefit of using a template file is that when you go and use it, you're creating a brand new document and you don't risk writing over the document that you are basing it on, so I'll choose file new from template. I'll go to the folder that I just saved the file in. Here's the color swatches file. I'll select it and click new, and we have a new file based on that template. You'll notice that it's being given a sequential file name, and that's not the color swatches file, so we're not at risk of overwriting the original color swatches file for that's one of the benefits of using templates. 3. Pt 2 Make a Shape using the Gradient Mesh tool: The first tool that we're going to use to create this sort of glowing gradient orbs is the gradient mesh tool because it's been around since the illustrator version 8. So chances are you're going to have that available in your version of Illustrator. We're going to start with a circle. So I'll go to the Ellipse tool and then create a circle. So hold the Shift key as I drag out a fairly large circle. Now I'm going to fill that with one of my colors. With it selected, I'll go to the eye dropper tool and just click on this purple color. Now this does two things. You'll say that not only does it fill it with the purple color, but because this swatch here was just a fill color and didn't have any stroke a circle has also lost at stroke, and that is exactly what we want to happen. We'll go next to the gradient mass tool and just click on it. You'll need to have your shaped selected when you apply the gradient mesh to it. The way the gradient mesh works is that wherever you click in the document. So for example, if I clicked about here, illustrator is going to draw a vertical line and a horizontal line through that point. So let's just do that. Now I'm not seeing this very clearly because of the color of my shape and these lines are blue. Well, let's go to the last pallet and see if we can solve this problem because this will occur quite often in Illustrator and the solution I'm about to show you will work every time it does happen. You'll see here that when I select either any of these shapes, I'm seeing a little blue box here. The reason for that is that this layer is working on blue as being the highlight color if you like. If I double-click here, I open up the layer options and here is the blue color. Well I can set that to be any color I like and since I'm working on this blue, then a contrasting yellow probably will work better. I'll click "OK". Now when I click on this shape, you'll say that these lines are yellow. It's got nothing to do with the final illustration. It's just what color is being used for elements on that particular layer and if it doesn't suit you, then just go and make it a different color. So I'll just re setting my workspace. This is my gradient mesh line i clicked here and so these are the lines that are going through the shape. I'm going to add a few more gradient mesh points and you can put them wherever you like. Now once you've divided up your shape and you don't have to divide it up to start off with, you could just put in one or two of those lines. You don't have to put in it a lot because you can add them whenever you want. What you're going to do is you're going to select some of these points. So are I'm going to the direct selection tool and I'm going to click to select some of these points. I'm holding the Shift key as I select a series of these points. Now you can select the points inside the circle and they're also points here on the outside edge as well. Now I've got a whole heap of these points selected. I'm going to the eyedropper tool, I'm just going to click on the pink box. What happens is that because this is a gradient mesh tool, Illustrator is adding a color dot at those points and then it's blending it like a gradient into the areas around. What you'll do is continually go and select individual points with the direct selection tool. Hold the Shift key as you select them. So you are adding to your selection h time, then go to the eyedropper or you could go for the color swatches and select a color to use for those points. Now a couple of things that might be of help to you. One of them is that the Lasso Tool also works. I'm just going to click outside the shake to deselect everything. Let's go and select the shapes that we can see what we're doing and with the last suit or we can select more points. It's just a little bit easier if you like. So I'm going to drag over some of these points. I'll hold the Shift key and then I can drag over and select some additional points. Once I've got those, I'll select the eye dropper tool and click on a color. You can see that that's being applied to all of these selected points. So I'll go back to the selection tool. I'm going to get to it by pressing the letter "V", click outside the shape and back on the shape, and then go and grab the last Lasso tool. Now if you have a look at the tool tip for the lasso tool, you'll say that its letter is Q, and so if you know the letters V and Q, you can very easily come in and select the Lasso tool and also select the selection tool anytime you need to make the selections. So it just makes life a little bit easier. I like using the lasso tool to just select over these points. Press the letter "I" for the eyedropper or click on the eye dropper and then click a color to use for the shape. So by working this way, you can add colors to your shape. Now, each of these anchor points is also editable so you can come in here and select them and pull them into different places. So you can push these colors further together or move them further apart. Again, the Lasso tool will work here. You can select a whole range of these points and then move them with the direct selection tool. 4. Pt 3 Twirl and Recolor Your Shape: Now when it comes to using the gradient mesh, there's one thing that you can do to the gradient mesh object that you couldn't do to the new free form gradient, in illustrates. We're going to have a look at this right now. What I'm going to do is, go here to the twirl tool. It shares a toolbar position with the width tool. The twirl tool is going to allow us to twirl the colors in this shape. But right now it's really, really small. Well, if you hold Alt and shift on the PC, that's option and Shift on the Mac, then you can just drag to increase or decrease the size of this tool and you want the tool to be large enough to cover your shape. Now, I've increased the size of my tool, to easily cover my shape. What I'm going to do is, just click once over the shape. That's twirl based colors. Now if it goes too far, just undo that, double-click on the ''Tool'' here, you see that you could actually select the width and height manually. But the intensities, what we're looking at here, and that's how far it twirls every time you press the left mouse button. I'm going to take this down to 15 percent because that's going to give us a less of a twirl. Now I'm just going to click once and then click again. Every time I click, I'm going to twirl the lines in this gradient mesh, which is going to blend these colors together and you could be really harsh with that. You could create some really twisted effects, if you want to. Once you've finished, just press the ''vacate'', go back to using the selection tool. Of course these points are still editable, so you can come in here and select any one of these points and then just move it somewhere different and edit its handles if you like. You can get a more sophisticated effect, for example, using the twirl tool here. Now you could also change the colors of the elements in this shape. Remember, I said that we were setting this up as global colors for that very reason. I'll open up the swatches panel and I think I would like the pink to be brighter, I'll double-click on this ''pink color''. You can work in RGB. You can also work in HSB, which is hue saturation brightness. Sometimes that's easier. But for this, I think I'm going to stick with RGB. I want this color to be a bit more saturated. At this point, I'm going to turn preview on so I can see what it looks like. If want to, I can switch between HSB and RGB. I could, for example, just come back and see if I could get a slightly different color here for my pink. This will change, this color here. It will change, this color here, and it will change everywhere in the shape that that pink color is used. Now you can also, recolor these objects by selecting over them and use the re-color artwork tool. When we change the global color, we didn't need to have the object selected, because that's how global colors work. Where this color is used is going to change, even if it's not selective. When you're using recolor artwork, then you need to select, the object first. Click on the ''re-color artwork'' tool. Here you can do things like, rotating the colors around the object. Here I'm going to randomly change the color order. The look of the object's going to change because these colors are going to be placed in different places, inside the Shape. Now, if you see something you like, you can click ''Okay'', but just be aware that you're going to lose the previous look of the object, because you haven't actually saved that. It's not like patterns where the thing's going to be saved for you. You're going to lose the original and you're going to get this changed color version. I think I quite like this one. I'll click ''Okay'' Now also in the re-color artwork dialogue, you can go to edit. If you lock the colors, then you can just rotate them around so that they change in relation to each other. You still got the special arrangement between the colors. But you can, move them in or out or around to change, the whole lot of them at once. You can also deselect this option and then just move individual colors. You could get a more monochromatic look, if you like, for your shape. Again, you're going to lose your original illustration when you do this, it's not going to be saved in any way. The only way that you could get to it would be to undo this change that you've made and wind back. 5. Pt 4 Add Colors Using a Freeform Gradient: The second method that we're going to use to create this glowing gradient orbs is with the new free-form gradient tool. This was introduced in Illustrator CC 2019. Make sure that you're using 2019 or later version of Illustrator to get access to this feature. We're going to start again with a circle, so I'm going to the Ellipse tool, just dragging out a large circle. Now so that we can use the new Gradient tool, we're going to need to fill this circle with a gradient. With it selected, I'm going to click here on the Gradient option. That just fills it with the default black to white gradient. I'm going to drag the gradient of panel over here because it's going to be easier to use the closer it is through the shape that we want to work with it on. I'm going to click here on the free form Gradient tool. That now default to this bluey color, which is nothing that we have actually in use. But we do have a single gradient stop here. Now you may have more. I've seen people starting off with two or three, I just have one. With this selected, I'm going to double-click on it to open up the color picker. Here's where we're going to get advantage from adding those global colors as swatches here. I'm just going to select my darker color. Now that's used to flood the entire shape. Because I'm working in the free form gradient and because I have points selected, I can just click where I want to add another stop, double-click, and this time choose a different color. I'm going to pick the lighter blue. Now the lighter blue is the color I'm working with now. So anywhere I click in this shape, I'm going to add a gradient stop that has lighter blue as its color. If I double-click and choose a different color then I'm going to start defaulting to that color is being the color that I'm using. I can add that color wherever I want it to be. Double-click and then I can select a different color, and then that's going to be the color I'm using, but you'll see it over here in the fill color. That's pretty easy to see what's happening here. Now if you add a color and don't like, you can get rid of it by just dragging it off the edge and that just removes it. Each of these colors has a circle around it, which is illustrating just how big that color area is going to impact. Well with it selected, you can drag here to enlarge it. Now it doesn't get any bigger than this, but that will impact the size of that color dot, if you like, inside the shape. You can also shrink it down so we can make it much smaller if we wish to do so. Now there's also a linear gradient here, a linear, free-form gradient. Let's go to the Lines gradient. I'm going to click and that will add my first stop and it's just defaulted to white. It's a little bit annoying. I'm going to double-click on it and choose another color. I'm going to make this gradient thing a pale blue so am just is going to add that. Now, pale blue is the color I'm working with. See that I've got a rubber band attached to me. This is going to show me how this gradient line is going to work and when I click on it and drag, you'll see that it's curving around. This actual tool can be really handy for adding highlights and shadows to shapes because you can run round the edge with the gradient and just add a slightly darker color in there. Now you can also go back and make it a full shape. A linear gradient within a shape. If I click back here, you'll see that now I now have that blue color running all the way round attached to that line inside the shape. I can double-click on any of these points and change their colors. You can have multiple colors along a gradient line. Now, anytime you click away from the shape and click back on it, you'll see that you get the edit gradient option, but it's probably easier to learn the keyboard shortcut for this, which is the letter G. If you just tap the letter G, all the gradient stops reappear so that you can edit them very easily. It's probably one of those keyboard shortcuts that I would encourage you to learn. Don't encourage you to learn very many of them, but it's just a lot easier to just press the letter G when you want to go back to editing your gradient. Just be aware that right now we've got line selected. If you want to start editing your point, you want to go back to point and then click on a point to edit it. 6. Pt 5 Save a Freeform Gradient: Now there are benefits and disadvantages to each of these techniques. We saw that when we created our shape at the gradient mesh, we could use the twirl tool on it. Well, the twirl tool just doesn't work with this alternative free-form gradients. If I select the shape and just keep clicking on the twirl tool, nothing's happening to it. So we're not going to get any ability to twirl our shape and twirl our gradient if you like with that tool. If you want the ability to create those twirls, you're going to need to use the gradient mesh to create the effect in the first place. I do rather like the free form gradient option, I think it's probably a little bit more intuitive as far as putting colors into your shape. You can't save this gradient, however, as a color swatch. If I open up my swatches panel, you'll see that the new swatch option is grayed out. So while I've got a swatch for my free-form gradient, it's not savable. On the face of it, it looks as if you can't reuse it later on. That's not quite correct, if I go to the Graphic Styles, then I can save it as a graphic style. I'm going to select over the shape, I'm going to click here on New Graphic Style. Now, I can go and make another shape. In this case, I'm going to just make a rounded rectangle. I've got its fill selected, I'll go and click on my graphic style and now that graphic style, that free form gradient has been applied to my new shape. It is able to be saved in a way, you just can't save it as a gradient swatch, you have to save it as the graphic style. Of course, if you want to save it as a graphic style, you're going to need to save the actual graphic style file so you can use it over and over again. For this, you'll click the Library option here, choose Save Graphic Styles, and then you can save it as a user-defined set of styles. You probably will want to remove the excess styles from here before you do that, so that you don't save everything in this default set of graphic styles along with the one that you want to actually save. What I'll do is go and select all of these graphic styles and delete them. You won't be able to delete the default one because it is the default, it's like saving brushes and swatches, there's always one or two that are defaults and that you can't remove. Now, I've got mine being the only one that is really relevant here so I'm going to click "Save Graphic Style". I'm just going to call this free-form colors and that's saved as a graphic style file. If I create a new file, again, I'm going to do that based on this template that I just created. Then I can add that graphic style to my graphic styles panel by clicking this library button, choosing user-defined, and go and select free-form colors. You'll see that even though we saved a graphic style that had the default and this color swatch in it, only this color swatch has been actually added to the file. I'm going to select it, it's now added to the graphic styles for this document, and I can use it to fill a shape. This time let's create a star. 7. Pt 6 Recoloring a Freefrom gradient: Let's head back to the document that we were working on, because there a couple of other things that are interesting to note. When I select over this shape, you'll see that the re-color artwork tool is available, leading us to believe that we can probably use it to re-color this object. Unfortunately, that's not the case. It looks like this dialogue is going to work, but you'll say that the assign option isn't selectable, you've only got the edit option available, and you'll see that recolor artwork is disabled. So as much as you might try to edit the colors in this document using the color picker here or the color wheel here, it's just not going to work. That leaves us with global colors. I'm going to open up the Swatches panel here and we know from our experience with global colors that when we double click on a color and click "Preview" and make changes to that color, we're going to see that changes reflected anywhere in the document that that color is used. Adjusting global colors is going to work for this particular free-form gradient. If we choose a different color or tweak the color that we're using, we're going to see the changes lie within the gradient here. Of course, the color swatch here is going to change accordingly. So global colors will give you some ability to edit the colors in your gradient ob. 8. Pt 7 Freeform Gradients and text: So far, we've been looking at these freeform gradients and the gradient measure in relation to shapes. It's time now to have a look at our options in relation to text. I've got a piece of type here and it's fully editable type. I've got two copies of it you can say that it's nice and editable. Well, you may already know that there are problems with actually adding gradients to type, even if it's just a regular gradient. I have this type selected, I'm going to click on the "Gradient" option here. It looks like it's worked but our type has not changed. If you want to add a gradient to type, you need to select the "Type" and you need to do it through the "Appearance" panel. With the "Type" selected, you have to click here on "Add New Fill" and then that added fill has to be your gradient. I am from just going to apply a gradient to that. Next, you would go to the "Gradient" option here and then just make your gradient. Let's just change the color to show that it can be done. That's how you would add regular gradients to type in Illustrator. With the "Type" selected, I'm going to click here on "Freeform Gradient." Well, while it looks as if I'll be able to add a freeform gradient to my type, when I hover over it, I'm not able to add these color stops. It's just not possible to do with "Type" in Illustrator. That leads us to how we're going to solve the problem if we want to use one of these colorful gradients inside "Type." Well, one option is to turn the "Type" into outlines. I'm going to select this "Type" here, and I'll choose "Type" and then create outlines. What that does is it makes each of these characters an outline. Instead of being editable "Type," they are now individual characters. With the pace of type selected so I'm going to select the entire set of objects. If you like, click on "Freeform Gradient." I've still got problems, I'm still not able to add color stops in here. Instead, what I'll need to do is to break this out of the group that it's in. I'll choose "Object" and then "Ungroup." If we check the last panel, you'll see that the objects are now out of the group. But again, with all of these objects selected, if I go back to the gradient tool here, let me just fill the shape with a gradient. Let's go back to the "Freeform Gradient." Again, I still can't add color stops to the set of objects. The only way I can do that is to go back and just select one of the objects. With one of the objects selected, click on the "Freeform Gradient" tool. Now, I'm able to add color stops. Well, this is the gradient that I'm working on here. Here's a color stop. Let me go and just select the blue that we're working with. You would need to come in here and edit each individual character to be able to get access to the "Freeform Gradient" here for "Type" in Illustrator. But there is an alternative, so let's have a look at that. Let me just reset my workspace for a minute. I've got my "Type" here, what I am going to do is make a rectangle that is pretty much the size of my "Type," maybe just a little bit bigger. I'm going to add a gradient because I need to trigger that gradient fill option. I'm going to click here on "Freeform Gradient". I'm going to locate the color stops, there's one here. I'll double-click on it and I'm going to use one of my colors here. Having my base colors in, I can now, start adding some other colors from my gradient color collection. Now I could continue to work on that gradient, I'm not going to because I just want to show you the process. I'm not really too concerned right now as to the actual outcome. But you can make the freeform gradient exactly the way you want it to be. I'm going to place the freeform gradient over the top of my text, no, actually going to move it underneath my text. I'll choose "Object," "Arrange," and then "Send to Back." I've got my "Type" on top of my gradient if you like. Select both of them and make a clipping mask with "Object," "Clipping Mask," "Make." Now I have "Type" that's filled with this "Freeform Gradient," but it's done a different way. It's done using a clipping mask and one of the benefits of that clipping mask is that "Type" is still editable. Let me just make things a bit bigger so we can see what's going on here. Here's our "Clipping Group." When I open it up we've got the word "Gradient" and we've got the rectangle that's filled with color. Well, if I target just the word "Gradient" and go to the "Type" tool, then I can edit this because it's fully editable "Type." When I click away, you'll see that it's still gradient filled. We've got the ability to retain the editability of our type and still fill it with this freeform gradient. But we're having to do it using a clipping mask. 9. Pt 8 Gradient Mesh and Text: Now, it's also of course possible to use the Gradient Mesh to apply a gradient. We would do that pretty much the same way as we would use the freeform gradient. I am going to create a very large rectangle this time, and I'll show you in a minute why. I'll use the eyedropper tool to select a base color. I'll go back to the mesh tool and click once to create my first mesh point. I'll press the letter I because I want to sample a color for this. I'll press the letter U to go back to the Gradient Mesh tool and then the letter I to sample a color. The letter U to go back to the tool, the letter I to sample a different color. So I'll alternate between pressing U and I. U for the gradient mesh tool, I for selecting the color I want to place there. Then going back to the direct selection tool or the letter A, then I'll press the letter I to sample a color for that particular point. I'm just going to add a few colors in here and then let's have a look and use the twirl tool on this shape. I'll go back to the twirl tool. This time it's not covering the shape and I don't want it to cover the shape. I do however, have an anchor points selected, so I am going to make sure first of all, that I click outside the shape and then click it so I've got everything selected. With the twirl tool, I'm just going to start twirling some of the bits inside the shape here. Now, if I want to twirl the other way, I'll double-click on the "Twirl Tool" and change the twirl rate to a minus 40 instead of a positive 40, and that will take the twirls in the opposite direction. Now, that I've got something more interesting, I'm going to shrink it down so it's a little bit more intense and then I'll put the text on top of that. This time I'll bring the text to the front. It doesn't matter whether you take the text to the front or the gradient to the back. We're just going to line it up, so it's going to be placed nicely over the text. Select both of these objects and choose object clipping mask make. We've got this gradient field effect with our text, but this time it's being created using the gradient mesh, and that's going to help you if you happen to be using an older version of Illustrator. You can size this, so I'm just going to drag it down to make it taller. It's obviously re-sizable and in the last pallet, we're going to get access to the two things, the two elements here. The first one is the text gradient and the second one is the mesh. If you want to edit the mesh, you can get access to the mesh this way to make edits to it. You'll simply select the mesh here so that you've got the mesh itself selected. Turn off visibility on the text, and this gives you access to the mesh point, so you can make changes to the mesh, so you're not affecting the text itself. When you're ready to go back to seeing your text, just make your text visible and then you've got the effect back again. It's important to understand how you're going to edit that gradient mesh where you are using it to color texts because of course we can't add these fancy effects to text just by itself. 10. Pt 9 Some Additional Techniques: Before we finish up this class, there are a couple of things that I wanted to cover, and one of them is how to add some additional dimension to their shapes. This is the one that's created using the free-form Gradient tool, but it could just as easily be the one that is created using the gradient mesh as the feature will work just as well on each of them. I'm going to select this shape and I'm going to choose effect, and then stylize and choose Inner Glow. Now the default for inner glow is a white screen, yours is going to look something like this, where you've got screen and a white glow. Well, what we're going to do is we're going to set this to multiply because we want to darken the edges. Then we're going to select a color to use and I'm going to use a purple color. I'll turn preview on so that we can see the effect. Now again, the opacity default is 75 percent I've brought mine down to 40 percent just to reduce the opacity at 75, it's going to be too thick and too heavy. I thought about 45 percent was pretty good, and the blur by default is five pixels again, that wasn't enough it really wasn't showing up on this shape. I'm taking mine up to probably 25 or more, so it's just bringing it inside the Shape. I'll click "Okay". Now with this shaped selected, let's have a look at the before and after I open the appearance panel, you'll see that this Inner Glow is just an effect. This is without the Inner Glow and this is with the Inner Glow, and you can see that it's giving it a more dimensional look. Now we can do the exact same thing here with the one that has the gradient mesh applied to it, will choose Effect and then stylize and again inner glow. Now the inner glow will default to whatever it is that you use last in this session, and because I set it to multiply with all of these settings for this shape, that's what it's defaulting to hear. Now of course you can use it to lighten the edges and if you want to do that, choose screen blend mode and choose a light color. But I like the darkened edges here, so I'm just going to use Multiply and click "Okay". Now you can also obviously used these same effects, both the free form gradient and the gradient mesh on any shaped objects, so your object doesn't have to be a circle, you can create these shapes a couple of ways I like to use the pencil toilets are nice, easy tool to use. I'm setting it to smooth, it's going to draw a nice smooth shapes and I can just draw around to create a shape. Now the free-form gradient can be applied to this shaped by selecting it, clicking the eyedropper tool and then just select a shape that has the free-form gradient applied to it. We're effectively copying that effect to this new shape, but of course we could create that from scratch. Now It's also possible to re-shape the shapes. I'm just going to Alt or Option Drag, a duplicate of this particular circle, this is the one with the free-form gradient applied to it. I'm going to choose the warp tool, but I could choose any of the tools in this collection. They're all liquefy tools, if you like, and I'm just going to drag in on the sides of this shape. As I do, the gradient is just reforming and the shape is changing shape if you like, and of course we can go back and edit that. I'm going through the selection tool, select it, press the letter G, and here our gradient stops and I can just double-click on one of them and just change the colors. Now this shape was created, of course, with the gradient mass. I'm going to drag a duplicate of it away. I'm going back again to the warp tool here, again, I can just walk this shape and the gradient mesh is going to be applied to the warped shape. We could of course apply a gradient mesh to a shape that we have created using the pen tool or the pencil tool or whatever you like. Just wanted to show you those additional techniques, one of them is applying a darkening to the edge of the shape using the inner glow effect and the second one is of course, at any of these effects can be applied to any shape in Illustrator. 11. Project and Wrapup: We've now finished the video content for this class, so it's over to you to practice these effects. If you're using a version of Illustrator prior to cc2910, then you'll be using the Gradient Mesh tool. If you're using Illustrator cc2910, you can use either or both of the tools, the freeform gradient or the Gradient Mesh. Practice using these tools with shapes and text and post an image of your completed art as your class project. As you're watching these videos, you will have seen a prompt asking if you would recommend this class to others. Please, if you are enjoying the class and learning from it, would you fill in the online survey as this helps other students to see that this is a class that they too might enjoy and learn from. If you're seeing the follow link on the screen, click it to keep up to date with my new classes as they're released. If you'd like to leave me 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 Illustrator for launch, and I look forward to seeing you in an upcoming episode soon.