Seasonal Designs - Chalkboard Wreath - in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class | Helen Bradley | Skillshare

Seasonal Designs - Chalkboard Wreath - in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

Helen Bradley, Graphic Design for Lunch™

Seasonal Designs - Chalkboard Wreath - in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

Helen Bradley, Graphic Design for Lunch™

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6 Lessons (31m)
    • 1. Seasons Greetings Introduction

      1:22
    • 2. Seasons Greetings Part 1

      6:20
    • 3. Seasons Greetings Part 2

      6:04
    • 4. Seasons Greetings Part 3

      4:56
    • 5. Seasons Greetings Part 4

      7:31
    • 6. Seasons Greetings Part 5

      4:19
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About This Class

The Graphic Design for Lunch™ series is one of short videos you can study in bite size pieces such as at lunchtime. In this course you'll learn to make holly leaf and berry shapes, how to transform them and make an Art Brush. See how to make a wreath out of the brush and add text, a chalkboard graphic and an overall texture. This video is  "Pen Tool free" so it's great if you hate the pen tool.

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More in this series:

10 Adobe Illustrator Layer Tips in 10 minutes - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

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10 Illustrator Pen tool and Path Tips in 10 Minutes - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

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10 Interface & Workflow tips for Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

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20 Adobe Illustrator Color tips in 20 mins - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

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20 Illustrator Gradient tips in 20 mins - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

20 Illustrator Reflect and Rotate tips in 20 mins - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

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3D Y Shape Pattern in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

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

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

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

Whimsical Tree Design in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

Wreaths & Floral Designs in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

Zentangle® Inspired Pattern Brushes in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

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. Seasons Greetings Introduction : Hello, I'm Helen Bradley. Welcome to this graphic design for Lunch class seasonal designs, a chalkboard wreath 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's Illustrator learning is going to cover things like using the transform tool to create multiple objects, such as the holly leaves and the holly berries that you see in this particular project. Then we're going to turn everything into a brush and use it to stroke paths in Illustrator. We're also going to bring in a JPEG image to use as a Chalkboard background. We're going to apply the text and we're going to see how we could format text by giving it strokes and fills and changing the strokes and fills in the opacity. Then at the very end, we're going to dump over the top of everything in a grunge texture. Again, we're going to use a bitmap texture this week and this is going to go over the top of the holly leaves and the text to give it a sort distressed look. Now there's a whole heap of learning packed into this Illustrator for Lunch course, I sincerely hope that you enjoy it as much as I have enjoyed putting it all together for you. Let's get started on our seasons greeting illustration. 2. Seasons Greetings Part 1: To get started on our season's greeting riff, we'll choose "File" and then "New", I'm going to make a square document, so mine is 700 points by 700 points and it's RGB color. I have that all selected, so I'll click "Okay". Now, if you want to, you can go ahead and draw a holly leaf. But if a holly leaf is a little bit too much for you to draw with the pen tool, then I'm going to show you a much easier way of doing it. We're gonna go to the Ellipse tool. I'm going to drag out a long narrowish ellipse. I'm going to fill this with green. Let's just go and get the kind of green that we're going to use for our holly leaf. I think probably this green will be fine. Switch our fill and stroke colors and let's turn off the stroke for now. Now I'm going to go back to my Ellipse tool and I'm going to drag out a smallish circle, probably something like about this. I'm going to fill it with pink just so that it's easier to see what's going on. Now with the Selection tool, press letter v or go and select the selection tool. I'm just going to move it up into position here over one end of the ellipse. I'm going to hold the "Alt" or "Option" key and drag a duplicate of it down. It almost touches itself. Well, it really probably does need to touch itself here. Then we're going to continue to use these circles to cut out our holly leaf. I'm going to hold the "Alt" or "Option" key down and just move a duplicate of the circle away. I'm going to do the same thing up here. You can see those little guides are telling me when I've got things pretty much lined up. I'm going to get an evenly shaped holly leaf. But you know, it's a holly leaf, it doesn't really matter whether it's evenly shaped or not. It just needs to look like a holly leaf. I'm just going to continue to copy these circles down. What I'm concerned not to do is to see any white in here. If I saw a bit of white, like say here, you can see just a little bit of white in there, then I'm just going to select the shape and just nudge it down. I'm just using the arrows on the keyboard. I'll need two more. Let's "Alt" drag a circle away here, just to finish off, and "Alt" drag another one away here. What I'm doing right now, is looking at this inside shape, this green shape, and saying, " Is this what I want for my holly leaf." If I want to make some alterations, now is the time to do that. But I'm pretty happy with this, I just think it's nice to be nudged down a little bit because I'm saying just a little bit of white there that I don't want to see. Now that we've created the holly leaf, this green thing in the middle, we need to get rid of the red bits around the sides. Let's just select over it with the Selection tool, this one up here. Because all the red shapes are on top of the green shape, we can use the Pathfinder in Minus Front. What Minus Front does is it looks at what the very back object is, which is the green oval, and it subtracts all the front shapes from it. If we subtract all of front shapes, what we're going to be left with is this green holly leaf size shape. I'm going to the Pathfinder here and I'm just going to click Minus Front. There we have it, that is our holly leaf. We haven't used the Pen tool, which is even better. Now let's color it. At the moment it has the green fill. I'm happy with that, but let's put a darker green stroke on it. I'm just going here and I'm going to get a darker green color for the stroke. I'm just going to increase it to probably about three points. Now I'm going to zoom in here using the Zoom tool because I do want to add just a little bit of a shape through the middle of the leaf. Now you can do it with the Pen tool or you could just do it with the Line Segment tool. I'm going to do it with the Line Segment tool. I'm just going to click here and I'm just going to drag across my leaf. I have a big green bar, which is fine, but it could look a little bit better. Well, first of all, I'm going to increase it to make it four points. Then I'm going here to this drop-down list which currently says uniform. When you drop it down you get what are called profiles. This is a width profile for a line. If I click on it, what I get is this sort of triangular-shaped line. That gives me exactly what I want for across the middle of my holly leaf. I'm just going to move it back a little bit because I can see a little bit of extra green there. This is now my holly leaf. I'm going to select either the entire shape and I'm going to group it with Object, Group. Now let's go back to seeing the entire workspace, "Control" or "Command" zero. I made a couple of holly berries and I also want this leaf to be tipped on its side a little bit. I'm going to select the leaf, hold my mouse pointed just outside one of the corners, so it shows bent arrows and I'm just going to drag down to make it on an angle a little bit. Now I want some holly berries, so I'm going to click on the "Ellipse tool". I'm going to hold the "Shift" key as I drag out a holly berry shape. Now at the moment, its stroke is dark green, so I'm just going to make that a dark red stroke. I'm going to increase the stroke width to about three points. I wanted to have a red fill, so I'm going to click here on the "Fill" and I'm just going to select just a red color for the fill. I'm just going to click away from it. You can see this looks a bit like a holly berry. So I'm going to drag this into position here. Then I want two holly berries, so I'm going to "Alt" drag a second one away from the first and just put it in position. When I'm happy with how the holly berries in the leaf look, I'm going to select over everything and group that, Object, Group. This means that these are going to travel as a group. They're also going to re-size as a group. This one's a bit big, so I'm just going to shrink it all down. There is our starting holly leaf. In the next video, we're going to go ahead and create the brush that we're going to use to create our riffs. 3. Seasons Greetings Part 2: To create the brush that we're going to use to create our wreaths, I'm going to select over the group shape that we created in the last video. I'm going to choose Effect and then Distort & Transform, Transform. Now this dialogue can look really, really scary and just a little bit confusing, but it's about to become your next best friend, because it's going to do all the hard work for us when I click on Preview here. I already know that I probably need around 22 copies of this holly leaf and the holly berries to make my brush, so I've selected 22 here. What I want to do is, I want to start moving these leaves away from each other. You can see what this tool is going to do for me, is it's going to make 23 leaves. Well, I've started with one and I'm going to get 22 copies; it's just not looking quite the way I want it to look right now. Now, one of the things I want these leaves to do as they go along is, I want them to get a little bit smaller, so we can scale them as they move. I'm going to reduce this size to about 95 percent. That doesn't sound very much, but every single one of these leaves is going to be 95 percent of the size of the one before. That's actually going to make them as you can see now, scaled down pretty nicely. We're going to increase the horizontal movement, so I could use the slider here, but I prefer to just click in here and then just press the up arrow key because that allows me to move it one or two points at a time. That's nice even flow here for our holly berries and our holly leaves, but we want it to be both sides of the wreath. We can do that by selecting Reflect Y. Now we get these leaves to teeter-totter as they go along. We can pull them apart from each other by adjusting the vertical. I'm just going to decrease the vertical here. Let's see what we getting. Well, we're getting something that's looking a little bit more like the holly wreath that we want. For now, I'm just going to click "Okay" because it's not perfect. But the problem with the perfection is that this one's not really tilted enough to start off with. So I'm going back to this group shape and I'm just going to tilt it a little bit more. Watch what happens when I let go. Well, all of them tilt because they're all based on this single shape. You can say that we're getting our holly berry look and we can adjust it as we go. Now, if we get to this stage and say, well, we still want to do a little bit of work on this, let's go to the Appearance panel. With this shape selected, I'm going to the Appearance panel. Here's the Transform that we just applied to that shape. If I click on it, I just open the dialogue up again, so I can continue to make changes. If I want these to be further apart, I can do so, but I will have to select a preview so that we can see what we're doing, otherwise illustrator just does it in the background and we have no clue what's happening. I'm just going to find a good spot for these. I'm pretty happy with that. When I'm happy, I'm just going to click, "Okay". This is the basis of the brush that we're going to be using. But it would look better if it had a single rib behind it, so we're going to do that now. I'm going here to the line segment tool, and I'm just going to measure this by drawing it a little bit below where we're actually going to put it. I'm just going to click and drag all the way out here. I'm going to hold the Shift key as I do that, because that's going to constrain that to a perfectly horizontal line. Now it's red, and I want it to be the dark green that we've been using. I'm also going to increase its stroke weight quite a bit, because I want to taper it like we tapered the line through the holly. I'm going to click on "Uniform" and I'm going down again to this Width Profile 4, the one that gives us a pointy end. Now with the selection tool, I can just move that up here. Check its position. Now, it's in front of all the other shapes and I really want it to be behind all the other shapes, so I'm going to my Layers panel. It's going to open up the Layers panel and open up this layer. Here on top is the line path that we created and underneath are all of the leaves. What I'm going to do is just drag this top path underneath the bottom one. That just places it behind everything. That's the same as choosing Object, Arrange, center back. But sometimes it's handy to learn the Layers panel just so that you can see what's going on in your illustrations because sometimes you can actually get more control through the Layers pane than you can through that align option. I've just lined everything up pretty nicely there. This is going to be our brush. I'm going to open the Brushes panel, here it is here. Just going to size it nice and big. I'm going to select over everything here, grab the whole lot; the line and this shape, because that's really all my brush is. I'm going to click and drag and drop it over here in the Brushes panel and I'm going to make it into an art brush, and I'll click "Okay". This is what my art brush looks like. Now, I wanted to paint along a line in this direction, so the direction is really good here. I want to stretch to fit stroke length, so that's good too. Now, if I want to be able to re-color it, I need to select something like Tints and Shades; Tints or Tints and Shades. I'm choosing tints and shades, and I'll click "Okay". There's my brush. Technically, I no longer even need these objects, so I could just get rid of them. Let's be courageous, and I'll just press "Delete" and let them go. Now we're ready to create the wreath itself. 4. Seasons Greetings Part 3: Now we're ready to create our wreath. I'm going to go and get the Ellipse Tool, and I'm going to drag out a circle in middle of this artboard. Now, I want it to be a little bit smaller than the actual artboard because I want the wreath leaves to go around it. Now to make this brush work correctly, I need to split the shape. I'm going here to the Eraser Tool because underneath it is a tool called the Scissors Tool and it's the Scissors Tool that we need. I'm just going to click on it and I'm going to click up here on this top anchor point to cut the circle at that point, and I'm going to click down here again to cut the circle at that point. Now if I go to the Selection Tool, you'll see that we've got two half circles instead of one whole circle. I'm going to select this half and hover just outside the top of this selection until I get those bend arrows. I'm going to turn it a little bit. I'm going to do the same on this side. It doesn't matter which corner you hover over because they all behave exactly the same. I'm just going to move this down so that the wreath shapes, these arms of what are going to become my wraith are lined up pretty neatly. Now I'm going to select this one and I'm going to apply my brush to it. I'm going to click here on the brush, and I'm going to click here. I'm going to click on the brush. Now, a few things have happened here. One of them is because I applied tints and shades because I wanted this to be colored with tints and shades. That's why I've got shades of green. But since I actually, for this particular illustration, want white leaves, this is going to work really well for me. I'm not worried about this coloring, although I'm going to show you in a minute how you could set it back to its regular coloring, the red and green. This is a little bit bigger of a problem. You see that this leaf on this arm of the wreath is going the wrong way. Well, before you start worrying too much about it, you can turn paths around because this path has a direction. It's from here all the way down to here, but we can turn it around the other way and we do that by going and grabbing the pen tool. But all we have to do with the Pen tool is just line the pen tool up over this anchor, which is the very end of this wreath and just click once and the path turns round. Unfortunately, our pen tool is anchored here right now. We need to stop it from doing what is just doing right at this very moment. I'm going to hold Control or Command and just click and that virtually sets the pen tool let go of it. I don't want to be still attached. Here are our leaves. Now we want our leaves to be white and gray. I'm going to select either both of these arms. I'm going to set the stroke color to be white. Now it's going to be easy actually, if I go and get it from the swatches over here. I'm going to make it white. When I do we get these really cute little gray leaves. This is going to work really well when we put our background in behind our shape. But for now we're often running on our illustration and we actually have our wreath in place. Now, I promised I would tell you how to sort out the problem if you really wanted your wreaths to be green and red. I'm just going to select this one here. I'm going back to the brushes panel. I'm going down here to click on options of selected object. What that allows me to do is to change just this instance of the brush. I'm just going to click on it here and what I'm going to do is I'm going to select colorization method none. You can see now that it gets back the colors than it had in the brushes palette. Anytime you want your brush to paint with its original colors, make sure its colorization method is set to none. But what I did here, remember was to select this option here. I'm not actually changing the brush itself. I'm just changing this instance of the brush setting it to colorization none, paints in red and green. But I actually want it to paint in tints and shades of my stroke color because I want a downplayed look for this particular illustration. But if you wanted red and green, that's how you're going to do it. In fact, you could have just selected none as the colorization method when you actually created the brush. Then it's always going to paint in red and green regardless of whatever color you have here. But of course then you could always select this option down here to change it for any particular selected brush. There's a little bit of brush voodoo in there. I hope that you've gotten it, but it's probably worth playing around with it until you understand a little bit more about how color and brushes are applied together. 5. Seasons Greetings Part 4: Now the chalkboard that we're going to use, I'm actually going to give you a square piece of chalkboard board you can use, but you can also find them on the web for download. I'm going to choose File and then Place, and I'm going to locate the folder in which I have the chalkboard stored. Well, I've got it over here so I'm just going to click it and click "Place" and I'm just going to drag out a location for it. I just want it to fill the illustration and I cropped it to square so it's going to fit really nicely for you. Now, one of the problems with this is of course, that it's landed in on top of the rest of the artwork so we want to move it to the back. I'm going to the last pallet and here is the chalkboard. I'm just going to drag it all the way down to the very bottom so it sits behind the rest of the illustration and I can lock it in place. Now the S1 [inaudible] with this chalkboard image provided you level of this stuff on your own computer. There's not going to be any problem at all. But if you wanted to send this image to somebody else, then you're going to have a few problems because the chalkboard is not embedded in the Illustrator file. When we save this file, the chalkboard won't be embedded in it. If you want to embed it because you want to send it to somebody so it's all packaged up as a single object, then you'll need to embed this object. I'm just going to unlock it for now and I'm going to go into Window and then Links. This shows me any linked images in the file and of course, the chalkboard image is linked. If I go here, I can select embed images and that will embed the chalkboard image in the file. It's going to make the Illustrator file much larger, but it doesn't mean that anytime we open it later on, the file is actually going to be embedded in it, the chalkboard is going to be embedded in it. Now I want to write season's greetings in here, and I have a font that I found that was pretty good to use, and it's called Edwardian Script. Let's just go and get it here. I think that you will probably have it on your computer, it's Edwardian Script ITC and if you don't, I'll have a link for you to go and download it. I'm just going to type season's greetings, seasons, and then I press the Enter key and type greetings. Now, obviously the type is way too small, so I'm just going to select over it. I'm going to click in here and I'm going to start to shift up arrow because that lets me make the type really big, really quickly. I'm looking at about the size it needs to be to fit in the shape that I have. Now I'm going to click on the center align option here because that's going to center these words and now I'm just going to move them right into the middle of my shape. Now they still need some work, they need work because for a start, they are black and everything else is white. Let's just go and make the text white. With the text selected, I'm just going to give it a white fill. Now, the white that way using as bright white, whereas the actual holly is a tinted white. I'm going to the appearance panel here and I'm just going to the Opacity option and I'm going to reduce the opacity a bit and that's going to blend in this text into the chalkboard. You can see that it's a little bit softer on the chalkboard. That's a nicer of blending than we had previously. Again, with the text selected, I want to scrunch it up a little bit because you can see that there's a really big space between these two lines of text, a space that we really don't need. I'm going up here to the character panel, this is the option that I need, the leading. I'm going to start to decrease the leading and that's just pushing the word greetings a little bit closer to the word seasons. I actually like it when this bit joins up so I'm looking at just making those to join but not overlap. I'm pretty happy with that. I'm just going to click away from the shape and now let's just move it down a little bit. Right now we're pretty good. But you might be looking at this and saying, "Well look, the holly had this outline and those lighter white in the middle. What if we did that to the text?" Well, we can do it. What we're going to do is we're going to select the text object by selecting it with the selection tool and then we're going to convert the text to outlines. We do that by choosing type and then create outlines and that turns the text object into outline objects. You can see now that I've got little anchor points on the characters. Now we want to join these together where we can. We're going to the Pathfinder and we're just going to click "Unite" We're back to our solid white but I'm not worried about that at all right now. But now I've got paths and things are going to be much easier because we can stroke and fill paths. Let's add a really bright white stroke to this text. You can see now it has a stroke but no fill. Now we can add a filter this object by clicking on fill here, and then we can go and add a white fill to it. We have a text object that has a white fill and a white stroke. Well, let's go and re-select our text object and let's see if we can get it to look a little bit more like the leaves on the holly. We're going to do that by using the appearance panel. With this object selected, you can see that it's a group, but if we double-click on contents we'll get access to the group settings. Now here is a stroke and that's a one point white stroke and here is our fill, which is just a solid white fill. If you open up this little triangle, you'll see that there's an opacity setting for the fill alone. I'm going to click on that and I'm going to decrease the opacity because that's going to let me make the fill a gray that's going to blend in more with the chalkboard underneath because it's going to be partially transparent. Let's just click out of the way and see what we've got. Well, we've got some nice gray fill on our text, but we may want to make the edge of the text, the stroke perhaps a darker gray. That's going to look a little bit more like the holly. I'm going to re-select, well my text object here, double-click on Contents, and let's this time go to Stroke. Here for the stroke, I'm going to set this to a gray, and this one is black equals 60, so c equals zero, m equals zero, y equals zero, and k equals 60. I'm just going to click on that and that's going to give me a darker stroke around the text. You can see it in place here now, just a little bit more interesting. If I want it to be a bit wider, again, select the text object, double-click contents and here I could increase it to maybe a two-point stroke, or I could make it even 1.5. You can come in here and you can just type in whatever value you like, I'm going to make mine 1.5 and I'll just click away. Now you can see that the text and the holly look a little bit more like they belong together. You could finish up at this point, but if you wanted to go a step further, I'm going to show you how you can add a texture to this entire shape to distress it just a little bit. 6. Seasons Greetings Part 5: In this final step, I'm going to show you how you could add a texture to the text and to the holly berries. Now we're going to do this with a bitmap texture, not a vector texture. That's quite acceptable for something like this that probably isn't going to be scaled up really large anyway. Now I've found you a texture that you can use and it's on a site called FudgeGraphics. When you get to the site, you're going to say something like this. These are whole set of free high-res grunge textures. The one we're going to use is this one here, and it's called Light Grunge Texture 17. You're going to click on it to open it in the browser window, then right-click Save Image As, and just put it in the folder in which the rest of this project is being stored so you know where to find it. I've already done that. Let's go back into our illustration and we're going back into the Layers panel just for a minute. We want to say what we've got here. Well, we've got a group here, which is the text object. Then we've got one half of the wraith and the other half of the wraith, and then we've got our chalkboard. What we want to do here with the chalkboard is lock that down because we're not going to texture the chalkboard. But everything else we can select. If we just click on this icon here, we select everything that is not locked, effectively, everything except the background. We're going to group that Object, Group. The reason why we're grouping it is that then we can place the grunge texture as a texture over the top of this entire group. Going into the Appearance panel, we have Group selected here. We're going to select Opacity, and this allows us to make a mask here. You'll see your illustration over here, and there's nothing over here. You're going to click "Make Mask". Then you're going to deselect Clip because we don't want it to be clipped. Then you're going to click on this mask because you want to edit the mask itself. Now you can come out into the image and you're going to choose File, and then Place, and you're going to go and find your texture object. Here is my light grunge texture, and I'm going to click "Place". I'm just going to drag it so it covers the entire wraith and the text, but it doesn't actually have to cover the chalkboard, just the wraith and the text. I'm just going to let go here. You should see the grunge texture appearing in here, this should start to grunge everything up. Now, one of the problems with this Opacity option in the Appearance panel is that just keeps closing on you all the time and sometimes it can be really difficult to get back to. There is an alternative. There's this option here which is the Transparency panel. It's a bit better behaved. It just stays open. It's exactly the same thing as you're saying down here. It's exactly the same items, exactly the same relationship, but this time in a better-behaved panel, if you like. Sometimes I like to work from the Transparency panel just because it makes life a little bit easier. Now we're still working on this text just so we could move it down a little bit. It seems to be a bit light around the edges, there's less texture at the bottom, so I may want to move it down a little bit just to make sure it captures these bottom holly leaves. When I'm happy with that in the Transparency panel, I absolutely must come back and click on this option here to stop editing the opacity mask. Because if you don't do that, you'll never get your document back. You can't go back to editing your document. That's the confusing thing about masks, if anything, that you have to be really careful about going back to your illustration when you're finished. This is a completed illustration. Your project for this class is to reproduce this chalkboard, seasons greeting wraith. Now you could also do it on a plain background, and use your colored brush if you prefer, just whatever you like. I would like to see that you're creating a brush and that you're able to create this wraith shape however you want to decorate it. But if you want to go ahead and do this chalkboard effect, I've given you everything that you need to do that. 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.