Something's Fishy! Appearance Panel Tricks in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class | Helen Bradley | Skillshare

Something's Fishy! Appearance Panel Tricks in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

Helen Bradley, Graphic Design for Lunch™

Something's Fishy! Appearance Panel Tricks in Adobe Illustrator - A Graphic Design for Lunch™ Class

Helen Bradley, Graphic Design for Lunch™

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6 Lessons (30m)
    • 1. Something's Fishy Appearance panel Tricks - Introduction

      1:04
    • 2. Something's Fishy Part 1

      5:05
    • 3. Something's Fishy Part 2

      8:31
    • 4. Something's Fishy Part 3

      6:09
    • 5. Something's Fishy Part 4

      5:39
    • 6. Bonus video on rotating and scaling fish

      3:46
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About This Class

The Graphic Design for Lunch™ series are short video courses you can study in bite size pieces such as at lunchtime. In this course you'll learn to make three fish using the Appearance Panel - the entire fish, head, tail and eye is one single object! You'll also learn a handy recolor technique. This video is "Pen Tool free" so you can complete the project without using the pen tool.

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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. Something's Fishy Appearance panel Tricks - Introduction : Hello. I'm Helen Bradley. Welcome to this graphic design for lunch class Something's Fishy Appearance Panel Tips and Tricks 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. In this particular course, we're going to look at using the appearance panel and each of these fish that you're going to create is actually one single Illustrator object. Buried inside that object is the fish's body as well as its tail and its face and its eye and so you're going to get used to using the appearance panel, adding a mask to the appearance panel, and then creating your fish all inside the appearance panel. By the end of this project, you're going to have a real appreciation of what path is in the appearance panel in Illustrator and just some of the things that you might be able to do with it. If you're ready, let's get started with our fish project. 2. Something's Fishy Part 1: The first step with our project is going to be creating a new document and starting with one of our fish. We'll choose File and then New. Now I know that my final image needs to be a bit wider than it is tall, so I'm going to set it to 700 pixels wide, but I'm going to make the height just 450 pixels. I'm also setting it to RGB color mode, and I'll click "Okay." This is a good shape for our image. Now to create our first fish, we're going to use the Ellipse Tool. I'm going here to the Rectangle Tool and here is the Ellipse underneath it. I'm just going to draw out the first of my fish, which is just going to be a long, narrow ellipse. Just remembering I want to get three of them onto the page here. I'm going to invert my colors here because I want it to be filled with black and I don't want it to have any stroke at all, so I'm going to turn off the stroke. Now I'm going back to my Ellipse Tool because I'm going to make the tail using the ellipse, but you could use the Pen Tool if you prefer. I'm just trying to make this Pen Tool free for people who really freak out with the Pen Tool. Let's go and get the Ellipse Tool, and let's create a small ellipse. Now I'm going to the Selection Tool. I'm just going to rotate it around. It's going to form the first part of my fish's tail, so it's going to be in this position. I'm just going to audition it and just make sure it looks pretty right for where it's going to go. I think I've rotated it way too far. Here is the first shapes. I'm now going to reflect it. I'll choose Object, Transform, Reflect. I'm going to reflect it vertically. You can say that it's gone from pointing in this direction to this direction. I've Preview turned on so I can see what's happening and I want to duplicate, so I'm going to click "Copy." Here's my fish's tail. I'm just going to move these pieces into alignment with each other and that makes a pretty good fish tail. Now that I've got these pieces together, I'm going to select them and I'm going to join them. I'm going to the Pathfinder. You can get to that by choosing Window and then Pathfinder, but I have it open here. What I wanted to do is to unite these, just put them together into a single shape. I'm going to move them over my fish. Now the Smart Guide is showing me that everything's lined up, so I'm just going to test it and make sure it looks good and just work out where it's going on my fish. Once I've got everything nicely lined, I'm going to select over both of these shapes, and I'm going to unite those two. I have a single shape, that is my fish shape that has a black fill and that's all. There's the basic shape for our fish. Now before we go any further, we're going to make a mask and this is the trickiest part of this project. You want to get this right. Let's just take it very, very slowly. The first thing I'm going to do with my fish is put it in position here. I'm going to select it. I'm going to choose Edit, Copy. Now what that means is that I have a copy of my fish on my clipboard. With the fish still in place and I'm definitely not going to move it because that would be a bit tragic right now. We don't want to move it at all, we're going to the Transparency panel. We're going to click here on Transparency. Now you can also get to it by choosing Window and Transparency. What we're going to do is we're going to make a mask. We're going to click "Make Mask." This is perfect. The fish's all disappeared. That's exactly what it should do. We're going to make sure that Clip is selected. We're going to click here on the Mask. Then we're going to choose Edit, Paste In Place. What that's going to do is paste our fish from the clipboard right on top of the existing fish. We can't see anything here. Well, we can if we hover over it. Now, we're going to switch the colors here. I'm just going to select over this fish and I'm going to make sure that it's filled with white. I've got my fish and I've filled it with white. Interestingly enough, everything goes black, but don't worry about that. That's exactly what it's supposed to do. Now we're going back to our Transparency panel. Because it's really important before we leave here that we first of all make sure that we've got what we need to have, which is a black fish on white here and a white fish on black here. But also at the moment we're still editing the Opacity Mask. You can see up here in the title bar, here for this image, it says Opacity Mask. Now you've got to get out of this Opacity Mask or you'll never be able to work on your fish. So what you have to do before you leave here is make sure everything looks like this and then click this fish here. Then everything is perfectly all right. Now if your transparency dialogue doesn't look like this, now is the time to stop and go back and start again. You want a white fish here and a black fish here. Then click on your black fish before you leave this dialogue and now everything is perfect and we're ready to continue to work with our fish. 3. Something's Fishy Part 2: Now that we've got our fish created and we've got our mask, we're ready to decorate our first fish. Let's just select over the fish, so we have it selected. We're going to get our appearance panel, which is down here, and we're going to move it where we can see it because we're going to use it all the way throughout this project. If you don't have an appearance panel down here, just choose Window and then go and get it from the list here. It's called appearance. Right now we can say that our fish has no stroke and it has a black fill. Let's click on this fill item here. You have to click on the fill because we want the effect that we're going to apply next to only affect this particular fill. We're going to choose Effect, Stylize, Scribble. Now, what you should see is exactly what you're seeing on the screen here now, is you should see a scribble effect. We're going to make it 30 degrees in angle, and then you can go ahead and create any effect that you like. You can make yours whatever you want it to be. Now, I like a little bit of variation in mind, and the strike with is one pixel. But I think that's probably a bit much because I'm going to crosshatch these, I probably want less width in my stroke than you might normally want. I might just increase the spacing a little bit as well, and maybe a little bit of increase in variation, but probably not that much. Let's go back to a little bit of variation, but not a lot. You can play around with this dialogue, it's all fun from here on in. Now that I've got that, I'm just going to click, "Okay". This means that I now have this fill on my shape that has a scribble effect in it. You see when I cause this up that the scribble effect disappears because it's attached to this fill, that's critical. Now we're going to click on this and we're going to drag it down here to the new icon. What that's going to do is give me a second fill exactly the same right on top of the first, you can see that it's darkened things up quite a bit. Well, going to the second fill and we're going to click on its scribble because we want to change this effect only. What I want to do is to make this a 120 degrees in angle and that's giving me my crosshatch effect. Now again, you can do whatever you like here. This is open, slide or do whatever you'd like, make whatever choices you like here for your fish. These are just the choices I've made, so I'll click, "Okay". So far so good. We have a crosshatch fish, but we want to give it a tile and we want to give it a face, and this is where this project is really awesome because we're going to do it using a fill. Let's see how are we going to do it. We're going to just click here on "Add New Fill". This adds a solid black fill over the top of everything, so we've lost ask scribbles temporarily. Let's make sure that we have this particular fill selected. So one that you just added that makes everything black. With it selected, you'll choose, "Effect" and then Convert to Shape and then Ellipse. This is really interesting, you're going to really like this. I have previewed it on and I'm going to make size absolute. Look what happens. What we've done is we've converted this film within our fish into a circle because this is a 30 pixel wide and high ellipse, which is basically a circle. We need ours to be a little bit bigger, so I'm just going to make mine. Let's test 1770. That's pretty good for the fish's face. It's going to go over here, but I'm just measuring it where it is right now, so I'll click "Okay". We have a crosshatch fish and we've got the fish's face it's not in the right place. Let's go and get this fill here. We want to make sure that we're working on the black dot fill. I have it selected here, now let's choose Effect, Distort and Transform, Transform. What we want to do here is we want to move this, so we're going to click "Preview" to turn it on. We don't need any copies, all we need is to move it towards the front end of the fish. Let's drag on the horizontal option here. Yes, it moves, but you can see that we're out of room on this slide up. Well, that's just illustrated because if you click in here and start pressing the up arrow key or type in a number, you can put whatever number you like in there. I'm actually pressing shift and the up arrow key to move the circle all the way across so it covers the fish's face and I'll click "Okay". That was a circle, but why am I not seeing the circle outside the fish's face? Well, the answer to that is this mask. The mask that we created is signed to illustrate a shovel A's fills into this fish, but anything that goes outside the area of the fish we don't want to see. It's basically a clipping mask buried inside the shape by making a mask before we started everything as scribble and a circle and anything else we do with this shape is all going to be constrained to inside this shape. That's why it's working like this. Now we want another one of these circles, but this time we want it for the fish's tail, just so we get a bit of practice with this. Let's do it brand new. Let's go to Add New Fill. We could have made a copy of the other one, but it's worthwhile just getting a little bit of practice with this Convert to Shape option. This is our fill, this is our solid black fill, so we're going to target it so that the effect that we're going to create is going to be made with this, we'll choose Effect, Convert to Shape, Ellipse. Make sure previous turn on and click Size, Absolute, because that means that we're actually making the size ourselves, we get to choose how big it is. We're going to start with 70 by 70 for this, looks pretty good, click "Okay". Again, we need to move it, so again, we're going to target this one so we make sure that we're targeting the correct one, and then we'll choose Effect, Distort and Transform, and then Transform. This time we're going to push it in the opposite direction, but we want to make sure that we turn preview on first so we can see what we're doing. Let's take it in this direction. Again, we've run out of space in our dialogue, but we can just down arrow, shift down arrow to push our fish's tail out as far as we need it to be. When we get it in place, click "Okay". Now before we finish up, let's create the fish's eye, and you already know how to do this because it's just going to be another fill. Let's click here on Add New Fill. Now, this is a black fill, but let's make it pink for now, just so that we can see it clearly and see exactly what we're working on. We need to make this fill into a fish eye size circle. With it selected, we'll choose Effect, Convert to Shape, Ellipse. Again, turn Preview on. We want it to be an absolute size, now 36 is obviously going to be too big, I'm thinking more, something like 13 and 13 will be a good fish-eye size. There it is, I'll click "Okay". Now what we have to do is move it. Again, I'm making sure that this fill is selected. I'm choosing Effect, Distort and Transform, Transform. Make sure that preview is turned on and we need to move it towards the front of the fish. We've run out of slider here, so I'm just going to click in the box and I'm going to up arrow or shift up arrow to move the eye over. I still think my eyes a bit big, so I'm just going to make a guess as to where it's going to go. Think I want it to be a bit further down on the fish's face as well, so I'll click "Okay". But it's still a bit big, so I'm going back to my ellipse, I'm going to click on it, and that lets me make changes to the size of my fish eye. I'm just bought it down to 12 and 12 and I'll click, "Okay". Now it's a pink eye, but I think our fish might look better with a different color eye, so let's just click in here, and let's go and change the fish's eye to, for example, white, actually, I think I'm going to go for a light gray. There we have our first fish and we're ready, go ahead and to create our other fish. 4. Something's Fishy Part 3: We can create the other fish for our project by just making a copy of this fish. I'm going to select this fish with the selection tool, and I'm going to Alt, drag a copy of it away, and then I'll drag a second copy. If you're working on a Mac, that's going to be Option drag. Now I'm going to select all three fish because I want to space them out neatly. When I select them, you'll see that the align options appear here, and the first thing I'm going to do is drop down this icon here to make sure I'm going to align the fish to each other, not to the art board, so I'm going to click Align to Selection. What I want to do is to make sure that they're evenly spaced apart. I'll choose Vertical Distribute Center, and that's just going to make sure that they're nice and evenly spaced. To make sure that their tails are in alignment, let's just go and align them horizontally align left, and that just makes sure that they're nice and neat and tidy fish. Let's have a look at this middle fish because what we want to do is to flip it over so we want it to point in the opposite direction. With it selected, let's choose Object Transform, Reflect. Now, you'll see that it's reflected across the vertical and that's fine, the problem is that it's eye and it's tail have moved a little bit, but we already know how to create those, so knowing how to create them means that we can very quickly fix them, so I'll just click "Okay". With this fish selected I need to oscillate the things I need to fix. Well, first thing is this eye, so let's just go and select the eye. All I need to do is to change the transform, so I'm going to this transform and I'm going to move the eye in the opposite direction, making sure I have preview turned on so I can see where my eye is. I'm just going to continue to move it. I've lost my preview, this is better. Let's continue to move it, and I think by the time I line up the face, that's going to be in a pretty good position so I'll click "Okay". Now let's have a look and see what this one is, well, this is the FISA lips, so again, let's go to Transform, let's turn Preview on and we want to move it just back a little bit so it looks like the other faces, I think my eye might need a little bit of adjustment tool now, let's go and transform the eye again just bring it back a little bit. Then let's have a look at that tail, which means this one is probably the one that's left, it's the tail. Let's click on "Transform" because we want to adjust the tail click "Previous" so we can see what we're doing, and then we just need to push it out a little bit more and make it match the other tiles and click "Okay", so now we've made two extra copies of our fish and we've flipped one of them. Let's have a look at our background. I can get rid of the appearance panel for now because I don't need it quite so visible, I'm just going to pop up back into position. We're going to add a background using a rectangle, so I'm going to click here on the "Rectangle" tool, I'm going to draw a background all the way across my illustration and it's filled with solid black. Now to get our rippled ocean look, we're going to use the pattern, so I'm going up here to the Swatches palette, and I'm going to click here on this icon here, this "Menu" icon. I'm going to choose Open Swatch Library, and I'm going to patterns, and I'm going to nature, and I'm going to nature animal skins. These patterns are given to you in Illustrator, so you will have these just go to Open Swatch Library, Patterns, nature, nature animal skins. Now there's a pattern here called tiger and I'm going to use that. This is the tiger pattern. Now at the moment it only looks half-life waves in the ocean. One of the things that we need to do is to rotate this so that it goes across the Illustration, not up and down. With our Rectangle still selected, I'm going to choose Object Transform and then Rotate. What's happened here now is that my shape and my pattern have both rotated, I don't want to rotate my shapes, I'm just going to deselect this option. I have preview turned on, but you can see now that what's happened is that by rotating 90 degrees, my pattern has rotated, so now it looks a little bit more like waves in the ocean, so click "Okay." What we want to do next is to move this below the fish so we can see it in place. I'm going to click open the Layers option here, the Layers panel, you can get to that by choosing Window and then Layers. We've only got one Layer in this document, but when I open it up, you can see that we have a Rectangle and three fish, the three fish are on these paths. I'm going to grab this rectangle and I'm going to drag it all the way to the back. Now I could have used object, arrange and used Send to Back, but I'm just want to show you that you can also do that with the Layers panel. Now we have a few problems here, the PSF fish say through, but that's going to be easy to solve in a minute, but let's deal with the fact that ocean right now is brown. Well buried inside Illustrator, ask some color editing tools, with this Rectangle selected, I'm going to choose Edit and then Edit Colors, and there's an option here for Convert to Gray scale. What that's going to do is make my patent gray scale. There it is, a gray scale pattern, much more like what we want for our fish illustration. Now that we've done our background, we're ready to solve the problem, that our fish are little bit say through, and we're going to do that in the next video. 5. Something's Fishy Part 4: To solve the problem of I'll say through fish, we're going to take the selection tool and we're going to select on this first fish. Let's go to the appearance panel. The problem with the fish is that everything that we have in the way of fills that is across the fish's body is a scribble effect. Here're the two fills that affect the fish's body, and they're both filled with scribble effects. What we need to do is to put something behind that. We need to fill the entire fish with a color and put everything behind the scribble effect, and behind the face, and the eye, and the tail, and life is going to be good. Let's go here and click ''Add New Fill''. For argument's sake, let's just use the fill that we've got here. It's a pale gray that I selected for the eye earlier. But you could always come here and click on another color to make the fill whatever color you want for your fish. You can say that this fill is at the very top of this fish, and that's the reason why it's covering up everything underneath. To put it behind everything else, we're just going to grab it and just drag it down. We want to drag it down underneath the last fill, which is one of those scribbles. When we get it there, we're just going to let go. Now you can say that the fish actually has a background color. We can go and do that for the other fish as well. Add a fill, well, this hasn't come in the correct gray. I'm just going to go and grab a gray for it, and then drag it all the way under every other fill. Let's go to this fish and do the same thing. A new fill, pick it up, drag it under all the other fills. When we click away, you can see that the fish are having a little bit of difficulty being seen inside the ocean. Well, we can solve that a couple of ways. One of them is that we could actually add a stroke around our fish. Let's click on the first fish. We already have a stroke here, it's just that it's not stroked with anything. Let's go and get white for our stroke color. Let's make it, for example, a three-point stroke. Now, the three-point stroke, let's just have a look at it away from the fish, it's only stroking the body and it's not stroking the face and the tail. The reason for that is it's buried here way way low inside the fish's appearances. It's underneath the face, and the tail, and the eye. All we need to do is to go and grab it and drag it to the very top. That will put it over the top of all the other objects on the fish. I was to go and say that again on this fish, we'll go and add a stroke. We're going to go and add a white stroke, we're going to make it a three-point stroke. Then we're going to pick this stroke up and we're going to put it above absolutely everything else so it surrounds the fish. We'll do that on the last one. That's looking better. To finish off, let's go to our rectangle. I have my rectangle selected here and I'm going to choose, Object, Transform, Scale. What I want to do is to scale down the fills so I have Preview turned on here. I want to make sure that I have Transform Objects turned off and Transform Patterns turned on. Because what I want to do is to make sure that I transform the pattern and not the object. At the moment, I have it set to 70 percent, but just let's just take it down a little bit. I'm thinking it needs to be pretty small here. I have it set now to about 39 percent and I'll click ''Okay''. There we have a black and white version of our fish image. If you want to go a little bit more colorful, you can select the first fish and go back to the appearance panel. Now my appearance panel appears to have disappeared so let's just go and select it. We know that down here is the fill that is controlling the fish's color. Well, we can just drop down this panel here and add a color to it, we'll make a red fish, and then let's click here and we'll make a green fish. Then let's make, for example, a blue fish. Let's select this one and again, we're just going to change its color to a blue color. Your project here is going to be to create your own three fish. You're going to create your mask using the appearance panel. Then you can fill your fish with all scribble patterns, you can fill your fish with color. You're going to create the fish's face, and it's tail, and it's eye. You're going to flip one of the fishes and sort out the problems with some of the objects inside the fish not flipping with it and then create a background from that tiger pattern. This Illustrator course was jammed full of tricks and tips for the appearance panel. I feel sure that by the time that you've finished this project, you're going to have a real appreciation of what the appearance panel can do and just some of the potential for using it in your illustrations. Please if you like this video, give it a thumbs up so other people know that this is a video series worth watching. 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. 6. Bonus video on rotating and scaling fish: This is an additional bonus video for this class because there has been a question as to how you can rotate these fish once you've created them. Here in the last panel on my fish, and so let's just locate this topmost fish, which is this one here. I'm going to target its little icon here to select it. If I try and rotate it with for example "Object", "Transform", and then "Rotate". Let's just rotate it around about a 135 degrees and click "Okay", you will see that there are some problems with this rotation. Let me just zoom back out and we'll see that the head of the fish and the tail haven't rotated correctly, so this is obviously not going to work. I'm just going to undo this by pressing Control or Command Z. With this fish shape still selected, I'm going to draw a couple of things. First of all, I'm going to make sure that the mask that is associated with the fish is actually going to move with the fish. I'll go to the Appearance panel, I'll click here on the "Opacity" option and just make sure that this icon here is gray. That means that the mask and the fish are going to rotate together, and that's really, really important. I'll make sure that it looks not like this, but it looks like this. Then we'll go back to our last panel, back to our fish and will choose "Object" and then "Expand Appearance". Now, you're going to say the Scribble Effect. I just want to turn off the background here and you can see that we're seeing the selection around the Scribble Effect. But that's only temporary because of my click away from the shape, everything looks as it did originally. When I turn the background on, you can say that there's no change in the fish having expanded its appearance. Let's go back now to our group and let's see what we can do with it. I'll choose "Object", "Transform" and then "Rotate" and we'll go back to our 135 degree rotation, so this has rotated through this 135 degrees. You can save that with the Preview turned on. The fish's head and tile are going to work just perfectly. I'll just click "Okay". Now, the other question that people had was that they scaling wasn't working. If they were trying to adjust the size of the fish, it wasn't working. Well, this is how you make sure it's going to work, you'll choose "Edit" and then "Preferences" and "General". Now, if you're on a Mac, you'll do that through "Illustrator," "Preferences", "General". The general area here you are looking for this option Scale Strokes and Effects. We want that enabled because that means that the Strokes and the Effects that are applied to this fish are going to be scaled when we re-size the fish. Let's just click "Okay", let's go back and target our fish. I'm going to make sure my handles are visible, they are here. I'll hold Shift and Options so that I can just scale my fishing, so it's much, much smaller, and I'll just move it over here. Let's move it to the top of the layers so that we can say that this fish is working just perfectly. It has scaled down and it's scaled in proportion, and it's been able to be rotated. If you're having problems with this, just follow those steps. You're going to select the fish, you're going to make sure that the Opacity mask that is associated with the fish is actually linked to it so that it will rotate. When the fish rotates, you'll choose "Object", "Expand", "Appearance" to expand it. Then you should be right for rotating the fish and scaling the fish provided of course you double check to make sure that your preferences are set to this Scale Strokes and Effect. If you have more questions regarding the fish and adjusting the size or rotation of the fish, please don't hesitate to ask the question, I'll see what I can do to help.