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Adobe Illustrator CC for Beginners

Lesson 10 of 23

Pen Tool in Adobe Illustrator

Brian Wood

Adobe Illustrator CC for Beginners

Brian Wood

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Lesson Info

10. Pen Tool in Adobe Illustrator

Lesson Info

Pen Tool in Adobe Illustrator

Right now we're gonna start to create some different artwork that we're gonna use as well, but we're gonna venture into the Pen Tool area, okay? Little bit of Pen Tool, little bit of free-form drawing. Alright? What we're gonna do is we're gonna open up a file that we're gonna work on, so what I'd like you to do is come up on your File and come to Open. And what I want you to do here is come into the segment two folder in Day 1, and you're gonna see a file called Pen_practice. Now, you guys, we're actually open up a, we'll do one at a time, it's fine. You're gonna see a Pen_practice file. Does everybody see that? It's in the segment two folder, Day and going to open up Alright. Now I want you to go to the Selection Tool, the black arrow, and we need to take that first artboard right there, and we're gonna fit that in the window, okay? So what you can do is you can actually come down here. Here's an easy way to do it. Come down here, and choose one from the artboard me...

nu down there. That's kind of an easy way, and what that does is it actually says, "Let's go to artboard one, "and let's fit it in the window so we can see it." Okay? (coughs) Excuse me. Alright. Now we're gonna start drawing a little bit here, and I'm not gonna get crazy with this because there could be a lot of things that we can do here, and this is just kind of a starting point or a stepping off point for you to learn how paths work. We took a look at shapes. Shapes are composed of points that we saw and that paths between them, right? As we start to venture a little further in, we're gonna start to use tools like the pen and the curvature. This is gonna allow us to create free-form shapes. You can go in and draw a quick flower if you want to instead of just a square and a circle, right? If you look over here on the left, you're gonna see we have the Pen Tool, and we've got the Curvature Tool. Now, we're gonna start to explore the Pen Tool a little bit here just to get the feel and understand what a path is and how it works. Okay? So what I want you to do is go ahead and select the Pen Tool out here. Now we're gonna come out to the first artboard here, and what I want you to do is come close to this shape here and move around a little bit. Do you see the lines popping up everywhere with these little magenta? These are the Smart Guides, and when we draw with the Pen Tool, I'd say three quarters of the time I turn those off. I turn Smart Guides off because it's really distracting. Okay. So why don't you come up under View up here? Smart Guides are the measurement labels. There are all kinds of things that we can use that are great, but sometimes we don't need them. So go ahead and choose or select, rather, Smart Guides right there under View, and it will turn them off. You can toggle them on and off. As you work in here more and more, you're probably gonna learn that keyboard command, and you can just turn them on, turn them off as you need them. If you move your pointer around now, you're not gonna see it, so none of those lines anymore. Good. What we're gonna do is we're gonna create a path here and get started. We're gonna mimic this path right here a little bit, but let's go right below it. When we work with tools like this, we are actually charged with making points, these anchor points, and determining or figuring out what the line looks like between these points. Okay? So just watch for one second. With this Pen Tool, I can go out and do this. I can go out and click to set a point, move it away, and you're gonna notice this little rubber band. I can then click to set other points, and basically what I'm doing is, kinda like the square we created, you're creating these little anchor points and the paths between. That's pretty much it. This is its simplest form. This is how the Pen Tool works, okay? Here's what I'm gonna do. I'm gonna delete, delete, get rid of it, and let's try this. Come below this path down here. We're gonna just kinda sort of make a zigzag here. What I want you to do is when you start with the Pen Tool, you're gonna see an asterisk show up. That means you're drawing a new path. Ready to begin. Just click once and let go. Move your pointer away. You're gonna see this rubber band. This is something that was, this is probably four versions old now, but this is a little bit newer. Some of us don't like this. If you're used to the Pen Tool in Illustrator, this is something you could tun off in the Preferences. We're not going there, but it's gonna show you what the path is gonna look like. Come down here, and we're gonna set our next point. You guys, this is the golden rule of the pen. You set a point when you want the path to change. If you want it to swerve this way, you set a point. If you want it to curve that way, you set a point, okay? So why don't you click another point here? Click and let go. And you basically just created a straight line essentially. That's what we did. Move away, and you're gonna keep drawing this same path with the Pen Tool. Come down here, and just click again. Come down here again, click and let go. Come down here, click and let go, okay? Kinda makes sense. You're just making a point, making a path. It's one big path all connected together. Now, crazy thing about the Pen Tool, when you wanna stop, everybody when they first start, they'll be like, "Oh, I'm gonna go over here and draw now." They'll start drawing, and you're making this ginormous path that's all over the place. To stop with the Pen Tool, we need to switch tools or do something different. What I would do is this. Come up to the Selection Tool, and select the Selection Tool. And it says, "Okay, stop drawing, please." We now have this path or the shape here that we can work with. Alright, now we're gonna do a little bit of editing to this just to get used to this, so what I want you to do is I want you to zoom in just a little bit to that shape. So come to the Zoom Tool over here on the left, and I want you to just click a few times so you can zoom in, see a little bit better. Now, to move the entire shape, this thing we just drew, we would actually use the Selection Tool, the black arrow. So select the Selection Tool. You're gonna notice that even this thing that we just drew has a box around it. We can do things like resize, rotate, scale, do different things like that. If you come in here, we can do that. We can stretch. You can do all kinds of things if you want to. Now, what if I decide that, I just made this thing with the Pen Tool. I know where all the points are. They're on the those corners there. What if I wanna grab one of those little points and do something different with it, like move it around? Easy way to do that is to come to what's called the Direct Selection Tool. This is where this kicks in. Select the Direct Selection Tool, and if you look at the path here, you're gonna see that, you can see all the little points on it, the corners. Come to, let's, say this point right here. We did this a little bit earlier, but if you hover over it, it's gonna get bigger. That means if you click, you're gonna select it. Go ahead and click. Now, you're gonna see a little, do you see the little corner radius widget thing? This is awesome. You could now drag that thing and make it rounded, which is kinda neat. We're not gonna do that, but I want you to take that corner, that little point, and drag it somewhere. Just drag it over here. Drag it over there. This is Illustrator, you guys. This is base level. This is what it's all about. We create these little anchors, we create the paths. We are in command, we do what we wanna do. Now, of course, we just created straight lines out of this. And for us to go in and create curves and different things like that is a little different animal. Hopefully, this makes sense, okay? We're gonna move on to curves. What I want you to do is we're gonna go to the third artboard, so come down here to artboard navigation. The second artboard just has a little bit of practice if you guys wanted to do that later on, but come to the third artboard, artboard three, and you should see this. If you wanna zoom into it, you can a little bit. You don't have to, depends. I'm gonna zoom in a teeny bit using my Zoom Tool just so we can see it. There we go. Come to the Pen Tool. Select the Pen Tool. Now, this is where it, we take a leap, okay? We're about to create curves. Now just watch me for a second. First and foremost, we haven't really talked much about color. We're gonna do that the next segment, but as you draw with the Pen Tool, it's gonna put a color of white inside of the shape you create, and it's gonna put the border or the stroke on it as black. Okay? Don't worry about that right now, watch. I'm gonna create a curve. To create a curve, what we wind up doing is instead of just clicking and moving away, we actually click and drag. Watch. I'm gonna click, hold down my mouse, and pull away. Shoo. These little guys are called direction handles. You will get to know them well in Illustrator. You will love them, and you will hate them. The idea here is that it allows us to change the direction of the curve. These are like little magnets. Look at this, look at the one behind. The line behind, the direction handle behind the actual point in the center there, it's controlling the curve before. This little handle I'm yanking on right here is gonna control the next curve, the next path, okay? So whenever I draw with this thing, I'm always looking back. It's kind weird, but you're looking back. Let's try this. Why don't you come with the Pen Tool, and just come over here? You're gonna see what's called start. Let's go below it. You don't have to go on it, just go somewhere below it. And what I want you to do is I want you to just click and let go. Click and let go somewhere. Move the pointer away, click, hold down, and drag away, and you're gonna see you're gonna create a curve. Pretty cool. Okay. Now, there's a ton we can do with curves, and as a matter of fact, once you let go, it's like, "Alright, let's keep going. "Let's keep drawing this thing." Right? First of all, I'm kinda done with this path. I know it's really simple, but I wanna stop doing it. So go to the Selection Tool for a second, black arrow. You're gonna learn later there are a lot faster ways to do, a lot of ways to do that. Go back to the Pen Tool, select it again, and we can continue drawing another path. We're looking for the asterisk, okay? Alright, why don't you come up to this? This is kind of a little practice thing. I wanna follow that gray curve, the one in the middle. Not the arrows but the gray curve. So what we're gonna do is instead of just clicking for the first point, 'cause that's gonna get kind of a flat curve, I want a total curve like this. We're gonna actually click and drag the first point. So if you wanna watch for a second, you can. I'm gonna start here. Click, hold down, drag away. And what we're doing is we're saying, "Which way is the curve going?" It's going that way. And how curvy it's gonna be? The further I drag away, the more it's gonna pull the curve up, and the curvier it's gonna get. So, you guys, I gave you these little cheats right here. So come to the little red circle and let go. I can let go there, and if I move my pointer away, I can continue to draw. Why don't you try that? Try that part. So start there. Click, hold down, drag up to the little red dot. Move your pointer away after you let go, and you should see the curve happening, right? Okay. Now, you're gonna get a feel for what I mean by drawing behind, looking behind. Come to this black point right here, and just watch me for one second. You'll still draw in a second. I'm gonna click and drag. Okay. Now, what I'm doing here is I'm trying to complete that gray curve right there, so where I'm dragging, I'm dragging away from the point, but I'm looking back. So I'm looking at the previous curve, saying, "Hey, if I wiggle it that way, "now it's gonna flatten it out." If I move it this way, there we go. I'm gonna come closer. It's gonna be more shallow. Further away, it's gonna be curvier. This takes time, you guys, and practice and all that kind of stuff. But I'm gonna get close. I gave you a little guide here to kinda help. I let go, I got myself my arch. Why don't you try it if you haven't already, okay? The most awesome part about drawing with this, so what you're gonna do is come to that gray square, the black square, rather. Click hold down, pull away, watch the curve, get it right, then let go. As you work with this, it's gonna take you time. You're gonna get frustrated in the beginning, and there's a lot of keyboard commands you have to use with the Pen Tool to get it to work the way you want it to, okay? The reason why I wanted to show you this is because paths we create are composed of anchor points and these direction lines which control things. I wanna switch gears a little bit here, and a lot of people would keep taking you down the Pen Tool path, but I wanna make this a little bit lighter because a lot of us are beginners out there. So what I'd like to do is we're gonna switch tools to what's called the Curvature Tool, and I wanna show you guys kinda the same thing but just using an easier method. Let's say that, okay? Alright, let's stop drawing this path, so you can go to the Selection Tool. That should stop it for you, and we can keep drawing other things. We're gonna open up another file now just so we kinda keep things clean. I know we have a lot open. We'll close them when we're done here, but what I'd like you to do is come to File, Open. And you're gonna see a butterfly in there. Now, I went a little crazy. I made it a little further along, but we're gonna try this. Okay, so go to in that segment two folder. Open it up. Okay, I wanna fit the artboard in the window. If you remember anything from this class today, it's gonna be Fit Artboard in Window. I guarantee it, so View, Fit Artboard in Window. There we go. Now what we're gonna do is we're gonna try and draw one of the wings. We're gonna copy it and makes ourselves a butterfly, okay? So what I'd like to do is I'd like to make, I'm giving you a little test here. We're gonna try and remember something we did earlier. I wanna make a new artboard. We're gonna keep this as our final. We're gonna make one over there, an artboard, on the right so we can practice on it, okay? So we're gonna go to the, one of the easiest ways to do it is to go to the Artboards panel on the right, down here, lower right. And come down and say, "Let's make a new artboard." Create new artboard. There it is. Now what I'd like to do is I'd like to fit that new artboard in the window. Easy way, you guys. You can use your fitting, View, fit window. You can also come to the number two here and double-click and fit it in. Like I said, lots of ways, okay? Alright. Now I'm gonna show you guys the Curvature Tool. This thing is, it's killer. It's relatively new. It's probably three, two, three versions old now, and it's an easier way to draw paths, I think. Okay? If you take a look over here at the Curvature Tool, why don't you go ahead and select it? It's over here on, it's just to the right of the Pen Tool. Click on the Curvature Tool. Now just watch me for one second. I'm gonna draw a little bit, kinda get you used to this thing. When we just played around a little bit with the Pen Tool, I showed you that we are clicking and dragging away with those little handles to control how the curve worked. Right? This tool is gonna create the same kinda path. It's gonna make the points, paths, all that stuff. All you gotta do is move the points around, and it does the curve for you, okay? This is actually pretty sweet. Watch, just watch. I'm gonna click, same thing, though. This is the thing, you're not gonna click and drag away. This is a different concept. It's the same thing, though, watch. I'm gonna click and make two points. Click one, click two. Here's the magic, watch this. I'm not holding anything down, I'm not doing anything. I'm just moving my mouse away. Look what it does. It's got those little handles working right now. I'm just not dragging them, I'm not doing anything crazy. I can just go in and start to adjust and do what I need to do here. Now, I'm gonna go out and just make another point, let's say. I'm gonna make a point and say, "Cool, there's a curve." I could just keep jamming, keep going in different directions. I look back, I'm like, "That looks kinda dumb." I wanna move it. Any of these points with this tool you can just go, "Hey, let's move that one there." Let's put that one there. I wanna put another point. I'm gonna go on the path and click on it. Let's move that one there. Let's click here, let's move that one there. It's pretty cool. Okay. Now, if you're doing a lot of intricate work, the further you get into Illustrator, the more I split my time between this tool and the Pen Tool. I actually use both depending on what I'm doing, but for a lot of our work, we can get away with this one. It's a great tool to work with, so let's try it. Come out here. Now, here's the thing, though. We're gonna try and draw a butterfly wing, okay? I know you're all pretty good at that, so we gotta put that to use here. So just follow my lead here as we start. I'm gonna start right about here. We're gonna make it a little smaller, right about here, and just click. Okay. Move the pointer away. Move it up here somewhere. Think of a butterfly wing, and move it up here, and click kind of up in the corner maybe. Move the pointer away. You now got the curve for the butterfly wing starting. Now, this thing takes a little bit of time and a little practice. I'm still getting used to it a little bit. We're gonna come down here, and I'm looking at that wing right there on the left and saying, "Alright, let's try and do that." So I'm gonna come over here and say, "Let's put another point right about here and just click." You're not pulling away, doing anything. Just click and let go. Click and let go. Come down here a little bit, click and let go. I'm looking at the other curve. Come down here. Click and let go. Click and let go. Is that working? You guys doing okay? Okay, now I'm moving here. I'm doing my thing. I'm looking back, saying, "Eh, the wing's not full enough." I need it to be curvier, okay? At any point while you're drawing with this, take the pointer, bring it right over one of the points you already made, and just click and drag it in one movement. Click and drag. Make it a little, maybe a little curvier. If I decide that this point up here, it's little too sharp maybe, it needs a little more curve, a little balloon to it, if you will, I could add another point. Watch. I could come maybe to the right of it. Once I come over the path, I can see a little plus show up. If I click, I can add another point and move that point away and start to make it a little curvier. There we go. It's a feel, you guys. It's one of things where it's gonna take time to get used to how this works, okay? Does that feel okay? Is it doing okay? Look what I'm doing here, you guys. I'm still drawing. So once I'm done editing, I can keep going. I'm gonna come down here now and say, "Eh, let's put one right there." Let's put one way down here. We're gonna stop this, get it done. Put one way down here. Now, this tool, unlike the Pen Tool, the Pen Tool, we can go in, and we can make straight lines, we can make curve lines, and we can do both together if we want. We can go from a straight line to a curve line. This one, by default, it's just making a bunch of curvy paths, which is fine. That's great, but you can also say, "I wanna now go to a straight line." Okay? Here's how you do that. If I come out here, and I'm like, "You know what? "I want this to go straight to that next point. "I wanna make a straight line right now," if I were to just click, it's gonna make a curve. It's gonna keep going. If you come to the last point you made right down here and you double-click on it, you're saying, "Let's make it, instead of a curve next, "we're gonna make a corner." Double-click on that last point you made down there. Now, it's not gonna change what you did before, but move your cursor away now, move your pointer away. Look what you get. So I can come back up here, for instance, and I could say, "You know what? "I'm gonna come back up to the original point, "and click on it." Don't worry, look at it. I know, it's gonna do its thing. There you go. But it kinda messed it up, didn't it? Well, it's following the curve we started with, but look down here. It's still a corner, right? So here's what we could do. Come to this point right here, and it's just a little experimentation. It's just trying it out. Come to that first point we created, and double-click on it. Okay, got a straight line now. Well, it's straight. It's not perfectly vertical, but that's fine. So if you don't think that this line right up here is curvy enough, what could I do? I could add another point, move it around. I could take the point that's here and try and move it over, and we could try and adjust the curve a little bit. This tool's awesome, it really is cool. If you get used to it, you've got yourself a way to create these paths that are both straight and curved at the same time, you can do both. Takes practice, I'm gonna tell you that right now. It's not gonna happen in these 10 minutes that we've been doing this, but at least you kinda get an idea of what we get. Now, the magic to this tool, we're gonna just finish this real quick here, but the magic to this tool is that it creates the same kind of path as a Pen Tool with those little direction lines, the little magnet things coming out. Here's what I'm talking about. Why don't you do this for me? Come to the Direct Selection Tool. We're gonna be, we switch tools in here, by the way, all the time. I am constantly switching from drawing to selecting, drawing, selecting. If you come to the Direct Selection Tool, what I want you to do is come to, let's say, one of these points right here, like that point right there. Hover over it. You should see a little box, and just click to select it. Do you guys see those little handles show up? There you go, there's your direction handles. If we were using the Pen Tool, we would actually affect those handles to get the curve to curve more. In this case, we're dragging, we're adding, we're moving, so it's kinda doing it for us. I don't wanna go crazy here. We're not gonna try jamming on these handles, but if you take these little handles and you drag them, you can actually start to adjust the curve even further, okay? Let's not go there. It's fine (laughs). Alright, so we got ourselves a wing. That's awesome. What I'd like you to do is go to the Selection Tool here, and we got the wing. I want you to click off to deselect it. Actually, we learned this earlier. We could now take this wing, and what if wanted to make a wing the same size, same shape, same thing but flipped over on the other side? We could use our Reflect command, right? Go up and reflect it. So we kinda have that. That's the thing about symmetrical artwork like this, that you might wanna be symmetrical. You're gonna use things like that. The last thing we're gonna do here is we're gonna work with what's called a Pencil Tool. This is just another way to draw. This one, I don't know, people just don't like. I like it, I use it for certain things. It's totally free-form, okay? If you want control, Pencil Tool may not be your thing, but for certain things, it'd be great. What we're gonna do is we're gonna draw the little, what is this thing called? Butterfly, the little butterfly body, because they're a little squiggly, weird thing, and then we're gonna draw little antenna, okay? But I'm not gonna be crazy precise so I don't need to use Curvature. I could if I wanted to. Come over here to the left. You're gonna see we have the Shaper Tool. Go ahead and click on the Shaper Tool and hold down, and you should see the Pencil Tool. Now, Pencil Tool comes in a set, okay? You get the Pencil Tool, the Smooth Tool, and the Path Eraser. You guys, this tool's awesome, it really is. For free-form stuff, it's really great. Click and select the Pencil Tool. Now, we don't have to be symmetrical. We don't have to care about, necessarily, exactly how straight things are gonna be, so this is a great tool to work with. The thing bat this tool you have to do first is you've got to set some settings on how it works. Otherwise, it's gonna be out of control, okay? Come to the Pencil Tool, and some of the tools will work this way. You can try it out. Double-click on the Pencil Tool. Double-click right on it, and you're gonna see Pencil Tool Options, tools like the brush, different things like that, will let you do this. Now, you guys, we're just starting in here, okay, let's say. And this is a little overwhelming. There's a lot of stuff to do in here. I'm only looking at one thing, the one thing that we need to look at. It's called Fidelity. I don't care about the word fidelity. All we need to know is is the path we're gonna create accurate or smoother. If you feel like you've had too much caffeine and you draw a path with this thing, it's gonna show. It's gonna be like (imitates pencil squiggling) like that. So what we tend to do is we tend to let it work for us, so you take this little slider, and you drag it to the right. There's only five settings in here, which is kind of annoying, but you drag it to the right. And if you want it to, if you let go after drawing, it's gonna smooth it out, make it smoother. You guys, if you drag it all the way to the right, and you drag, make a little body, it's gonna make an ellipse, so we wanna be careful with how much we do. So just do a little bit, so go right there. That's good. Tons of other settings we can work with. I'm not doing that, we're not working with it. Just click OK. Alright, now we're gonna draw a little funky butterfly body, okay? Here's how the Pencil Tool works. It's gonna draw curves. That's its job, but in the latest versions of Illustrator, the last three, four versions, you can now draw straight lines with this thing too, which is awesome. We're gonna just draw it, so watch me up here for a second. You're gonna see the asterisk. On any drawing tool, means let's start. I'm gonna click, drag, start drawing. This is gonna look awesome. Gotta be careful how I make this look. Wow, that's a worm. Actually, they are kinda like worm. If I come back to the original starting point, you're gonna see a little zero or oh. That means if I let go, it's gonna close it up, and we got ourselves a little body. Why don't you give that a try? I'm gonna try that again. So start somewhere. Don't worry, click and drag. We're drawing a little squiggly worm, butterfly body. Draw it up here. Wow, that looks great. I'll let go. Do you see the smoothing happening, though, when you let go? Sometimes it doesn't even look close to what you drew. Okay, so that's why you got to adjust that before you draw. This, to me, did anybody screw up? I did. Okay, I know, look at that thing. This is the best part about the Pencil Tool. You can go now edit the shape. You're gonna kinda rub it. That sounds bad, that sounds wrong. You're gonna go in, and you're gonna edit it, watch. I'm gonna come now, it's a little tricky, but you're gonna redraw parts of it. So if you come back to the path, you're gonna see the asterisk goes away, and what you can do is you can say, "You know what? "Let me do this." I'm gonna start here on the path, draw a little longer maybe, come up, come back to the path, and let go, and it just redraws that section. That's my favorite. That's my total favorite part. There's a lot of way you can work with this. There's other things we can do too. You can smooth it out. You can do things, but by default, this is how it works. Now, if you're gonna mess it up, you guys, if you watch for one second, you're gonna come up, and you're gonna start perfect. Drag and you're not gonna connect it, and it's just gonna draw another path. Just hit Delete. Well, actually, we have the whole selected. Just go to Edit, Undo Pencil. Undo is your friend in here, okay? So Undo Pencil. So make sure you start on the path and finish on the path. There we go. Alright. We got ourselves a little, squiggly body. That's awesome. Now we're gonna make some little antenna. We're gonna finish this up here. Some little antenna. So I just wanna, these are just simple. They're just gonna be little lines we draw off the top. So here's where you gotta be really careful. If you start on the path here, no asterisk, right? It's gonna try and combine, work with that path existing, so what we're gonna do is we're gonna deselect this shape. Now, we have the Pencil Tool selected. If I go click somewhere else, it's gonna draw. Another way to deselect things instead of clicking is to go to Select, Deselect. Okay? Good commands up here, you're gonna see a lot of. So Select, Deselect. Alright. Now you can come back to where we started. You're gonna see little asterisk. Come back to the top of the butterfly's head here, and we're just gonna draw a couple paths. Draw one here and one here. This is awesome. Beautiful. Look at my butterfly go. Alright. Last couple steps, and we're gonna be done with this section. So does anyone have the little antenna on top of the body, like they're sitting on top of it? What I really want just to make it look a little better, we cheat a lot in Illustrator. I wanna put the body on top off those little antenna, so we're going to arrange it to the front of the antenna. Select the Selection Tool, the black arrow. Click on the body. Now, if you guys come into the little body, can you click in the middle of it to select it in the white area? Watch up here. I can't. Look at this. I'm gonna click. All day so far, we've been clicking on our shape in the middle of it somewhere and say, "Hey, it's selected." When you use these drawing tools, there's no color in these shapes. Every shape we've been drawing so far has a white color inside of it, which means you can click on that to select. There's nothing in there, so right now you actually have to click on the path, on the stroke itself, on this edge here. Or another way to select is what we did before. Drag across. I can just kinda click, drag, touch it, and select it, okay? Let's bring it to the front. You know what's gonna be crazy? There's no color in it, so it's not gonna look any different. This is ridiculous, but that's fine. So come up to Object, Arrange after you select the body, and Bring to Front. Let's put a color in it. This is ridiculous, we need some life here. With that selected, look up top. You're gonna see that Illustrator, we're gonna learn this in the next section, but Illustrator has a fill in the stroke. Fill is inside of the shape. Stroke is the border. You're gonna see a slash, which means no color. Click on that one right there with the slash on it, and you can just click on any color in here you want. We can make our own. Hopefully, everybody saw that. Click on that slash right there, the arrow, and then just fill it with a color. What would a butterfly, probably brown maybe. I don't know, whatever. Black, something like that. That's good. I don't stare at butterflies all day, but that's fine. Press the Escape key when you're done. Hide that panel. And here's a test for you, okay? You're gonna love my test. I wanna take the antenna and the body and keep them as one object. I wanna group them together, so we're gonna select all three objects. Easiest way right now, there's no other artwork in the way. I'm just gonna click and drag across, touch them. Go to Object, Group. I can now take the little body and bring it over to the butterfly wing, and we've got the start of our butterfly. It's pretty cool. I could take the body itself, arrange it behind the wing. We could take the wing and reflect it. We could put some color in the wings. We could do all that kinda thing, and that's actually what I did on this side. I just cheated and kinda finished it up for us, but these are the starting points of it. What do you think so far of drawing? There's a lot, I know. There's a lot going on, a lot of ways to do it. I wanted to show you the three main tools, and, honestly, if you're just starting in Illustrator, the one tool you're probably gonna be using a fair amount is the Curvature Tool. Some people jump right into the pen. Takes a little longer, but it works. There we are, we've got ourselves a mutant butterfly. Looking pretty good.

Class Description

This course is part of: Adobe Illustrator Creative Cloud: Essentials for Creating Projects 

Gain the fundamentals necessary to tackle the world’s best vector-based illustration software Adobe® Illustrator®. Brian Wood will take you step-by-step and explain everything a beginner needs to know to get up and running with Illustrator, including:

  • Interface & tools
  • Using the pen tool
  • Applying color
  • Formating Text 

In Adobe Illustrator CC for Beginners Brian will use a series of projects to teach you everything you need to create your first graphic or illustration. 

Software Used: Adobe Illustrator CC 2015



I've been trying to learn Illustrator on and off for years. This is the best instruction I've had! Brian is a great instructor. Finally feeling comfortable with it. It does use an older version but I just adapt.

Bill Neill

Great content and a good instructor. Not his fault the world marches on and doesn't stay in 2015. Any reasonably intelligent person will be able to figure out the changes since 2015 and how they relate to this course. It is early 2019, and I'm not having any trouble, but then I am reasonably intelligent and not to lazy to do some thinking.

a Creativelive Student

Pretty good so far but he's using a very different version of Illustrator and my currently updated version does not have the tool bars top and bottom for dealing with artboards.