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Infographic Elements from Scratch in Illustrator

Lesson 16 of 25

Advanced Techniques in Pathfinder Panel

Jason Hoppe

Infographic Elements from Scratch in Illustrator

Jason Hoppe

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Lesson Info

16. Advanced Techniques in Pathfinder Panel


  Class Trailer
Now Playing
1 Class Introduction Duration:06:47
2 Basic Shapes Overview Duration:05:55
3 Start Creating Basic Shapes Duration:13:36
4 Edit Basic Shapes Duration:07:58
5 How to Use Corner Widgets Duration:16:39
6 Get Creative with Shapes Duration:15:32
7 Add Lines to Shapes Duration:05:57
8 Shapes with Offset Path Duration:06:38
9 Create Custom Lines Duration:06:01
10 Add Curves Into Shapes Duration:21:49
11 Curvature Tool Duration:08:35
12 Width Shape Tool Duration:14:25
13 How to Create a Dotted Line Duration:06:00
14 How to Segment a Circle Duration:05:50
17 How to Create a Slip Shadow Duration:08:50
18 Tips & Tricks for Chart Tools Duration:12:34
19 Combine Shapes Together Duration:19:27
20 Create Perspective in Shapes Duration:11:34
23 Create Implied Shading Duration:17:02
24 How to Make Graphics 3D Duration:16:29
25 Q & A Duration:05:02

Lesson Info

Advanced Techniques in Pathfinder Panel

So, more things that we can do with the pathfinder mode. Now this is one that I just did last week, and I love it because it's so simple. I'm gonna take these shapes here, and sometimes the process that we do takes multiple steps. So I want to end up creating an ax head here, so I'm gonna start with a circle, I'm gonna duplicate that circle, and what I wanna do, is, I'm gonna change the color of this, so we can see the outlines a lot better, there we go. So the resulting shape is, I want a double-headed ax, curved on this side, curved on this side, and I'm gonna go through and take my shapes, and I'm gonna do, this right here, so, I just want this ax shape right here, you see that. Okay. So, I'm gonna go and I'm gonna select all my objects, I'm gonna do minus front. When I do that, and it's like, oh my gosh, everything disappears. Isn't that cool. Now, sometimes you have to do these things in steps. I, in some cases I won't be able to go in and do everything I want, so I would have to ...

go in and subtract the front of one of them, and then go in, subtract the front of the other one, because sometimes as we're trying to take these apart or subtract or add, I can't just go in and click one button and have it do everything. But, sometimes it does. Works perfectly, I get my ax head, and there it is, awesome. Now I have to create a handle, which is going to be of course just a rounded rectangle, and I'm gonna make that brown, and I've got the handle, and you know, maybe my corner widgets are a bit extreme, so I can unwidget the corners a bit, that's a little bit better, but I still want the rounded handle, at the bottom. Awesome. Now, I need to go ahead and create the little lashing right there. Little angle tool, look at that. Little bit of rope to put over the top of that, nice. Right there. Let's do something a little bit different so you can see that. Make it, there we go. Now we can see it a little bit better. Gonna take that, and I can duplicate that, and I can rotate it, right there, kind of create a little bit of lashing over there, actually wanna copy this, I'm gonna flip it. Right click, reflect this, over the vertical, awesome. There that is. Look at that. Now I can kind of sew that whole thing together. I can move these up, actually I'm gonna hot dog the ends of both of these so it makes it look like they're kind of going around the edge, so much better. Put that at the end so they touch, that goes around there. Look at that! Center that a little bit better, right there, there you go. Good thing we haven't drawn a single thing, yeah. I know. But I could take these shapes, copy them, lift them, and there we go, like that, rotate them, drop them in there, boom. Done. Mm-hm. I know. Lipstick and lipstick case, sure. We're gonna do a fancy one. Okay? We're gonna do the ones that have a little chrome rings around them, oh yeah. So, we start off with our rounded rectangle, right there, and I don't want that much, so I'm gonna use my down arrow, and I'm gonna kinda round it a little bit more, there we go. Just like that. And we're going to fill it with a lighter color, that's a little bit too intense so let's just go and knock that back a little bit more, much better. Okay. So, that can be our base. And, I know some of them have little chrome rings, at the top here, we have the rounded ends, but we're gonna make this a little bit more square right there. So, I could go in, I could just draw a line, across this whole thing, like that, and put a bit of a stroke on it, of course hot dot the ends, go in, and with my stroke right there, create like a highlight ring, on there, and move that into the end if we want like a little edge on the cap, snap that to it, turn on our grid here so we can see what we're doing, so, it's easier make sure we're snapped into our grid, there we go. That was our issue before. There it is. Gonna make as wide as my grid, so, there can be a little cap right there, right there. Now we wanna make the little lipstick coming out right? Okay. So I'm gonna use my rectangle tool as well, position it just a little higher, right there, up above, and we're gonna need to make this bright fuchsia. There we go. Oh yeah. And, the bottom isn't going to be rounded, cause it's gonna be square sitting against the base there, and, I'm gonna take this side, and I'm just going to bump it up. Like so. I know. We have a little flat spot like there, and so I would have to fix that, what I would probably do, is I'd probably not widget the corners at first, get my shape, and then widget the corners afterwards. So there it is, up arrow, up arrow, up arrow, select those two points, round a little bit, no way. Get out. Okay? There it is. I can position that right up against there, like that, it needs a little highlight, doesn't it. Because you gotta have that highlight on the side there. There it is. Little line, put a little stroke on there, highlight noodle, go in, we need a much brighter color than this, I'll take that, double click, go in there, saturation, bring that up, pump that up, oh yeah. That's looking good. Mm-hm. Totally. I think we need a little ring around the bottom there, you know where you go ahead and turn it, like a little traction ring, so, I'm just gonna take a rectangle, put it over here, and doesn't matter if it's a fill or a stroke right there, I'm just going to use the pathfinder, and I'm going to cut it out. And then ungroup this whole thing, get rid of what I don't want, and there's my separate piece. Beautiful. Gonna change the color on that a little bit, saturate that, there we go, there's my little ring. Now, it needs to have little traction fingers, doesn't it. So you can actually feel and turn that. Totally! Need to send this, the back as well, so our little ring fits under there. So, I'm gonna jump down here, with the vertical line, I'm gonna draw a vertical line, and here's where snapping to the grid can kind of be a pain, because I don't want it to snap to the grid, I wanna basically put it right in the middle, so I'd have to turn off my snap-to-grid right here, and kind of put it right there, where I want it, in the middle of my object. Let's change the color of it here, so we have this, I'm gonna change it to, just a slight contrasting color here, hotdog the ends, right there, and then, I'm going to copy this. I'm gonna hold down my option key, click and drag, to match my grid command, Command-D, Command-D, Command-D, Command-D, Command-D, and now I've got my little traction thing at the bottom. There you go. Pretty sweet. Mm-hm. That's how you do it. A mascara brush. Same thing. All you have to do, is this can be your little handle, on the end, and then you can go and you can draw your little bar, so that you've got your little mascara bar there, and just copy this whole thing if you wanted too, put it over there, rotate it, there's your handle end, right there, there's your mascara wand, yeah. And then you can just do your little frizzy thing. Mm-hm. So you wanna do little brushes here, sure. The little brushes can literally be just straight lines if you want, with rounded ends, make 'em look like they're not so poky, and you can do little rounded ends with a little bit darker mascara there, and of course, we're on our grid structure, we can snap it to it, Command-D all the way along, and then grab all those, copy those down below, and now you got a little mascara brush. And on and on and on. Simple shapes. Look at everything, break them down into the simplest shapes that you could possibly imagine, and really, when you look at this, it's all just theory, basic shapes. So, there it is. And now we've got matching little handles, and all that other stuff. I did have a question, from Eunice Kim, who says, is there a way to give it more of a 3-D look behind, beyond the highlight tool, like on the lipstick. For example. Mm-hm. So, here's a really cool way, if you wanna add some, give something a little bit more dimension to these things. You can always go put a gradient fill inside here. Now, when I do a lot of infographics and icons, I tend to stay away from gradients, because it can get a little bit busy, visually, I like to use flat color. But yes, if you wanted to go in and do something like this, you could select the shape, and you could call up your gradient panel, and in your gradient panel here, I could take my gradient panel and I could apply a color here, go in and grab my colors, right from here, and I could pick a purple that's going to work really good, and I could have that fade to white, and I could control that gradient, so I could go and I could, you know, reverse my gradient right here, one direction or another, like that, that's one way of doing it, right there. If I wanna keep a solid color and I'd like to go and I'd like to create something with a little bit more depth and dimension, this is a great trick, if you ever wanna show something that has a little bit invention to it. I can take a line and I can also then take another line and copy it off a little bit, and actually go and take that line and I could make that line a little bit lighter or darker, to kind of give, an impression of like a drop shadow.

Class Description

Infographics are an effective way to provide a visual representation of information. In this beginner-friendly class, Jason Hoppe will take you through image-making techniques in Illustrator to use when building Infographics.  

You'll learn about:
  • Common icons used in infographics and how to create them 
  • Creating patterns and effects 
  • Using the shape builder tool 
You’ll then use the elements you created in a simple info graphic that is flexible enough to use in multiple ways. This class comes with an Illustrator file containing all the graphics created in the class. A great bonus that you can customize and use in your projects, in addition to what you create on your own. Get started today!

Software Used: Adobe Illustrator CC 2015


Patricia Green

This class is so much fun! I gobbled it up because I enjoyed every minute. It begins my journey into infographics, something I intend to put in my portfolio. Jason Hoppe is a great instructor who really knows his stuff. If you want to have fun with Illustrator, this is the class for you!


I bought the first version of the course of Infographics and I strongly recommend it to anyone who wants to learn how to use Illustrator. Exactly as he explains in the video, this is not a course just to learn how to make graphics. At the end of the course you will be able to develop just about anything in Illustrator. Really! All the knowledge I have today of this tool, started from this course of Infographics to which he refers. Not only the content is comprehensive, but Jason is a great teacher, explaining everything very, very simply. I'm looking forward to watching this update.


Jason, you ROCK! I learned a lot of things during this class. Thank you for being such a great teacher and taking time to share your knowledge. Will continue to purchase your classes. Sandra