Archive for March, 2009

March 14, 2009

Cool Extras–Weekly Wrap

Contributed by Terry Hemphill, Illustrator Product Marketing Manager

I always like to get good news about all of our customers, but especially those “FOIs” (Friends of Illustrator) who use vector graphics to help craft their unique styles.

Catalina Estrada, Simone Legno and Chevon Hicks are amazing designers who have been working on some interesting projects. Check em’ out after the jump…


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March 12, 2009

Working Smarter, with Templates

Contributed by Brenda Sutherland, Illustrator Drum Major

Wouldn’t it be handy if you could keep a shoebox for every client you had. You could fill it with the colors, fonts and logos that you keep around just for that client, and every time you had a new job for them, you could just open that shoebox and shake the content out onto your computer and PRESTO, begin work with everything at your fingertips!

What if I told you this wasn’t pure fantasy, that you can assemble that shoebox, and many more like them, so they’re always ready for you whenever you need to pull them off the shelf? There is a way, and it’s so simple you won’t believe anything this easy could be so powerful and save you so much time.


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March 11, 2009

Inspiration Break — Artist Tasso

Contributed by Terry Hemphill, Illustrator Product Marketing Manager

Creating portraits using vector graphics can be problematic; there’s just so much work out there that shows great technique but very little in terms of creativity.

Tasso is a young artist from Southern California who’s work always manages to capture the moment.
Check out this video of him creating a self-portrait with Illustrator. Music is Bluebird from One Self.

For more on Tasso, check out his MySpace page and an interview with him on

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March 10, 2009

Focus on the art

Contributed by David Macy, Illustrator Product Manager

When I meet people who rely on Adobe Illustrator for their daily work, I like to ask them how long they have been using it. Some respond with the number of years, but most respond by the version number they started with, or sometimes even with the key feature they remember from that version. One man at a San Francisco user group meeting smiled and proudly said “I’ve been using Illustrator since the time when you had to enter text in a dialog box!”.

Imagine that – in the first versions of Illustrator you actually had to type your text in a modal dialog, then click OK before you could see the text on the artboard. Moving from that to being able to enter text directly where you want it and get a real-time WYSIWYG preview on the art as you type was such an amazing improvement in usability, efficiency and creativity that direct on-the-artboard control should have become one of the guiding principles for the design of every new feature in Illustrator.

Now, I’m not saying that each and every control in Illustrator should sit right on top of your artwork. There is certainly a time and place for tools and settings which are accessed from those elegant, dock-able, floating panels that we’ve developed. What I am saying is that there are many features of Illustrator that can be improved by imaging how to give artists more direct interaction with the artwork. Direct control on the artwork is what we had in mind as we re-imagined some of the important features in CS4 (Gradients and Smart Guides for example), and you will certainly see more features that are re-imagined to follow this guiding principle in the future. What Illustrator features can you think of that would benefit from this philosophy?

And for extra credit – can you name the Illustrator version where live text on the artboard was introduced?

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March 9, 2009

Monday Caffeinators — Quick Tips to Start the Week

Contributed by Terry Hemphill, Illustrator Product Marketing Manager

Rounded rectangles in Illustrator — we all use them, but how many of us create them using Effects?

Instead of using the Rounded Rectangle Tool, create a standard rectangle and apply the Effect>Convert to Shape>Rounded Rectangle. Using Effects lets you can make adjustments to the roundness of the corners at anytime, all while previewing the changes.

Here’s a link to a great tutorial from written by Mordy Golding.

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