Utilizing the Magic Wand’s Tolerance Levels

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Illustrator has many great selection features, as I talked about in a previous post Save Time With Save Selection. Another selection option that I use regularly is the Magic Wand Tool (Y). With the Magic Wand Tool (Y), you select an object and the tool will select every object with similar attributes. The real benefit of using the Magic Wand Tool (Y) comes when setting the tolerance levels.

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Quickly Change Measurment Units

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I have seen this tip around on a couple of blogs, but it is so helpful I had to repeat it. You can quickly change you document’s measurement units by Control-Cliking (mac) or Right-Clicking (pc) on the Ruler. I use this constantly when designing websites or working with a file from overseas (the United States is a little behind on the whole Metric system thing).

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Save Time With Save Selection

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Selecting multiple objects in Illustrator is essential to productivity. Illustrator has some great selection features: Select Same, Select Object, Magic Wand, and so on. One selection feature that I always use is Save Selection. I usually save selections early on in a illustration to easily come back to them even though the stroke, fill, and other attributes have be modified.

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Easily Switch Color Profiles

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This trick is similar to the Compliment Color trick, but I use it so much, I had to share it. I use specific color modes for different projects, and found myself more comfortable mixing certain colors in certain color profiles. A quick way to switch between profiles in the Color Panel is to press Shift and Click on the Color Ramp. You can easily swap between CMYK, RGB, HSB, Grayscale and Web Safe RGB.

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Extract Paths From Mesh Shapes

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I love the results you can get when working with meshes, but sometimes I don’t love trying to edit them.  When a path is converted to a Mesh Object, it is no longer a Path. This can get frustrating if you want the original path for other purposes. To extract the original Path, select the Mesh Object, go Object > Path > Offset Path and enter 0. Now you have a copy!

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