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!
I’ve made some changes to the site. Probably most noticeable, is the advertising. I have started using BuySellAds.com, check them out for more info on purchasing ad space. I really want to keep the advertising to a minimum, but still need some revenue to keep the site running. I have also added Email Subscriptions to the feed and added Related Posts for better browsing.
If you are ever needed an object with a stroke to have exact dimensions, you probably got frustrated very quick. By default, Illustrator doesn’t take into account the dimensions of a stroke. You can easily change this by going Illustrator > Preferences > General and check the Use Preview Bound box. Now, Illustrator will take into account the dimensions of strokes, brushes, effects, and so on.
I love using the Brush Tool (b), but hate trying to change the direction of them. Finally I found a quick way to change the direction of a single brush stroke without affecting other strokes associated with the same brush. First, select the path and then click on a endpoint with the Pen Tool (p), creating a new direction toward that point. Sadly, this trick only works on open paths.
The second texture up for Vectips Texture Week is brushed metal. Like the previous Water Texture Tutorial, this brushed metal technique also utilizes Illustrator’s Effects. Again this tutorial is pretty simplistic when you break it down, and easy to replicate numerous times. You can use the brushed metal texture in almost anything, but I find myself using it in icons, logos, and interfaces quite a bit.
Here is another quick, but usefully tip. To isolate a layer in a complicated file, Option-click (Alt-click) the Visibility Icon on a certain layer to hide all other layers. Option-click (Alt-click) the Visibility Icon again to reveal all the layers. You can also Option-click (Alt-click) and drag across multiple layers to isolate more than one layer at a time.
In Illustrator, it’s easy to pick a complement color of the current Fill or Stroke in the Color Panel. From the Pop-Up Menu of the Color Panel select Complement. If you are keyboard shortcut freak, like me, you can change to the complement color by Command Shift-clicking (Mac) or Ctrl-Shift-clicking (Win) on the Color Ramp at the bottom of the Color panel.