Tips for dummies: Using Illustrator on a daily basis

Tips for dummies: Using Illustrator on a daily basis

If you are starting work or want to work in the graphic design world, or want to incorporate some of it into your daily work life, then Photoshop and Illustrator are two of the main software that you will need to get used to. Most people are familiar with Photoshop to an extent due to most up and coming photo editing software/ apps on phones and computers having the basic elements of Photoshop. But sometimes when you want to do a bit more than just editing brightness and glare of a photo, then you will need to get used to more tools.

In illustrator more so than working on photos you get to put your own artistic flair into work and create something new. In illustrator you will be working with vector graphics rather than raster. In Photoshop it is the opposite. Vector graphics are mainly polygons and lines that make up the image in the first place. Vector graphics allow you a lot more freedom than working with raster works.


Tip #1: Shrug off the fear of the pen tool

As you get used to Illustrator you will slowly but surely understand that the pen tool is your best friend out of most of the tools in illustrator. Although most fear the pen tool due to the difficulty in drawing anything in Paint and Photoshop, in Illustrator the pen tool is the main thing to use to design something. You can just put up points and the pen tool will draw the most probable shape with these points. With the pen tool you can manipulate a shape to a far greater degree than you ever thought possible.


Tip #2: Using the pathfinder tool to the maximum

Pathfinder panel is the best thing to use when you want to put a shape into another shape. You can just add one shape on top of another and then either merge it together, subtract one shape from the other, intersect them and select the insides or outsides, exclude one shape from the other shape and et cetera. It’s the best to be used for designing logos and such and there are multiple tutorials for efficiently using the pathfinder tool online as it can be used in a multitude ways and with tons of shortcuts.

The appearance panel, clipping masks, custom made brushes, custom made patterns are some of the options that you can try out on your own and also make on your own. Illustrator is one of the best software out there for making your style and actually making it great.

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