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Two little questions concerning the Pen Tool.

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  • Two little questions concerning the Pen Tool.

    Dear designers,

    I was wondering if you could share some of your knowledge concerning the pen tool (I have watched the "Everything you ever wanted to know about the pen tool" video).
    I have an assignment to complete by Monday, which is to reproduce the attached images as accurately as possible (only allowed to use the pen tool). I know how to do it, but just wanted to ask whether there were some time-saving tricks that I don't know about.

    1. In the first photo, my initial plan was to trace the whole face and fill it in with the color. If you notice, a lot of the hair right on the face is black, and since I have already traced the whole face, i.e. some parts of this black is already traced, I was wondering if there was a way to trace the black piece not from the scratch, but from the part that was initially done for the face, just to save time?

    2. For the second image, I got to use the clipping mask. Again, I know how to do it, but the prof said that there is a little cool trick to save time for the background (circles), and we'd have to do the research ourselves. We don't have to trace each circle, which would be quite painful! I can create a circle, duplicate the layer, arrange them properly, and repeat it over and over, but is there a time-saving method around it?

    Because English is not my first language, I apologize if you have any difficulties understanding what I meant

    Best wishes!
    Attached Files

  • #2
    Originally posted by Gamma007 View Post
    1. ...a way to trace the black piece not from the scratch, but from the part that was initially done for the face, just to save time?
    With the Direct Selection tool (white arrow), marquee-select the particular segments that make up the part(s) you want to reuse and press Ctrl/Cmd+C to copy. Paste in Front (I'd paste to a new layer above) using Ctrl/Cmd+F. With the Pen tool, continue the shape by clicking an open endpoint first; the next click will add a connected segment.

    Originally posted by Gamma007 View Post
    2. the background (circles)...
    You mean the dots? Google "halftone dot pattern in Illustrator"

    I'd rather be killed than come to your party, but if you don't invite me, I'll kill myself.

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    • #3
      For the first one, you can do as Hotbutton said, which will work fine. You can also use the various tools in Illustrator's Pathfinder palette window to cut shapes apart. For example partially layering one shape over another, then using one of the pathfinder tools to cut one shape out of the next (sort of hard to explain, but easy to do).

      For the second one, yeah, I'd do as HotButton suggested. Make a pattern out of 50 or so dots, then fill the face shape with the pattern. Here are some instructions: https://helpx.adobe.com/illustrator/using/patterns.html

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      • #4
        For halftone dots, nothing beats Rasterbator. My favorite go to tool for vector halftone dots (from raster artwork such as a gradient created in photoshop just for the purpose of making a screen pattern.)

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        • #5
          Originally posted by HotButton View Post

          With the Direct Selection tool (white arrow), marquee-select the particular segments that make up the part(s) you want to reuse and press Ctrl/Cmd+C to copy. Paste in Front (I'd paste to a new layer above) using Ctrl/Cmd+F. With the Pen tool, continue the shape by clicking an open endpoint first; the next click will add a connected segment.
          Perfect! Exactly what I was looking for. Truly appreciated.

          Originally posted by HotButton View Post

          You mean the dots? Google "halftone dot pattern in Illustrator"
          Yeah, I meant the dots. Thanks for that, but I've found an even easier way. Draw 1 circle, hit Object -> Pattern -> Make. That's it.

          Anyways, gratitude for your kind and quick help. I've finished the first image already. Tomorrow, I'll get on the second one and should finish it as well. By the way, how long do you think it would take you to duplicate the first image using only the Pen and Eyedropper Tools? Just curious.

          Comment


          • PrintDriver
            PrintDriver commented
            Editing a comment
            I'd use the Blob brush, and the convert anchor tool more than the pen tool. And a Wacom.
            About 30-45 minutes maybe.

            It's quite possible live trace would do an adequate job on something like this in a split second. I'd try that first.
            Last edited by PrintDriver; 09-22-2017, 11:12 PM.

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