Attack of the Vectors!

October 4, 2010 By Paul Yeatman

Man oh man.  Tonight we got to use a program called Adobe Illustrator.  Rather than doodle away using rasters, like in a paint program, the illustration proggy makes the user draw lines called vectors. The straight lines are easy, some curves are easy, but the wiggly curves such as those used to make umbrellas or waves are hard!

It was also my first use of an Apple computer, but despite some small differences, I could not see what all the fuss is about.

So, how did tonight pan out?

After about 30 mins of intro, we got to get our hands dirty by drawing simple shapes at first, using template, up to some really tricky ones.  This took about an hour or two to get a grip on.  Following that, it was onto new shapes, but without any templates.  Talk about frustration.  For what I got up to in two hours, see below:

I found the easiest way to do things was to get as close to possible to the what we were tracing, then clean up the lines using ‘the white arrow’.  Probably not the best approach, but now I’ve got about 3 hours or practice this week to try and improve on this.  Stay tuned.

Things were not helped by our lecturer? not being 100% there thanks to disappearing to chat on his mobile quite frequently, once we were started in weilding the mice.

Okay, after writing that, I had a play and redid what I’d done at class in about ¼ the time.  I appear to be getting the hang of how to get a line to change direction so yippie.  The plan now is to convert something an old t-shirt design of mine into a vector in the before the weekend.  Wish me luck.