Resolved Illustrator CS5: Clipping Mask Alternative?

Discussion in 'Design and Graphics' started by Lord Blackadder, Sep 17, 2011.

  1. Lord Blackadder, Sep 17, 2011
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2011

    Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #1
    Self-taught (read: inferor) Illustrator user here with a dilemma.

    I have a large grayscale vector drawing (a map, to be precise), from which I want to produce a detail section. The goal is to take a smaller rectangular portion of the map, crop it out of the larger drawing and blow it up, adding details.

    The 'crop' is where I am having issues. Making a clipping mask won't work because I don't want to lose the 20+ layers I've created yet. I tried making an identical-sized clipping mask for each layer, but that doesn't quite work either; I want to get rid of all the data outside the clipping mask - not mask it.

    Any hints or tips? Is there a way I can draw a shape and delete all data outside the shape? Thanks in advance folks!
     
  2. skyton macrumors 6502

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    #2
    Have you tried looking at the pathfinder tools?
     
  3. CortexRock macrumors 6502

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    #3
    This might not work, but could be worth a go... (I don't have a 20 layer Illustrator file handy to test it on)

    Try creating a new art board instead of a clipping mask around the bit you want to zoom in on, then export that art board as a separate file.

    You should then be able to open the exported chunk, work on it as necessary, and even import it back in to the main drawing to create the illusion of a zoomed in section.

    Let me know if this helps! :confused:
     
  4. Lord Blackadder thread starter macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #4
    I haven't, and don't know anything about them. Time to do some research... :eek:

    Thanks for the tip! :) I will give this a try.
     
  5. Lord Blackadder thread starter macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #5
    Bump -

    I tried your suggestion CortexRock, and it seems that, while I can save the second arboard as a seperate file (and it will print it as a crop), it does not get rid of all of the paths outside of the artboard.

    So far, the only solution that I think might work will be to unlock all layers, draw a box for the desired crop, then use the eraser to draw around the box, severing every path that crosses the box. Then I will use the scissors and pencil to neaten up the paths so they all intersect with the box as a border. Unfortunately, this is going to take a long time. But is seems to be the only way to get rid of the data I don't want to include without messing with my layers.
     
  6. andy.barron macrumors 6502

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    #6
    What you want to do is copy the elements you need to a single layered document, outline all strokes & flatten any transparency.

    Draw your rectangle selection over the are you require & 'crop' (pathfinder) with everything selected.

    Voila, you will have only the are you require:)
     
  7. Lord Blackadder thread starter macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #7
    Thanks for the tip!

    By 'single layered' do you mean merging all of my layers before cropping? I'm trying to avoid that. But that may not be possible unless I follow the labor intensive, half-assed method I outlined above. I'm sure if I have more experience with Illustrator I would know a better way to go about what I'm trying to do. :eek:
     
  8. andy.barron macrumors 6502

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    #8
    No problem, I've been using Illustrator every day of my working life since Ill'88 & can understand your frustration as its not the lightest app.

    From reading your thread again, here is what I would do:

    1. Save your multi layered map as your base file: 'MAP' (use .eps).
    2. Create a new .ai the same size as your original file (MAP) & call this something like 'ART'.
    3. Place the file 'MAP' as a picture into 'ART' into co-ordinates 0/0.
    4. Then place MAP again into a masked area (rectangle or any shape you like) which will allow you to re-size this to any size & position you like
    5. Repeat stage 4 for any additional sections you would like to enlarge or show.

    NOW, when you update original file 'MAP' all your placed elements will update also, saving repeat editing or making amends quick & easy.

    Make sense?
     
  9. Lord Blackadder thread starter macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #9
    Thanks again! I'll give it a try...I'm assuming the masked area you refer to in step 4 is a clipping mask in the shape of the desired crop?
     
  10. andy.barron macrumors 6502

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    #10
    Thats it. So you could have something like the below. This way any amends you make to your master 20 layered map will auto update in your layout doc:
     

    Attached Files:

  11. Lord Blackadder thread starter macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #11
    I think this will work. Thanks very much! I owe you an adult beverage. ;) I think I learn something new every time I try to make a drawing with Illustrator. :eek:
     
  12. andy.barron macrumors 6502

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    #12
    No probs, will tie up for a Stella soon!:)

    ----------

    Or perhaps a slapup meal at Mrs Miggins pie shop!!:D
     
  13. skyton macrumors 6502

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    #13
    [/COLOR]Or perhaps a slapup meal at Mrs Miggins pie shop!!:D[/QUOTE]

    Actually made me laugh out loud!
     

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