Why is Illustrator so damn infuriating and over complex? It takes about 40 steps to do something where as in Freehand (an ancient app) can do it in 3! As Freehand is no longer supported I'm stuck with Illustrator and at times I think I've cracked it but then some days Illustrator just does whatever the hell it wants. So my problem to day is simple. I want to make a clipping path/mask of a group of items... thats it! Why the **** does Illustrator refuse to do it and/or change the outcome of the process? Below is a logo I'm working on. Its poo I know but its what the client wants anyhow... underneath it are the circles representing bubbles and the black mask I want to use. Once masked the bubbles will be moved on top of the logo above. I know the mask has to be on top when executing the path I've shown it underneath here so you can see what Im clipping. When I try to create the mask I get two kinds of result. One is an invisible mask and no bubbles inside it OR I get bubbles in just the H at the beginning. I tried grouping and uniting the bubbles AND the mask but I get the same results. The stupid thing is, I did it about 30 minutes earlier with the same exact object in the same damn file. Please can someone explain to me why Illustrator gives different results and is there a stupid sequence or dance I need to do before it will work. In Freehand all I would need to do is cut one object, select the other and click past inside. Job done! I've been at this for ages now and I"m charging by the hour and I can't start charging 100s for a ****ing clipping mask! Why Adobe keep insisting on creating ever complex apps when it is clearly not needed I dont know. I've been in the graphics industry a long time and the only other app more complex and ridiculous than Illustrator is Microsoft Word. Hope someone can help and apologies for the attitude I'm just pissed off!