New to illustrator, i need some help!

Discussion in 'Design and Graphics' started by NoSmokingBandit, Jul 3, 2010.

  1. NoSmokingBandit macrumors 68000


    Apr 13, 2008
    I've done a bit of vector in photoshop before, but i decided to finally do a project the right way and use illustrator. The problem is that everything seems to be a pain to accomplish, though i assume most of that is just me not knowing the program.


    First thing i wanted to do was make something simple and symmetrical so i could get the hang of basic functions. I like to add a vertical guide halfway through the canvas, but there doesnt seem to be a way to make the rulers show percentage in Illustrator :confused: How can i line a guide up to the middle of the canvas other than zooming in and lining it up by counting pixels?

    It also seems that guides dont snap to points on a selected path. In Photoshop i could select a path, put a guide on one of the points, then easily line up other paths to that guide, but in illustrator the guides dont snap into place so i have to eye it up, which bothers me because i know its not 100% lined up.

    Any help would be much appreciated. Thank you!
  2. IgnatiusTheKing macrumors 68040


    Nov 17, 2007
    das Fort
    Go to View > Guides and unlock the guides, you can then select them after they've been created and use the transform controls at the top to set them to the exact location you want.

    If you have Smart Guides turned on, it will tell you when an object you are dragging is intersecting a guide, so you can align them all to one another. Also, if you hold down the shift key while you drag something, I think it snaps to the ruler increments.

    Hope that helps.
  3. usclaneyj macrumors regular

    May 1, 2005
    After you have created a shape, you can align it to the artboard. So you don't need to drag a guide to the 50% mark. With the object selected, look at your application bar. See something that looks like this?
    Set that rectangular thing to "Align to Artboard" and then choose whichever align option you need.

    Like Ignatius says, use Smart Guides to align objects/anchors/etc. Just a note from my personal experiences though: Smart Guides are a pain in the ass 90% of the time, so learn that keyboard shortcut for turning them off & on! :)

    Hope that helps.
  4. NoSmokingBandit thread starter macrumors 68000


    Apr 13, 2008
    I think i'm getting it now :eek:

    Illustrator is a completely different beast than Photoshop, but i feel like once i figure it out i'll be cranking out vector work much faster than Photoshop.

    Thanks for the pointers!
  5. usclaneyj macrumors regular

    May 1, 2005
    For sure. Illustrator is awesome.

    I dunno what version of AI you're using, but if it's CS4, I highly recommend the Blob Brush. And the pathfinder palette is your best friend. Seriously. Of course, if you have AI CS5, you can use Shapebuilder to do most of what the Pathfinder palette does.

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