Lynda – Tracing Artwork with Illustrator

Discover how to trace artwork in Adobe Illustrator and convert raster graphics into vector form. This course shows how to perform auto tracing with the Image Trace panel as well as create artwork from scratch using the Shape Builder and the Pen tool. Author Justin Seeley shares several real-world tracing scenarios, which will help you learn how to assess artwork, determine its traceability, and then convert it into vector form in a variety of different ways.

Topics include

  • Analyzing the existing artwork
  • Developing a tracing plan
  • Setting up your artwork
  • Exploring the three steps of tracing
  • Adjusting the curve fitting
  • Combining paths into shapes
  • Tracing text by hand
  • Applying colors to your artwork

Table of Content

Using the exercise files

1. Core Tracing Concepts
Setting your expectations
Exploring common tracing scenarios
Analyzing existing artwork
Scanning original artwork
Cleaning up raster artwork
Understanding tracing terminology

2. Preparing Your Trace
Autotracing vs. manual creation
Developing a tracing plan
Setting up your artwork for autotracing
Setting up your artwork for manual creation

3. Auto Image Tracing Basics
Exploring the three steps of tracing
Exploring the Image Trace panel
Quick tracing with presets

4. Advanced Tracing Options
Adjusting the tracing palette
Adjusting pixel assignment
Adjusting the curve fitting
Basic tracing: Photos
Basic tracing: Line art
Expanding your artwork
Cleaning up stray pixels
Removing unwanted anchor points

5. Re-Creating Artwork with Shapes
Creating with shapes
Using the Pathfinder panel
Exploring the Shape Builder tool
Re-creating basic structures
Creating complex shapes

6. Re-Creating Artwork with the Pen Tool
Creating with the Pen tool
Basic Pen tool operations
Tracing basic lines and shapes
Tracing curves and complex areas
Combining paths into shapes

7. Working with Text
Tracing text by hand
Finding fonts on the web
Setting type yourself

8. Adjusting the Tracing Colors
Creating a color palette
Applying colors to your artwork
Creating color groups from your tracing

9. Quick Tracing Projects
Turning a photo into a logo component
Vectorizing a technical drawing

About the author



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