Adobe Illustrator CC - Advanced Training

How to make a Linocut effect in Adobe Illustrator CC

Daniel Walter Scott

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Hello wonderful Illustrator people. In this tutorial we're going to learn how to make a Linocut like this. It's super simple, let's get started. To get started, we need to draw the two sides of our petal. Now I've just made a green background and locked it, nothing fancy. You can use any drawing tool you like. I'm going to use the Pen Tool, with no Fill and no Stroke. It's kind of like this one, super simple. Just so it's nice and clear, real kind of nice. White Arrow, just to make some slight adjustments. Pen Tool again. Now, it can't be one solid shape, it needs to be two separate ones. So I'm just going to kind of draw them separately here and not spend too long trying to fix it up. 

Now, there's two things that make this-- well, two things that can mess you up. If you try and align these up now to make them perfect, you can make them perfect like, you might be here, you really want to. When you start blending it does weird stuff. So what we're going to do is match them up, then pull them back apart. I've got my Smart Guides on, so it's snapping. It's not snapping away. Come on, petal. There you are, snap at this, buddy. Don't worry too much about the Stroke yet, we're going to go and fix that. But before you hit Blend, just move them apart. Now we've done blending quite a few times in this course. Let's just use the shortcut, 'Command-Option-B', or 'Control-Alt-B', and now we can blend them both, now we can move them back together. 

To get them back together, double click the outside to get inside the Blend. Now I can grab one of these guys and just kind of align them back again. Let's go back out, smash that arrow until it comes back out. And with it selected, double click your 'Blending Tool' and increase your steps. Now it will all depend on the size you've drawn yours. 8. I practiced this, can't even remember which I picked. That will do for the moment, maybe let's come back to that because what we want to do is—

You could leave it like straight lines like that, that's cool. We are going to go to Stroke, and play around with the Profile and just pick this first option here. Then increase the weight of the Stroke until we get something we kind of like. Kind of like it in there, but I probably need some more steps. I'm going to just go into Steps real quick. That's basically it, you got two sides, just lines kind of connecting up. Using Blending now, I'll show you that kind of effect where they, kind of-- it's more just kind of what other tools you can use to make this kind of full petal. It was like more of a flower bud. And I'll show you some of the pros and cons. 

Now one other thing is, if I start duplicating this, and start kind of messing around with it, it does weird stuff with the Strokes. You could fix it afterwards, say you do decide to kind of bend it around and these kind of end points don't work good. Go to 'Stroke', and just turn this on and off again. Just kind of reset it, which is one way. Another way you might do is just to outline it. So that's what I'm going to do because the next step requires me to do some cutting a bit. To outline it, or to kind of expand it-- the way that you normally do is you go to 'Object', 'Expand', right? Don't do it that way. Go to 'Blend', and go to 'Expand'. Same sort of thing but now it's all those lines. 

I'm going to-- I should have gone to Transform Flick. Reflect. I'm just kind of doing something else. What am I doing here? Just trying a new size. Now what I'd like to do is, I want-- I should have saved a version of this, I'm going to save a version. Like this other version of this side. So this guy here, I want to get back to my shapes. I can go inside, copy it, and paste it out. I can just go 'Blend', say 'Release', release my lines. Thank you. We're just going to use one of these, actually I'll show you both. I'll make it green, so it makes it obvious what I'm doing for this guy. It's going to be like a cutting path. We'll make it a little bit bigger, bring it to the front just so I can use that, I want to use that slice, the chunks of this. Move it to V field, I'm using my arrow keys on my keyboard. That's nice. 

I'm going to grab both of these guys now, and just move them out because that's just hard to work in there. Now we need to delete all these. The best way is the Shape Builder Tool. I'll hold down the 'Option' key on a Mac, 'Alt' key on a PC, and just kind of drag across them all. And then, this guy here, I'm going to delete. That's kind of it, we're going to do-- I'll do the top bit with you, but if you want to carry on, you can, because that's kind of what I do to get this. 

Now, that guy there probably needs the Stroke Weight taken down. So we can see a bit more of it. Now this other one at the top here, I could use that thing again or I could just draw one; let's draw one. So skip ahead now if you're keen otherwise let's do this together. I'm using my Drawing Tool. Now what I'm going to do is make sure they over lapse. So even though I've drawn those two little shapes, I'm going to kind of have it, so—

Goes under here, so I can slice it off. Now remember, keep them separate. Actually you've done your Blending. Remember, 'Command-Option-B', or 'Control-Alt-B'. Let's zoom back in. Let's go to 'Wireframe Mode', which is 'Command Y', or 'Control Y' on a PC. They’re joined, double click to get inside them. Now I can grab one, actually I can grab the Anchor point up there. Just make sure they're tippy touching. Come back out. Right click in there a few times. 'Command Y', or 'Control Y', and with them selected, let's add that Stroke and just change the Profile. Happy enough with the size at the moment, let's increase the Blending. Double click the 'Bending Tool'. Let's do the specific steps, and we're here. Click on that. Not enough. 20. If I zoom out, I actually can't, well that's there, zoom out. Yes, it’s getting there. Kind of like it. Maybe it's the Stroke Weight that's not quite working. This maybe Stroke Weight. Yes, that's fine. I increase it up again, oh, don't increase that up again. As long as it's—

This is enough. Down the bottom there to slice off. So now I'm going to grab the thing that I've duplicated. You can freak out too. Keep a copy of it. Geez Dan, come on. 'Release'. I'll make it a bit bigger. This side here as well. I'll 'ungroup' that. Now I just want you, my friend, to be a piece. Make it a little bigger. If you just use the same size it doesn't tend to follow the curve as you'd hope. That was probably just a little big. That's my plan. You know exactly what I'm going to do now, it's exactly what we did a second ago. 

This guy here needs to be expanded because I can't use the Shape Builder Tool to delete it, because it's still that Blending mode. So, you grab this. 'Object', 'Blend'. 'Release'. Not what I wanted. It's 'Expand'. Let's select these ones, I'm using my Shape Builder Tool. Shortcut for that is 'Command M', 'Control M' on a PC. Just deleting the bits I don't need. Come here. 'Black Arrow', and you guys are gone. Move it. The crowning glory. Ah, it's awesome. Come in. That is how to do kind of a Linocut effect in Adobe Illustrator. 

All right, let's get on to the next video. Hold on, one last thing; Drop Shadows. You may or may not like Drop Shadows, I'm going to select them all. I'm not sure why I've paused the video to come back and show you Drop Shadows, but here we go. I like the little ones, little baby ones. Kind of makes it more, maybe from a distance, a bit more linocut. Now we can skip on to the next video. All right, see you there.