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Adobe Illustrator CC - Advanced Training

Mastering corners with Adobe Illustrator CC corner widget effects

Daniel Walter Scott

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Welcome to the Corner Extravaganza. We're going to turn corners into curves by using these weird little targets that appeared. Now that looked a little underwhelming. It gets a little bit more exciting but you should stick around because some of the tips you're going to learn here are going to help us later on in the Advanced course so hang around, let's learn about corners. 

So Corner Options have been around a little while. A lot of people just ignore them. I'm going to grab my 'Rectangle Tool'. I just got a plain document open, nothing fancy. I'm going to draw a box, and it's these guys, these little targets in the corners. If you can't see yours, they're under 'View', and they call them 'Corner Widgets'. So you can turn them on and off. They can get annoying, a little bit when you're using Pen Tool, and stuff, or the Direct Selection Tool. So what they do is-- all I do is drag them in, and I get rounder corners. Not particularly fancy, we can fancy them up a little bit by grabbing the Direct Selection Tool, the White Arrow, clicking on just one corner. And you can kind of do one side, click on the other side. That's kind of cooler. 

Where it gets nice, or more advanced is, holding down the 'Option' key on a Mac, or the 'Alt' key on a PC, and just clicking one of these guys. Whatever you've got selected. And you can see, I can change it from an outie to an innie to a flat but you get the idea. So it works for rectangles, it works for anything. Grab the 'Curvature Tool', and we start doing weird corner stuff. And you'll see that, if I have my White Arrow here, whenever there is a corner, you can see, I can kind of flatten it out. And that's going to come in real handy later on when we start joining things with the Shape Builder Tool. That was a pretty bad example but let's look at the Star real quick, and we'll look at a couple of other options. Don't leave. 

So I've got a Star, I'm going to drag it over here. I'm going to grab the 'White Arrow'. You can see, there's corners everywhere. I can just kind of turn them up or I can select just this one, hold 'Shift', and grab all of these guys, and just do the outside ones. It does get better than this, I promise. How much better? There are some extra options. If you double click any of these guys, so double click any of the targets, you get kind of corner options. You can decide on how-- how relative or absolute. Just different kind of corners. Depends on how the Anchor Points make it. You can obviously change your Anchor Points here as well, and if I go back to the 'Radius' you can kind of push it in and out, instead of dragging it. Let's click 'OK'. 

One thing you might run into is, if you're drawing something, say a random shape. I grab the 'Pen Tool', I'm just drawing randomness, right? And if I double click on any of these points, it gives me this kind of Corner Options Panel. You might get, if you're dealing with say a regular shape, like a Rectangle Tool, it's still a primitive shape, Illustrator still knows it's a rectangle. You can see up there, it says, "I'm a rectangle, not a random shape." Now if I use the 'Black Arrow', and double click on any of these guys you get a slightly different window. It controls the-- you get a bit more control here but you can see, these are the corners, and these are the corner options. So it's no real difference, just-- I'm going to increase this up and you can see, I'm looking at the top right angle over there. Just so you know, you might look at a different window than I got just a second ago. 

Now the big thing to do in here though is, say if I-- I'll make this a lot bigger. Scale Corners, I can't remember if it’s on or off by default. I've not played with it too many times but the difference is, if I grab my 'Rectangle Tool' now and scale this down with 'Scale Corners', and I'm holding 'Shift', so it scales proportionately it gets smaller. Whereas if I turn that off, and scale it down, you'll notice it eventually turns into a kind of a weird circley egg thing because it's trying to maintain those corners. So, turn those on and off as you need them. If you can't get this thing to open up, just go to 'Window', 'Transform'. You end up at the same place. 

One thing might happen though-- you saw I double clicked it. It might end up looking like this to start with. If you double click the word 'Transform', gets smaller before it gets bigger. So big, medium, little, bit tiny; I'm not sure why that one's useful but anyway you get the idea. You can keep double clicking that way to get the different options. I'm going to click 'Scale' on, seems like a better way of working. 

Now what I want to do before we go, I'm just going to go back to-- remember, our whale from earlier? It really annoyed me, this nose here so I'm going to click on it, and I'm going to-- remember, I'm using my White Arrow, if I use the Black Arrow, I set the whole shape, and I don’t get those little targets. So I'm going to grab this and I click on just this corner, and that's what I wanted for my friend, a little snubby nose. I'm going to go wreck a few other bits but you are fine to carry on, and now I'm going to grab you, and just track you down there so it's just on this top bit. Looks terrible. Kind of looks a little bit more like water. My whale's not like flowers. All right, you get the idea, right? 

So Corner Option's useful. We're getting that more and more useful as we get through that course. So yes, we need to introduce it now. All right, let's get on to the next video. But before then, I'm going to undo. I'd rather, not like he's ejecting flowers. Anyway, that looked terrible. Okay, now we're going to the next video.