Adobe Illustrator video tutorial #10
Smoothing Tool, Pen & Thickening
We start off this Adobe Illustrator inking tutorial video with a look at the "smooth" tool. The smooth tool is very useful when you want to simplify an overly complicated or wobbly line.
All you have to do is to
select the line that you want to smooth,
and then draw over it with the "smooth" tool.
There's also a brief look at the pen tool as I use it in a very simple way to help me draw SpongeBob's belt. I don't often use the pen tool, but in this case it was the best choice.
Once more, the reshape tool comes to the rescue when the straight line of SpongeBob's arm needs a little bit of tweaking.
There are times when the geometric lines created by the line tool need to be softened with the freehand brush tool. As you can see, the lines don't always match up perfectly... but you can always go back later and touch them up in Photoshop.
...Or you can leave a little bit of imperfection in your drawings -- that's the whole point of using the freehand brush tool. It provides the breath of life in your drawings that the more technical and geometric tools cannot provide.
Take a look here as I select ten different ellipse shapes at the same time in order to uniformly boost up the line thickness. You can select multiple objects by pressing the shift key as you use the selection tool.
Once all of those objects are selected, you can use the stroke panel to adjust the thickness of the line weight for every thing that is currently selected.
You'll also get a super close-up view of how I use different brushes with different line weights to differentiate between the thicker outer contour lines and the thinner interior lines.
Next time, the inking portion of these tutorials comes to a close as we zip through the inking on Patrick, all the while using that as an opportunity to review all the preceding tips, and seeing them in action at full drawing speed!
Here's the YouTube version in case you have trouble watching the high-resolution video at the top of the post:
In case you missed them,
here are links to the first nine
Cartoon Inking tutorial videos:
#1 - How to Set Up and Import Images
#2 - Palette Options and Settings
#3 - Freehand Calligraphic BRUSH Tool
#4 - We Start INKING in Illustrator!
#5 - How to Use the Ellipse Tool
#6 - How to Use Graphic Styles
#7 - Working With Layers
#8 - Layers in Action