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How To Use New Pencil Tool In Illustrator To Create Complex Shapes (Part-1)

by Michael Crawford Tweet - in Illustrator


The revamped Pencil Tool in Illustrator CC is much friendlier to the designers as it allows them to draw lines and curves in easier manner. Quality of the work has also enhanced. The new Pencil Tool creates vector paths which look smooth despite the designer drawing the paths by hand. The look of the finished paths is natural and hand-drawn.

A major improvement that can be instantly noticed in the new Pencil Tool is that you can create a fluent path that looks smooth, with fewer points. This means that you can draw path exactly as wished it to look. The tool also enables you in drawing straight lines and curves. You can set the lines at any angel as is your requirement.

How Pencil Tool Works To Draw Easy And Smooth Lines, Curves

We can determine the degree of smoothness of the lines of our illustration by use of the new Pencil Tool in Illustrator. To do so, you need to double click on the Pencil Tool icon to open the Options Panel. You will notice that the new Options Panel of the Pencil Tool is much simpler than the older one in the previous version of the Illustrator.

Adjust The Right Smoothness Of The Lines

You can find the fidelity slider at the top of the panel. The slider helps in taking easy control to determine how much smoothness you want in the lines you need to draw. Just as you drag the slider to the far left on Accurate, you can draw an accurate path of your choice. As you move the cursor across the bar towards the right side, you draw the curve with more points. When the slider is dragged to the far right, the path of the line or curve becomes incredibly smooth. This means that when the smoothness of the path is the greatest, there are very few points on the path. So, you have the flexibility of choosing the right amount of smoothness as per your requirement of the drawing. May be, you can adjust the smoothness somewhere in the middle.

Now, for instance, if you drag the slider back to the starting point at the far left and click OK, you can start out by drawing a curve that looks very simple. You will be drawing a rough looking curve but the illustrator will produce it into a smoother curve. So, you do not have to worry about the look of the curve when you manually draw it. The illustrator will follow the movement of your hands to come up with a finished smooth path you intended to draw.

Easier Drawing Of Second Curve

Now, you can double click the Pencil Tour to open the Options Panel again. You should drag the fidelity bar to the extreme right and click OK. You can draw another similar path closer to the first one. You will notice that Illustrator has quickly smooths out your path and creates a fluid, single curve. While the first path had 5 anchor points, the new one has just 2, which means that Illustrator automatically new your intentions of drawing the curve and adjusted accordingly.

This shows that Illustrator can be used to create smooth curves quickly by use of the new Pencil Tool.

We show you here the steps to take for using the new Pencil Tool to create smoother curves and lines for a refined illustration.


tutorial pic 1

First go to file menu of Illustrator to find all the images that you have stored for working on them.


Then, click on the image of your choice to open it. This should be the image you will be working on by use of the new Pencil Tool in Illustrator.



Now, you have the image that you need to improve or more design.


As your next step, go to View menu and click on the Guide to reach to the Show Guide and click on it.



Next, by clicking on the Show Guide menu, you select layers.


Now, click the Pencil Tool to enable it for its use as per the specifications of your drawing.


In this step, after selecting the Pencil Tool, you can select right thickness of the line or curve. You have many options from different point sizes as is your requirement of the thickness.


As a final step, after you have selected the thickness of the curve you want, you can draw the curves. With help of the tool, you can now create the curves of right thickness easily.

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I am a young designer just starting out in the industry with big hopes. I currently do freelance work, run a blog, write for designs and hope to push my new design business worldwide. Twitter | Google + | Pinterest Twitter | Google+

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