3/7 Meeting Recap: Illustrator 101

By: Gracyn Green

This week, PRSSA’s creative director Mallie Rust stopped by to give a quick tutorial on Adobe Illustrator! In the world of creative and public relations, Illustrator is a valuable tool to be familiar with. Here are some quick tips and tricks to get you started.

The Selection and Direct Selection Tool
The selection tool is like the home button on an iPhone. You will generally refer back to this action quite often while creating your Illustrator masterpiece, as it selects and moves objects. The direct selection tool, however, is used to select and move anchor points, lines, and used to adjust Bézier curves.

Choosing Colors in Illustrator
Color can be considered a make or break factor in your Illustrator creation as it is one of the first things your audience will see. Because of this, you need to stay ON BRAND. This means that you should generally stick with the color your organization identifies with – PRSSA, for example, identifies with navy. (Hence why our shirts are this lovely shade of blue.)

Each color has a unique, identifying code, called a Hex code. Generally, if your organization has a specific color they identify with, they should have a Hex code. If you’re not sure, ask.

Mallie pro tip – get a Style Guide. A style manual, or style guide, is a set of standards for the design of documents, signage, and any other form of brand identifier. The reason for their existence is to ensure complete uniformity in style and formatting wherever the brand is used to ensure no dilution of that brand.

Control Z is Your Best Friend
One of the best ways to get familiar with Illustrator is to explore on your own! Click different commands, try out different color combinations and options to create something out of this world. If you don’t like it, no worries – control z will have your back every time.

Also, if at any point you want to get rid of a design choice, click on the box with the red diagonal line in the alternate color drop-down menu.

If you want a more tutorial based, outlined guide of how to use Illustrator, ask Lynda. Lynda is an online database for courses, training, and tutorials in business, technology, and creative skills – FREE for all UT students. Expert instructors teach you all about Adobe Illustrator: how to work with layers, create infographics, trace artwork, and use the application’s powerful drawing tools to create vector art like a pro. Lynda’s Illustrator tutorials range from beginner to advanced.