Buildings Illustrator | Illustrator Tutorial | How To Draw An Isometric Building

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Illustrator Tutorial | How To Draw An Isometric Building


[MUSIC] Hello and welcome to this design cuts video tutorial today we’re creating an isometric building in Illustrator, we’ll start with a brand new document. It’s going to be 2000 by 2000 size to create the isometric shape, the basic shape. I’m going to start with a square, so I’ll target the rectangle tool. Click once in the document, make a square, that’s 300 by 300 pixels in size. We’re going to remove the stroke from this and we’re going to fill it with a gray color. I’m going to use three different shades of gray for the left side of the building, the top of the building and the right side of the building, alt or option drag two additional squares away so that I have three In total, the lightest one will be in the middle and then a slightly darker one to the right. We’re going to use the 3d effects to create these shapes. I’ll choose effect 3d and then rotate. This is going to be the left side of the building, so I’ll scroll down to choose Isometric left. Feel curious, you can just click preview to see what it’s going to look like click. OK, and then we’ll do the same for the top of the building, and that’s going to be isometric top, and then we’ll do Isometric, right again. Effects 3d were choosing rotate here. Select isometric, right. Check if you want to that, everything looks good click. OK now! If we have a look in the layers panel here we’re going to discover that we’ve got lots and lots of things happening here and way too much for us to be bothered taking forward with us in this document. So right, now we have a shape that has a 3d effect applied to it and so if we were to select the shape and turn the 3d effect off, we would just go back to our square well. I want to expand all of these shapes. I’ll select them and choose object expand appearance. Now we’re going to look in the layer’s palette and see that for each one of these shapes, we have heaps and heaps of groups and clipping groups, But we don’t actually need them because there is just a single shape here. That is the actual shape that we want, so we’re going to drag it out of the group and then we’re going to target the group and delete it. I’m going to do that for all of these shapes just to keep this panel as neat as possible. This would be particularly the case. If you plan to sell this stuff as stock because stock agencies are not going to like, really messy layers panels. Next thing we’ll do is to just reassemble these shapes into a cube. This is going to be the foundation shape before our isometric building. I’ll select over this and choose object group, so we just have a single group for our shape. I’ll Alt drag a duplicate out of the way so that I’ve got one that I can continue to use to develop other shapes in future. I’m going to select over this one. This is going to be our building. I’ll go to the lasso tool here and I’m going to lasso the top anchor points on this shape, so we’ve got all four anchor points on the top shape, as well as the two anchor points on the left side and the right side. If we go now to the direct selection tool, we can drag up and create our building. Hold the shift key so that your building is upright and not on a slant. We’ll take another copy of this basic shape, alt or option drag it away, we’re going to enlarge it a little bit because it’s going to be the base of the building, and then we’ll go and do the same lasso trick again going back to the direct selection tool this time, we’ll drag downwards again. Hold the shift key so that you’re moving perfectly vertically and this will give us a base for the building. You can then move it into position. Of course it’s going to need to be underneath the building itself for the helipad on top of the building. We need two copies of our cube, so just Alt drag two copies of the cube away. The first one you’re going to flatten quite a lot. So do the same routine, selecting the topmost point and hold the shift key as you drag it down to make a sort of narrow edge cube here to resize this hold, they shift and all key on a PC that would be option and shift on a Mac and just resize it, so it’s going to fit on top of the building. Take the second cube, and you’ll do the same thing with that again, just shrinking it down. You’re going to reduce the size again holding Shift + Alt on a PC that would be Shift + option on a Mac and then place it on top of the elements that you’re assembling on top of the building. You want to line up this vertical edge here? So the edge is exactly the same on all three shapes, so you can select all three shapes go to the align tools, you’re going to choose align to selection and it’s going to be critical that you have all of these objects selected when you do so and that they’re grouped, so I’m going to include the base in this at the same time, and I’m just going to click here on horizontal align Center that just make sure that all the elements here are perfectly lined up in a vertical direction along this axis here. I’m going to take this shape and I want to recolor it, so I’m going to the group selection tools. I want to select this shape. Within the group, that’s the top of this second flattened cube, and I’m going to lighten it invisibly. When we zoom out, it’s going to look like this is a slight indentation in the top of the roof for the helipad itself. We want a circular shape, so we’ll go to the ellipse tool. Hold the shift key as you drag out a circle and you want to fill it with a color to use for the helipad. Now you’re not going to use a circle on top of the building because it has to be isometrically adjusted as well so select over the shape, we’ll go to effect and 3d but because we want this to have some dimension. We’re going to choose extrude and bevel this time. We’ll turn preview on, so we can see what we’re doing, and we’ll choose isometric top because this is going on the top of the building. Isometric top is the selection to use the extrude depth. Is this area here? And so we want it to be a little bit less extruded, So I’m going to wind that down to about 20 points once. You’re happy with that click. OK, like we did. The other shapes we’re going to need to expand this and clean up the layer’s pallet object expand appearance here. We’ve got a group and let’s just see what’s inside it. Well, inside this group here is the actual shape and a clipping group for the dimensional edge here, so we want all of this the shape we can grab that and pull that out, but basically, this is the group that we want, so we’ll take it out of the containing group just so that it’s less confusing. So when you open this up, you’ve got the sort of oval on the top and then this dimensional element, which is the extrusion. We’ll move this up and we’re going to place it on top of our building again. Hold this shift and option Keys shift alt on a PC just to size it down so that the helipad is going to fit on top of the building. You’ll want to line that up. I’m just using the smart guides to help me line it up now. The helipad would traditionally have a letter. H on it just so that we can see it as we’re flying in on a helicopter, so let’s go and get the type tool that’s going to click once in the document and type a capital letter. H I’m going to select this shape. Let’s just increase the point size so that we can actually see it. I’m using myriad probe and I’m going to make it a bit bolder, so I’m thinking that bold is probably a good choice here. Now we’re set in concrete here. We know it’s going to be an H. So there’s no point in leaving it as editable text, so I’ll go to type and then choose create outlines, and that creates it as an outline shape That means what we can then use the 3d effect on it effect 3d and for this one. We just want a flat letter. H so we’ll choose rotate. It’s going on top of the building, so it’s going to be isometric, top and click. OK, and exactly the same as we’ve been doing all along, There’s all sorts of things happening in here. So what we’re going to do is choose object, expand appearance, and then we’ll have a look in here and go and find the letter. H that we want, which is just this path here. Drag it out and then clean up what’s left that we don’t need will drag the letter. H up onto the top of the building, hold shift and old shift option on a Mac and just resize it in proportion and then we can add it to the helipad. We’re ready now to create the windows on the buildings. I’m going to zoom in, so I can see basically where I’m going to be working because we’re going to start by building a window, so go to the rectangle tool and just drag out what I think is going to be at the basic window shape. I’m going to fill it with a medium grey. Then I’m going to make a duplicate of this by Alt dragging a duplicate away. I’m going to make this slightly smaller and fill it with a different color and then Ill. Put these two windows back. I’m going to line them up, so I’ll go to the align options. I’m going to select align to selection so these shapes are aligned to each other. I’m going to choose horizontal align right edges, and then I’ll do horizontal align bottom because I want the window to look like this. The reason for this is that if we’re looking at this building face on to this angle here, we’re going to be able to see this edge of the window, but we won’t be able to see the inside edge of this. So basically, we’ve got a realistic. We know if you like. And we know that is correctly proportioned and correct perspective for our isometric building. I’m going to select over there. I’ll choose object group so now. I’ve got one window. I’m going to drag it and place it roughly in position. Just check, it’s going to be okay, which it is, so let’s turn this into an isometric shape. We’ve got grouped, we’ll choose effect and then 3d and then rotate and this is going to need to be isometric left, so it’s going to match this particular face of the building, but in fact, we may as well build the other window at the same time, so let’s just select to this shape and alt or option. Drag a duplicate away and for this one. I’m going to edit it, so I’ll just go back to the appearance panel over here. Click on 3d rotate and change it from isometric left to isometric, right and click. OK, now the shadings not correct, but we can fix that in a minute, lets. Go back to this window. This is this one here. We’re going to expand it with object expand appearance, and we’re going to do it exactly the same as we’ve been doing and just clear up this mess in the layer’s panel. So here is the actual window and here is the window frame. I’m going to grab these two drag them all the way out of this group and get rid of everything that is left behind. So these two pieces are what’s left of the window. I’m going to grab the two of them and choose object groups, so we’ve just cleaned that up into a nice, simple group that just has two objects in it. We’re going to place this in position and you want to see pretty much the base of their building at this stage, so let’s go and put this in position and now we’re going to use the transform command to fill in the bottom part of the building, so I’ll select the shape and choose effect and then distort and transform and transform. I’ll turn preview on. I’m going to work out. How many windows I want across? I think possibly five, which would mean they’re four copies, plus the one original. I’m going to start increasing the horizontal now. The windows aren’t going in the right direction. That’s just fine. We just want to get a horizontal value right now. So I’m actually going to make this six windows. So that’s five copies, plus the original. I’m just going to space this out so that this is going to be the spread of Windows across the building. Only they’re going to be at this angle down here. The problem is that I need this horizontal value before I can create the vertical value and the reason for this is that we need to make the vertical value the correct value. That’s going to pull this window down to the correct position, and this is mathematics, it’s. Mathematics relies on the fact that this angle along here is at 30 degrees to the horizontal. And so this is a 60 degree angle in here. If we use some simple mathematics and an online website, we’re going to be able to make this calculation really easily. So make sure that you get your windows spaced out first of all, then work out what this horizontal value was and it’s 35 degrees, and so now we’re going to the internet, and we’ve got this calculator. I’m going to give you the link to it and what you need to do is to go to side B and you’re going to type that value that you just move those windows, which was 35 and then you’re going to angle B and you’re going to type 60 and then you’ll click calculate and what you want to do is read off what side a says, and you’re just going to take this number back to two decimal places right now. It says 20 point 207 and a few other numbers. So twenty point, two one will be just fine. We’ll go back to illustrator and in the vertical, we’re going to type 20 point two one. Now that’s in a positive direction, and so that’s going to move these shapes down and this is now on a thirty degree angle. That’s the mathematics involved in turning this into a 30-degree angle rotation. It’s all you need to know. I’ll click okay. We’re going to do it again in a minute. And so if that was a little bit confusing, don’t worry, you’re gonna get another shot at seeing how it’s done so now. I’m going to just grab this. I want to be able to see the whole of my building because the next transformation I’m going to do is to move these windows all the way up so again with our window, shape, selected effect, distort and transform and then choose transform. You’re going to click to apply a new effect and you’re going to turn preview on, and you’re going to start moving these up vertically, and that’s in a negative direction and then start increasing your copy, So I’m gonna try for ten. Ten was too many, so lets. Just bring that down nine. It’s probably going to be just fine. I just need to decrease this value a little bit, so I’m just looking to place the windows in my building. And when I’ve got a nice arrangement of windows, that’s all I need. I’ll click OK. Now it’s time to sort out the other set of window, so let’s just zoom into that area. I’m thinking it’s going to be easier just to remove the 3d rotation effect for now, So let’s just remove it entirely. I’m going to drag it on to the trash can. I need to get to these shapes and just rearrange them so that the edge around the window is in the correct place. So what I want to do is take this top object, which is this lighter shape and just move it across. You’ll need to temporarily ungroup them, then use the align option, choose align to selection and align them to the left and make sure they’re aligned to the bottom, then put them back in the group and then go back and do the rotation again effect 3d choose rotate. We’re going to do isometric, right preview up. Make sure it looks like it’s supposed to look click. OK, now we’ll move our window pretty much into position here. And now we’re going to do a distort and transform effect, distort and transform and then choose transform now we’re going to go horizontally in the same 35 pixels that we used previously because that’s going to place these, probably in the correct position, so I’ve got five copies Plus one original so here the vertical is going to be twenty point, two one, but it’s going to go in the wrong direction and so what we have to do is make it a negative vertical value and that will pull it up click. OK, then you’re going to do the same vertical that we did previously. I’m going to check and see how far we went vertically last time because that will allow me to sort of know exactly what I need to put in here, So we went up 67 minus 67 so we’re going to have to go up minus 67 for this shape as well, so let’s go and select it effect, distort and transform transform new effect – 67 because we’re going in an upward’s direction in the Vertical’s, negative is in a upwards direction positive pushes You down will turn preview on so we can see what we’re doing. Let’s increase the number of windows and click. OK, now we’ve got two sets of transformations and we’ll want to expand those, so I’m going to select both sets of objects here. I’ll choose object, expand appearance. Then we’re going to start ungrouping these, but I’m going to watch them so that they don’t under and group object Ungroup, and that takes us back to a whole series of groups that are a complete window and that’s quite far enough. We don’t want to go any further back, so what? I’ll do is select over all of the objects on this side of the building. Now it’s going to be easiest to do if I lock the rest of the building down, so scroll down to the very end of the layer’s palette and just run down here and lock every single one of these shapes now. The only thing that is left unlocked is all the windows, so we can go to the selection tool and select over the windows on the right-hand side of the building and well group those. Then we’ll do the same with the windows on the left side of the building that just neaten things up and then you can run down the locks and just turn them off. Were finished with this cube. We don’t need that any longer, so you can select over it and just delete it. We’re going to add a base to this element and so we’re going to use a rounded rectangle, so I’ll go to the rounded rectangle tool. It’s going to be a square, so Ill. Hold down the shift key as I drag out a square, just going to round the corners a little bit here and let’s fill it with a grey color. I’ll just use this light gray. Now for it to be placed under the building, it is also going to need to be rotated, so we’ll select it, choose effect 3d and go to rotate and you can use top or bottom so isometric, top or isometric bottom achieve the exact same result. Preview it, you can see, everything’s looking good, expand it and then clean up the mess in the layer’s palette, and then you can place it underneath the building, and you’ll need to drag it to the bottom of the layer’s palette, so it’s underneath all of the other objects on the layer. Now, if you want to extend this and create a tree, that’s another shape that is worthy of noting how to do because it’s going to involve a 3d rotation, so let’s go and select the ellipse tool. We’re going to drag out a tallish sort of ellipse well. Fill this with green color. So we’ve got a sort of green tree. I’m going to the direct selection tool. I’m going to select the anchor point on the right hand side of this shape and press Delete, and then I’m going to create a rectangle for the trunk of the tree, so I’ll just drag out a small rectangle and we’re gonna fill it with a brown color. We’ll select the green element and choose effect and 3d this time we’re going to choose, revolve so we’ll select preview, so we can see what we’re doing. We’ll choose Isometric left because it’s going to go on the left side of the building and for the offset from, we’re going to choose right edge, so that’s going to give us the tree shape. If your tree looks correct from the beginning, you don’t need to make a change here, but it’s going to look like this or the right way, and you just choose whichever one is correct and so. I’ve got isometric left. I’m going to click, OK? I’m going to do the trunk before we go and clean up the layer’s palette, selecting the trunk. We’ll choose effect and then 3d and for this one we’re going to choose revolve. I’m going to choose Isometric left. Turn preview on, and it’s revolved round to make a cylinder. So I’ll just click, OK? I’m going to zoom into these shapes, and I’m going to just narrow up my rectangle so that my cylinder is a little bit narrower, and it’s going to be the trunk of my tree, so I’m going to place the trunk behind the tree, so I’ll choose object. Arrange and I’ll just choose send backwards. Sort of just tucks in behind the tree. We’re going to Center these in a minute, but there’s no point in centering them right now because they’re not going to Center correctly. Anyway, let’s go to the tree, so I’m going to choose object expand appearance now because this is a revolve we’re going to get two elements here, so we’re going to get the back and the front of this shape, and this is the back, and we don’t need it because it’s not contributing anything, so we’re going to grab this entire clipping group and just trash it because that’s a whole heap of objects that we don’t need now inside. This is a clipping path and the actual elements that go to make the tree right now. We don’t need to do anything to clean those up, but we are going to take this clipping group and just remove it from the rest of the objects, so we’re just simplifying it. I’m going to do something similar with the tree trunk selected object expand appearance have a look and see what that gives us. Well, we’re going to have a whole lot of shapes. We’ve got a top shape which is hidden behind the tree. We’ve got a bottom shape, which we’re not being able to see because the trunk is an isometric shape, so we’re actually going to take this one, and we can safely get rid of it. The rest of the objects pretty much we need. We probably don’t need the top, but let’s just make our correct cylinder and just leave it as it is, but drag it out of that group again, just trying to simplify it as much as we can so now. I’ve got two sets of objects that I can send us. I’ll select them, make sure to choose align to selection and just horizontal align Center. So now the trunk is centered on the tree. We’ll grab both of these objects and we’re going to group them so that they become a tree group. Okay, let’s go and put it in position alt and shift or option shift to just size it now. I want a row of trees across the bottom of the building, so let’s make this the frontmost tree and then we’re going to move them back from there. So with it selected, we’ll go and choose, effect, distort and transform and then transform and turn preview on. I think I probably want four trees, plus the original soil type for copies, and that’ll give me five trees In total. The horizontal is going to be a negative direction, So I’m just going to start moving them in a negative direction. I chose to put this tree here. Rather than at the other end and come forward because of the way that the transform tool works and what it does Is, it places the other trees behind the one that you’ve created and so it just saves having to reorder these trees later on so now. I’ve got my horizontal movement. I like that. This is where the last tree is going to be put. But, of course we need to move up, and we don’t know how much, but we do have a value here. We’ve got a value of 80 pixels and we know exactly what to do with that in our online calculator. So we’re going to the calculator and we’re going to reset it. We’re going to put in our angle. B, which is always going to be 60 degrees, We’re going to put in side B, which is our 80 and then we’ll click calculate and we’ll read off the value in the side a and its 46 point one eight, eight and so to two decimal places. That’s 46 point one nine, and, of course, it’s going to have to be in a negative direction because we want the trees to go up rather than down, and so there is our isometric arrangement of trees. Now, if you look at that and think it’s not quite right. I think I like my trees a bit closer together. So what we’re going to do is make them a bit closer together, but because we’ve changed this value to now 70 pixels. We have to change the vertical, so we’ll go back to the calculator. Reset it put in our 70 put in our angle of 60 degrees because it’s always 60 degrees calculated and then go and get our side A which is forty point four one four, so forty point four one is a nice rounded value and there is our isometric arrangement of trees, just based on a right angle triangle with the angles 60 and 30 and use the calculator to do it. Does it just magically? So now that we’ve got our trees? If we want to expand those because right now it’s just a single tree with a transform effect applied to it, so if we want to expand it object, expand appearance. And if we have a look, we get a single group. That’s got our five trees in it. We don’t need to break them out of there. We can just leave them as they are so there you have a completed isometric building created in Illustrator, you’ve seen how you can create rounded objects like trees and tree trunks. You’ve seen how to create circles and make them isometric shapes You’ve seen how to fill a building with Windows and how to calculate the angles yourself if you need to do so so basically, you’ve got pretty much all the tools that you’re going to need to be able to create isometric buildings in Illustrator. I hope you’ve enjoyed learning these Illustrator techniques. Let us know what you think in the comments below and give us a thumbs up if you enjoyed the tutorial until next time. I’m Helen Bradley for design Cartes.