Pathfinder Adobe Illustrator | How To Use Pathfinder In Adobe Illustrator

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Erin Gipford

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How To Use Pathfinder In Adobe Illustrator

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[MUSIC] Hey, everyone, Aaron Gifford here. I have been a graphic designer for almost 16 years. Now, which is so weird to say, but I have a brand new illustrator tutorial for you today and we are gonna be talking about the Pathfinder in Illustrator, which has so many different uses. It’s unbelievable. I’m gonna try to keep it to the basics because I don’t want to make it any more complicated for you than need be. So if you are ready to learn all about the Pathfinder, then stay tuned, alright? We are gonna dive into the Illustrator Pathfinder palette. So if you want to just go ahead and bring it up, you can find it up here under window and then go down to Pathfinder, So I’m just gonna keep mine up here, so we can see it and you can see. There are one two three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten different options in the Pathfinder palette. So we’re gonna go through each one, and in order for this to make sense in the best way, I’m gonna just continue to use the same shapes for it. Um, because I think that will just make it make better sense and easier to understand because it can get confusing, so the first one we’re gonna use is if you hover over this first shape, it’s called unite and it also gives you the keyboard shortcut if you hover over it too, so go ahead and use that if you want. But basically, the unite tool in the Pathfinder palette will combine two shapes. So I have two circles here. You can see that they’re separate beings and I’m going to go ahead and overlap them, and then if I drag and select both of them and I hit the Unite tool, it makes it one solid shape. It basically traces the outline of whatever multiple shapes you have to and and makes one shape for you, so if we look at the outline mode beforehand and then versus after you can see, it’s one shape versus two so moving on the next in the palette is called minus front, so if we select our objects and we hit minus front, what it does is it uses your front shape. Whatever is in front and it cuts it out of the back shape, just leaving you with one. So in this case, if we – front, we end up with this crescent shape, which, which is a moon, but I have to select both there, but if we were to change this and we would send the orange circle to the back, it would do just the opposite. It’s gonna cut out the black circle and leave the orange. Crescent. So that’s that one moving on the next one is intersect, so this is called Intersect and what this is gonna do is going to any of multiple shapes. It’s only going to leave you with the middle shape where the two objects intersect, so it’s just easier watched, so it’s gonna cut out that middle, and it’s gonna leave you with these two outer objects and vice versa if we move it down here and do both of them and do intersect, it leaves you with the middle, So wherever the shapes overlap is, where is is the shape You’re gonna be left with? Oh, then we have exclude so exclude is the exact the exact opposite of intersect, instead of leaving this middle portion where the objects overlap. It’s going to only leave the outer sections. So it’s gonna cut out. It’s gonna erase whatever intersects. So what is the opposite of exclude now moving down to the second row here? Divide this one. I actually use a lot because what it does is. If you have all your objects selected and let’s just even say that we add some more objects in here. Maybe even one right in the middle. Right now, they’re all separate circles, however, like if I wanted to just click on this little intersecting piece in the middle, I couldn’t because it’s part of a larger object, but if we select all of these, and we hit the divide tool now. Each one of these outlines is a separate shape. So I can move just that corner or just that intersection, just this little circle in the middle, so it divides everything into separate objects, which is very useful. That’s probably the tool in the Pathfinder that I use the most is the divide tool. Okay, back to standard two circles, we are on to trim, so we’re gonna select our objects. We are going to hit trim and what this does is. Whatever object is in the front. It cuts out of the back, so this intersecting point no longer exists. We just have the top circle and the bottom. Crescent, it does cut the top circle out of the back and moving on to merge. We are going to, which is the third one on the bottom. We’re gonna merge these two objects by selecting both of them, hitting the merge and again. This is very similar to the trim tool. Whatever object is in front, it gets cut out of the back so one thing that’s a little different because I know you’re thinking. Oh, this is just like the previous tool, but let’s just say that when we’re using the trim that we have a stroke on this top layer and the object has a stroke and just a white fill. Then when we hit merge the stroke disappears so it does not recognize the strokes, but we still have two separate objects. All right, the next one is crap so crap, think of the crop and Pathfinder similar to when you’re gonna crop a photo, your top object is going to mask or crap. Whatever is underneath it, so whatever is intersecting here, which is just this middle point is what’s gonna show because we’re using the tap object to crop the bottom object, so if we select both and we hit the crop? Oh, that’s the outline. We need to hit crop, then we’re just left with this inside intersection. So if we were to move this over, we would be left with even less because we’re cropping out. Whatever is underneath that tap object will show and what is outside of the top object will be cropped away. So, um, the next one is called outline, so if you have all shapes out here and you know what, let’s even just for fun, let’s add some stars. It’s that’s ginormous okay, and we’re gonna select all of that. And if we hit the outline, it will just instantly put an outline on any shape that you have. So then if you want, you can add a stroke, lets. Just bump that up because it looks funny there, so whatever object you have selected if you hit the outline command, it will just remove the fill and it’ll add an outline. It could be a major time saver, so we have one more to do and this one in the bottom right hand corner.