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Top 10 New Features in Adobe Illustrator CC 17.1 (January 2014)

Article Description

Brian Wood loves the handy new (and often long-awaited) features in Illustrator Creative Cloud (CC). In this article he shows you what they are and how to use them.

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Segment Reshape Improvements

Segment Reshape Improvements

Another big enhancement has to do with how we edit our paths. I’ve always found editing paths to be a bit frustrating, even after memorizing the keyboard shortcuts we can use to make our life easier. In this latest release of Illustrator CC, several of the tools now allow you to reshape path segments in different ways.

Let’s start with the Pen tool. As you draw with the Pen tool, you can reshape a previous drawn segment by pressing a modifier key and switching to the last selected Selection tool. Now, with the Pen tool selected, you can press the Alt (Windows) or Option (Mac OS) key and position the pointer over a selected path segment and the Reshape Segment cursor appears (see Figure 5). You can reshape the segment unconstrained by simply dragging (see Figure 5), or press the Shift key after you begin dragging to constrain the handles in a perpendicular direction.

Figure 5 Reshape the segment

The same drawing options work with the Anchor Point tool now, as well. By the way, if you’re old-school Illustrator, you may wonder what the Anchor Point tool is. The Convert Anchor Point tool is now referred to as the Anchor Point tool.

After drawing a path, we can edit the path with the Direct Selection tool. Only now, unless the path is a straight segment, the Reshape Segment cursor appears when you position the pointer over a selected path segment (see Figure 6). This allows you to drag the segment unconstrained. Like the Pen and Anchor Point tools, you can also press the Shift key after you begin dragging to constrain the handles in a perpendicular direction.

Figure 6 Edit the path with the Direct Selection tool

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