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How to Create Basic Shapes in Illustrator CS

Chapter Description

Many objects in the Adobe Illustrator program can be created by starting with basic shapes and then editing them to create new shapes. In this lesson, you'll use some basic shapes to create a logo. Along the way, you'll learn how to use tools and commands to create basic shapes, copy and combine objects to create new shapes, paint objects, and more.

Tips for Drawing Polygons, Spirals, and Stars

You can control the shapes of polygons, spirals, and stars by pressing certain keys as you draw the shapes. As you drag the polygon, spiral, or star tool, choose any of the following options to control the shape:

  • To add or subtract sides on a polygon, points on a star, or number of segments on a spiral, press the Up Arrow key or the Down Arrow key while creating the shape. This will not work if you have already released the mouse. The tool remains set to the last value you specified until you reset the number.
  • To rotate the shape, move the mouse in an arc.
  • To keep a side or point at the top, hold down Shift.
  • To keep the inner radius constant, start creating a shape and then hold down Ctrl (Windows) or Command (Mac OS). To undo this effect start creating the shape and then hold down Ctrl+Alt (Windows) or Command+Opt (Mac OS) while dragging.
  • To move a shape as you draw it, hold down the spacebar. (This also works for rectangles and ellipses.)
  • To create multiple copies of a shape, hold down the ~ (tilde) key as you draw.

Now you’re ready to add a fresh coat of paint.

9. Painting the Logo | Next Section Previous Section