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Editing Paths in Adobe Illustrator CS4

Chapter Description

David Karlins shows you how to use selection and editing techniques in Adobe Illustrator CS4, including selecting paths and path segments, grouping paths, and aligning anchors.

#39 Shearing (Skewing)

Shearing (or skewing—they're the same thing) is a hard process to describe in words, but it's something you'll often want to apply to a shape. In general, skewing distorts the relationship between opposite sides of an object. A simple example would be converting a rectangle into a parallelogram with 30-degree angles instead of right (90-degree) angles. You can do this by selecting a path segment and moving it with the Shear tool (Figure 39a).

Figure 39a

Figure 39a Shearing a rectangle into a parallelogram.

When you shear (skew), the affected object distorts around the center point of the object. To skew around a selected point instead, first click with the Shear tool to set a fixed point. The selected point (anywhere on the artboard) remains fixed while the rest of the object shears (Figure 39b).

Figure 39b

Figure 39b Shearing with a fixed point.

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