Monthly Archives: August 2011

3D Android Avatar Tutorial Part 2


This is the concluding part of this tutorial. Will we finish up the head and create the rest of the body parts for the avatar.

What You’ll Be Making:

Steps:

9. A. Let us focus our attention to the shading portion. From the looks of the preview we can see the shadow seems to be in the back though the Dot on the sphere indicates it’s on the front. This is due to the face of the cube being moved and is now facing the back.

B. All that is needed to be clicked is the first button on the left under the sphere. Now the light is in the back though we see it in front in the preview which is explained earlier.

C. Now move the light somewhere near the bottom left. Now click the “New __” button (middle button) to create a new light. The light will automatically be placed in the front. Move the light near the middle but a little to the right. Set the ambiance to 50 and the light intensity to 50 for the front light.

10. A. Create a green rectangle that has a longer length. Create a small circle and place it tangent to the rectangle’s right and bottom side.

B. Delete only the portion in the bottom-right corner and combine everything else together.

C. Revolve the object and insert values as shown in the picture.

D. Move the torso near the head.

E. Scale either the head of the body to match the width of the other.


11. A. Create a setup as pictured below with two circles (on at the top, one at the bottom) with a rectangle that goes connects half of one circle to the half of the other.

B. Use the Pathfinder or ShapeBuilder to delete half of the object as pictured below.

C. Revolve the object but do make the use of the easy shortcut Effect>Apply Revolve. This Apply _____ shortcut only shows up after you use any particular effect such as revolve or dropshadow.

D. Now we have a capsule shape that will be used for both the arms and legs.


12. A. Now copy the capsule object and place four of them around the torso as shown below.

B. Select three capsules starting from the right and right-click and choose Arrange>Send to Back.

C. Now it should look like as pictured below.

13. A. Draw a circle and a long rectangle whose sides (left and right) are tangent to the circle. Make sure the rectangle only intersects half of the circle. Also draw a line segment through the middle.

B. Combine the right half portion only and delete the left portion. This is due to Illustrator’s revolve feature revolving about the left side but this can be changed through the Revolve options but since the default is set to revolve around the left edge, let us leave it be.

C. Then as always, revolve the object.

14. A. Place the “ear” piece on top of the “head” and scale it down as pictured below.

B. Make sure the object is selected and go to its appearance window. Click the 3D Revolve link to make some changes. Make sure the preview box is checked. Drag the cube around till the “antenna” is facing toward us a little bit but also leaning to the left. See the picture below for help. Then click OK.

C. Copy the object again. Go to its appearance and click the 3D Revolve link. Drag the cube around so that this piece leans to the right and facing away from us slightly. Then click OK.

15. A. Your finished piece should look similar to what is pictured below.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this tutorial and learned something new.

3D Android Avatar Tutorial Part 1


Today I will show how to create a 3D Android avatar using only tools from Illustrator. Keep in mind that the steps won’t be basic and should only be done with sufficient experience with Illustrator. This will also be a long tutorial so I will break it in two parts.

What You’ll Be Making:



Tools:

  • Illustrator
  • 3D Revolve
  • Pathfinder/ShapeBuilder
  • Symbols

Steps:

1. A. Create a circle by using the ellipse tool and holding to constrain the proportions to a circle.

B. Make the circle green (RGB 158, 197, 76 or #9EC54C) and draw some segments (vertical and horizontal) that cross its center. I chose a black stroke for the segments so I could see them.

C. Select the circle and segments and click Shift+M to bring up the ShapeBuilder tool. Hold option or alt to turn the cursor into a Minus shape which indicates that you will remove objects instead of combining them. Simple click and drag your mouse across the pieces you want to remove then release your finger from the right mouse button.

D. Now you a single, green quadrant-shape.

2. A. Draw small squares from the corners of this quadrant. Draw lines that pass through the edges of the squares as pictured below. Also draw a circle with a center starting as the same one as the quadrant but let its intersecting arc be slightly lesser than the quadrant. Make sure the circle is also tangent to the squares’ “bottom” sides. Look to pictures below for help.

B. Delete some unnecessary pieces as pictured below.

C. Make sure to zoom in on your object and delete parts that go past your perfect arc as seen below. Remember to hold option or alt when using ShapeBuilder to remove objects.

D. Not add objects that you need together since we want a single combined shape.

E. You should get a shape like below.

3. A. Make sure the object is selected then go to Effect>3D>Revolve.

B. Make sure to check the preview box. Click More Options if you haven’t already. Set the shading to either plastic or diffuse shading. I personally will use Diffuse Shading. Make sure to change the blend steps to 100 but you can set it to the max (256) if you want. Then click OK.

4. A.  Now let us move aside from the previous object and work on symbols to use for future Art mapping of the 3D object. Create a rectangle of the same color with a ratio of 3:12. The ratio is important!

B. Create small black circles near the edges from the sides of the rectangle. Make sure the circles are the same distance apart from the edges of the rectangle.

C. Cut out the circles from the rectangle using either the Pathfinder of ShapeBuilder.

D. It should look as the one below.

E. Open your symbol window if you haven’t already. If unopened, go to Window>Symbols. Select your object then click the button right next to the trashcan button. Name the symbol anything. The type of symbol doesn’t matter as stated on the window. Name it anything then click OK.

5. A. Make sure the symbol is selected inside the Symbol window, if it’s not just simply click it. Then click the “New” button (the one next to the trashcan icon). Name it _____ 2.

B. Double-click your copied symbol to enter inside it to edit its features.

C. Flip your object horizontally. Then double-click anywhere on the canvas except on the object to exit the isolation mode.

D. Create a square of the same color and then make it a symbol. Name it anything.

E. Now you should have one square symbol and two rectangle-with-holes symbols.

6. A. Go back to your 3D object and go to its appearance  window and simple click the 3D Revolve effect.

B. Make sure to check the preview box. Click the Map Art button and click the right arrow button to scroll to the 2nd  surface as you can see below.

Note: The red highlighted surface indicates the current surface you are working on.

C. Select your first symbol from the symbol-selection drop down list and it should be automatically placed in the center.

D. Check the boxes for Shade Artwork and Invisible Geometry.

7. A. Go to the first surface (1/5)  by clicking the left arrow button. Then select your square symbol.

B. Make sure you click Scale to Fit button. You will need to do this for all the surface mapping.

C. Go to surface 3 and insert the square symbol again and click Scale to Fit button again.

D. Map the fourth surface with the square symbol and click Scale to Fit.

E. Map the fifth surface with the second symbol we created and click Scale to Fit.


8. A. Drag the cube around with your right-mousing button. Drag the cube around till you see the holes that go through the surface and to the inside.

This is the end of Part 1. I will conclude with Part 2 where you will create a body, arms, and legs for your Droid avatar.

Arabic Text In Adobe Illustrator Tip


You may never come across this problem but if you ever come into this situation, it will be a lifesaver. If you ever come into the problem of incorporating Arabic text into Illustrator, this tip is just for you. Adobe Illustrator is a type of program that only best suits the need of the English language so trying to use texts that have different letters than those of the English language will only lead to failed attempts. Though one thing should be noted; there is an Arabic version of Adobe Illustrator titled Adobe Illustrator Middle Eastern. This, of course, supports typing Arabic text correctly. This would imply purchasing it which is a waste since presumably you are using Illustrator already.

First let’s make sure that you have an Arabic language support for your PC or Mac. Add the Arabic language if you must.



Make sure that you select the right language before you start typing into a program. Make you sure you also select the right font before typing such as Arabic Typesetting or Adobe Arabic.


Now if you try typing Arabic into Illustrator without any support (plugins, etc.), you will get something similar like this. We have two problems with how Adobe Illustrator handles Arabic text. One problem is that Adobe Illustrator will normally type from left to right but this is a problem since Arabic is read and written from right to left. The second problem is that letters don’t connect at all which is a really big problem since there are rules of how certain letters of the Arabic language connect all of which depends of where they placed (beginning, middle, or end). Take for example the Arabic letters ف, ا , د , and ي which are “da”(d),  “alif” (a), “fa” (f), and “ya” (i or e) respectively. Now if I want to write my name, I have to abide rules when connecting letters. There is “f” sound in the begging so I’ll write ف in the begging. An “a” comes after so I’ll connect the “f” and “a,” فا. A “d” sound comes next but “alif” (a) can’t connect any letters after it so I’ll leave the “d” unconnected, فاد . Now an “ee” sounds comes at the end but “da” doesn’t connect with any letters after so I’ll write “ya” separate, فادي .

The left one is how adobe Illustrator will write it.

The right one is the correct way to write my name. We will see how to bring correctly formatted Arabic text into Illustrator.

Again the two problems are that Illustrator will write Arabic text from left to right and won’t connect the letters as you can see below.

Now I present two solutions to the problem.

1.) Install the ScribeDoor plugin for Illustrator.

Now this maybe costly but $89 (if purchased for Illustrator) / $119 9if purchased for Creative Suite) will be cheap in comparison to the Middle Eastern version. It’s also a good alternative since you manage the kerning and many other things inside Illustrator. You can also download a 7-day free trail if you want to try it out.

Note: When installed, you can access the ScribeDoor plugin by going to Window>ScribeDoor. You may need to adjust the ScribeDoor settings inside the ScribeDoor window if Arabic text still don’t connect or type in the right direction.

2.) Install Inkscape for free.

Inkscape is another vector program like Illustrator but it’s free. One good thing about this program is that it supports other languages so you can type Arabic letters just fine in Inkscape. Inkscape’s appearance is similar to Illustrator so it’s not too hard get acquainted with Inkscape. Select the type tool (has a symbol of an A) on Inkscape and click on your canvas to start typing.

So let’s test Inkscape if it can correctly write the Arabic word for door (Bab) or باب correctly.

Now it’s important what you do here. DO NOT simply highlight the text and copy and then paste it into Illustrator because Illustrator won’t recognize what you pasted and will react with crossed boxes as you see below.

The correct way is to select the text you wrote and right-click and copy it. Now paste it into Illustrator and you get outlines instead of text. Now this may upset some but I don’t mind it since you alter the kerning, tracking, or anything else in Inkscape if needed.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this tip and learned something new.

Resurgence


Sorry for being gone for a while. The reason for my long absence was due to my involvement in a summer enrichment program called Summer Bridge. This program helped familiarize me with the college I’ll be attending, SDSU (San Diego State University). I enjoyed my experiences and accustomed to managing an academic life and a social life. I spent at least 10 hours or more juggling classwork from two classes as well attending activities such kayaking at a beach or explore racial discrimination in a social justice group session. The program lasted for 31 days and feel like a better person from being involved in it. No doubt I will be prepared for when I’ll enter my real college setting on August 29th.

Since I feel bad for missing out on posting tutorials and other things. I’ll post some tutorials/tips this week on.

I fixed the logo up a bit from last time and changed the flier design as well. I’ve also worked on translations for this flier which include Arabic and Spanish translation. Click the flier thumbnail to see the Arabic translation. I’ll also be getting paid for my efforts.

Since typing Arabic in Illustrator gave me such a huge hassle. I’ll post in a tip on how to bring in Arabic text into Illustrator.

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