Once upon a time, I only used Photoshop. It’s a great program, still my favorite for image manipulation, but this year I dove into the world of Adobe Illustrator. Illustrator is key for creating large graphics like tablecloths, posters, banners…any huge printed graphics. The secret sauce is that it’s a vector-based program instead of raster-based, like Photoshop.
Pixels are tiny blocks of color that together form a raster image. I see your eyes are glazing over. Let me sum up: raster images have pixels, vector images don’t. The shapes themselves are each like one pixel, so when you blow them up to (for example) 1000%, you still see the same clear edge you did when the image was 100%. Try that with a photo, and you’ll see it gets very…pixelated!
This is just one of the amazing things that makes Illustrator so special. It’s very different from Photoshop, and yet similar enough to make users a little crazy. The tools are in different places. Color is handled very differently. At the beginning, I wanted to pull my hair out. Now I’m getting the hang of it and having a blast.
I’ve started learning pattern creation, and here is my first one:
When put together, it makes a seamless pattern, useful for things like website backgrounds:
I can’t wait to make more!