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posted by: Iaroslav Lazunov, in Illustrator Tips / Basix/ Comments: 1

The shape of most objects represents a combination of simple geometric shapes. Therefore it is very important to learn how to work effectively with the tools that create such objects. This is what we are going to talk about today.

Creating simple geometric shapes

At the beginning of this article I want to show you some user interfaces, which shapes I have created only using simple geometric shapes.

Let's proceed. The tools we are interested in are in the same group with the Rectangle Tool (M).

Take one of them, Ellipse Tool (L). This tool is designed to create circles and ellipses. All that will be said about working with this tool, it is also good for other tools in this group. Click on the artboard, and without releasing the mouse button, drag the tool pointer diagonally.

Release the button when we see the desired shape of the ellipse. Ellipse sizes were changing from the point of the first click towards the direction of the cursor. The corner of the bounding box is located at the point of the first click. In practice it is often necessary to fix the center of the created shape, rather than the corner of the bounding box. To get the size of the ellipse or other figure change from its center hold down Option / Alt while creating shapes.

If you need to create a circle or other shape with the same height and width, such as a square for example, hold down Shift while creating the shape.

To create a circle with the center at the first click hold down the Option / Alt and Shift buttons.
There are times when you know the sizes and other parameters of the created shape, for example, when you create App icons. Double click on the tool icon on the toolbar opens a dialog box with the parameters of the object.

Key in the appropriate values, and click on OK.

You are able to control some of the parameters of shape when it is being created using the arrow keys. For example, when creating a Rounded Rectangle pressing the Up Arrow key increases the rounding radius of its corners. Pressing the Down Arrow decreases the rounding radius of its corners.

Actions with these keys while creating the polygons using the Polygon Tool will lead to an increase and decrease of the sides of the shape.

You can read the full version of this tutorial on DesignModo

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