Final Image Preview
In this tutorial we will learn how to create a creative card using some color splashes. To make our artwork look more colourful and realistic we will apply some light effects to it. Don’t worry, we will barely make our hands dirty with paint. Find out more at the jump!
You can download the source vector file for this tutorial
Illustrator Tutorial Details
- Program: Adobe Illustrator CS3 - CS6;
- Difficulty: Intermediate;
- Estimated Completion Time: 1 hour;
Creating of Vector Color Splashes with Your Own Hands
After waking up early in the morning, so no one will be terrified of what we are going to do next, cover the floor and the furniture in your kitchen with some plastic covers. Put a few white sheets of paper on the floor. Take a syringe and a bottle of black ink. Take some ink into the syringe and spray it to the floor in the kitchen. I suppose, you don’t really like the beginning of this tutorial, do you? LOL! This is exactly the way I did a couple of ink splashes which you see on the figure below.
If you were not too much afraid to make your hands and your furniture dirty (by the way, ink is not easy to wash away), then scan the results of your experiments and paste the images into the artboard of new document in Adobe Illustrator (File > Place…).
Now go to the Object > Live Trace > Tracing Options…. Leave the parameters set by default without changes, just tick on Ignore White in the Dialog Box.
Click on the Trace button and we’ve got a vector splash as a result.
Now you can share your morning experiments with the whole world. The Vector Splash is pretty popular topic for design.
Usage of the Free Color Splashes
There are a lot of high quality free vector splashes in the internet. Google this request and you will make sure yourself.
So find some suitable vector slashes, download them and paste them into your current document.
Oh God, it has never been so much dirt in my artboard :). But it is more pleasant than messing with ink, isn’t it? I recommend you to fill all the vector splashes with black in order to perceive the form better. This will help you to make the right choice in wide varieties of options.
Some vector splashes can present the Compound paths.
Since we will need to fill the splashes with different colors, we convert them into the regular groups of vector shapes. To do so, go to the Object > Compound Path > Release.
Now group up the shapes (Ctrl / Cmd + G).
These actions should be made with all the Compound paths, which have been chosen for vector splashes by us.
Creation of the Creative Card with Color Splash
Strange as it might seem, business cards have different sizes in different countries. So, for example, in the US the size of business card is W: 89 mm H: 51mm or W: 3.5 in H: 2 in. You can order the business brochures at UPrinting. That is exactly the size of our artboard. Take the Artboard Tool and set the necessary size on the Control panel.
This tool is available to the users of Adobe Illustrator CS5 – CS6. If you work with older version of Adobe Illustrator, you should set the necessary size while creating a new document. Of course, you don’t have to create a business creative card. You can just simply make an ad banner or an abstract background.
Set the RGB color mode for your current document (File > Document Color Mode > RGB color). Our readers who are familiar with the printing process can be filled with indignation: "How can you possibly print it?” A little patience, we will talk about it a bit later. In the meanwhile, in order to receive better effects we’d better use the RGB color mode. Place vector splashes beyond the creative card borders, take the Rectangle Tool (M) and create a rectangle with white fill, the size of which corresponds to the size of our creative card.
Keep the background of the creative card selected, go to the Object > Create Gradient Mesh… and set the number of rows and columns in the dialog box.
With the Direct Selection (A) select all the mesh points, which are located on the edges of the card, and fill them with light-yellow.
Drag the first vector splash to the creative card while holding the Opt / Alt key which will result its duplication. We duplicate vector splash, because we can use it a couple of times while creating a creative card. Fill the form with radial gradient from white to light-green.
Now set the Multiply in the Transparent panel for it.
Duplicate the next vector splash, fill it with new radial gradient and set the Multiply again.
You can select some separate drops of the splash with the Direct Selection (A) and recolor them into the necessary colors.
Oops, I almost forgot to leave some space for the inscription on the creative card. Move the splashes a little bit to the left and reduce their size.
Some forms can be filled with solid color and can have the Normal blending mode.
I don’t think you should randomly place the vector splashes on the surface of the creative card. Determine the area in which they will be concentrated.
Then, determine the places of color spots. It will be good, if the color intensity will decrease from left to right.
There also should be some order in the direction of spray. Arrange them like a fan from left to right.
After having followed all these recommendations, I’ve got the following image.
Creation of Light Effects
To make the heterogeneity to the Color Splash create a circle and fill it with radial gradient from pink to white and set the Multiply. This is exactly the way we will apply some light effects. Place the copies of this circle in different places of the vector splashes.
To darken some areas I also use the circles with radial gradient. The centre slider of these circles is violet. The Color Burn should be applied to them.
You don’t necessarily need to use the colors which I specified. It is enough to change the color of the centre slider, and we can adjust the saturation of the necessary color spots.
In order to enliven our creative card, we will add some sparkling points. Create some circumference and fill it with radial gradient which consists of two black and one grey slider. Apply the Color Dodge to it.
It is a popular way to apply the light effects to the vector illustration.
With the Flare Tool, create a glow in the centre of our composition.
If you want to modify the light effect a little bit, then you can go to the Object > Expand and tick Object in the dialog box.
Now you can control the parameters of shapes that make up the glow.
With some light effects any vector artwork looks more attractive.
We still need to hide the parts of vector splashes which exceed the borders of the creative card. Create a rectangle, the size of which should be the size of our artboard. Select all the created shapes and create the Clipping path by clicking on the Cmd / Ctrl + 7 shortcuts.
You can download the source vector file for this tutorial
Well, perhaps that’s all. "Hold on” you might say "How can it be possibly printed?” This you will find out in the article "How to Prepare a Vector File for Print in Illustrator” written by one polygraphist with 20 years experience in this field. I wish you every success! Don’t forget to swing by anytime.
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