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In this tutorial we will learn how to create a grass background using quite simple vector techniques using Art Brush, Gradient fills and Symbols. Have fun learning our new Adobe illustrator tutorial!
With the help of the Ellipse Tool (L) create an ellipse elongated in the horizontal direction.
Select the points A and B using the Direct Selection Tool (A), then remove them by clicking on the appropriate button in the Control panel.
Move the handles of the remaining points to the center of the shape, holding down Opt / Alt key.
Duplicate the created object, and then slightly modify the shape of the new object by manipulating its handles.
Save two objects in the Brushes panel as Art Brush, without changing the default settings.
Using the Pen Tool (P) create a new shape so that its upper points coincide with the points of the lower blade of grass.
Select the upper and lower shapes of grass blade, then take the Shape Builder Tool and holding the Opt / Alt key, remove the lower part of the upper shape.
Using this technique, create a new shape of the second blade of grass.
Save both grass blades, each one consisting of two objects, as Art Brushes.
Using the first two Art brushes and Pen Tool (P), create a few curved segments, so that they looked like a bunch of grass. Adjust the thickness of the blades, changing the parameter of Weight in the Stroke panel.
Select all the grass blades, then go to Object > Path > Outline Stroke.
As you can see, our grass blades have an excessive amount of points. Since our artwork will contain a large amount of blades of grass, it would be better if we reduce the number of points, which will eventually reduce the size of the vector file. Keeping the blades of grass selected, go to Object > Path > Simplify .... The parameters that are set by default are suitable for the solution of our problem.
However, we have another problem; loops appeared at the places of corner points.
To delete the loops, run the Merge Overlapped Anchors script (File > Script > Merge Overlapped Anchors), which you can download here. As you can see, all the loops are removed, and the paths have not changed their trajectories at the same time.
Apply vertical linear gradient from green to dark green color to the grass blades.
Save grass blades as New Symbol in the Symbols panel.
Take the Rectangle Tool (M) and create a rectangle with a dark green fill. The size of the rectangle must match according to the size of grass background.
Double-clicking on the icon on the Symbol Sprayer Tool on the Tools panel will open the dialog box. Set the parameters shown in the picture below.
Choose a symbol with a tuft of grass in the Symbols panel, then spray it by moving the tool in the horizontal direction at the upper part of the rectangle.
Lock the created Symbol Set in the Layers panel.
Now again spray the grass symbol in a horizontal direction, creating a new row. Grass blades of the adjacent rows should overlap each other.
Using this technique, create rows of grass, moving from top to bottom over the area of the rectangle. Just do not forget to lock the previous row of grass blades.
Thus we have created a lower layer of grass.
Now create a tuft of grass from the third and fourth Art Brushes.
Do the same actions with this tuft of grass as you did with the first one. Go to Object > Path > Outline Stroke, then reduce the amount of points of the grass blades.
Run the Merge Overlapped Anchors script to remove the loops.
Using the Direct Selection Tool (A) select the object of dark green.
Now go to Select > Same > Fill Color.
Fill the selected objects with vertical gradient from light green to dark green color.
Select the object with the light green filling.
Go to Select > Same > Fill Color.
Fill the selected objects with a linear gradient that contains the lighter shades of green color than the previous one has.
Of course, in order to ensure best results, you can work on every grass blade using the Gradient Tool (G).
We are creating the upper layer of grass, so let's prepare a bunch of different kinds of tufts of grass in order to achieve better diversity.
Save all the tufts as symbols in the Symbols panel.
Using the Symbol Sprayer Tool and the technique described in step 8 and 9 spray the symbols over the surface of the background. Constantly change symbols to avoid monotony.
Lay the grass in rows moving from top to bottom.
Duplicate the lower rectangle and place the copy above of all the created objects.
Fill the rectangle with radial gradient from white to green, and apply to it the Multiply blending mode in the Transparency panel. By doing this we have achieved uneven illumination of the grass background.
Duplicate the upper rectangle one more time, and then select all the created objects created and click on the keys Cmd / Ctrl + 7 to create a Clipping Mask.
Now the grass background is ready.