Saturday, 10 October 2015

Create Spiral and Butterfly Composition in Illustrator

In this short tut I am going to show you how to create simple Spiral and Butterfly Composition using only basic Illustrator instruments plus default symbols and brush.
The Pattern and Gradient I have applied to the Background are exclusive for all versions of the program, as for both symbols used, you can replace them with another shapes which you can download from the web. You can also use another brush to stroke the spiral and create awesome effect.

This is the final result:


Create a new Illustrator .ai document of 1000 px both Width and Height (from Units drrop down menu choose Pixels). Name the file Spiral and Butterfly Composition and select RGB for Color Mode. I have set the Resolution to Medium (150ppi).


Take Rectangle tool and draw Rectangle which covers your artboard. Set the Fill color to R=166, G=185, B=175 to colorize the artboard with it (the Rectangle should be selected with Selection tool and Stroke color should be disabled).
Rename your Layer 1 to Background.


Now we are going to create subtle Vignette Effect. While the Background rectangle is selected, navigate to the Menu bar and choose Effect, Stylize, Inner Glow. In Inner Glow box select Normal for Mode drop down menu, set the Color of Glow to #082742, Opacity to 30% and Blur to 50px. Tick Edge. You can also check Preview to see what you are doing.


Keep the Background rectangle selected and open Appearance palette (Window, Appearance). Click on the tiny arrow at the upper right side of the palette and select Add New Fill from the fly out menu.


Open Swatch Libraries menu (Window, Swatches), click on the tiny arrow at the bottom left of the palette and select Patterns, Basic Graphics, Basic Graphics_Textures. Select Diagonal Lines Pattern from the swatches.

This is how your Background should look so far. In Appearance palette you can see both fills.


Create New Layer in Layers palette. Actually you can proceed to draw shapes without creating new layers as everything is visible in Appearance palette, but frankly speaking I don't like that mess.
Name the new layer Dot Pattern after the vector shape we are going to put on our artboard. You can lock your Background layer then select the new one and go to Window, Symbols. Click on the tiny arrow at the bottom left of Symbols palette and select Dot Pattern Vector Pack from the fly out menu.

Select Dot Pattern Vector Pack 12 symbol and drag it from the palette onto your artboard. Use Selection tool to resize it and place as you see on the following screenshot.

Keep Dot Pattern Vector Pack 12 symbol selected and go to Transparency palette (Window, Transparency). Set the Blend Mode of the symbol to Soft Light and lower its Opacity to 60%.


Now you can lock both Background and Dot Pattern layers and Create New Layer on top of Layers palette. Name it Spiral.

Now disable the Fill Color and set the Stroke Color to dark red (R=190, G=30, B=45). Select Spiral tool and click once anywhere on your artboard to activate its dialog box. Set the Radius to 400px, Decay to 80% and Segments to 10.

This is how your Spiral will look. You can set Stroke Weight to 5pt.


Keep the Spiral selected and open Brushes palette (Window, Brushes). Find Wacom 6D Brushes, then choose 6D Art Pen Brushes.

Stroke the Spiral with 6D Scatter Brush 1.


While the stroked Spiral is selected, go to Object, Expand Appearance. I used Selection tool to modify the Spiral and put it on the artboard like this:


Now go to Effect, Stylize and choose Drop Shadow. Leave Mode to Multiply, them set Opacity to 80%, X and Y Offset to 0px both and Blur to 25px.


Create New Layer on top of Layers palette and name it Butterfly (lock all layers created before for your convenience). Open Symbols (Window, Symbols, Retro) and select the awesome colorful Butterfly. Drag the symbol from the palette on your artboard and resize it with Selection tool. Apply on it the same Drop Shadow Effect you already applied on the Spiral, change only the Blur to 15px.


Create New Layer on top of Layers palette again and name it Copper Radial after the Gradient we are going to use. Open Swatches Library and select Gradients, Metals, then click on the Copper Radial Swatch. Draw a Rectangle covering your artboard. Disable Stroke Color. You should get this outcome.


In Transparency palette change the Blend Mode of Copper Radial layer to Soft Light.


On the screenshot below is shown the ready composition and the result in Layers palette. You should have these five layers in it (from bottom to top): Background, Dot Pattern, Spiral, Butterfly and Copper Radial.


Go to File, Export to save your work in a chosen format. I saved mine in .jpg and below is shown my final result.

Hope you like this short tut and find it funny and useful. Thank you very much for reading and if you have questions, just leave a comment below. :)

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