Editing Vector Objects/Reshaping Paths Using Path Operations
Combing, joining, intersecting, and punching holes in paths are
all functions (also known as Boolean operations) you will probably find yourself
using often. Many interesting shapes can be accomplished by using the path operations.
The combine options can be found by choosing Modify>Combine.
The options are Union, Join, Intersect, Crop, and Punch. To see how these options
can form different shapes, choose the ellipse tool with a special fill. I choose
the bubbles pattern with the texture of mesh.
The Union option is used when you want to merge two or more objects.
This operation combines all the shapes into the outline of them all, and removes
any overlapping areas. To use the Union operation, follow there steps:
- With the Pointer tool, Shift+select each shape you want to merge.
- Choose Modify/Combine/Union. You should get the result below:
The Intersect operation works the opposite of union. Whereas Union
throws away the overlapping area, Intersect keep it and throws away the rest.
To intersect paths, follow these steps:
- With the Pointer tool, Shift+select each shape you want to intersect.
- Choose Modify/Combine/Intersect. You should get the result below:
You can also apply an effect to the shape. I used an outer bevel
for the image below:
The result of using the Crop operation look the same as the results
of using the Intersect operation shown above. To use the crop operation, follow
- With the Pointer tool, Shift+select each shape you want to crop.
- Choose Modify/Combine/Crop. The image below has the same shape above but
I deleted the bevel and added applied a glow effect.
The Join operation isn't the same as connecting paths together
into one continues path using the join techniques with the Pen tool. To join
paths together, follow the steps below:
- With the Pointer tool, Shift+select each shape you want to join.
- Choose Modify/Join. Below is how the two circles appear joined.
- If you don't like the result or if you want to split the join apart at a
later time, choose Modify/Split.
Punch is probably the most fun of all the path operations, especially
if you like to punch holes in thins.
- With the Pointer tool, Shift+select the object you want to punch and the
object your are punching it out of.
- Choose Modify/Combine/Punch. Below is how the two circles appear punched
A Star Punched Out of a Circle
- First draw the circle.
- Next draw the star using the polygon tool.
- Center the star on top of the circle.
- Select both the star and the circle.
- Choose Modify/Combine/Punch. This is another example of how you can create
your own great graphics with this option.
Making a Frame Using the Punch Option
- Open a new document with a size of 500 pixels by 500 pixels.
- Select the Rounded Rectangle tool and draw a rectangle. In the Info panel,
set the size to a Width of 325 and a Height of 175. Open the Object pane (Window>Object)
and set the Roundness to 25.
- Choose Edit/Duplicate, and then choose Modify>Transform>Numeric Transform.
From the drop-down menu, choose Scale, uncheck the Constrain Proportions box,
type "85%" for the width and "75"%" for the Height,
and click OK. In the Fill panel, change the color to something different than
your larger triangle so that you can see it. Using the Pointer tool, center
the smaller rectangle in the larger rectangle. To be sure it is centered accurately,
Shift+select both rectangles and choose Modify>Align>Center Vertical,
and then choose Modify>Align>Center Horizontal.
- Shift+select both rectangles and choose Modify>Combine>Punch. From
the Fill panel, use a Solid fill with any color you like, and then press Enter.
From the Effect panel, choose Bevel And Emboss>Raised Emboss with a Width
of 4 and a Softness of 2. Then, choose Shadow And Glow/Drop Shadow with a
Distance of 15 and a softness of 4.
This is my completed frame below:
You could even go one step further and actually paste a picture
inside. This makes an eye striking presentations for a web page.