ColliderScribe v2 + Wacom Cintiq 22 Touch + Astute Graphics plugins for Adobe Illustrator

ColliderScribe v2 + Wacom Cintiq 22 Touch + Astute Graphics plugins for Adobe Illustrator

September 18, 2019 3 By Bernardo Ryan


Hi, I’m Nick, founder of Astute Graphics. In today’s special video I’m going to be presenting
the Wacom Cintiq 22 inch Touch coupled with our plug-ins for Adobe Illustrator. Our tools are all about improving and speeding
up the designer’s vector workflow. Whereas they work with any device, the Cintiq transforms the digital into natural. Its like working with a pen
on paper. So let’s look at this device further. In this movie I’m not going to be providing
a full review of the Wacom Cintiq 22 inch, instead I would like to reserve that for a
separate movie where I’m also going to look at the alternatives from Wacom, including
the Companion 2. Rather, I’d like to demonstrate the interactive and playful nature that you
can have with vector tools and the Cintiq with its touch capability. I’m going to be concentrating on our latest
plug-in ColliderScribe2, as well as one or two plug-ins along the way which will help
me just draw a bit faster and more naturally. So the first thing we are going to do is change
over to a new document, and you will notice that I can touch the screen to do that. If
you are used to working on an iPad, this is going to be second nature to you. However
it’s going to be much more productive, much more fluid. It’s really a fantastic system
to use. So, I’m going to go to Dynamic Shapes first, which is part of our VectorScribe plug-in
set and enable it and I’m going to draw a round ellipse. You will notice that I’m drawing it out using
my finger here. The nice thing about using the dynamic tool set is that it can actually
change dynamically. So I can, for example enlarge and reduce the scale of it which is
quite normal in vector. I can hold down a key-press using the key strip on the side
of the Wacom here to allow me to adjust the aspect ratio… like so. And you will see
later on as well that I can make use of this to modify shapes… like this… and I can
use the keyboard in front of me if I want to undo. Or I could assign a key on the Wacom
device to do that. So I can really just interact with the art
board in what is a technical creation but is actually drawn with my finger. OK, let
me look a bit further into the creation of this peacock element here. And what I’m going
to do is to copy and paste an element of this ellipse in front of it and I’m going to grab
hold of the pen to do this. Because what I have done, I’ve assigned special modifires
to my pen. You see, I have never actually used the buttons
on the pen to – for example – double-click instead of double clicking by tapping on it. So what
I have done is actually made the back button on this pen here [Copy] the front button on
the pen [Paste] so I can use it almost like a scattergun type thing. It’s fantastic for
that. So perhaps I’m using this quite differently
from everybody else, but heck – I like it. So I’m going to go to this element here and
I’m going to choose a darker shade of purple like this. Now again, I can put the pen down
and I’m going to modify this one so that it’s a slightly different shape… like so. And
if I were to go to the normal Select Tool I can move it around exactly as you would
expect. Nothing special about that… but what I want to do is actually look at it colliding.
Now, for this I am going to zoom out a bit and I can use the strip on the back of the
Cintiq here so you can see that I can zoom in and zoom out and also drag up I’m zooming
out. And I can move this a bit further away and now I’m going to find the ColliderScribe2
functionality. Click and hold down on the Select Tool and
drag out this strip here. And you see there are three new selection types here. There
is Snap to Collisions, Rotate at Collisions and Rotate to Collisions Tool. I’m going to
show one more tool in ColliderScribe2 a bit later, but these are the ones which really
are playful and interactive especially with the touch functionality. If I click on this tool so I’m actually in
the Snap to Collisions Tool, and I press the [Return / Enter] key on the keyboard, these
are the preferences for the tool. And what it is allowing me to do is snap to the pre
dragged positions – i.e where it is originally, and I’ll show the reason for that. And I can
allow for example collision spacing to take place as well. I’ll just Cancel this. I’m just going to use it straight out of the
box and I’m going to move this object near the original ellipse and you can see that
using my finger I can collide the two objects together. And this is actually a really natural
thing to do, its like going “Clunk”. OK, pity we haven’t put a sound effect in the
plug-in but it would be really really good on a Cintiq, I think it would. But you can see it actually collides in, so
it’s not like Smart Guides, it will collide at any point. And what I can do for example
is hold down another key modifier here and I can duplicate it as well whilst I am going
around, so you can see how quick and easy that is, using just a finger to copy this
around. It’s starting to look a bit like a petal.
Well, let’s take this a bit further and what I am going to do is I am going to drag it
away a bit further and use the Rotate at Collision tool. Again I am just going to use my finger
with the Cintiq. And this actually shows the accuracy of the Cintiq touch mechanism in
that I can actually select this point on the path here… to say I want that to collide
around like so… so you can see it colliding around. You can see at the north, south, east and
west points or the top, vertical points etcetera, it will snap to those points and I can override
that if I want. There you go. I just use the key modifier again so I can smoothly rotate
all the way round and again this is the beautiful thing about the Cintiq, as they provide these
key modifiers here which are completely configurable and you can use them exactly as you like. They provide them both on the left and the
right hand side of the device depending if you’re left- or right-handed. So I can move
this one around and I can hold it on the second key modifier at the same time and duplicate
it like so. So let me do another one. Let me drag this one in to position as well and
this one I will do again. Now what I can also do is go to the preferences in this tool here
and I can go and use collision spacing so let me do another one, let me drag this one
into position as well and this one I will Now what I can also do with preferences in
this tool here is I can go and use Collision Spacing. But I am going to go down to probably
on this one, 1mm of collision spacing and now if I do this you will see there is a gap
between the shapes which is continuously held by this Collision Spacing. If I find that it’s too easy for me to break
away from this sort of snapping, if perhaps I want a bit of a cruder snapping if you will,
it doesn’t have to be so close to actually snap in, I can go back to the preferences
and I can increase the snap tolerance to, say 36 pixels. And you can see it snaps much
easier… now I have to be really quite crude for it to snap away from it. It’s quite nice to do and I can also snap
between objects etcetera like that. So that’s great. OK, let’s go back to making this peacock
element and I’m going to select this, this and this and move this one a bit out of the
way like so. So, what I want to do is actually have this ellipse in this one and I actually
wanted this one to be vertical and you can see it has been rotated around. That’s no problem . Let’s use this same functionality
and drag and click there and by default it snaps to the vertical lower position here.
And I can let go and it snaps nice and square… like so. So I can go back to the original
tool and this time I’m going to drag in here and you can see that it is snapping to two
locations at once; on the left and the right here. And it’s so easy to place an object
using this tool set and this mechanism. Let me zoom in a little bit. OK, what I want to
do now, I’m going to use my old Copy and Paste trick so I don’t have to actually touch the
screen on the Cintiq. This is the beautiful thing about the pen
tool offered with Wacom. There’s no battery in them for starters, but the other thing
is that I don’t actually have to touch the screen as it’s so sensitive to where it is
to actually make it interact with the button. So I can actually Copy and Paste… and give
it a different colour… and I will go back to the Dynamic Shapes and if you’re curious,
this column here is all Astute Graphics plug-ins. From Space Fill at the top down to Rasterino
at the bottom. These are all Astute Graphics plug-ins. They really integrate very cleanly
with Adobe Illustrator. So if you are wondering if you haven’t got them on your system, then
simply download with a 14 day free trial and you can install all the plug-ins and just
try them all out fully for free. OK, let’s go to the Dynamic Shapes tool and I’m going
to slice this object out which is part of the Dynamic Shapes functionality. Dynamic
Shapes is a tool within our VectorScribe product And I’m going to move it there… and I will
also, I think, scale this down a little bit as well like that. Get rid of that panel there. You can see that
it just works with the finger. It just somehow works. So that’s fantastic. I’m going to grab
hold of this one and I will snap it to that location there. So I’ve easily made this peacock
feather element that you see here. Now just a quick review of what you are able to do
in an actual design workflow here. I’m going to just turn on the original peacock feather
and remove the other ones and show the grid that we used to align these peacock feathers
to. And what I’m going to do while I’m in the Rotate at Collision tool is just go back
to preferences and turn off the Collision Spacing like that. And now I can turn off
the touch capability if I want to, because I want to use quite small sort of locations
to actually steer this. Sometimes the touch capability may interfere
with it. And that’s how I did that. So I’m going to, let me see, I’m going to copy it
over here, copy it over here, copy it over here. I can override the locking like that.
Copy it over here, etcetera, and I can make another copy up here and do exactly the same.
And that’s how we built that grid which still looks very natural but its how we got the
grid of peacock feathers in this artwork. OK, let’s move on to a second element in ColliderScribe2.
And that’s the Space Fill tool. Now for this one I’m going to make sure that the touch
is off because there’s actually no touch capability on this tool. I’m going to be a bit more playful
with how things look in Adobe Illustrator. So I’m going to use this key modifier here
which I have assigned as the space bar key and it allows me to pan around like this.
And somehow it seems more natural than going down to the keyboard – even though its down
here. I just grip onto these key modifiers here really, really naturally. And what I
am going to do is I’m simply going to go to the selection key and I am going to select
that object… well let’s select both objects at the same time… and I’m holding down the
key modifier. Actually I’ll select them all – let me go in one go. And I’m going to go open this Space Fill panel
which is part of ColliderScribe2 and it’s completely new to ColliderScribe2. And what
it is, we have this sort of petri dish type object on top and the two sort of artwork
elements here. And I’m simply going to ask to make a fill with those objects. And now
what its doing is varying the rotation by default and so it’s actually rotating around
and I can turn it off if I want… and then it stops rotating around. So let’s put those two objects within the
overall circle of the petri dish. Thats all very well and good, but I think what I want
to do is have a few more copies of this. So again, just using the Wacom with the pen,
just use a very sort of precise method of clicking on here and I find it works brilliantly
on this interface here. I can increase the number of objects and what I can do is scale
them all down, so by scaling these down I can add more elements. Let’s see how many
we can have. I’ll tell you what, let’s start varying the
size as well of these elements by 1.5… perhaps only do 50% scale. I’m going to knock down
the uniformity so it looks cruder and I’m going to create more copies of this Space
Filled artwork. So you see it sort of starting to fill up, and its always reorganising so
this one is actually quite a crude sort of fill as there is no uniformity going on. Let’s make it a bit more uniform. Now remember
I have too may objects to fit in properly so I can knock that down and it sort of spaces
them out quite nicely. And it’s completely interactive which is the lovely thing. I could
use outlines to make it even more accurate, but I actually don’t want to make it accurate
on this occasion. I want it to look a bit crude as if they are bumping into each other…
I think thats quite funny. So I can increase this a bit more again and increase number
of copies and keep on playing around with it until I’m happy. I do want them to overlap so let me go back
here. OK, so we have got all these sort of elements sort of colliding and overlapping
and what I am going to do before I finish this demo is go back to the Dynamic Shapes
Tool because that circle is actually a dynamic shape underneath here. And with it knowing
it’s a circle, what I can actually do is change the primitive and I can change it to a polygon.
And by default it’s got four sides… well let’s put a 7 sided polygon like so. We can make the sides of the polygon bigger,
we can put roundings on the polygon like this… so I can make it more rounded. Again it’s
completely live and updating continuously so the Space Fill is always going on outside
there. And if I really wanted to, I could go to the Dynamic Corners Tool which is another
one of our tools in the VectorsScribe toolset. And I could modify these tools individually
like that. So, I wanted to show both a playful side with the actual touch and also the fact
that you can easily do precise artwork in vector in Adobe Illustrator using a combination
of Illustrator and our plug-ins. Thank you for joining me in today’s special
movie. I hope you enjoyed it. If you want to learn more about the two plug-ins I featured
– ColliderScribe2 and VectorScribe2 – please have a look at our YouTube channel. You can also find lots more material there
covering all our plug-ins as well as movies specifically pitched to Wacom users. You can
also find hundreds more tutorials on our Astute Graphics blog at astutegraphics.com/blog And
I hope you can join us for future instructional videos. Thank you very much.