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Mathias17 451 posts
Feb 20, 2012
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What is: Effect > Path > Outline Object & Outline Stroke for?

Apr 27, 2012 8:15 AM

They've mystified me since I noticed them.

 

Lords of Illustrator, forgive your humble servant's blatant ignorance, but searches and experimentation have come up disinsightful (possible a new word) - what do you do with these?

 

 

(Right now, I'm making a focused effort to figure out everything I can do with live Appearance Panel effects - the more I know, the better I feel I set up artwork, non-destructively. It's great. Correct Answer will manifest happy dancing.)

 
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    Apr 27, 2012 9:09 AM   in reply to Mathias17

    Using an Effect is just a way to nondestructively do the same thing as Object>Path>Outline Object or Outline Stroke. Set up two of the same objects and compare the results.

     
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    Apr 27, 2012 9:32 AM   in reply to Mathias17

    Among other things they are useful (and often required) in conjunction with Pathfinder effects.

     

    Are you interested in some sample files for detection?

     
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    Apr 27, 2012 10:09 AM   in reply to Mathias17

    A simple example - In the case of Outline Stroke, basically it would have susequent effects operate on the resulting outlined object (the one on the right) as opposed to the stroke (left example)

    Screen shot 2012-04-27 at 10.01.07 AM.png

     

    It is an odd one to puzzle out, as by itself, it appears to do nothing. And yeah, the appearance panel kicks ***.  I remember the epiphany when I discovered it and was like "wow - I've been doing it ALL wrong..."  [edit:] Amusingly (well, now anyway) the other "oh my god" moment was finding offset path and realizing that I didn't have to do it by hand.

     
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    Apr 27, 2012 11:39 AM   in reply to Mathias17

    Download this and check the Outline effects example file

    ftp://tpettit.best.vwh.net/AI_10_Style_demos.zip

     
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    Apr 27, 2012 12:27 PM   in reply to Mathias17

    This question has been Answered.

     

    Time to abscond then.

     
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    Apr 27, 2012 12:29 PM   in reply to Mathias17

    Thanks Mathias, this is one very cool illustration!

     

    To be clear, these files are not mine and I don't know who made them, they are floating on the web and I happened to have the ftp link in my bookmarks.

     
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    Apr 27, 2012 1:29 PM   in reply to emil emil

    The artist/engineer is Teri Pettit who's name you will find in the Credits list for Illustrator. She's been with Adobe since the early days of Illustrator and has contributed greatly to the product.

     
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    Apr 27, 2012 1:35 PM   in reply to Larry G. Schneider

    She also used to be one of the few Adobe employees who would slum it down here in with us lowly users.  It's been a few years since she's been here.  She taught me the awesome secret bat cave trick to determine the area of an irregular shape.

     
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    Apr 27, 2012 1:36 PM   in reply to Larry G. Schneider

    There you go, credits go to Teri then. Pasted the name in my bookmark.

     
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    Apr 27, 2012 1:50 PM   in reply to emil emil

    I love the Appearance panel.

     

    A bit of fun just to explore options with it... one circle, then appearance panel.

    appearancefun.jpg

     
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    Apr 27, 2012 7:39 PM   in reply to [scott w]

    Okay, that is awesome.  At first, I thought you just meant for the flower part, but then I realized the stem, leaves and water drops were in there too!

     
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    Apr 27, 2012 7:57 PM   in reply to Jesseham

    Yup. It's all only 1 single circle (you can see the selection highlight for the circle), then the entire image is built using only the Appearance panel.

     

    Wireframe looks like this....  O 

     
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    Apr 28, 2012 6:41 PM   in reply to emil emil

    I think Teri is responsible for developing the Appearance Panel.

     
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    Apr 28, 2012 6:45 PM   in reply to [scott w]

    Nice Scott!

     
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    Apr 28, 2012 7:15 PM   in reply to Freelance_illustrator

    Thanks

     
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    Apr 29, 2012 10:56 AM   in reply to [scott w]

    From an experimental point of view that flower is a remarkable study. No doubt.

     

    From a pragmatical point of view it's also a remarkable study that shows how absurdly over-complicated one can construct things inside the Appearance palette which can be done easier and way more straightforward by applying "normal" transformations to simple objects.

     

    The Appearance palette is useful, but it can also be an alluring playground that may mislead your mind.

     
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    Apr 29, 2012 11:11 AM   in reply to Kurt Gold

    Agreed Kurt.

     

    The point of the exercise for me was to determine at what point is it folly to continue to alter an object via the appearance panel. As well as to study performance differences. For example, I learned the Scribble effect dramatically slows down redraw. The image I posted draws in a few seconds, add a Scribble effect anywhere and that redraw time is easily quadrupled. Glows, shadows, blurs, feathers, etc. don't have that delay which the Scribble Effect provides.

     

    Another goal was to determine just how much transformation can you accomplish and how to get past some limitations (such as the restriction to only move an object 100px via the transform effect). While I'd never actually need anything similar to the flower for real work. It is sometimes handy to know you can create multiple objects which different via the Appearance panel. For example.... eyes or ears of a comic character. That way they stay internally connected and you have less assets to manage. Set up graphic styles for eyes... and they are then just a click away.

     
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    Apr 29, 2012 11:30 AM   in reply to [scott w]

    I once did a (rather simple, but not too simple) topographic map just by using the Appearance palette. An enlightening experience and a sportful experiment ;-)

     

    As for the 100 px limit you mention: Isn't it 4000 px per Transform effect ?

     
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    Apr 29, 2012 12:25 PM   in reply to Kurt Gold

    hmm.. I only get 100px/pt in any direction.

     
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    Apr 29, 2012 12:29 PM   in reply to [scott w]

    You're used to only take the sliders, right?

     

    Type 2798 px into the Move field and see what happens ;-)

     
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    Apr 29, 2012 1:55 PM   in reply to Kurt Gold

    I'll be a monkey's uncle. I had no idea. Yup 4000.. THANKS for that!

     
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    Apr 29, 2012 2:14 PM   in reply to [scott w]

     
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    May 11, 2012 11:46 PM   in reply to Mathias17

    Is there a difference when you click on the eye in the Appearance panel to hide the Outline Stroke effect? If yes, it is working.

     
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    May 12, 2012 12:28 AM   in reply to Mathias17

    Hmm, works fine here.

    Try this, select your path and from the Appearance panel menu choose Clear Appearance. Then take the eyedropper tool, make sure it is set to copy appearance by double clicking the eye dropper in the tool box. Then while your path without any appearance is selected click on Teri's path to see if it will copy the effect. It may be helpful to turn the smart guided on to make it easier to click on the path with the eyedropper.

     
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    May 12, 2012 12:56 AM   in reply to Mathias17

    Yes, I can do it from scratch without a problem. The point of my suggestion was when you start from scratch, after you draw the path, first clear its appearance to make sure it is not inheriting something by default. And also create it on a brand new layer.

     
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    May 12, 2012 1:52 AM   in reply to emil emil

    Mathias, I'm seeing the same problem (even after clearing the appearance), but can solve it by shifting the effects around the Appearance panel at what I think is random before putting them in their proper places. At least I have not yet determined which changes precede proper functioning. I got it to work on your "crappy" example by shifting both the outline and roughen effects a couple of times each, including applying them to the fill before shifting them back to the stroke. If there's any sense to it I haven't found it yet.

     

    Peter

     
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    May 12, 2012 6:25 AM   in reply to Mathias17

    Applying Outline Path effect can also make text wrap work on an open path:

     

     

    JET

     
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    May 12, 2012 1:11 PM   in reply to Mathias17

    Maybe you would like to post an example of what doesn't work.

     

    But in addition to that: Teri's example is from Illustrator 10. There has been a change in the appearance panel in Illustrator CS4 which affects exactly the outline stroke and outline object effects. Stuff that has been possible until Illustrator CS3 is not any more:

    http://www.vektorgarten.de/outline-object-and-stroke.html

     
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