Questions, questions, questions let's see.
It is easier to show with a movie then explain
You have to create the first text frame then copy it and then adjust the width of the copy and thread the text frames. There is no cell tool.
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Jrough, I'm sorry, and no offense intended, but you really need to read the documentation. You have come to Illustrator with a bunch of assumptions about its features.
Illustrator has no feature for rounding individual corner points of a path (rectangle or other). You have to resort to workarounds, all of which constitute drawing or constructing the path shape you want in one way or another.
A photo (raster image) in Illustrator does not automatically have a "container" to which you can apply a corner effect, like is common in page-layout programs. You can deliberately put a raster image inside a Clipping Mask (a path of any shape), but it is not necessary to do so in order for the raster image to be in the document. So applying a path Effect like Round Corners to just a "bare" raster image does nothing. (The command should not be selectable if it cannot be applied to the current selection, but Illustrator is chock full of such poorly designed interface caveats.)
Illustrator has no straightforward 2D "bevel" rendering feature, like is common in other drawing programs. So you must draw such bevels in any of several ways.
Illustrator does not allow you to individually size columns of TextFrames created in the Area Type Options dialog. You can create individual TextFrames and then thread them, but they are then individual TextFrames, not "columns" per se in a single text object.
There is no "cell tool". Aside from the afore-mentioned rows/columns of the Area Type Options dialog, Illustrator doesn't build spreadsheets or text tables in the usual and customary sense of other programs.
All of this (and no doubt dozens of other similarly basic questions you will have) would be clear had you looked over the documentation.
It's understandable that you are somewhat aghast at the lack of such commonplace features; and I'm certainly not defending the omissions. But Illustrator is a very long-in-the-tooth program that has simply never kept up with a multitude of features now long considered standard-fare in most similar programs. Examples abound: Illustrator has no proper path cutting tool, no user-defined drawing scales, no connector tools, no dimension tools, no shape primitives (live ellipses, rectangles, polygons, etc., with adjustable geometric parameters). The list is quite long.
I hope you are using the demo version. When you first start poking around in a new program (let alone buying it), the first step ought to be at least a cursory perusal of its feature set to get a general understanding of its interface, features, and "logic". It's crazy to just jump into a program like this one and then go straight to an online user forum to start asking a plethora of very basic questions about its feature set. It will take you three forevers to actually learn to use the program with any measure of proficiency that way.
Buy CorelDraw and use their simple tool which allows you to round only one corner!
No, just playing around -- although if Adobe wasn't so stubborn, they'd lift dozens of features that Corel has offered for the past decade -- which would make the Illustrator world that much more enjoyable.
Illustrator is still the bombdiggity!
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I'm using CS2 here so please bare with me if for CS3/4 the methodology might be a bit different.
You say your photo is disappearing...this is because you can't turn a photo into a rounded corner shape, via effects, you must make a clipping mask. lets try this:
1. Place the photo on a layer
2. Draw a Rounded rectangle in the postion you want it, ABOVE the photo
3. Draw a small regular rectangle BEHIND the Rounded rectangle, where you want the two rounded corners to get cut off.
4. Select BOTH the Rounded AND the Square rectangle only
5. Using the PATHFINDER Menu, Select "Minus Back"
6. Now Select the newly created Rectangle (has two rounded corners only) AND the Photo
7. use menu: OBJECT > CLIPPING MASK > MAKE
You should now have a two rounded corner/ two square cornered box with the photo in it.
You can use this as is in the 3d portion of the software as Wade Pointed out...
I just did it in CS2 and it worked...
I notice a couple of fellow responders stepped in while I was writing my reply... I must say I agree. Just reading through One book will help an awful lot and save a ton of headaches. Try a few easy tutorials, there are 1000's of them that won't cost you a dime. You really can't hurt anything by trying a few of your own methods out before writing to a forum. If that were the case I would have given up years ago.
Hey all you responders thanks. I told you I was very noob. I have actually been reading tutorials for a month now. Illustrator maybe not be what I'm looking for. Do you think that InDesign would do the layout for www.365main.com? I already have the gifs. All I need is a mockup of the text layout. I just figured out how to give points. I did the best I could. I will go back to my last post and add some points if it isn't too late.
I don't think anyone would use Illustrator to create tables and I do
not know of a layout program that allows you to create columned text
with the columns varying in width.
So much of what you want you want to do in another program like ID.
They do have the feature in Flash so it is possible that this might
come to Illustrator as well.
gifs are you making a web page? If so you might find Dreamweaver the
better choice though there is a learning curve but zI D can do it as
well but it is more designed for print then the web.
I agree with Wade, it really all depends on what you need for an end product. If you are just doing a "Mock-up" and that's it, I'd probably use Indesign or Photoshop. For a simple layout, Photoshop could be the easy way out. If you need to create something for print, you would go to Indesign. Indesigns also has the tables you want. If you are actually going to get into making a web page, Dreamweaver would be the way to go, BUT, Dreamweavers learning curve is a bit steep. If you are just making a small one-shot deal, I'd look around for a simple web page building program. Illustrator is a great program, but really made for designing individual objects like logos's and such. (Although it can be used for much more, with more experience) Probably on the forums, if you describe just what you intend to do with the project and how far you need to go with it, will determine just what software is needed to pull it off. Many of the Adobe programs are overkill if all you need is a very small project that needs to be done once.