15 Replies Latest reply: May 7, 2012 6:00 AM by GSIDesign RSS

    Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?

    GSIDesign Community Member

      I have a lot of line drawing illustrations each made with various weight strokes. Each illustration looks good by itself but when compared some look with overall thicker or thinner lines and I want to make them look the same because all will be used in the same book. To scale the weight of the strokes I make a scaled copy of each illustration and then select a line or set of lines selected using same -> stoke weight and with the eyedropper copy the style from the scaled version. This is a lot of work and I would like to know if there is a faster way to do this. Ideally I wish it was possible when using the scale tool to have the option to scale only the strokes with the same percentage.

        • 1. Re: Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?
          Jacob Bugge MVP

          GSIDesign,

           

          You may, with the relevant artwork selected (Ctrl/Cmd+A to select all or whatever):

           

          1) Tick Scale Strokes & Effects in the Transform panel,

          2) Scale the artwork as much as you want the strokes scaled (Transform palette/panel or Object>Transform>Scale),

           

          and then the reverse,

           

          3) Untick Scale Strokes & Effects in the Transform panel,

          4) Scale the artwork back to the original size.

          • 2. Re: Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?
            Wade_Zimmerman Community Member

            it is much simpler than the both or you are trying to do this.

             

            1. Select all the artwork that you need to have the same weight stroke

             

            2. In the stroke panel simply choose or type the weight of the stroke you want

             

            all the art that was selected now have the same stroek weight and the art has remained the same size as far as te path size is concerned.

            • 4. Re: Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?
              Steve Fairbairn Community Member

              Yep, but this way means doing Select Same as often as the line weights are many.

              I reckon Jacob's way is better: Scale twice, with and without Scale Strokes & Effects.

              At least that's the way I usually go for this kind of thing.

              • 5. Re: Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?
                Wade_Zimmerman Community Member

                Why would you have to do a Seelect Same?

                 

                All you have to do is select allthe art and change the weight of the strokes with one setting in the stroke panel!

                • 6. Re: Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?
                  Steve Fairbairn Community Member

                  If you have, say, 5 objects each with its own line weight, you would need to Select Same 5 times.

                  Otherwise you wouldn't be able to enter a value.

                   

                  Using the other method you only have to do the process once.

                  • 7. Re: Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?
                    Wade_Zimmerman Community Member

                    The OP wants the art to look alike so the strokes do not look different when placed in this particular piece the easiest way is to give it the same weight stroke.

                     

                    It is possible that the OP means they want to try to make the strokes to be different but relative the the art but that is not going to work visually or technically.

                     

                    Sothis is what I am suggesting and this is all they really need to do.

                     

                    http://www.wadezimmerman.com/videos/OneWeightStrokes.mov

                     

                    as you can see from my screen shot and the example in the video the art looks consistent simply with the same stroke weight applied to all the art even though they art  objects are of different sizes.

                     

                     

                    very simple matter.

                    • 8. Re: Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?
                      Steve Fairbairn Community Member

                      As far as I can see, the OP is asking how to scale 'various weight strokes' within single drawings.

                      He is not asking about how to unify stroke weights.

                      • 9. Re: Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?
                        JETalmage Community Member

                        The workaround described in Post 1:

                         

                         

                         

                        This is an age-old workaround for (among other things) the fact that Illustrator does not provide an option to disallow scaling of strokes contained in base art used in Brushes and Symbols. (An additional--and completely unintuitive--workaround for the problem with Symbols in CS5 and later is to apply 9-point scaling, even when you don't otherwise need it.)

                         

                        JET

                        • 10. Re: Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?
                          Steve Fairbairn Community Member

                          Exactly.

                          I have just finished a furniture catalogue with a large number of line drawings. The originals were worked in various sizes but using fixed line weights (usually 3 weights per drawing independent of their actual size).

                          To get them to look right together when scaled down, all I had to do was scale them with Scale Strokes & Effects turned off.

                          • 11. Re: Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?
                            JETalmage Community Member

                            ...all I had to do was scale them with Scale Strokes & Effects turned off.

                            Not quite the same thing. Using just one step in the situation you described only works because you had the forethought to use the same stroke weights on the two differently-scaled drawings. If you had used different sets of stroke weights in the two drawings, and needed to scale them to similar size, simply turning off Scale Strokes would not suffice; thus the workaround described.

                             

                            Example:

                             

                            You draw a camshaft using stroke weights of 1 pt. and 2 pt.

                            From another original, you have a rocker arm also drawn using two stroke weights, but of .75 pt and 1.5 pt. The rocker arm is also drawn to a different scale, three times that of the camshaft.

                            You need to combine the camshaft and rocker arm in the same drawing.

                             

                            Simply scaling the rocker arm to 33.3% with Scale Strokes turned off would not serve. The rocker arm would still have stroke weights lighter than those used in the camshaft. So you:

                             

                            1. Note an overall dimension of the rocker arm drawing.

                            2. Scale the rocker arm to 133.33% with Scale Strokes on.

                            3. Scale the rocker arm back to its original size by keying the noted dimension back into the H or V dimension fields, with Scale Strokes off.

                            4. Scale the rocker arm to 33.33% with Scale Strokes off.

                             

                            Even the workaround will not truly serve if the stroke weights used in the two drawings being merged are not proportional. For example, If the camshaft had been drawing using stroke weights of 1 pt and 2 pt, but the rocker arm had been drawn using .75 pt and 2 pt.

                             

                            The underlying lesson is that it's advantageous to structure drawings using Graphic Styles, just as it's similarly advantageous to always use paragraph and character styles--even when you think you don't need them.

                             

                            So GSI's desire for a sensible, no-nonsense setting that allows you to scale strokes without scaling paths is quite legitimate. This could be implemented as simply as:

                             

                            Change this:

                             

                            to this:

                             

                            ...and make the checkboxes behave like checkboxes are supposed to (non-exclusive), rather than like radio buttons (mutually exclusive).

                             

                            Given several drawings (ex: a set of cartoon figures drawn at different times and/or from different sources) all drawn in loosey-goosey, artsy-tartsy eyeballed fashion with no structure whatsoever in terms of defined (and therefore selectable) styles, one could at least scale the various drawings to commensurate proportion and then just the stroke weights based on percentage of their original weights, and at least make the combined drawing more convincingly consistent. A "Sameness" slider could even be provided to skew the scaling of thin versus thick weights.

                             

                            Failing that (as is no doubt certain), this feature could be built with Javascript. But the result of doing so would be far more elegant if one could get the Palette object of ScriptUI to work worth a dang.

                             

                            JET

                            • 12. Re: Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?
                              GSIDesign Community Member

                              Thank you all for your help

                              Given there is no option designed for this, so far the workaround with scaling down and up with strokes on and off is the best that can be done.

                              I don’t have permission to show the illustrations because it is a manual for a product not released yet but I can describe. The illustrations show hands using a product. I created the illustrations by tracing manually photos. I used one set of line styles for the hands and another for the product in each illustration. Each set has lines with different weight and profiles used for different things such as the silhouette of the hands, wrinkles, nails, shading, and etc.  Even though the same set of lines were used for the hands in each illustration they don’t look consistent because the hands are with different sizes. This was caused by taking the photos at different distances or zoom levels in order to frame the hands in the same space while using the product which occupies different space when viewed from different angles and on top of that it unfolds.  So I have to change the overall thickness of the lines for the hands in each illustration in order to make them look consistent in relation to the size of the hands while the lines for the product should stay the same because they look fine.

                              The best way I can imagine for this would be if it was possible to use the scale tool interactively in the same way like scaling patterns with holding the ~ key.  This will make easy to evaluate interactively the overall thickness of the lines for the hands in relation to the lines of the product and the consistency with the other illustrations.

                              • 13. Re: Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?
                                Jacob Bugge MVP

                                For my part you are welcome, GSIDesign.

                                • 14. Re: Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?
                                  CarlosCanto MVP

                                  Hi guys, I just posted a script to scale strokes based on the input above, look here:

                                   

                                  http://forums.adobe.com/thread/999641

                                  • 15. Re: Is it possible to scale only the weight of strokes without the objects?
                                    GSIDesign Community Member

                                    Everyone reading this thread and interested in scaling strokes only should check the link from the Carlo's post above. He made an awesome script for this.

                                     

                                    Thank you Carlos