Hello all. In this week’s Technique, I show you how to draw a classic heart shape in Adobe Illustrator. The introductory graphic is a bit misleading. I don’t actually add the stylized highlights and shadows. Nor do I add the nipples. (But, you know, isn’t it interesting how two innocent ellipses can turn something so harmless into something mildly salacious? Gosh, I like ellipses. Life’s best stuff is elliptical.) Rather, I focus on how to draw a perfect heart shape using nothing more than three tools: the underrated arc tool, the appropriately rated white arrow (so good). And the reflect tool, which lets you flip the left half of the heart to make it symmetrical.
I should mention that this is the first Deke’s Techniques in which I train my sights on Illustrator. There will be more.
Here’s the official (nipple-free) description:
Yes, you heard it right. This week, Deke’s Techniques gives a little love to that occasionally daunting yet imminently lovable drawing tool, Adobe Illustrator. Although many of you know author Deke McClelland as a Photoshop maestro, in today’s free technique, Deke returns to one of his early digital loves and shows you how to draw a classic heart shape in Illustrator. If you’re Illustrator-phobic as I’ve been known to be, let me assure you even I was able to draw this shape by following Deke’s clear instructions:
The steps are simple and employ only a few easy-to-use tools—the Arc tool, the Reflect tool, and the trusty black and white arrow tools (officially known as Selection tools). By adjusting curves drawn by the Arc tool, we safely avoid the far more complicated Pen tool. And, in the end, what could be more a more appropriate command for combining two halves of a heart than the Join > Paths command in Illustrator CS5. Ah, vector love. So unpretentious, uncomplicated, and unambiguous.
Of course, sometimes you want your declaration of love to be florid, eye-catching, and just this side of over-the-top. Or maybe just the other side of over-the-top. For subscribers to the lynda.com Online Training Library, this week’s new exclusive video in the Deke’s Techniques course features that same heart shape taken to a glossy extreme in Photoshop:
And of course, lynda.com members can view the entire collection of Deke’s Techniques here. You’re bound to find something there to love that will make your creative day just a little easier, sweeter, or more exciting.
What I love about the classic heart is how much you can do with it. It honestly fires the imagination. Let me know what you come up with. Members of the lynda.com Online Training Library can check out what I made of it in Photoshop. Nothing tawdry, you’ll be glad or perhaps disappointed to know. But it’s provocative nonetheless.