dekePod Episode 013: With this episode, we resume our regularly scheduled programming. Beginning with one of the most powerful but convoluted features in Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign: the pen tool. Some artists take to it right away, others just don’t get it.
My thinking: Y’all can get it!! It’s not hard once someone (me) provides the proper introduction.
You start by clicking to lay down points. At first, it all makes sense. The line goes this way and that through the points. But then you accidentally drag and make a control handle. And you go, whoa, hold on. What the hell’s that thing? Count me out!
Which is where this week’s dekePod comes in. The points, they’re the boys: comically, transparently, often tediously obvious. The control handles, they’re the girls: mysterious. But once you know them, predictable. And wicked kung-fu mind-bendingly powerful. Just like girls.
Here’s the official marketing copy:
Adobe’s landmark pen tool defined an industry. But to the uninitiated, its reliance on anchor points and control handles makes it as approachable as first-year algebra. Until you see it’s nothing more than a mating ritual: The points are boys and the handles are girls. Once you get that, it all falls into place.
If it’s all too much to handle (get it?), I understand. Why not save it for later by consuming one of these intriguing links:
- For a high-quality QuickTime movie, right-click here and choose Save Target or Download Link or the equivalent.
- For an M4V file that you can play on an iPod, right-click here and choose one of those same commands.
- Or you can subscribe to dekePod via RSS or iTunes.
You can also check out the page at my book publisher O’Reilly Media.
Parting note: The pen tool, it’s the oldest and most powerful tool in the Adobe Application Arsenal. Adobe keeps trying to improve upon it, but they never will. It was just too damn good. So seriously, check out my various videos on the pen tool at lynda.com! I predict you’ll enjoy, regardless of your mating habits. (About which, the less I know, the better.)