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Illustrator CS Explored

Illustrator 10 was one of the first major applications out of the door when Apple released OS X, so it wasn't surprising to find a few bugs here and there, the biggest being its lack of speed. As a result, designers and illustrators were keen to get their hands on the latest version to see how it fares, and illustrator Jason Arber is glad to report that it's satisfyingly nippy when performing complex pathfinder operations - tasks that previously gave you time to make a cup of tea and skim through the Sunday papers.

So with that major issue out of the way, creative types have now turned to the application's new features. Many of these, such as the ability to save for Microsoft Word and PowerPoint, are very handy, but they don't have a direct bearing on creating artwork. For artists and designers, the really exciting new feature is Illustrator CS's ability to create basic 3D shapes, including mapped artwork, based on Adobe's fondly remembered Dimensions application. The beauty of Dimensions and Illustrator's new 3D capabilities is their simplicity and seamless integration into the vector world.

But the ability to extrude, revolve and rotate isn't just aimed at packaging designers; with a bit of thought, it's also possible to use Illustrator's new features to add extra levels to your tried-and-trusted techniques - something that Jason Arber discovered shortly after his copy of Illustrator CS arrived in the post€¦

Click here to download the tutorial for free