Review - Bends and Blends in Adobe Illustrator

Review - Bends and Blends in Adobe Illustrator
In this Skillshare course entitled Bends and Blends in Adobe Illustrator, Helen Bradley takes you step-by-step through her process for making beautiful geometric art using the Bend and Blend tools in Adobe Illustrator. She creates several artworks that could be used for many projects. She starts with a simple project and progresses in complexity. She includes a downloadable help file pdf for use in the last project. This course is part of Bradleys popular A Graphic Design for LunchTM Class series.

Bradley begins with step-by-step instructions for creating a simple project that demonstrates how to use the Blend tool and the replace spine feature. She shows how to apply a straight line of small dots to the spine of a large circle. One spine is replaced with the other, as the straight line of dots are wrapped along the circle's spine. Next, she applies the same process to a straight line of small squares. She uses this variation in order to demonstrate how to change the orientation of the squares in relation to the center of the circle. She challenges the class to use this technique with other shapes.

The next example is to create a sci-fi shaped graphic. Bradley uses the same process but this time she uses the skew and shear features in Illustrator to reshape three oval shaped spines to a saucer shape. She then places them together to create the sci-fi version of the Borromean rings.

The next example is my favorite and the one Bradley features in her course cover image. She starts by creating several lines of small squares that gradually reduce in size along the line. She uses the warp feature to reshape the lines in to an arc. But this time she creates a custom brush to apply to the lines. Next, she creates the first variation by applying a colorful gradient to the lines. For the next two variations, she applies a solid color and finally she applies a two-colored variation.

For the final project, Bradley creates a series of dots along a circular spine. After duplicating the circular spine shape several times and gradually reducing the size of the dots for each new line, she aligns the circles in order from the larger dots on the outside to the smallest dots toward the center. As the process is complex, she supplies a downloadable help file pdf.

Helen Bradley teaches the popular Graphic Design for LunchTM series and is one of Skillshare's Top Teacher.

Bends and Blends in Adobe Illustrator by Helen Bradley (affiliate link)

Disclosure: As a participant in the Skillshare affiliate program, some of the links in this article are affiliate links. However, my opinions are completely my own based on my experience.

Screenshots used by permission of Skillshare, Inc.

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