Design Assets

Clipping Masks and Compound Paths in Adobe Illustrator

By on March 20, 2017
make clipping masks

Clipping Masks and Compound Paths in Adobe Illustrator

Clipping masks in Adobe Illustrator are something that I use nearly every day. Most designers of any kind will need to be able to use a clipping mask at some point. Today I will talk about what it is, where to find the option, why you would use it, and what sort of projects it is ideal for.

First a clipping mask is a lot like what it sounds like. You would use it to “clip” around a particular area. In the end it is sort of like a layering effect that will take place. Shapes are an easy way to make use of a clipping mask. Text is also very common. Using a clipping mask is great for effects that you want to use in your project. It is also ideal for masking around exact shapes. Take the shape of a heart for instant. If I wanted to have a texture effect of an glitter image I could use a clipping mask.

Before Clipping Mask
Heart object clipart
After Clipping Mask
Heart clipping mask

Steps to Create a Clipping Mask

You will find the option to use a clipping mask under: Object > Clipping Mask > Make. You can also use the Command 7 shortcut on the Mac. I usually right click my mouse and select “Make Clipping Mask.” Make sure the image you want is behind your object. You can move the layer to the bottom or Right Click > Arrange > Send to Back. Select both the image and your object and then make a clipping mask.

make clipping masks

clipping mask

Ocassionally you may need to group your elements, unite them through the Pathfinder Tool, or outline your text before a clipping mask will work. Sometimes especially when using text or complex shapes you must make your elements a compound path first. For instance, if I outline my text my Clipping Mask no longer works (shown below). However, I can make my text a compound path by going to Object > Compound Path > Make or Command 8 on Mac. I can then create a clipping mask with no problem.

Create a Clipping Mask from Outlined Text without Making a Compound Path (RESULTS)

create outlines

clipping masks

clipping mask

As you can see, this is not the result that we wanted. So in this case we can easily release our clipping mask by right clicking and then selecting “Release Clipping Mask.”

release clipping mask

 

Create a Clipping Mask with Outlined Text by Making Text a Compound Path

make compound path

make compound path clipping mask

make clipping masks

When you would use a Clipping Mask

When or why would you use a clipping mask? Use it to create effects such as a texture or image effect. You would use it to make exact paths such as a round shape. It as also an easy way to finalize a design that may otherwise seem too dull. Use a clipping mask to keep your art from going on to another artboard. You can also use a clipping mask to create mock ups in Illustrator that would otherwise need to be done in Photoshop.

Clipping masks are ideal for creating stationary such as postcards, posters, and invitations. Wall décor or prints use clipping masks all of the time. Even branding can be done with a clipping mask if it is well thought out and done correctly. There are a ton of reasons why you would use a clipping mask.

In conclusion I hope this tutorial helped you learn how to make a clipping mask or that you learned something new about the process. The texture and font that I used to create these examples were created by me and are released to the public domain. Feel free to download them and use it for whatever you want! No credit is required, but is always appreciated. Don’t forget to join our exclusive membership down below!

 

 

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Design Assets | Freebies

To The Point Font – Open Font License TrueType TTF Handwritten Font

By on March 6, 2017
to the point font

To The Point Font – Open Font License TrueType TTF Handwritten Font

Download To The Point Font (TTF)

Our brand new To The Point font is now available for free!

To The Point font is a handwritten font created by pen. It is a great natural font that is not too perfect or imperfect.

This handwritten font is perfect for invitations, wall prints, home decor, branding and much more. Our Open Font License (OFL) allows crafters and designers plenty of freedom for creativity.

Feel free to share this font with others or have it available for download! You may not sell this font or any part of the font as-is. You must also include our OFL wherever you share it or have it available for download.

Credit is not required but is always appreciated. When possible, please link back to savanasdesign.com! This will allow us to create more free fonts in the future!

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