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Gradient Transparency in Illustrator

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#1
Casey Greene

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Does anyone know if there is a way to make a "gradient transparency" in illustrator?...what I had in mind was trying make a multi-colored gradient-filled polygon and have one end of the gradient set at 100% opacity and the other set at 0%. So, the polygon gradual blends to the background.

-Casey Greene
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#2
James Hines

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Does anyone know if there is a way to make a "gradient transparency" in illustrator?...what I had in mind was trying make a multi-colored gradient-filled polygon and have one end of the gradient set at 100% opacity and the other set at 0%. So, the polygon gradual blends to the background.

-Casey Greene
(cbgreene@yahoo)

I wasn't able to find a tool for that in Illustrator but if you have InDesign there's a tool called the Gradient Feather.

Just create in either Photoshop or Illustrator your product, import into InDesign, (don't open the file), on the right side there click Effects then at the bottom select Fx then seelct gradient feather. For more information on this tool refer to: http://www.adobe.com...video_workshop/
Select InDesign>Applying Opacity Effects

Attached File  Europe_Grad.jpg   509.42KB   93 downloads

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#3
François Goulet

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It's quite easy (once you know how ;) )

I do it quite often with an opacity mask

First, you have to select what you want to be masked.
Then, in the Transparency palette, you will see you selection appears at the left. Double click on the grey space at the right of your selection preview, (see MaskStep1.jpg below) then unselect "Clip".

Now, everything you will draw in white will be 100% transparent and black will stay unmasked.

For masking with a gradient each country, just select them by color (I did a Select > Same fill color in my example), and set their fill with a black to white gradient (MaskStep2.jpg). You could maybe do a Select All, but sometime, when you export from ArcMap for instance, you will select the bounding box as well and all the map will be masked as well.

To come back to your map, just double click on your selection preview (at the left of the Transparency palette).

The result should be something like the one I uploaded...

There's an article explaining it all surely better than me: http://illustrator.d....jsp?id=26026-1

I'll be happy to give more details if I'm unclear.

Good luck!

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#4
Nick Springer

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Francois beat me to it. I use Opacity Masks all the time. I was just about to post a tutorial so I will put the screenshots up anyway :P

Create the Opacity Mask (you can also double click the mask thumbnail in the palette)
Attached File  gradient_transparency_step1.png   50.73KB   119 downloads

Activate the Mask layer (you can Alt-click to view the mask layer by itself)
Attached File  gradient_transparency_step2.png   9.69KB   114 downloads

Select a gradient fill for the mask (or any that you prefer)
Attached File  gradient_transparency_step3.png   7.93KB   99 downloads

Draw a box (or whatever shape you want over your object
Attached File  gradient_transparency_step4.png   37.81KB   98 downloads

Click the object thumbnail to return to editing the object
Attached File  gradient_transparency_step5.png   9.97KB   88 downloads

If the Link icon is checked the mask will move with your object.
Attached File  gradient_transparency_step6.png   43.07KB   108 downloads

The Clip option HIDES everything except where you have your mask object. Unchecking this will make everything VISIBLE except where you have your mask object.

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Owner: Springer Cartographics LLC


#5
François Goulet

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Francois beat me to it. I use Opacity Masks all the time. I was just about to post a tutorial so I will put the screenshots up anyway :P


Yours is clearer though ;)

#6
Casey Greene

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I feel like a child turned loose in a candy store...Thanks Guys :D

-Casey Greene
(cbgreene17@yahoo)
Casey Greene - Cartographer - Adventure Cycling Association
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