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Lesson 5 from: Adobe Illustrator CC: The Complete Guide

Jason Hoppe

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Lesson Info

5. Layers

More complex projects can require many layered elements: Jason teaches how you to create, manipulate and lock layers, modeling best practices that graphic designers use and sharing his recommendations. See how to use a clipping mask with layers.

Lesson Info


Welcome back, folks. In this next segment, we're gonna show you how we can work with Illustrator layers so you can create a layout that can be somewhat complicated, but we can actually work through how we create layers, best practices for working with layers, being able to reorder things, lock things, keep things from being printed, and a whole bunch of cool things that most people don't associate with layers. So we're gonna start off here with our layers panel. You can bring that up under the window menu. Bring it up under layers. And when we bring up our layers panel, the thumbnails are gonna be really small. And we can adjust the size of those thumbnails under the layers cheese grater, under the panel options. And then we can set small, medium, or large, and then you can set any size layers that you want. I'm gonna set this fairly large so we can get some kind of look and feel how it's going to look with our thumbnails. So these are gonna be big, but I wanna show you this. Okay, so ...

just some basic things with layers. You've been using layers ever since you've been using Illustrator. And you're like, what, I've never opened it. It's like, well, you actually have. So when we're dealing with layers here, what we can do with layers is, like in this particular case, I've done this layout for another Illustrator class. And there were certain things that I wanted to be able to have people work on here, but I didn't want them selecting a whole bunch of other content on the page. I only wanted the content to be active that I wanted them to use. So this is where the layers came in. I was able to go ahead and put my content on the layer that I wanted to have active right here. And then everything else was on a different layer that I kept locked so that they couldn't actually access this. And so this is how we would go through and set it up. So let me show you this, okay? We were just working on this in the previous lesson. And when I say everybody's been using layers, yes, everybody has been using layers, whether you know it or not, because when you start creating something and you draw a specific shape right here or do anything, you draw and you get this shape. And this goes on a layer. It's gotta be someplace, so you're actually on layer one. And why is it that the bounding box around every single shape that it is that you draw is blue? The reason why is because that is the color of the layer that you're on. And why do we do this? Because I may have a more complicated layout that it may have some pictures, it may have some type, it may have some color, and I wanna put those on different layers. How do I know which layer it's on? We change the color of the layer. I'm gonna jump over to my layers panel here. And the color of my layer by default is going to be blue. Which means every time I draw any shape, the bounding box, no matter what I draw, is always going to be blue. That's great, that's why the bounding boxes are blue. How do you change the color of a layer? Because you may be working on a blue background and you don't want that to happen. Well, if I go to my layers panel here I can click on the cheese grater, I can go down to the panel options, and I can call up what different size I want all of my thumbnails to be right here. But if I want more options here, I can go in and I can work with editing the actual options for my layer itself. So if I click on the options for layer one, I can name this layer. And then I have a choice of colors that I can make all the bounding boxes on that layer. If I change it to red, then every time I select an object those bounding boxes are going to be in red. This just simply tells me what layer I'm on. And you'll notice that when I do that, it changes that layer. I can also call this up by double clicking in a free area here, and it goes in and allows me to choose, you know, whatever color I want to here. Now, the crazy part is, if you are one of those people who like color choices, I don't know how they built in so many color choices, but watch this. Yeah, I've got my list, and you don't like those colors. I'm gonna go to custom here. When you go to custom, you can use your color wheel. You can use your sliders right here. You can use all of your premade Apple or crayons, I mean, yeah, seriously crayons, you can use the full spectrum right here as well. Or, if you want a box of colored pencils, you can use that too. So you're never at a loss for colors or color choices to go ahead and color your layers. It's always baffled me that they put that much into a particular, you know, color picking of just a layer, right there. I'm gonna return this to light blue here so that everything we draw is blue. That's something interesting. Now, as we go through working with layers here, I've got a lot of content on here, but nothing really overlapping because we're just going through learning how to create shapes and so on here. And as I create the shapes, every time I create a shape, what happens when I create a particular shape here is that, once I create a shape and I put it in, my shapes are always going to be drawn progressively. Okay, any content is always progressive. It means it's always going to be in front of or on top of everything else that I draw. And the layers panel gives us a perfect preview of this. You can see, when I draw any shape, any line, any stroke, it's always gonna appear on top of everything. And this is fine because it's gotta draw in some way. But, you know, you can actually control how this stuff actually draws. Bet you didn't know that. Well, it's funny, because if you go down to the bottom of the toolbar, here, you'll see three little shapes. Circle/square and a circle/square right here. The normal mode is drawing in front, which means every time I draw something here, it's always going to be in front of anything else and it subsequently builds progressively. Now, if I use the draw behind feature, the draw behind feature's kind of interesting. The draw behind feature means that every time I draw, it actually draws behind the object. So if I go over to my layers panel here and I begin to draw those shapes, let me draw those shapes here. I'm gonna set this to transform so it does not show on creation. There we go. And I start to draw these shapes here and I draw behind, it will start drawing behind. And when I say behind, it is literally behind everything, not the last shape I drew. It literally draws completely behind everything. Okay, so I use the draw normal or the draw in front, that's going to be on top. So, kind of interesting, how that works. Now, when we get a lot of objects in here and we begin to work with our content here, trying to get to other objects is a real pain. And this is why a layers panel is absolutely great to work with here. Because I can tell that this one's in front of this and this one's in front of this, but I don't know how much further back, you know, these are. And I do have the ability to select the object, go into the object menu, and choose a range, bring to front, bring forward, send backward, send to back. And it's like, gosh, what's the difference? Bring to front means it's going to take whatever object, no matter where it's located in the document, and bring it in front of everything else. Bring forward is going move it up one step at a time. And it'll make a little bit more sense here if I use my path here. And I put my, I take my path and I'm gonna put it here. And I'm gonna use my bring forward method. If I bring forward, object, bring forward, then it's going to go ahead and it's gonna bring it forward one item at a time. Well, I could use the bring to front, send to back feature, using the object menu. It's just way too much time to have to go there and open up the menu and choose this. So, I could learn my shortcuts here. And my shortcuts for going in and arranging, bring to front, send to back, command, right bracket brings it all the way to the front, command, or brings it forward, command, left bracket sends it one step backwards. Bring to front is shift, command, right bracket, brings it all the way to the front. Send to back is gonna be shift, command, left bracket, all the way to the back. So I'm gonna show you this feature and I'm gonna put this arrow behind everything here. And we can see in my layers panel that it's clearly behind everything else. If I use my shortcut of my command, right bracket, you can see it actually happening in the layers panel, coming up one at a time. My command, left bracket is going to go ahead and send it backward one layer or one step at a time. Of course, shift, command, right bracket brings it all the way to the front. Now, it's great to have these shortcuts because using the menu here is just way too much to have to go up here and do. You wanna do this, here, you don't know where you want it to go? Select the item, either here on your desktop or go in and actually click on the layer and then click on that little button. And then just drag it where you want to go. Literally, click and drag and put that where you want it to go. If you want it sandwiched in between those two, or these two right here, you can do that. And this is also a really cool thing if something is hidden and I don't know where it is. I may have this shape over it completely and I can't get to this arrow very easily. And I see here, and I click on that, it's like, oh, it's highlighted right here. Sure, I could go and then just drag it up and bring that to the front very easily, could do that. Move that out of the way however I want to. Now, sometimes I'm trying to get to something that's behind and I have a hard time getting to it. And so if I take this and I send this to the back here using my command, left bracket, I'm gonna send this down behind the group here, and I wanna get to this little shape right here, I could move everything out of the way or do the classic, take this and send this behind right there. But I could also do this, which is called the click through. Now, I know that I have this shape behind here. I may not even be able to see it, okay? I could definitely select it in my layers panel to get a hold of it and move it. But I wanna do this a little bit quicker. I wanna get to the shape behind here, so I'm gonna select the shape that's in front. Doesn't matter if it's a group or not. I'm gonna hold down my command key and I'm going to command, click. And I'm going to then command, click, and then you see, my arrow gets a little left arrow next to it. What this is doing is, this is allowing me to click through, I call this the drill down feature, it actually clicks through and allows me to click through to the next object below, the next object below. And once I select that object, it's then highlighted here with the tiny little crouton in the right-hand side of my layers panel, showing me exactly where it is. Well, now I've got access to this. I could scale this, I could move this around, I could change the attributes of it here, without removing it in the order that it's in or doing anything else, or even disturbing the content on the top, because once this is selected here, I've got the ability to move this all around without having to edit everything else in front of it here and mess with it right there, which is really cool. If I want it in that same area, that's fine. I can move it, scale it, rotate it, without moving everything else out of the way. So that's as simple as clicking on your object, command, clicking and then literally selecting the next object below. And you can keep going through the whole thing. As long as there's something behind it, you can keep drilling down, and then it just repeats the cycle, comes back to the first one. So a lot of interesting ways to go through and work with this. Now, when we're dealing with the layers panel here, we have sublayers. And all of these are sublayers in here because I can click on the twirly right here and this is my entire layer. If I wanna lock absolutely everything on that layer, I can go to the entire layer and click on the lock mechanism and it locks everything, right there. If I try to do anything, I get the pencil with a little slash through it, next to it, saying no, you can't edit it. And that goes in and that turns off, or locks all of my content. You'll notice that all the locks are grayed out. And the reason why the locks are grayed out is because this shows you an overall layer lock. And the reason why I can't unlock these particular ones is because I've locked everything from the initial layer, right here. If I were to go in and lock specific items here, I could do that. And if I locked the entire layer, I could go in and I could unlock those. But once I do, the overall layer lock still overrides that. So it's kind of interesting. So yes, I can go through and I can lock specific items. Now, a cool thing to do, if you wanna lock, you've got a lot of items on the layer, say you've got hundreds of little lines, and you wanna lock just certain things, you can go in and you can lock every item right here, one by one. Or you can do what I call the poke and swipe. Click and hold the mouse and then just swipe while you're holding the mouse down and run over all of your consecutive layers. And that locks all those items right there. To unlock, it doesn't matter where you start, poke and swipe, click, and with the mouse held down, swipe over all of those. And this works in InDesign and Photoshop as well. I call it the poke and swipe. I know that's not the right name for it, but it sounds good, so that's why I use it. So locking and unlocking these items is really quite useful. Now, when you get more complicated items here, I may wanna put a colored background behind everything here. And I could go in and I could take my colored background and I could put it here behind everything, like that. I'm gonna cut the stroke off right there. But I could take that rectangle and I could drag that all the way down my layers panel, or use my shift, left bracket, put it all behind there. And I could lock this in place so that I don't accidentally select or move this item here. I'm gonna change the color to something else. There we go. Okay, so I could put that in position and I could lock that in place. But you know, maybe I wanna put this on a totally separate layer. And I realize it's like, yeah, you know, putting the background in this layer and maybe my type on another layer so I can then work with this and not have to fight everything on the same layer, that's what I'm gonna do, I'm gonna create a new layer. So, I've already created my artwork here. I could just do this whole thing over and then create a new layer and draw on it. Or I can simply take this and I can create a new layer and move this to a new layer. I'm gonna create a new layer here. I'm actually gonna close this layer. I'm gonna create a new layer and I'm gonna click on the new layer icon at the bottom. It creates a new layer. Well, where do you want this layer to be? It can be above or below. By default, it always puts a new one up above, but it doesn't have to be above. Because I can click and drag this entire layer and move it down, just like I can the sublayers. Now, if I would like to then move my selected object to my new layer here, I go in and I open up my layers panel. And I've got all this content in here, okay? And it's like, wow, it's a really long list, and I can just move it to this layer. But what happens if this layer is up above? Well, it doesn't matter. Here's how I can go ahead and grab this content. What I'm gonna do is, I'm gonna select this object. And whether my layer is open or not, it doesn't matter because once I select this particular object, I get my little selection, I call this the little selected crouton, right here. Because this is the only selected item in my layer, whether it's open or not, I can simply take this little crouton, and as long as my new layer is visible and unlocked, I just have to drag this down and I have to drag it to the new layer. Now you can see that the bounding box color has changed to red and it's now on this layer. Now, because this layer is below everything else here, I can never take this object on this layer here and move it up above, until I've moved this entire layer up above. If I move the layer up above here, everything in this layer and all its sublayers will now be in front. So when I do something like this, this may be great for a background color or a background texture that I can then lock in place. And I can lock that. I'm just gonna double click on the name here and I'm gonna call this my background. Hit return, and then lock this in place. And now, there's no way that I can put anything on there. The great thing is, is that I can then turn off my other layers so I can see what I'm working on. So it's not a bad idea to have my artwork on one layer, if I'm dealing with type, have the type on another layer, my images on another layer, so I can very quickly and easily isolate when I'm working on something. I may wanna work on the background. If I still wanna see my artwork, I'm just gonna go ahead and I'm gonna lock my artwork layer here. Probably not a bad idea to go ahead and name these. I can lock my artwork layer and I don't have to worry about clicking on anything whatsoever because I've already locked that other layer. Now, if I'm on a layer and I'm working, every time I draw a new shape, it's gonna go on that selected layer. How do I know it's on that layer? Well, I'm drawing my bounding box and it's red, so it's like, oh, I know that that shape is going to be on that layer. It's like, okay, great, there it is. And if I draw another shape here, it's all gonna be on this layer because the bounding box shows me the layer that it's gonna be on. Okay, so that little gradient right there, it's like, ah, okay, that's cool. We're gonna learn about color too, but there you have it. Now I realize, it's like, oh my gosh, I didn't want these on this layer. Not a problem, okay? I could actually just take these and I can just move these to a new layer if I want to by simply selecting them, and I can either open this up and I can drag them one by one here by selecting the little icon here and dragging it up to the layer here, making sure this is visible and unlocked. If it's locked, I can't drag it up there. But I'm gonna click and I'm gonna drag that little crouton up there and move it up. Now, I'm gonna undo that and if I want both of these to go, it doesn't matter if my layer is opened or closed. If they're selected, those little croutons are gonna show up, okay? So, if they're open, yes, I can drag those. And if I have multiple ones, I'm gonna go up to the layer here and this is gonna show with all my selected art, it actually highlights right there, I'm gonna drag this up right to there. Now, where does it put it? Well, it always puts it on top. Okay, so whenever I drag something into that file, it's gonna go ahead and be on top because these are the last things that I drew, as well, and we always draw in succession, so they go on top. If I wanna move these around in this artwork panel, I certainly can as we go. So creating separate layers here is really quite useful for locking, for isolating things, and being able to work with that. Going back into my artwork here, I had a couple things in here that were grouped together. I had my entire group right here, and working on this group. The previous video, we talked about going in and being able to work with these by using isolation mode or going in and actually working them with layers. Layers are fantastic because if I don't wanna use isolation mode when I have a complicated piece of artwork here, I can simply go into the group and click on the twirly and open the group. And then I can activate that layer and then specifically click on that little dot and activate that dot right there, which would get to my shape. And I can edit this shape without ever having to get something out of the group. Don't have to ungroup it. Now, I realize that this shape I would also like to have in the group as well. And I'd like to put this in a group. And if I click on this, I find out where this is, okay, there it is, it's outside the group here. Do I have to go in and activate the group, ungroup this, then select this, then group it all together? Sure, I could, if I wanted to waste time. But what I'm gonna do here is, I'm going to actually put this into the group here without ungrouping it first. I'm gonna grab this triangle. I'm gonna select it and I'm gonna activate it here. And so I can drag this right in, and I can either drag this little one through here, but even easier, I'm just gonna drag the layer. And I'm gonna park this right inside the group. Now it depends on where it's going to be. So I can put it here, which means if I move this around, it's now going to be in front of this portion of my pie chart but behind this one. Okay, maybe I don't want that. I'm gonna put that there so it's behind. It's in the group. I didn't have to ungroup and then put it in there and then group everything together. So, can I take things out of a group? Sure, absolutely. I can put things into a group, but I don't have to ungroup them. Another cool thing too is, if I go in here and I select something and I would like to duplicate something within the group here, I can go in and I can simply select that object and then option, click and drag right here, and duplicate it, puts it right in the group as well. Now, if I didn't want to have to go through and do that on my actual document here, I could go in and I could do this directly in my layers panel. If I wanted to create a copy of this, I could simply select this layer, hold down my option key, and option, click, and drag. And it's going to go ahead and duplicate that right there. Now, it's gonna duplicate it right in the exact same location, just in front of, because it's now, I duplicated it above the layer. But I can still move that around if I want a duplicate of this. When you duplicate this, it does do it right on top of itself. So it may not look like you've done anything with that, here's my rectangle, if I option, click and drag, it's duplicated it right on top of itself right there. So I have to activate this one independent of everything else, right there, select it, there we go, activate it there, and then I can go in and I can move this as well right there and I can move that out of the way, right there, because I had duplicated it. So, interesting things we can do with the layers panel. Quite interesting, quite fun, and of course, I could always turn that group off completely. Still there, if I didn't want to work with it as well. I can turn off all these other ones just by using the cool poke and swipe, by running over, turning off an entire existing layer. Now, being able to go through and do this, you can see that we can have a lot of layers as it comes up with. The nice thing about this is that it names what the actual object is. So here we have polygon or a path or an ellipse or a group or a line or a path, so we kind of get an idea of what we're seeing here with the content. Now, there's one complicated feature in here. And we're gonna cover this a little bit more. It's what's called a clipping mask or the draw inside mode and it's very frustrating to be able to go ahead and work with these if you don't fully understand what they are, how they work. Now, and like I said, we're gonna cover this later, but a clipping mask or a draw inside is if I have some content here, and I want to go ahead and put some other artwork in here and using this as a frame or a mask for my artwork. And I can do this in many different ways. We're just gonna show you one way because we're gonna cover it other ways, but we're gonna make this and we're gonna show you the frustration of getting back in. If I wanna do a clipping mask, I have my artwork, or my frame here, and I go to the bottom of my toolbar and I click on the draw inside mode. And then when I draw inside here, I can draw specific shapes. And when I draw these specific shapes, you'll notice that these specific shapes only appear inside the box. And Illustrator doesn't really have this draw inside feature. It makes it look like it's drawing inside, which is called the clipping mask. Like I said, we'll get to those other things later. But here, I'm using the window as kind of my masking for these particular objects, to make it look like I've got these kind of clipped inside here. When I'm done, I'm gonna go back and click on the draw normal mode, and there it is. Now, once I've done this, trying to get back in and edit these things is a real pain. There's different ways of doing this, but we're gonna show you because we're here in the layers panel one of the easiest ways to do it. When we cover clipping masks a bit later, then we're gonna show you how this actually works in many different ways. Easiest way, layers, by far. Because when I go in and I select my entire content here, what's really weird is, I click on the orange box and nothing happens. And the reason why is because Illustrator treats these really weirdly. Even though it's like, okay, that box is orange right there, you can only activate it by either clicking on the edge of the box or the actual artwork in the box to move it around and scale it. If I were then to go in and apply a stroke around this whole thing, you'll notice that everything, including the box and the artworks, gets a stroke as well. And it's like, gah, that's frustrating. How do I go in and I actually get into these things? Well, I could use isolation mode by double clicking and then being able to get in here and move them around, which is really quite nice. But it can be quite frustrating when you have a lot of content inside a clipping mask. So I'm gonna go over to my layers panel here and I'm going to kind of assess what's going on here using the clipping group right here and find out how we can do this. Now, this works kind of like a grouped set of objects. But because this is a clipping mask, or a clipping group, they have several different names for it, the way this works is, this seems really odd that the orange triangle would be on top of everything because based on what we know about layers, it would seem like that orange triangle is actually blocking everything. Well, it isn't, and welcome to the weird world of clipping masks, okay? Look at this as my actual picture frame, so when you go ahead to frame something, you never put the artwork in from the front of the frame. You always put the artwork in from the back of the frame. So this is my frame, even though it's filled with orange, you know, it's still my frame and all my artwork is going in from behind, or in this case, underneath, because of the layers panel. So with a clipping group, this shows us our rectangle and the line underneath means that this is our frame that our artwork goes in from behind. If I would like to specifically edit this frame and change the attributes, I can select it, and then I can activate it by clicking on that dot. And this has now isolated it from all the artwork inside. I can change the fill color on this, I could change the stroke on this as well, and I could change whatever color I'd like to make that. And I can edit that shape so that I am doing just the actual rectangle or the frame itself. But could only do that by going in and activating this here, by selecting it and then activating it with the little dot. If I would like to edit, move, or manipulate any of the shapes inside, I'm gonna select that shape and then activate it using the little dot right here to target it, and now I can go in and I can move, edit, delete, copy, change, do whatever I want to with these things independently of everything else. And I can only do that easily by going in and doing this via the other layers. There's other ways of doing it. None of them are this easy. Isolation mode can work. By why not go ahead and do it via the layers panel? This is great. Once people start knowing how to do this, it's absolutely the best way to go because you can target, you can specifically see, you can also move these around, you can change the size, and I realize, okay, you know, I do this, and it's like, oh, I don't want that behind my yellow rectangle. Great, layers panel. Click and drag and move those around, change the layer order and then you can begin to manipulate these things, you can change all the attributes, the size, the rotation, all by having those active right here, all by doing this with the layers panel. When you're done with a clipping group, you can just close it right back up again. Get access to it right there and be able to manipulate every single shape. You wanna put something else into a clipping group? If you've ever tried to do it by using any of the other methods here, this is crazy. So I'm gonna go ahead, and I'm gonna put my arrow, I'm gonna find out where my arrow is here. There it is. I'm gonna drag this down closer so I can grab a hold of it. I wanna put this into my clipping group. If I needed to do this using the keyboard commands or using the menu items, I'd have to ungroup everything, put everything in the order, put it back into its clipping group again, and reassemble it. Way too much work. Here's my path. I want it inside the clipping group. Put it right inside there. Take it, activate it so that it's active, you have to click on it and click on the little target dot. And I'm gonna drag this in here, I'm gonna put it right here. Now, it's like, well, it's not showing up. Well, no, because it's gotta be inside the window, okay? Yes, it was over here, but it was noplace near the window. And people get freaked out. They're like, why isn't it there? Well, it's not in the right location. So now I can move this over here. Now it's in the right location because in order to do this, you've gotta have it inside the window. It can't be six feet away. Now I can change the attributes of this any way that I want to, and it's right inside my clipping path, my clipping group. I want it out, click on anything, simply drag it outside the group. It's now outside and it's free to roam about the art board. Put it back in, make sure it's in. And this happens all the time. People have something out, it's over here, they drag it into the clipping group and it disappears. Right, because as you know, you can never see through a wall. And this is basically, your window is here, and the wall is over here. So no, you will not be able to see through it. It's gotta be inside the window. So, being able to use all of your layers to go ahead and do this is absolutely beneficial. Going through and using the different layer colors is really quite handy. If I unlock all my content here, you can see as I go through here, I have the ability of getting in and editing my content. It's all in a different layer here. This is where I did all of my type. I can turn that off separately from everything else. If I select my content here, I can see that it's got a red border so that I know I'm on that particular layer. If I have this layer selected and I start to draw, everything's gonna be on that layer. If I don't wanna draw on that layer, you can lock it or hide it. And I wanna draw on this layer, whatever layer you have selected, you're gonna draw on that selected layer. Pretty simple, pretty easy. Going through and using layers, while it's not something that everybody needs to do, as you get more complicated files, it's nice to be able to have that, to be able to isolate things, turn things on, turn things off, segregate things, so that you don't accidentally move or delete or copy or touch anything in there. Works awesome. You can have as many layers as you want. If you end up with too many layers, I may have gone in here and I may have created layers here because I got so excited about layers and I've got layers all over the place and I've drawn shapes and now I've gone through and I've done way too much craziness and I've got all these layers everywhere. I can go ahead and I can merge all of these layers together. The order that I created these in, it's very simple to go ahead and do. This is my last one that I drew. Everything here is on top of these circles, on top of this artwork. If I would like to merge all these layers together, I can. I can go in here and I can select multiple layers. I can go in and I can select these layers here. And I can just simply hold down shift and select those layers and then use my layer drop-down menu here and choose the merge selected command. That's going to merge everything down and it's going to merge it all down to the last layer in your selection. Here, if I would like to go through and I would like to just move content from the layer, if I have multiple things on the layer, I can go in and I can select the topmost level target, which is going to allow me to select everything in there without having to go in and physically highlight everything. Don't even have to open it, I can target that. Click on the target, it targets everything on that layer. And then I can simply just drag that target or that crouton onto the new layer, taking it off that layer right there. If I delete a layer with something on it, when I accidentally do that, hit the delete, or the trash can at the bottom, and it says, okay, you know, there's content on this layer. You're like, oh, don't wanna delete it. If you have a layer that there's nothing on it and you delete it, it just simply deletes without warning because there's nothing on it. So you can't just simply delete a layer and be like, oh my gosh, where did it all go? It does warn you right from there. And so it's a lot of cool stuff with layers. Lots of fun, to be able to go through and do this, reposition your layers, but the biggest thing is when you get more complicated files to be able to go in and select and edit things that are grouped together, that are put in clipping groups, be able to duplicate things, be able to work with items, without having to take things apart and dig through things. Your layers panel is going to be super, super, super helpful. And so we'll use layers a whole lot more throughout our other lessons here because they're great. And for now, that pretty much covers the basics of layers here in Illustrator. So stay tuned for more videos here for the Illustrator boot camp. See you soon!

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Gradients Tutorial
Layers Tutorial
Infographic - Watering Can Tutorial
Symbols Tutorials

Ratings and Reviews


What an amazing course! I am a working professional and have cobbled together most of my knowledge of Illustrator from working through different projects. I wish I would have taken this course sooner! There's so many tips and tricks that Jason teaches that would have saved me at least 20% of my time. I feel like a more well-rounded Illustrator user now after this and I'm excited to use all these skills in my upcoming projects. Thanks, Jason!

Sheldon Carvalho

All the info was super. Super easy to follow. And great to start learning. Illustrator. One thing I could see that needed adding was little projects after every class. Get something new created and then learn how it was made with the tools that were discussed. But there should be another class for sure.

Tomas Verver

Like most of Jason's courses they are professional high quality courses. From beginner to expert. The course is packed full with the latest tips to improve your Illustrator Workflow. There are some nice examples included so you can watch the video's, do the exercises and build experiences in the program quickly.

Student Work