How To Create Intricate Circular Patterns with the Blend Tool in Adobe Illustrator

Hello everyone Chris here from Spoon Graphics back with another video tutorial Today we're going to take a look at some nifty tricks in Adobe Illustrator that can be used to create some extremely detailed patterns

In this tutorial I'll show you how to create this complex circular pattern that consists of thousands of intricate paths that loop and overlap each other to form a variety of bands that form the overall circle It might look super complicated, but it's actually all done with Illustrator's Blend Tool, so let's get started and I'll show you have you can create one yourself Begin by creating a new document in Adobe Illustrator Before we start, you might want to check your Illustrator preferences and turn off Scale Strokes and Effects This will allow you to resize your objects while keeping the same stroke weight

Select the Ellipse tool and draw a small circle on the artboard Clear out the white fill by clicking the None icon at the bottom of the toolbar With the Selection tool active, hold the Alt and Shift keys, then drag out a duplicate of the shape to the right Draw a selection around both shapes, then go to Object > Blend > Make Grab the Ellipse tool again and draw a circle at roughly the same size of your desired pattern

Draw a selection around both the Blend and this circle, then go to Object > Blend > Replace Spine You'll notice that the circles don't follow the entire circumference of the circle Instead they start and end three quarters of the way around To fix this, grab the Scissors tool and give the top point of the circle path a snip Head back to the Object > Blend > Blend Options menu, then check the Preview button

Change the dropdown menu to Specified Steps, then alter the number to produce a detailed pattern of ring shapes Press CMD+C then CMD+F to Copy and Paste in Front a duplicate of the first pattern Scale it down while holding Shift and ALT Because of the Blend effect, the pattern doesn't scale perfectly towards its centre We could Expand the shape, but then we would lose the ability to alter the blend settings

Instead, bring up the document Rulers with the CMD+R shortcut and drag out two guides to form a cross Zoom right into the document to make an accurate adjustment, then grab and move each of the two shapes with the centre handle and line them up manually with the guides Select the Ellipse tool and draw another circle as the basis of a new pattern, this time make it a little smaller Add a black stroke with no fill Make a duplicate, then create a blend

When drawing the replacement spine, hold the Alt and Shift keys and drag the circle out from the centre of the guides so it will be nicely aligned to the main pattern Select both the new circle and the new blend, then head to Object > Blend > Replace Spine Remember to snip the top point to allow the blend to run all the way around the circle Bring up the Blend Options and change the setting to Specified Steps and alter the figure to create a different style of circular pattern If you scale the pattern to line it up with the other circles, remember to zoom in and correct the centre

Add another circular pattern towards the centre This time crank up the steps to produce a really detailed centre piece for the overall design Let's try something a little different this time Grab the Ellipse tool, but instead of a circle, draw an oval shape Create a blend, draw a new spine, replace the spine and snip the anchor point

Bring up the Blend Options and set the mode to Specified Steps This oval shape requires one more setting Click the Orientation icon that aligns to path to point all the shapes towards the centre Go ahead and adjust the steps to create a slightly different type of pattern It isn't just ellipses that work with this effect

Repeat the process with a square, following all the same steps, including the option to change the orientation Simply building up and aligning multiple bands of these circular patterns results in a super intricate design It's up to you how big you go! So I hope you enjoyed this quick tutorial for Adobe Illustrator If you did, be sure to check out my channel for more You can also find written tutorials and free design resources over on my website at spoon

graphics, otherwise thank you very much for watching and I'll catch you all later

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