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Create a 3D vector scrolling ribbon in Illustrator

Posted in Tutorials on April 10th, 2015 | No Comments

vector ribbon

Adobe Illustrator is one of the best and popular applications for creating graphic artwork like logos, designs for print and Web pages. 3D effect is nowadays one of the hot trends. Mostly I use it to create some strange and dynamic objects for logos. Client seems to be satisfied with these objects. So, I’ve a 3D tutorial to give you an idea of what Adobe Illustrator offers and how to use its 3D features.

vector ribbon

We will be making scrolling ribbon that can be used in logos or in some other artworks. The picture above is final image we will be working towards.

vector ribbon

Click on a Rectangle Tool and draw three rectangles and color it with your chose. Press Ctrl/Cmd + G to group them.

vector ribbon

Go to Window > Symbol and you will get a symbol pallet. Now drag those grouped rectangles into the symbol pallet to make them  symbol. Use the default setting for new symbol.

vector ribbon

Now its time to get 3D object. To get it draw a circle using Ellipse Tool.

vector ribbon

vector ribbon

Then go to the Effect > 3D > Extrude & Bevel. Set the options as shown in the figure above or adjust them as per your requirement to make a vertical rod as shown above.

vector ribbon

Next click in the Map Art option and select the number 3 surface.

vector ribbon

Click the drop down arrow of symbol in Map Art dialogue box and select the symbol that you have created earlier.

vector ribbon

vector ribbon

Rotate the symbol in the Map Art dialogue box as shown in the figure above. Make sure Shade Artwork and Invisible Geometry checked. It will give you clear view of the ribbon and show you the shadow in the ribbon. You can adjust the size of the symbol until you get the perfect settings for your project. You can also click on the Scale to Fit button to wrap whole tube. Keep on experimenting with the rotation and different colors and click OK.

vector ribbon

You can adjust lighting and shadow from the More Option of the Extrude & Bevel dialogue box.

Note: To see your progress instantly you can check the preview option or if you hit OK and wanted to edit current effect then you can double-click the name of the effect in the Appearance Panel.

vector ribbon

This is how you will get your Rectangle symbol after 3D effect.

vector ribbon

Go to the Object > Expand Appearance and expand the object and ungroup them. Again Object > Clipping Mask > Release for the final touchups. This the quick way to get some amazing shapes for the logo or some other projects. I usually follow this method for making logos.

vector ribbon

To get long ribbon we have to modify our Symbol slightly. First click on the Rectangle Tool and draw a rectangle.

vector ribbon

Holding Alt/Opt + Shift key, click on the rectangle and drag it down to make a stack of rectangles as shown in figure above. Now press Ctrl/Cmd + D for next six times to get eight rectangles stacked on.

vector ribbon

Delete four of them to get the object as shown in the figure.

vector ribbon

Select the Shear Tool and shear the object slightly equal to the height of the single rectangle as shown in above figure.

vector ribbon

Draw a rectangle over the object as shown in the figure above.

vector ribbon

Select all the objects and go to Effect > Pathfinder. Click the Crop option.

vector ribbon

Press Ctrl/Cmd + Shift + G to ungroup and delete all other unwanted objects. Press Crtl/Cmd + G to group the remaining objects. Now you will get the object as seen in the picture above.

vector ribbon

Go to Window > Symbols to open Symbols Pallet. Click New Symbol option selecting the object or just drag the object into the pallet as we have done earlier, to convert it into symbol.

vector ribbon

After that, all other steps are same as we have done above. At last you will get a long scrolled ribbon. You can increase the number of rectangles to get longer ribbon. Experiment with different color and shapes. Enjoy experimenting.

Written by Ashok Shrestha
Ashok Shrestha is an up and coming graphic designer for both print and web. He is knowledgeable in Adobe C.S. 3/ C.S. 4, Joomla and Wordpress. He likes to experiment with various techniques in both print and web.

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