How to Create a 3-D Arrow With a Reflection in Illustrator

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Creating a 3D arrow with a reflection in Illustrator will require you to experiment with concepts like depth, shading and perspective. Create a 3D arrow with a reflection in Illustrator with help from a well-versed web, graphic and illustrative designer in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Using Adobe Illustrator
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Video Transcript

Hi, my name is Alex Cecilio. I'm a graphic artist and I'm going to show you how to make a 3-D arrow with a reflective surface in Illustrator. So the first thing you're going to do is, and this, one tip I'm going to give you is it might help to start by just making sure your grid is showing so if you go to view and show grid this will just bring up a grid on your screen just so that you can make some shapes, in an exact shape. So I'm going to start with a rectangle and the way you draw a rectangle is you go to the rectangle tool or you can push M for shortcut and then we're going to draw a triangle and this, there is no triangle tool in Illustrator so what you're going to want to do is select the star tool and the way you select that is you hold down the shape tool and you just go down to star tool and it is going to draw a shape at first that's going to look like this. It's going to look like a star. So what you're going to want to do is just push your down arrow key and it will take away some of the points. So I'm going to take my triangle and I'm just going to rotate it a little bit so that it fits and then I'm going to make sure that it's lined up and level and it looks like it's pretty lined up so I'm going to select all of it and then you're going to want to go to the pathfinder window and if your pathfinder window isn't showing you can just go to window and then you scroll down to pathfinder and this will open up the pathfinder. So make sure that you have selected all of your shape and go to this button which is going to unite your shapes to be one shape and so that way when you make your line your stroke which is down in this left corner where your color is, you're just going to select, I'm going to select a gray just so that it shows up a little better and you'll see what I mean once I've made the 3-D arrow. So right now I've got a lined arrow so the trick to making it look 3-D is going to effect, 3-D, extrude and bevel and what this is going to do is add some depth to this arrow and make sure you click the preview so you can see what you're doing because if you don't, you're not going to know what you're doing and it might you know, turn out the way you don't want it so I'm going to say this is good for now for our 3D arrow. Alright so now we've got this 3D arrow and what you want to do now is go to your layers panel and mine isn't showing so you can just go to window, layers and just create a new layer, zoom in, if you can a little bit just so you can get your exact points, go to the pen tool and this, and make sure you have the pen tool and any of these options and then go down to your color palette, select the none panel so that there is no stroke but a fill is activated and then just select white and then I'm going to zoom out and select some points with my arrow and I'm going to make a reflective surface. That's what I'm trying to do right now and make sure your windows are not as messy on the screen so that it's easier to see what you're doing and so just click all the corners and then go about halfway down your arrow and then close your shape by clicking that anchor. Now you've got this white shape and it doesn't look very reflective so what we're going to do is down here you can select the gradient or you can select the gradient tool. I'm going to select this because my gradient is already selected and as you can see it's already starting to create a reflective surface but you're going to want to mess around with your panel a little bit with these panels and what this does is it adjusts where your gradient is more transparent and so you might ask how do I make this transparent. So you might have something that looks a little bit more like this. You might have you know, this, or you might have blue and black or whatever you have. So in this case what you're going to want to do is select both, one of these ends and I'm going to select white for that and then select this one and you're also going to want that to be white but then you're going to want the opacity to be all the way down on one of them and the opacity is down on both in my case so I'm just going to fix that. And then this is going to tell you where the opacity line kind of moves around and makes it so that you know, if you move it all the way down here there isn't really any opacity, it's just all white so I'm just going to move this slightly more towards the middle and that way you can have this kind of reflective looking surface. And I'm just going to move it a little bit more and you know, you can really, you can get more specific if this isn't reflective enough for you. Reflective in the sense of this arrow I think this is probably going to be fine and there you have your reflective arrow. My name is Alex is this is making a 3-dimensional reflective arrow in Illustrator. Thank you.

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