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How to Import and Affect Image Fills

(2-Minute Training)

Welcome to Expression Design. When you first launch the program, you'll find the artboard (white area you draw or create in), the tool box to the left. This is where the main tools for creating and manipulating exist. To the right is the property inspector; here you can organize your artwork/ objects using the layers panel, change the color or other various properties using the appearance panel.

You can customize the interface by docking and undocking Toolbars, and changing Option settings.

Let's get started.

  1. So to begin with open Expression Design and create a new document. File/ New or CTRL + N These are the settings I used. Although, it really doesn't matter for this lesson. Rename the file PatternOne. Click OK or press enter to create the new document.

  2. Go to the appearance category, select the fill tab and give it a solid color (I chose red) select the stroke tab and give it a black color Stroke width; 1. Select the rectangle tool , starting in the upper left corner of the document boundaries, click and drag while holding the Shift key to create a perfect square. Activate the selection tool , click and drag the new red rectangle while holding Shift + ALT to make a duplicate that's horizontally aligned, all the way to the right upper corner of the document boundaries. With the duplicate still selected, change the fill color to yellow. Use Shift Click to multi-select both the red and yellow squares.

  3. Go to Object/ Blend Paths. Enter or drag the steps slider to 20, click OK to commit the value.

    The resulting image should look like this:

    Press CTRL + A to select all. Right click on the selected objects and Group them. Click and start dragging down, while dragging hold the Shift and Alt keys. Shift key to constrain the group to a vertical axis and the Alt key to make a duplicate of the group, just below the first group. Right click again and select Transform/ Reflect Horizontal.

  4. Press CTRL + A to select all. Click and start dragging down, while dragging hold the Shift and Alt keys. Shift key to constrain the group to a vertical axis and the Alt key to make a duplicate of the group, just below the first two groups. Now press CTRL + D to duplicate your last actions until the document boundaries are filled.

  5. Now we'll export the file as a jpeg. Go to File/ Export. Select jpeg from the "Save as Type" drop down menu. Save it somewhere you'll remember it. You'll then get the Export Jpeg dialog. I left all the settings in this example alone. Click OK, select all (CTRL + A) and delete everything from the artboard.

  6. Select the fill tab in the appearance panel. Give it an image fill. Click the "Import" button and navigate to the jpeg we just exported. Activate the rectangle tool click and drag a large shape onto the artboard.

Use the fill transform tool to adjust how the image fill is applied to the object. The fill transform tool gives you adorners to manipulate the fill property. You can also use the fill editor popup (the icon next to the import button) to adjust the property more precisely.

This lesson was designed to provide a quick introduction to using Warp Groups with bitmap images and/ or vector artwork in Expression Design.

This short lesson was created by Jesse Brown, a freelance designer and presenter for Total Training. Jesse's keen design sense and "big picture" sensibility are among the reasons his skills are in high demand. Total Training, Inc. ( www.totaltraining.com), with offices in California and New York, is a pioneer in innovative video-based training for leading software applications. Total Training is best known for its superior product quality, entertaining content, and strategic partnership with Microsoft which includes tutorials in Microsoft software boxes.