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Chez A's picture
89 pencils

Duplicate a Shape Using the Rotate Tool

Duplicate a Shape Using the Rotate Tool
The rotate tool is one of the most important tools in Illustrator. To duplicate a shape using the rotate tool, first select the shape if not selected and then select the rotate tool. Place the rotation point on the desired position and rotate the shape while holding Alt (hold Shift + Alt to get a perfectly 45D angle) to make the first copy and the fun part; press Ctrl-D (windows) Cmd-D (mac) repeatedly. By doing so, you’ll get an equal rotation spacing/distance between the shapes.

Using this magical tool, you could turn virtually any shape into a beautiful kaleidoscopic design, create patterns of shapes, add numerical characters to a clock or dial efficiently and lots, lots more.

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tripdragon's picture
416 pencils

AW I forgot about that one !

Tha jogs me brain to recal the equvelent in PS
command-j + command-shift-t ! Neat !

workys --->>

iancorey's picture
94 pencils

Unless you get your anchor point perfect and your angle perfect you'll end up with an overlapping center point or your last duplication will be unevenly positioned in relation to the start/finish point.
Any hints for this would be appreciated.

Ivan's picture

For some reason the human brain responds very well to repeating patterns, especially if they are circular. I can only guess why that is, but nevertheless this technique is great for logos, where recall is important.

ludvik's picture
29 pencils

Could somebody tell me how to 'clone' (duplicate) nt only a rotation but scale and such?

I used to love using this feature in Freehand, since like 1993 and I always wished Illustrator to have it.

In Freehand You can create a shape object, then rotate it and scale it and then you click the "clone" and voila, you have some awesome shapes in a few steps..... How do I do that in Illustrator?....

The pursuit of life is happiness, so bug off.

The pursuit of life is happiness.

tdominey's picture
3 pencils

On the Mac you'd press Cmd-D (or 'open apple'-D) to duplicate.

The original post also states to simply "press Ctrl-D," but that just gives you one angle. You need to repeatedly press this to get the effect. Just nit-pickin' in case others were confused.

Chez A's picture
89 pencils

There you go, mac users press Cmd-D to duplicate and repeat it a few times to get the result. Only human ... not perfect but thanks for correcting.

ludvik's picture
29 pencils

These are excellent tips, I am so happy I didn't know about the dragging while holding the -`- key.

But what I was referring earlier was about Freehand. I'll do it in freehand TIP mode and let me know if you know how to do it in Illustrator.

Make sure you have your transform palette open.

1. Create any object.
2. Click on the rotate tool
3. While holding the "option" key (Mac) click and release where you want your center to be
4. Release the "option" key
5. Now click again the same place and drag, while you're dragging press the option key again, this will clone the object
6. Release/position it wherever you desire
7. Go to the transform palette, in the scale tab, and type any scale, anything below 100% would make a spiral shape to the inside of the 'circle', anything above 100% will make an outward spiral.

I am attahing a sample:

The pursuit of life is happiness.

Ivan's picture

That's pretty cool. Thanks! I'm one of the few still using Freehand.

Ton Frederiks's picture
1 pencil

The Effect menu will let you do amazing things with simple objects.
Create a shape and keep it selected.
Select: Effect/Distort & Transform/Transform...
Check the Preview box.
In this dialog you can create multiple copies and transform them (don't forget to set a value to move them or the copies will be on top of each other).
The result can always be modified, because it's an Effect.
If you look at the Appearance palette, you can double click the Transform effect and modify the settings.
You can even add more Transform effects to this single object.

tutorials99's picture
1 pencil

Good Guide...
I found another site having higher rank professional Illustrator tutorials..
see link below

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