Defining Your Workspace  E-mail
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Written by Craig Watkins   

Setting up a document to work from.

The first thing you will need in Illustrator is a document to work from!

Go to FILE in your menu bar and select NEW.



After you have done this, you will get a dialogue box.



The dialogue box will give you a few options. The options are:

• Name your document - you can pass on this step until you are ready to save your document if you choose.
• Set up your Artboard -
This is where you decide on your page size, the printable area of the page and your units of measure. If you will be printing directly out of Illustrator this will be important. If you are going to import your work into another program such as Quark, this part is not really important, but as a rule I set my document to letter size to create a familiar workspace. This is also where you choose the orientation of your document. (Horizontal or vertical.)
• Choose your color mode - CMYK if you are going to be printing the piece. RGB if your image will be viewed on screen only.

Select OK and your document will appear.


Please note the dotted lines inside the borders of your document when the document appears. These lines represent the “printable area” of your document. Meaning, if you plan to print out of Illustrator, you don’t want the image you create to be outside of these lines. Anything that is outside of these lines will not be visible when you print out your document.




After you have started working, you can adjust you artboard parameters if you need to by choosing FILE> DOCUMENT SETUP in your menu bar.



After you have done this, your document setup dialogue box will reappear and you can make adjustments.



This is where you can adjust your PRINTABLE AREA by clicking on the PAGE SETUP box on the right side of the dialogue box. Change the paper size for your printer, and the PRINTABLE AREA will change. You can also make many custom adjustments using the previous and next buttons.



When you open a new document in ILLUSTRATOR CS or CS2, you will not see the dotted line representing the PRINTABLE AREA.


To see the PRINTABLE AREA, go to VIEW>SHOW PAGE TILING. This will bring up the dotted line that shows you your PRINTABLE AREA.

To adjust the PRINTABLE AREA in CS or CS2, go to FILE>PRINT and then under GENERAL in the menu on the left, look in the MEDIA section to define your PRINTABLE AREA based on your printer.



That's all there is to it!

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