2 March 2009

Illustrator diamond flower

Not sure if my title describes exactly what I’ll try to explain in this tutorial, but it in the center of the shape I see a flower and the outside reminds me of a diamond. I’m sure there are a few different ways to create such a shape. It’s all pretty simple really. The hard part is choosing the right colors, right transparency value and transparency mode because you need to experiment a lot to achieve the result you want.

Final result of the Illustrator diamond flower

Draw a circle

Start by drawing a circle. Select the Ellipse Tool (L) and hold down the Shift key while dragging.

Draw a circle

Fill the circle with a color to your liking. My suggestion here is either to use a dark color and tone it back by adjusting the transparency, or you can choose a light color. Change the Transparency mode to Color Burn in the transparency palette (Window > Transparency).

Make sure rulers are visible. If they're not visible, hit cmd/ctrl + R. Drag a horizontal and vertical guide as shown in the image above. To make the guide snap to the points of the circle, turn on Snap to Point: View > Snap to Point. It's also suggested to turn on Smart Guides: View > Smart Guides. To switch them on and off use cmd/ctrl + U.

Draw a circle

Select the Selection Tool (V) and select the circle in the middle of the bottom right path segment. Now drag the circle 45° downwards until your pointer curser reaches the intersection point of the guides as shown in the image above. Use the Shift key while dragging the circle.

Rotate and duplicate circle

Select the Rotate Tool (R), hold down the Option/Alt key and click exactly on the guides' intersection point. Enter a value of 90 as degrees and click the copy button.

Rotate and duplicate circle

With the 2nd circle selected, hit cmd/ctrl + D twice to repeat the exact transformation. You should end up with a shape of 4 circles as shown in the image below.

Rotate and duplicate circle

Go to the Layers palette, select the layer with the circles and drag it onto the Create New Layer icon to duplicate this layer.

Duplicate and rotate circles

Lock your original layer, by clicking the empty square next to the eye icon in the Layers palette (see image below).

Duplicate and rotate circles

Select all circles of the duplicated layer and select the Rotate Tool (R), hold down the Option/Alt key and click exactly on the guides' intersection point again. Now enter a value of 45 as degrees and click the OK button.

Duplicate and rotate circles

Adjust colors and transparency mode

With the circles still selected, choose another color fill for the circles and choose Overlay as Transparency mode.

Adjust colors and transparency mode

Duplicate layers

Unlock the original layer. Select both layers and drag them onto the Create New Layer icon to duplicate them. Lock the 2 original layers.

Duplicate layers

Rotate duplicated layers

Makes sure all circles of both new created layers are selected. Select the Rotate Tool (R) hold down the Option/Alt key and click exactly on the guides' intersection point again. Enter a value of 22.5 (or for some of you 22,5) as degrees and click the OK button.

Rotate duplicated layers

I always check the Preview option to view the result upfront.

Final result

The final result should look similar to the image on the left. Though it all depends on the colors, transparency modes and transparency values you've chosen along the way. Chances are the result of the color combination is not to your satisfaction.

Final result of the Illustrator diamond flower

You can adjust the colors, transparency value and mode where needed adjusting circle by circle.

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