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Chapter 8. Transforming Objects > Editing Objects with Transformations

Editing Objects with Transformations

If you have a phobia about Bézier curves, or if you just need to alter an Illustrator object in a predictable way without a lot of tweaking, transformations are for you. Transforming an object means changing its size, shape, or orientation, not by manually moving its anchor points, but by using a tool, menu command, or palette button to apply a predictable action to it (see Figure 8.1). The transformations available in Illustrator include the following:

  • Scale— Scaling an object means resizing it, either to make it larger or to make it smaller.

  • Rotate— You can rotate an object by turning it around any specified center point.

  • Reflect— To reflect an object, Illustrator flips it over an invisible line whose angle you can specify.

  • Shear— Shearing is often called skewing; it means slanting an object along any axis.

  • Twirl— Although twirling isn't usually recognized as a transformation, Illustrator's Twirl tool shares a Tool palette slot with its Rotate tool. To twirl an object, Illustrator rotates the object's edges farther than its center.


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