Illustrator Fundamentals: Module 5 [Combining Paths and Shapes]

Joining and Average Paths

In this lesson the instructor guides us on how to use the Joining and Average path options to form whole shapes out of separate objects with the Joining tool and making neatly arranged lines using the Average Path.

Offset Path

In this lesson the instructor teaches us how to use the offset path tool to add outlines to our original shape to add extra variants and increase the overall size of the item.

Clean Up Command

In this lesson we were taught about the outline tool in the view menu in Adobe Illustrator, you can see highlighted areas on the image that show rogue entities, which can be manually deleted in this mode.
We also learned about the Clean Up tool in this lesson which can be found in the Objects menu. This is an automated way of getting rid of rogue entities, allowing you to get rid of stray points, unpainted items, and empty text boxes with a few steps.

Compound Paths

In this lesson the instructor teaches us how to combine items to make more complicated objects. The image above was made out of two original shapes, a circle, and a “flower” shape. The circle was used to “carve out” a hole in the center of the flower that still supported outlines.

Compound Shapes

In this video the instructor teaches us how to make compound and complex shapes using simple shapes and the pathfinder panel (shown above). By using simple shapes in unique ways we are able to form designs that would usually be difficult to make with items such as the pen tool.

Shape Builder Tool

In this lesson the instructor teaches us the different uses of the pathfinding tools, along with a few extra tricks on combining simple shapes to form full unique shapes.


In this lesson the instructor teaches us about the six pathfinder tools. Divide, Trim, Merge, Crop, Outline, and Minus Back (Examples are in order from left to right). Divide brings the outlines of the objects to the surface but leaves the layers intact. Trim gets rid of the layers in all of the selected items. Merge acts a lot like trim but it merges any items that use the same color into one object. Crop is used with the addition of an added outline to clip anything outside of the designated cropping area. Outline is self explanatory, it gets rid of a majority of the color inside of the shape, only leaving a small amount of color as a frame of the original shape. Finally, we have minus back which does the opposite of minus front which we usually use, this takes the selected items behind the highest selected layer and cuts out shapes from the object.

Split into Grid

In this lesson the instructor teaches us how to divide a rectangle into a series of smaller shapes that form a grid. This comes with a customizable amount of rows, columns, gutter spaces, and width/height modifiers.

Blob Brush Tool

In this video the instructor describes what a blob brush is and what it does. The blob brush works a lot like the paint tool but it forms shapes instead of paths. This allows the creations to be modified in ways that you could never do with the paint tool such as altering the size or angle.

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