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Keep Stroke Outline in Illustrator

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Last Modified: 2013-12-02
Hello Experts -
I'm new to Ilustrator CS3 so I'm pretty sure this is possible (and easy) but I can't figure it out for the life of me.  I created a drawing in Illustrator of an animal.  After the animal was finished, I put an 11pt stroke around the outside.  Now, I want to remove the actual animal shape and keep the stroke.  How can I do this?  The idea is to be able to select the whole stroke outline and not just the animal shape.
Thanks for any help you can provide in advance.
chezbrgrs
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CERTIFIED EXPERT
Expert of the Year 2004
Top Expert 2004

Commented:
it should be easy :)

select the animal object
goto the tools palette and click on Fill(X) color box (used to fill the object and not the stroke)
and click on None(/) button
that will remove the fill for the object leaving just the stroke

Author

Commented:
Thanks SheharyaarSaahil --
I was able to figure that out but I want to be able to select (and transform) the stroke shape.  With the object still in place, I can only manipulate the object's shape.  Basically, I want a solid blob that when selected, can be moved independently of any other object.  Does that make sense?
Thanks again.
CERTIFIED EXPERT
Expert of the Year 2004
Top Expert 2004

Commented:
not exactly.....

you need the object in two versions
one with the solid body only, without any stroke
other without any body, with only stroke
so that you can play around with them separately, true or am getting it totally wrong?

Author

Commented:
Very close.  I created an object and all I want is the SHAPE of the stroke.  If I select it, I want it to select the outside edge of the stroke and not the original object.  

Author

Commented:
Maybe this will be more clear.  How can I move the selection from the outside of the object to the outside of the stroke?
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To be able to move the object, you may have to select it again and then goto Object>Expand. (It depends on the complexity of the original object whether 'Expansion' of the object is necessary.)

Author

Commented:
Thanks emphaticDigital.  I'm sure I didn't do it the easiest way but I used your suggestion and then moved the drawing into photoshop where I knew how to get rid of the anchor points.

Anyhow, it worked great!
Excellent. Glad it worked. BTW, anchor points are an intrinsic part of vector graphics, (which is illustrators native file format). Any path that is selectable will have at least two anchor points. Deleting one of them would erase the whole line. So your method of moving to Photoshop to get rid of the 'anchors' is the best method as the graphic will then be pixel based. The term used to describe this process is 'rasterization' and while illustrator does have a 'Rasterize' command it does not edit pixels. So good job!
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