Adobe Illustrator Clipping Mask help

Posted on 2011-10-30
Last Modified: 2012-05-12
Hi Experts,

I have an illustration in AI (see attached file 'original') and I want to clip it to a width of 300px to become an object similar to the one in the file called goal.jpg.

I've been playing with clipping masks and pathfinder and can't figure it out.  Can someone explain how to do it?  Remember that the original object is a group of layers (elipses) and I couldn't seem to simple use a mask for some reason.


HNM original goal
Question by:HelpNearMe
    LVL 22

    Expert Comment

    by:Sigurdur Armannsson
    Assuming you want to make a jpg picture the best way is to make your Artboard 300 px in width.

    Go to Shift+O and at the top right you can set the measure of the Artboard.
    Go back to your illustrator with Escape.
    Move your illustrator on the Artboard the way it should be cropped.
    File>Export as jpg and check: Use Artboard.
    LVL 22

    Expert Comment

    by:Sigurdur Armannsson
    Using the mask works this way.

    You have an illustration.
    Draw a box the size of the mask you want. Do it by simply clicking once on the screen with the Rectangle tool (M) and set your measurement in the dialog box that appears.
    Select the illustration and the box (which has to be on the top) and go: Object>Clipping Mask>Make.
    LVL 26

    Expert Comment

    by:David Brugge

    I always enjoy your tips. I was getting ready to explain clipping paths and layers and such and you cut right to the chase.

    I'll just go stand over here in a corner and watch and learn.

    david brugge
    LVL 22

    Expert Comment

    by:Sigurdur Armannsson
    @D_Brugge: Thanks a lot. It's encouraging to get comments like that from experts like you.

    Author Comment

    Thats funny because as I was making the jpg versions for this post I adjusted the artboard and thought... why don't I just to it this way?  Anyway I'll give it a shot.. thanks!

    Author Comment

    Ok that works fine but the arc edges are super jagged in JPG and png format.  Pretty much useless for making a finished product.  Doc properties are set to 300dpi, JPEG is set to max resolution.

    How can I get an image with smooth edges?


    LVL 22

    Accepted Solution

    The key to smooth edges is the resolution.
    I tried an image similar to yours in 300 dpi using the artboard. It's smooth when watched at 100%, while File>Export for Web and Devices at highest jpg ratings it becomes less smooth.
    However, the first one is 94k and the latter one is only 6K. FirstoneDirectExport SecondSaveForWebAndDevices

    Author Closing Comment

    Great thank you!

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