Illustrator Tutorial: A Trick or Treat Pumpkin

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Halloween-pumpkin-tutorial

By: Bao Nguyen

Let’s have some fun for Halloween. Learn how to draw a realistic trick or treat pumpkin in Adobe Illustrator. It will include an easy to create pumpkin, candy and a simple background. This tutorial will focus on the Pen tool, Pathfinder, a bunch of gradients and some basic effects.

Create a New document

  1. Launch Illustrator and then press (Ctrl + N) to create a New Select Pixels from the Units drop-down menu, enter 1010 in the width box and 925 in the height box then click on the Advanced button. Select RGB, Screen (72ppi) and make sure that the Align New Objects to Pixel Grid box is unchecked before you click OK.

Create the Pumpkin.

2. Pick the Ellipse Tool (L) and create a 184 by 488px black ellipse. Next pick the Direct Selection Tool (A) along with the Shift, extend the handles of the top and the bottom anchor point of the newly created ellipse.

3. Pick the Pen Tool (P) and create a magenta object like you see in the first and the second image. Once your object is drawn, reselect the black ellipse created in the step 2 and make a copy (Ctrl +C, Ctrl +F) of it. Keep this copy selected, hold down the Shift and click on the magenta object. Then open the Pathfinder panel (Window > Pathfinder) and click on the Minus Back

4. Continue with the Pen Tool (P), create a blue object like you see in the first and the second image. Once your blue object is drawn, reselect the magenta object created in the step 3 and make a copy (Ctrl +C, Ctrl +F) of it. Keep this copy selected, hold down the Shift and click on the blue object. Then open the Pathfinder panel (Window > Pathfinder) and click on the Minus Back Now focus on the fifth and the sixth image, create a red object using the Pen Tool (P). Next select the blue object created in this step, hold down the Shift and click on the red object. Then click on the Minus Back button from the Pathfinder panel.

5. Select three objects created from beginning step 3 to this time, remove their strokes and then fill these objects with the radial gradients as shown in the images below. Now reselect the three newly created shapes and go to the Object > Transform > Reflect… Check the Vertical and click Copy. Keep these copies selected, drag them to the right and place them as shown in the last image. Don’t forget to hold the Shift key on the keyboard for straight dragging.

6. Select the black ellipse created in the step 2, remove its stroke and fill this object with the radial gradient as shown in the first image. Make a copy (Ctrl +C, Ctrl +F) of the resulting ellipse and then replace the existing fill color of the copy with new radial gradient as shown in the second image. Still having the resulting ellipse selected and go to the Effect > Stylize > Feather… Enter a 15px Radius and click OK. Next pick the Ellipse Tool (L) and create a 103 by 474px very light orange ellipse (# ffcd69), then place it to the position as shown in the third image. Keep the newly created ellipse selected and go to the Effect > Blur > Gaussian Blur… Enter a 20px Radius and click OK. Now select the ellipse with feather effect applied in this step and make a copy (Ctrl +C, Ctrl +F) of it, then bring the copy to front (Ctrl +Shift +Right Square Bracket). Having this copy selected, hold down the Shift and click on the ellipse with blur effect applied in this step. Right click on the artboard and then select the Make Clipping Mask section from the drop-down menu.

7. At this point your pumpkin should look like in the next image:

Add the Mouth, the Eyes and the Nose of the Pumpkin

8. With the help of the Pen Tool (P) and the Gradient Tool (G), create a dark orange shape like you see in the first and the second image. Focus on the third image and create a turquoise object using the Pen Tool (P). Once your object is drawn, reselect the dark orange shape created in this step and make a copy (Ctrl +C, Ctrl +F) of it. Keep this copy selected, hold down the Shift and click on the turquoise object. Then open the Pathfinder panel (Window > Pathfinder) and click on the Minus Front Remove the stroke of the resulting compound path and then fill this object with the linear gradient as shown in the next to last image. Now reselect the dark orange shape created in this step and make a copy of it, then bring the copy to front (Ctrl +Shift +Right Square Bracket). Remove the fill color of the newly created shape and add a 2px very light yellow stroke (# ffea7f). Then apply the Width Profile 2 for the resulting object.

9. With the help of the Pen Tool (P) and the Gradient Tool (G), create two shapes like you see in the images below. Once your shapes are drawn, reselect the bigger shape and make a copy (Ctrl +C, Ctrl +F) of it, then bring the copy to front (Ctrl +Shift +Right Square Bracket). Remove the fill color of the newly created shape and add a 2px very light yellow stroke (# ffea7f). Then apply the Width Profile 2 for the resulting object. Now select all three objects created in this step and group (Ctrl +G) them. Still having this group selected and go to Object > Transform > Reflect… Check the Vertical and click Copy. Select the resulting group and drag it to the right, then place it as shown in the last image.

10. With the help of the Pen Tool (P) and the Gradient Tool (G), create two shapes like you see in the images below. Once your shapes are drawn, reselect the bigger shape and make a copy (Ctrl +C, Ctrl +F) of it, then bring the copy to front (Ctrl +Shift +Right Square Bracket). Remove the fill color of the newly created shape and add a 2px very light yellow stroke (# ffea7f). Then apply the Width Profile 2 for the resulting object.

11. At this point your pumpkin should look like in the next image:

Add the “TRICK” piece of text

12. Pick the Pen Tool (P) and create ten strong orange shapes (# d07726) like you see in the images below. Once your shapes are drawn, reselect them and go to the Effect > Stylize > Round Corners… Enter a 3px Radius and click OK. Keep the resulting shapes selected and go to the Object > Expand Appearance.

13. Before you continue, select five shapes as shown in the first image and make a copy (Ctrl +C, Ctrl +F) of them, then press (Ctrl +3) to hide the copies. Focus on the letter “T”, select two shapes of it and go to the Object > Blend > Blend Options… Follow the data like you see in the second image and click OK. Then go to the Object > Blend > Make (Ctrl +Alt +B). The blended object should look like the third image below. Likewise, repeat the same techniques for the remaining four letters. You should end up with something like in the fourth image. Now press (Ctrl +Alt +3) to show five shapes hidden in this step. Keep these shapes selected and replace the existing fill color with very light yellow (# ffdd6f).

14. Focus on the letter “R”, pick the Pen Tool (P) and create a red object like you see in the first image. Reselect the red object and the light yellow shape of the letter “R”. Then open the Pathfinder panel (Window > Pathfinder) and click on the Minus Front The resulting shape should look like the last image below.

Add the “TREAT” piece of text

15. Pick the Pen Tool (P) and create five turquoise objects like you see in the first image. Once your objects are drawn, reselect the object of the left letter “T”, then remove its stroke and fill this object with the linear gradient as shown in the second image. Now reselect the remaining four turquoise objects created in this step, then pick the Eyedropper Tool (I) and click on the shape of the left letter “T”. The resulting shapes should look like the last image below.

16. With the help of the Pen Tool (P) and the Gradient Tool (G), create five shapes like you see in the images below. Now reselect all ten shapes created from beginning step 15 to this time and go to the Effect > Stylize > Round Corners… Enter a 3px Radius and click OK. Keep the resulting shapes selected and go to the Object > Expand Appearance.

17. Before you continue, select five shapes as shown in the first image and make a copy (Ctrl +C, Ctrl +F) of them, then press (Ctrl +3) to hide the copies. Focus on the left letter “T”, select two shapes of it and go to the Object > Blend > Blend Options… Follow the data like you see in the second image and click OK. Then go to the Object > Blend > Make (Ctrl +Alt +B). The blended object should look like the third image below. Likewise, repeat the same techniques for the remaining four letters. You should end up with something like in the fourth image. Now press (Ctrl +Alt +3) to show five shapes hidden in this step. Keep these shapes selected and replace the existing fill color with light orange (# ffce5b).

18. Pick the Pen Tool (P) and create two objects like you see in the first image. Reselect the red object and the light yellow shape of the letter “R”. Then open the Pathfinder panel (Window > Pathfinder) and click on the Minus Front The resulting shape should look like the third image below. Next select the blue object and the light yellow shape of the letter “A”. Then click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfinder panel. Finally select the light yellow object created in last image of the step 8 and then bring it to front (Ctrl +Shift +Right Square Bracket).

19. At this point your pumpkin should look like in the next image:

Create the Candy

20. With the help of the Ellipse Tool (L) and the Gradient Tool (G), create a 100 by 100px pale orange ellipse as shown in the first and the second image. Next pick the Pen Tool (P) and create a bright red shape (# e14226) like you see in the third and the fourth image. Reselect the newly created shape and open the Transparency panel (Window > Transparency), then change the Blending Mode to Multiply. Keep the resulting shape selected and go to the Object > Transform > Reflect… Check the Vertical and click Copy. Still having this copy selected and open the Reflect dialog box again. Check the Horizontal and click OK. Then place the resulting shape to the position as shown in the last image.

21. To give a more realistic look I’m going to be adding some highlights on some key places. Pick the Pen Tool (P) and create four blue objects like you see in the first image. Once your objects are drawn, reselect the left blue object and remove its stroke, then fill this object with the radial gradient as shown in the second image. Continue select the remaining three blue objects, then pick the Eyedropper Tool (I) and click on the white shape created in this step. Finally select all shapes created in this step and change the Blending Mode to Soft Light.

22. With the help of the Pen Tool (P) and the Gradient Tool (G), create a shape like you see in the first and the second image. Once your shape is drawn, reselect it and go to the Object > Path > Offset Path… Enter a -3px Offset and click OK. Replace the existing fill color of the newly created shape with slightly orange (# c49866) and then move it 3px Still having the slightly orange shape selected and apply a 6px Feather effect for it. Finally hide the two shapes created in this step behind the shapes created in the step 21.

23. Select and group (Ctrl +G) all objects created from beginning step 20 to this time. We are done with the candy for the moment. Place the candy to the position as shown in the image below. 24. Pick the Selection Tool (V) and double-click on the blended object of the letter “R” of the “TREAT” piece of text. Select the lower shape and replace the existing fill color with new linear gradient as shown in the first image. Next select the upper shape, then pick the Eyedropper Tool (I) and click on the lower shape. Finally, double-click on the anywhere outside of the blended object.

25. Pick the Selection Tool (V) and double-click on the blended object of the letter “E” of the “TREAT” piece of text. Select the lower shape and replace the existing fill color with new linear gradient as shown in the first image. Next select the upper shape, then pick the Eyedropper Tool (I) and click on the lower shape. Finally, double-click on the anywhere outside of the blended object.

26. At this point your illustration should look like in the next image:

Create the Pumpkin Stem

27. It’s time to draw the stem. With the help of the Pen Tool (P) and the Gradient Tool (G), create a shape like you see in the first and the second image. Continue create three shapes using the Pen Tool (P). Reselect three newly created shapes and apply a 6px Feather effect for it. Then change the Blending Mode of the resulting shapes to Soft Light. Next pick the Pen Tool (P) and create a blue curved path like you see in the seventh image. Replace the existing stroke color of the newly created path with very dark orange (# 6c2c10) and change the stroke weight to 4px. Then apply the Width Profile 1 for the resulting path. Now select and group (Ctrl +G) all objects created in this step. The pumpkin stem is done! Finally hide this stem behind the pumpkin.

28. We will continue with the pumpkin vines. Pick the Pen Tool (P) and create two curved paths like you see in the first and the second image. Reselect the two newly created paths, right click on the artboard and then select the Join section from the drop-down menu. Next right click on the artboard again, then select the Join Remove the stroke of the resulting object and then fill this object with the linear gradient as shown in the last image. Finally hide this vine behind the pumpkin stem.

29. Next with the help of the Pen Tool (P) and the Gradient Tool (G), create two vines like you see in the images below.

30. Now select and group (Ctrl +G) all objects created from beginning step 2 to this time. The Halloween pumpkin is ready and looks like this:

Create the Background

31. We’re done with the pumpkin. It’s time for the background now. With the help of the Rectangle Tool (M) and the Gradient Tool (G), create a 1010 by 925px light grayish orange rectangle. Next place the pumpkin into the newly created background.

32. To give a more realistic look I’m going to be adding shadow for the pumpkin. Pick the Ellipse Tool (L) and create a 592 by 102px ellipse, then place it to the position as shown in the first image. Remove the stroke of the newly created ellipse and then fill this object with the radial gradient as shown in the second image. Finally apply a 7px Gaussian Blur effect for the resulting ellipse and then hide it behind the pumpkin.

Here is what the completed design looks like.

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