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Andrei Marius On June - 24 - 2010

Hi there. In the following tutorial you can learn to create a laptop icon. Once you’ve created the basic shapes, it’s easy to continue with the other components. Give it a try and you might learn some interesting stuff about the role of Smart Guides and Rectangular Grid Tool.

Difficulty: Advanced
Estimated Completion Time: 1 hour
Number of Steps: 10


This is what you’ll be creating:

preview

Step 01

Create a 256 by 256px document. First of all turn on the Smart Guides (Ctrl+U) then go to Edit > Preferences > Smart Guides and make sure that the Alignment Guides box is checked. Next select the Rectangle Tool(M), click on your artboard and create a 240x36px shape. Pick the Direct Selection Tool(A), select the top left anchor point and move it 25px to the right. Next, select the top right anchor point and move it 25px to the left. Now, your shape should look like the one shown in image #3. Move this shape in the bottom of your artboard an fill it with the color shown below (for the moment). Name this shape “Part1″.

Step 02

Reselect the Rectangle Tool(M) create a 190x130px shape and fill it with R=230 G=230 B=230. Select this shapes and use the smart guides to align it as shown in image #2. Next, move this shape 20px down, add a 5px Rounded Corners effect and go to Object > Expand Appearance. Name this shape “Part2″.

Step 03

Pick again the Rectangle Tool(M), create a 240x10px shape, fill it with R=204 G=204 B=204 and align it as shown in image #1. Add a discrete 1px Rounded Corners effect then go to Object > Expand Appearance. Select the resulting shapes, pick the Convert Anchor Points Tool (Shift+C) and click on the top right anchor points (highlighted in image #2). Next, select the anchor point highlighted in image #3 and move it up (as shown in image #4). Repeat this technique for the top left anchor points of this shape. Name this shape “Part3″. Reselect the Rectangle Tool(M), create a 230x7px shape fill it with R=153 G=153 B=153, send it to back and place it as shown in image #5. Finally, add a 1px Rounded Corners effect and go to Object > Expand Appearance. Name this shape “Part4″.

Step 04

Grab the Rectangle Tool(M), create a 170x100px shape, fill it with R=0 G=113 B=188 and align it as shown in image #1. Add a 1px Rounded Corners effects the go to Object > Expand Appearance. Name this shape “Screen”.

Step 05

Reselect the Recntangle Tool(M), create a 204x18px shape, fill it with R=0 G=113 B=188 and align it as shown in image #2. Pick the Direct Selection Tool(A), select the top left anchor point and move it 12px to the right. Next, select the top right anchor point and move it 12px to the left. Add a 2px Rounded Corners effects the go to Object > Expand Appearance. Name this shape “Keyboard”.

Step 06

Once again select the Recntangle Tool(M), create a 52x11px shape, fill it with R=0 G=113 B=188 and align it as shown in image #2. Pick the Direct Selection Tool(A), select the top left anchor point and move it 5px to the right. Next, select the top right anchor point and move it 5px to the left. Add a 1.3px Rounded Corners effects then go to Object > Expand Appearance. Name this shape “Scroll”.

Step 07

Reselect “Screen”, fill it with the gradient shown in image #1 and add a 0.75px aligned to outside stroke (R=204 G=204 B=204). Move this shape in the top of the Layers pallete.

Step 08

Create two copies of “Screen”. Select the Ellipse Tool(L) and create a shape like the red one shown in image #1. Select this new shape along with the copy of “Screen” and click on the Intersect button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with the gradient shown in image #2 and lower its opacity to 10%. Reselect the Ellipse Tool(L) and create a shape like the red one shown in image #3. Select this new shape and the other copy of “Screen” and click on the Intersect button from the Pathfidner panel. Fill the resulting shape with the gradient shown in image #4 and lower its opacity to 10%. Move these two shapes above “Screen”.

Step 09

Select “Part.2″ and change it’s fill with the linear gradient shown in image #1. Next, add a new fill (from the fly-out menu of the Appearance panel) and use the gradient shown in image #2.

Step 10

Change the fill of “Keyboard” with the gradient shown in image #1. Double click on the Rectangular Grid Tool and enter 5 horizontal lines and 20 vertical lines. Now, select this tool and create a 204 by 18px grid. Fill it with none and use a 0.25px stroke (any color). Select the outside rectangle and delete it. Now, your grid should look like in image #3.

Step 11

Use the Direct Selection Tool(A) to select the anchor points highlighted in image #1. Now, pick the Scale Tool(S) and click and drag from outside to the inside until the grid looks like in image #2. Next, select the anchor points highlighted in image #2 and move them as shown in image #3. Select this grid and go to Object > Expand Appearance. Create a copy of “Keyboard”, fill it with none and add a 0.25 aligned to center stroke. Select this stroke and go to Object > Expand Appearance. Select the resulting shape along with the expanded grid and click on the Unite button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with R=179 G=179 B=179 and add a discrete 0.5px Rounded Corners effect.

Step 12

Select “Scroll”, fill it with the gradient shown in imge #1 and add a 0.5px aligned to outside stroke (R=204 G=204 B=204). Pick the Pen Tool(P) and create a horizontal and a vertical path (as shown in image #2 and #3). Fill both paths with none and add a 0.5px stroke (R=204 G=204 B=204).

Step 13

Fill “Part1″ with the gradient shown in image #1. Add a new fill for this shape and use the gradient shown in image #2. Fill “Part3″ and “Part4″ with the gradients shown below.

Step 14

Select the Pen Tool(P) and create a path like the one shown in image #1. Add a 0.5px stroke (R=255 G=255 B=255). Reselect the Pen Tool(P) and create a path like the one shown in iamge #2. Add a 0.5px stroke (R=128 G=128 B=128). Select the Rounded Rectangle Tool and create two small shapes (as shown in image #3). Fill them both with R=131 G=131 B=131, place them as shown in image #3 and move them behind “Part1″.

Step 15

Select the Ellipse Tool(L) create a small circle an place it as shown in image #1. Fill it with R=204 G=204 B=204 and add a 2px aligned to outside stroke (R=230 G=230 B=230). Add a new stroke for this shape (from the flyout menu of the Appearance panel), make it 1px thick and fill it with R=255 G=255 B=255. Reselect the Ellipse Tool(L), create a small circle an place it as shown in image #2. Fill it with R=0 G=104 B=55 and add a 1.5px aligned to outside stroke (R=179 G=179 B=179). Add a new stroke for this shape (1.25px) and and fill it with R=204 G=204 B=204. Create two new copies of this green circle. Move them to the right and the fill color to blue and red.

Step 16

Create a copy of “Scroll”. Select the Ellipse Tool(L) and create a shape like the red one shown in image #1. Select it along with the copy of “Scroll” and click on the Intersect button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with the gradient shown in image #2 and lower its opacity to 25%. Create two copies of “Part1″. First create a shape like the red one shown in image #3, select it along with a copy of “Part1″ and click on the Intersect button from the Pathfinder panel. Fill the resulting shape with black and lower its opacity to 7%. Next, create an oval like the red one shown in image #5. Select it along with the other copy of “Part1″ and click on the Minus Front button from the Pathfidner panel. Fill the resulting shape with the gradient shown in image #6 and lower its opacity to 30%. Select all these shapes along with the shapes made in step #8 and group them. Move this group in the top of the Layer panel.

Step 17

Duplicate all the shapes created so far. Select these copies and click on the Unite button from the Pathfinder panel. Duplicate the resulting shape. Fill the original shape with black, change its blending mode to Overlay, decrease the opacity to 50% and move it just below the group made in the previous step (in the Layers panel). Select the other copy, fill it with none but add a 0.75px aligned to outside stroke (R=179 G=179 B=179). Finally, you need to create a discrete shadow effect in the bottom of the laptop. Select the Rounded Rectangle Tool, create a shape like the one shown in image #4 and send it to back. Fill it with black then add a 3px Gaussian Blur effect and lower its opacity to 25%.

Final

Now your work is done. Here is how it should look like.

Categories: Icons

24 Responses

  1. Loige says:

    Wonderful tutorial ;)
    A must for illustrator beginners!

  2. you should mention at intro it’s for Illustrator

  3. Jae Xavier says:

    simple enough. thanks!

  4. Mjr tom says:

    Many thanks, nice tutorial, very usefull!

  5. bako says:

    very very cool

  6. amy says:

    nice work , I’ll try it when I have time.

  7. Rob Carr says:

    Right above step nine, when you’re working with the intersection of the ellipses and the screen copies, there are two gradients given–but they’re not gradients as far as I can tell. The RGB numbers are the same for both ends of the gradient.

    I’m just a rookie at Illustrator. Is there something I’m missing or are the numbers wrong?

    I am learning so much from this tutorial, by the way. it’s taking me several hours, but it’s fun and I’m figuring stuff out.

    • Marius says:

      The numbers are not wrong. Take a closer look at the photos. You’ll see a small, yellow “0″ above the gradient sliders. It means that you need to select that gradient sliders and lower the opacity to 0% (only in Illustrator CS4). I’m glad you find my tutorial useful. Let me know if you encounter any other problems.

  8. I take it that we are suppose to have software The Illustrator? Because I’ve not idea what went on here. Then you show at the end, you state “now your work is done and it should look like this”, This being a picture of a laptop that has a blue screen? I will admit and have always admitted that I am not a techi but really want to learn,but I’m not sure if people in their 50′s are able to do it. Either that or the tutorials are designed for more advanced computer skilled people. Thanks and I love the characters that you have at the top of this page. I am an artist and these are the kinds of things I want to know how to do. Any suggestions other than taking night classes? Thank you jj

    • Marius says:

      Yes, you need the software the Illustrator. This is a pretty advanced tutorial so it’s normal for you to encounter difficulties. If you really want to learn “The Illustrator” you should start from the basics. Take a look at this pack of free lessons. It might be a good start. Also, if you have the money you can go to Lynda.com. They have really good video lessons (even people in their 50’s might be able to understand them). Thank you and hopefully one day you’ll be able to make this “picture of a laptop that has a blue screen”. Good luck!

  9. Paul says:

    Thanks, very nice

  10. Razvan says:

    Great tutorial!
    How long have you been working with Illustrator Marius, how long does it take to become that good?

  11. artzam says:

    Awesome man!!nice,thanks for sharing…

  12. Bahare says:

    Thanks,and many thanks for sharing.

  13. coby says:

    I need help from steps 9 – 14 please. you mentioned pictures but never showed the pictures. im brand new to illustrator any help would be very much appreciated

  14. Angelyn says:

    This is a great tutorial! I should have listened when you said it was for the advanced lol I don’t know if it’s me or what ever else it might be but I don’t see the # of the steps except for step #1. It says there are 10 steps but there are more than 10 sections of words so I got kinda lost there.

  15. Jesus says:

    pretty neat

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