Home > Adobe, CS5 > Adobe Illustrator CS5: Draw Behind and Draw Inside

Adobe Illustrator CS5: Draw Behind and Draw Inside

This is one of those features that had me going ‘meh’ (Shape Builder Tool was another one). This is the new drawing modes in Illustrator that allows you to draw behind or draw inside existing objects.

  • By default, Illustrator draws new objects on top of existing objects. Apparently this isn’t good enough.
  • [Shift+D] will allow you to cycle through the drawing modes so you can Draw Behind existing objects with the Draw Behind mode.
  • If you have an object selected (basic path, live text, compound path) you can [Shift+D] into the Draw Inside mode, where you can draw Inside the object.
    • What is Draw Inside? Well, is essentially a clipping path. No, wait, it’s not essentially a clipping path. It IS a clipping path. That’s all it is.
    • Using the Draw Inside mode does let you preserve the appearance of your clipping path, unlike using the command though
    • Once you exit the Draw Inside Mode, to edit your Inside drawing, double click on your group to go into Isolation Mode first, then you can select Draw Inside again.
    • Or, you could draw inside of your inside drawing…

Honestly, I think Draw Behind and Draw Inside are nice additions to the program that adds convenience. But if you think this is wonderful, and you haven’t gotten the hang of arranging object stacking orders or clipping paths, you need to do some basic homework.

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  1. Lina
    2011/05/19 at 5:45 am

    The problem is drawing inside seems very buggy. Once you have left an object drawn inside to come back to edit it is difficult. Sometimes you may doubleclick to get to isolation mode and continue to draw inside, sometimes the draw inside option is greyed out even in isolation mode. When you have drawn inside of multiple objects it seems even more buggy. What’s up with that??

    • Canvai
      2011/05/19 at 6:29 am

      Draw behind/Draw Inside takes away the need to learn basic ideas like arranging object stacking order and clipping masks, and turns it into “magical” features for novice users.

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