Make a Bag using the Gradient Mesh Tool in Illustrator

    ●  The Gradient Mesh Tool is a great asset in your arsenal of Illustrator tools.

Learn About:

Gradient Mesh Tool Pen Tool Brush Tool Direct Selection Tool Shadows

  •   It is part of the Monster Mesh, Make a Scene, Shadow Life and other Projects.

Other People's Work:

Here are some examples inspired by this tutorial.

 Step #1: Open your Project in Illustrator ~

Using the Pen Tool, keyboard shortcut letter (p), create a sack looking shape …

Step #2: Stroke and Fill ~

Turn the Stroke Off and pick a Fill color that matches your theme.

Step #3: Create a Gradient Mesh ~

With the shape selected, go to: Object > Create Gradient Mesh

… and experiment with the settings.

You don't have to copy these settings! Just try different settings and see what happens.

Step #4: Lasso Tool ~

Get the Lasso Tool or hit the keyboard shortcut letter (Q) …

… and circle the outside anchor points around the outside edge of the shape.

Step #5: Darken the Color ~

Now, pick a darker color to simulate a shadow …

… keep going - all around the outside - darken the edges.

Step #6: Direct Selection Tool ~

Get the Direct Selection Tool or hit the keyboard shortcut letter (a) …

… and, holding Shift, select multiple anchor points in the middle - along a path - and darken them all at once.

Step #7: Lighten the Anchor Point ~

Click one of the anchor points in the middle …

… and lighten the color of individual anchor points, too.

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Step #8: Lighten the Mesh Points ~

Now lighten the mesh points using the same technique.

lighten the gradient mesh

Step #9:  Keep Going ~

Keep Going! Use Light and Shadow to create as realistic an object as possible.

Step #10:  Paintbrush Tool ~

With get the Paintbrush Tool or hit the keyboard shortcut letters (B) …

… paint a rope around the neck.

Step #11: Create a New Layer ~

Open Layers or hit the keyboard shortcut (F7) …

… make a New Layer and lock the other layers …

… and drag that layer to the bottom.

Step #12: Make an Oval ~

Get the Ellipse Tool or hit the keyboard shortcut letter (L) …

… and drag an oval around the bottom .

Step #13: Gradient ~

Now click the Gradient icon or hit the keyboard shortcut: Cmd(⌘)+F9 and select Radial as the Type.

… hit Reverse Gradient if necessary.

Step #14: Aspect Ratio ~

Lower the Aspect Ratio of the gradient.

Look! A shadow!

Step #15:  Drop Shadow Effect ~

Select everything by hitting the keyboard shortcut: Cmd(⌘)+A and go to: Effect > Stylize > Drop Shadow

Last Step: Save and Attach ~

Save your work as -]

Attach it!

  •   ALWAYS save your projects using the following naming convention:

  •   DO NOT name your project any other way - Improperly named projects will not receive credit and you will be sad.

  •   NEVER leave your work on the desktop or depend on a flash drive - instead, save your work in a folder you can find later - preferably on a virtual drive where it can be backed up.

Other Resources: