This tutorial will teach you how to design a shine effect on any surface using Adobe Illustrator. In this example, I will apply my technique to a flat screen TV.
To get the most out of this tutorial, I recommend that you understand the basics of the following tools:
Creating a lifelike and striking shine effect can be difficult. In this tutorial, I will create a flat panel TV from scratch as a sample object and then apply my shine effects to it.
Before you start:
» create 4 rectangles: 335 x 185, 295 x 165, 90 x 9, 185 x 9.
» organize them as shown below.
1. Add Fill Color.
» apply a fill color of #000000 to 3 of the rectangles, don't worry about the overlapping rectangle.
2. Cut out the Screen.
» Select the top 2 rectangles (335 x 185, 295 x 165).
» use the pathfinder window to 'minus front'.
3. Create Shine Objects.
» make a copy of the 3 objects we are left with in step 2. We will work with this copy to begin making the shine.
» create an ellipse: 775 x 225.
» place the ellipse over the cut out rectangle.
» select both the cut out rectangle and the ellipse.
» use the pathfinder window to 'divide'. This will create many objects based on the two overlapping objects.
» select all of these new objects, right click and click ungroup.
» delete all of the excess objects until you have the below objects remaining.
Note: The offsetting of the ellipse to the right implies that there is a light source shining down from the top left corner. We could move this around to imply different lighting locations.
4. Apply Shine Gradients.
Apply a gradient to all of the objects.
For the top half of the cut out rectangle, use a linear gradient with an offset of 90 degrees.
» set the left slider to fill color #FFFFFF and opacity 0%.
» set the right slider to fill color #FFFFFF and opacity 100%.
» move the slider in the centre of the gradient colors to 75%.
For the bottom 3 objects, use a radial gradient.
» set the left slider to fill color #FFFFFF and opacity 100%.
» set the right slider to fill color #FFFFFF and opacity 0%.
» move the slider in the centre of the gradient colors to 25%.
Select these gradients one at a time and click the gradient button (hotkey g) from the tools menu. While any one of the shine objects is selected, change the shape of the radial gradient until it is an elongated oval. Then, move the centre of the gradient to the bottom right of the shine object.
Finally, select all of the shine objects.
» set the transparency of all the shine objects to an opacity of 50%.
This will give you a result like below.
5. Combine Shine/Background.
» combine the shine objects with the original 3 objects you made a copy at the beginning of step 3.
6. Create Border.
» Create another copy of the original 3 objects.
» apply a border color of #000000 to all of the objects.
» set the transparency of all the objects to an opacity of 50% and darken.
7. Combine Border/Shine/Background.
» combine the border objects overtop the already combined shine and background objects.
8. Create Corner Shine
The sharp, corner shine consists of 3 objects: 1 L shaped, and 2 flat shaped.
Create the L shaped object:
» create 2 rectangles: 333 x 184, 332 x 183.
» align the 2 rectangles horizontally to the right and vertically to the bottom.
» use the pathfinder window to 'minus front'.
» this will leave you with an L shaped object.
» apply a linear gradient to the object. Use the same linear gradient as the one used on the top shine object in step 4.
Create the flat shaped objects:
» create 2 rectangles: 333 x 1, 183 x 1.
» apply a radial gradient to the object. Use the same radial gradient as the one used on the bottom 3 shine objects in step 4.
9. Combine Corner Shine
» combine the corner shine objects overtop the already combined border, shine and background objects.
» to correctly place the L shaped corner shine, align the object to the top left corner of the cut out rectangle and move it down and right 1 unit.
» to correctly place the 333 x 1 corner shine object, align the object to the bottom left corner of the cut out rectangle and move it up and to the right 1 unit.
» to correctly place the 183 x 1 corner shine object, align the object to the bottom left corner of the bottom most object and move it up and to the right 1 unit.
10. Add Screen Image.
» select any image you like or create a new rectangle.
» align the screen object to the centre of the cut out rectangle.
» arrange the screen object to the back of all the objects (ctrl+shift+[).
Now you have completed your flat screen TV. I hope that you will be able to build on these shine techniques by applying them to your own applications in the future. Good luck!