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Illustrator Project: Copy cat Christmas card

I saw this Christmas card on Pinterest a while back ago and I fell in LOVE! I practically tried copying it as shown just so I could learn some neat tricks. I started out in indesign and realized really fast that this was going to be an illustrator project, and a large one at that. I had only ever attempted something this complex once before and that ended up being bust. This has been by far my most complex project to date. Below is a list of a few things I learned and where I got ideas from.
  • Images: The banners and the Dragon things are preinstalled symbols in Illustrator, the Snowflakes I found a free vector file online with tons of different ones to choose from (but only after attempting to make my own for an hour or so) The trees I made myself with three triangles and a rectangle, I just used path finder to merge the four into one shape. 
  • Organization: I started from the bottom and worked my way up. First was the snowflakes, after finding my image, I used the align panel to make sure everything was straight. Next I made the hexagons just with the polygon tool. The biggest thing I did as far as organization was create layers on my Illustrator document. I was able to create the background, then lock it in place so I wouldn't accidentally move something later on. 
  • Changing the color of the symbols was kind of a challenge. I'm too stubborn to actually look something up, so I kept playing around with the selection tool to try and get these things the color I actually wanted. I ended up just clicking individual parts around ten times then changing the color like I would any other text. On the bottom white ribbon I couldn't figure out how to change the color of the gray background, so I literally just drew a triangle and covered up the parts I couldn't fix. 
Let me know what you think and if you'd like to try something similar! Also, please remember I was not the original creator of this design, I copied it to teach myself Adobe Illustrator. Visit Rayz Ong's page to see the original.

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