Illustrator Mapping

Illustrator Tutorial with Ricardo.

Friday lunch time was dedicated to learning some essential new skills using Illustrator. Ricardo took us through a 60 minute tutorial teaching us tools and the step by step process of mapping our local area.

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Step by step process

  • Open Document – A4 – Colour Mode | RGB – Landscape – OK
  • Open Artboards
  • Double click artboard to resize to original
  • Create 5 New Layers
  • Layer 1 – Map
  • Layer 2 – Data
  • Layer 3 – Text 
  • Layer 4  – Key
  • Layer 5 – Colour
  • Using the map layer, place the image on this layer, resize to a reasonable size
  • Moving to data layer, add route to map using the line tool

Moving to key layer, create a key with shape symbols (we used circles) each circle at a different size for example smallest circle – 5 people, small circle – 10 people, medium circle – 15 people, big circle – 20 people. Using the colour layer, create a new colour palette, using one already made titled Nature we colour coded our key and map data. This lesson has helped me to learn how to map data in a digital form using Illustrator.


The World of Riso

Today Sara introduced us to The World of Riso Printing. She explained to us how it’s important to use different processes when being a professional practitioner. I arrived a little late due to train delays however I managed to catch up with the lesson pretty quickly. 

Sara first showed us some beautiful examples of Riso Print Documents. The first few were made by Nous Vous a London based studio. The two tone colours used within these books work in the most amazing ways adding a painted look to each image. 

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We were then taken on a step by step process of how to use the riso printer. 

All images and documents used within riso printing must be black to get the best quality prints. We can also use collage or single shaped images by placing them on the scanner bed. There are also ways of printing digital works using a USB. Riso printing is a different interesting way of printing design work, detailed and delicate textured prints.

Step by Step Process

Changing the colour – press button to open ink draw, lift ink out used green handles only and add new colour (options are blue, green, red and black)

Photocopy face down – enter 1 and press M to Master your image

Remember which way round you printed your first master when printing on top of mastered image or making a book.

Printing on top of a mastered print, press M to turn master off and press print.

<     > speed of print 

O Intensity of print and quality of colour

The biggest print being A3 and the smallest being A5.

Here are some examples Sara did with us this morning, the first image being the original black image we used to master, the second being the first master print with did with second layer and the third being the best print. 


Booklets and books must be divided by 4, InDesign can help with this but it is also very important to learn the full process of riso printing.

Creating a booklet can be complicated if you don’t number the pages correctly and work out what number pages are aligned next to each other. For example if you were to create a 14-16 page book you would need two sheets, two masters and two printouts. All together this equals 32 print outs – budget your money before hand – £1 a print/master. It’s also important to think about points, you never want the points to be too small.


Sara also introduced us to G.F. SMITH’s paper sample book, the main swatch which includes every type of paper they sell. A successful paper company based in London.

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“The feel of different paper is important” – Sara

Golden Hour


Refresher lesson for Letter Press with Danny. Last year we were taught how to use letter press this lesson was a refresher lesson to make sure we remembered and understood the process. Danny took us step by step through the screen print method and once done we created our own designs for our Journeys project.

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I chose to base my letter press typography pieces on the previous two lessons where we grouped our journey photographs into categories. One of my category names was The Golden Hour, meaning; the early hours of the morning when the sun rises. I wanted to create an interesting effect blending the colours orange and yellow together.


Here are a few of my outcomes. I want to add to my letter press pieces adding illustration which I am looking to work on over the next two weeks.