Bobby Henderson

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  1. 795 votes
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    Dear Users,

    Hope you are well and safe during these uncertain times. We at Adobe wish you well.

    I am glad to announce that we have completed this feature in Beta and are actively seeking your feedback to help us understand if this feature meets your workflow needs.

    All the users who subscribed to our pre release program would have received an email from me to welcome you to our new Beta program. The new Beta program gives you access to the Large Canvas feature and also seeks your feedback through the survey link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/7ZDMD5L

    This survey link can also be accessed within the app.

    For everybody else, I would ask you to join our pre release program (https://www.adobeprerelease.com/beta/85A6F544-2705-49BD-8314-DD549C6A1713#) and we will give you access to the new beta program. We hope each one of you is able to try the new build and give us feedback.

    Look…

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    Bobby Henderson commented  · 

    CorelDRAW was mentioned earlier as having no size limits to its art board. That is incorrect. CorelDRAW has a max art board size of 1800" X 1800". But really it's only practical to go up to about 1000" before the app hits zoom limits that bring up warning pop ups. I don't think any drawing program has an unlimited art board size.

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    Bobby Henderson commented  · 

    Working in a virtual scale can be a liability. In sign design and manufacturing you will always need to export the artwork to other applications and even other computers used by co-workers or even at a different company sub-contracting out certain specialized fabrication tasks. This situation can force the designer to plaster warning notes across the artwork inside the art file and written notes elsewhere to prevent the artwork from being fabricated as is without enlarging it to the correct, full size scale.

    CorelDRAW will allow users to design things in scale by altering the ruler setup. In the Options dialog one can select "Edit Scale," which by default is set to 1:1, 1.0-inch Page Distance = 1.0 World Distance. The idea is to let someone design something seemingly big yet still fit it on a normal letter sized or legal sized sheet of paper for printing client sketches. I avoid this method because I've seen all sorts of odd, math errors when this scale artwork is enlarged to the intended real full size. The numbers often don't add up. I was dealing with this issue just recently, having to fix the artwork from another sign company. In my work I create production sign artwork at full size and then create separate client sketches with the artwork reduced down to defined scales, such as 1" = 1' or 3/8" = 1'.

    Jay mentioned CorelDRAW having an unlimited art board size. That's not true. CorelDRAW has a 1800" X 1800" limit. And even before then, around the 1000" X 1000" the user will get pestered with a box saying "this zoom has exceeded the boundaries of the drawing space; your window will be adjusted accordingly."

    Dedicated sign making applications, such as SignLab or FlexiSign Pro, have larger design spaces. From my own experience, dating back to the early 1990's using CASmate, some of these applications get a bit unstable when the drawing surface grows past 200 feet in any direction. I've witnessed strange errors (spectacularly bad ones in CASmate) when going that big and doing anything too complicated. I'd do something like weld a bunch of objects and see points disappear or other strange things. At smaller scales the same welding operation would work just fine.

    Obviously there is some push and pull going on between art board size and precision of object editing.

  2. 56 votes
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    13 comments  ·  Illustrator Feature Requests » Type  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
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    Bobby Henderson commented  · 

    CorelDRAW does not have the ability to convert missing fonts in a CDR document to editable outlines. Recent versions of CorelDRAW have allowed users to embed fonts in CDR documents. But that is an option. And the font embedding feature may not always work. I think the feature is similar to how font data can be embedded in Adobe PDFs.

  3. 299 votes
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    81 comments  ·  Illustrator Feature Requests » Type  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    Bobby Henderson supported this idea  · 
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    Bobby Henderson commented  · 

    The thing I really want is to be able to vertically align a text object to a box or frame according to the text object's capital letter height. It's very difficult to do that accurately in Adobe Illustrator without converting the text to outlines and then manually centering the elements. This is very basic stuff for things like sign design. For something like a name plate label the text object has to be aligned on the background piece according to the capital letter height.

  4. 20 votes
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    3 comments  ·  Illustrator Bugs » Effects  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    Bobby Henderson shared this idea  · 
  5. 6 votes
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    1 comment  ·  Illustrator Feature Requests » Type  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
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    Bobby Henderson commented  · 

    Corel acquired a lot of the KPT properties, but did nothing with Vector Effects since it was an Illustrator plug-in and thus incompatible with CorelDRAW. Then Corel let a lot of the KPT stuff it was selling either languish or merge certain features into their PhotoPaint application.

    I would like to see Adobe improve its Text on Path tool. Generally, I avoid setting type on curving paths (like circles) because I just can't stand how wacky the end results look. The letters' vertical stems, base lines and cap lines have no harmony with the curving path to which they're joined. To get the lettering looking reasonably correct you either have to carefully edit each letter's path by hand or even create the lettering from scratch as a drawing to scan and vectorize in the computer.

    My guess as to why text on path and text warping features haven't been improved much since the 1990's is that so much of that kind of process is associated with cheesy design. I know I get triggered just from seeing people artificially stretching and squeezing fonts rather than using typefaces that are drawn as extended or condensed/compressed typefaces.

  6. 14 votes
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    1 comment  ·  Illustrator Feature Requests » User Interface  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    Bobby Henderson shared this idea  · 
  7. 18 votes
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    13 comments  ·  Illustrator Feature Requests » Type  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
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    Bobby Henderson commented  · 

    For sign design work and creating graphics for LED-based signs it's crucial to be able to size, position and align type objects according to capital letter height. Adobe Illustrator currently has no features to support this kind of work, which forces me to hop back and forth to other programs (like CorelDRAW and Flexi) that directly support those features or have work-arounds that won't drive designers crazy.

    Illustrator's type functions are still confined to the paradigm of setting type for the printed page. If I want lettering whose capitals are exactly 20 pixels tall for display on a LED jumbotron Adobe Illustrator will not deliver that. It sizes that blue box around the lettering to 20 pixels, not the actual capitals -which makes the lettering even more fuzzy. I'm trying to at least have the cap line and base line hit that pixel grid exactly. The same problem exists in physical lettering used on signs, be it 24 inch tall channel letters on a building sign for 1.5" tall letters on a door graphic. You can't size those objects exactly without a bunch of time-consuming work arounds. And then for something very basic, aligning a text object over the center or a box or some other container, Adobe Illustrator won't deliver the correct result, aligning the text according to the capital letter. Instead, if you align a text object over another container the text object is placed too high and you have to manually correct the error. It's very frustrating.

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    Bobby Henderson commented  · 

    For years I've been making feature requests to the Illustrator team to provide the option to size, position and align type in reference to the capital letter height of a type object. Some of my more recent requests (with illustrated examples) seem to have been flushed with the changes made to this user request forum. This would be very useful for sign design purposes and any other project where absolute cap letter height specification is needed. For instance, I create a lot of graphics for LED-based variable message center signs. Type tends to look a lot better when the baseline and cap height line of letters corresponds to the pixel grid of the LED display. For instance if I make cap letters exactly 20 pixels tall they're going to look sharper while letters 19.47 pixels tall are going to look fuzzy in all directions.

    All fonts have built-in numerical values for dimensions, such as overall UPM size, ascender, descender, cap height and lowercase x-height. For example Gotham Book has an overall UPM size of 1000, ascender is 800, descender is -200, cap height is 700 and x-height is 517.

    What I find strange is the blue box Illustrator puts around all type objects doesn't correspond at all to the UPM size of a letter. If I type a capital "E" in Gotham Book, size that blue box to 1 inch tall, the "E" should come out to .7" when converted to outlines, right? No, it comes out to .6398" tall.

    I'm not asking Adobe to replace traditional type layout standards with this approach. People who are used to setting type on the printed page, thinking in terms of baseline grids and distance from one baseline to the next get pretty defensive whenever this suggestion is made. "That's not how type works," is the common retort. When you're doing sign design or setting type in other kinds of mediums the baseline grid approach just doesn't work. You have to go by what you can actually see: physical letter sizes and distance between those letters.

    In regards to various scripts that reference M-height or x-height and scale letters accordingly, that approach only works with typefaces whose squared off letters align perfectly with the baseline and cap height line. Clean, sans serif typefaces like Helvetica and Gotham work alright with that system. The scripts don't work well with many decorative typefaces and script typefaces. That's where using the font file's internal dimensions becomes critical for accurate sizing, position and alignment. Like if I want to set Sloop Script with 2" tall letters and vertically center it in a 3" tall box I'm not going to be able to do that even with the various letter sizing scripts out there.

  8. 16 votes
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    1 comment  ·  Illustrator Feature Requests » Type  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    Bobby Henderson supported this idea  · 
  9. 14 votes
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    6 comments  ·  Illustrator Feature Requests » Drawing Tools  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
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    Bobby Henderson commented  · 

    I don't like the extra clicks Illustrator requires of users to align objects. Certain rival applications automatically hold the first object or last object clicked or shift-clicked in place and the other objects align to it. I really dislike Illustrator's approach to aligning anchor points. These very simple things make Illustrator a chore to use for technical drawing purposes.

  10. 43 votes
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    Under Review  ·  7 comments  ·  Illustrator Feature Requests » User Interface  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
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    Bobby Henderson commented  · 

    I just wish Illustrator could perform alignment operations like several other graphics programs I either currently use or have used in the past. When shift-clicking two or more objects to align either the first object clicked or the last object shift-clicked stays put an all other objects align to it. I can't stand all the extra clicks Illustrator requires of its users. And anchor point alignment is a pretty big pain in the backside. This really hurts Illustrator for technical drawing purposes. As for alignment preferences, that's something easily incorporated into a palette or toolbar. For example, CorelDRAW provides 5 object alignment preference buttons in its align and distribute palette to align objects to active objects, page edge, page center, grid or a numerically specified point. The same palette has 4 different text alignment preference buttons and a couple distribute preference buttons. This is on top of the six alignment buttons and eight distribution command buttons. You don't have to hunt through a bunch of drop down menus or preference boxes to get to any of that stuff.

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