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Library: Creative Design


Want stunning 3D package presentation? We'll show you how to make it easy

Added on Monday 15th of February 2010 04:05 am EST


Package art, whether it′s a CD cover or a cereal box, begins its design life as one-dimensional fl at art. However, clients often want to see what the fi nished package will look like, complete with the art and text. Rather than use a complicated modeling program to produce a three-dimensional box, we can use Illustrator′s mapping and 3D tools to create and present packaging comps to clients. Illustrator′s 3D features let you create packages you can then rotate to see from diff erent views, as shown in FIGURE A.

Eliminate the extra work use our ready made art
To begin this project, you fi rst need to create the artwork for each side of the package. We′ll make a package with six panels which include: front, back, top, bottom, right side, and left side. When creating the panels, it′s best to make them at actual size. That way, you can use the same fi le for your package presentation as well as for the fi nal product printing. The process of laying out and designing the panels takes a while, so we′ve provided the fi le SARDINES.ZIP, which you can download from the URL given at the beginning of this article if you want to follow along with us. Launch Illustrator and open the fi le SARDINES.AI, as shown in FIGURE B. Let′s take a closer look at the document′s content.

Watch out! Check your layers before you begin
As you can see in the Layers palette (Window > Layers) our project is composed of three layers: Graphics, Border Outline, and Guides, as shown in FIGURE C. The Graphics layer contains all of the artwork that we′ll use to create our 3D package by converting it to symbols. The Border Outline layer is the outline of the Front panel′s shape that we′ll use to generate the 3D package shape from. The Guides layer was created to help you identify each panel. The guides also helped us to make the panel sizes correctly and consistently before we dr...