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Discussion Starter #1
Greetings folks, I am hoping someone out there can put me out of my misery. The issue is as follows:

Designing with Illustrator CS2, I wish to cut a graphic using my Roland GX-24 that is essentially the perimeter of a complex shape containing a checkerboard within. What do I mean.

For example, I wish to take the shape of a tribal flame and fill the inside of it with a checkerboard. I just cannot figure out how to do it via Illustrator without having the checkerboard appear outside the confines of the flame's perimeter. Although I can make what I am looking for appear on the screen by using Illustrator's clipping mask command, it does not do the trick. If I do a clipping mask then cut, the entire checkerboard is cut rather than just the section within the perimeter of the flame's path.

Hopefully someone can provide me with the solution.

Thanks Fred
 

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Fred, what you can do is use the clipping path to contain the pattern but then use the "Divide" in the "Pathfinder" palette. That will leave only the art inside the shape.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Robert,

Thanks so much for your reply. I tried what you directed but still unable to get what I need. Perhaps I am going about it incorrectly. As such I will try to explain:

First I put down a checkerboard. On top, I create an oval. Then command Illustrator to create a clipping mask. Afterwards, I then went to pathfinder and used the divide command. Hopefully I have the procedure wrong because it still leaves the outside portion of the CB in tack.

Thanks again. Fred
 

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Robert,

Thanks so much for your reply. I tried what you directed but still unable to get what I need. Perhaps I am going about it incorrectly. As such I will try to explain:

First I put down a checkerboard. On top, I create an oval. Then command Illustrator to create a clipping mask. Afterwards, I then went to pathfinder and used the divide command. Hopefully I have the procedure wrong because it still leaves the outside portion of the CB in tack.

Thanks again. Fred
I'm Rhonda, but it's okay if you call me Robert ... I've been called worse. LOL :D

It sounds like you are doing it correctly, but why don't you let me take a quick look at the file? Maybe there is something else going on with it. I will private message you my email if you want to shoot it over.
 

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Fred,

Don't use a clipping path. Instead fill your path with a swatch pattern of a checkerboard. Create the swatch(make two squares and have the bottom right hand corner of one swaure touching the top left hand corner of the other square. turn on smart guides or your grid to help with being precise. select both squares and drag them into your swatch palette. now you have your pattern.) select your tribal design path and click on the pattern you just made in your swatch palette. now you have your checkerboard contained inside your path without the messy clipping path.
 

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Hello Fred,

One thing that has to be done for this to work. The shape i.e. the tribal flame path has to be on top as far as order in the layers for the "exclude overlapping shape area" in the "Pathfinder" option to work.

Make a copy of the tribal flame path in a new layer then lock. Use the "exclude overlapping shape area" in the "Pathfinder" option and expand. Then use the "Direct Selection Tool" (White Arrow) to delete whatever peaces you don't need outside the shape "tribal flame".

If the tribal flame stroke is the same color as the the checkers, unlock the copied tribal flame path then expand the stoke. Place the newly cut checker board shape on top of the expanded tribal flame and weld them together. Use the "Add to Shape Area" in the "Pathfinder" and expand. This will close all the vector lines and make one peace for plotting or whatever use.

Let me know if you need any help.

Best,
 

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Fred,

Don't use a clipping path. Instead fill your path with a swatch pattern of a checkerboard. Create the swatch(make two squares and have the bottom right hand corner of one swaure touching the top left hand corner of the other square. turn on smart guides or your grid to help with being precise. select both squares and drag them into your swatch palette. now you have your pattern.) select your tribal design path and click on the pattern you just made in your swatch palette. now you have your checkerboard contained inside your path without the messy clipping path.
While that would definitely be the easiest route, I don't think that his vinyl cutter will recognize it without expanding it – and that brings you right back to a clipping path. :(

I sent him a short PDF tutorial early this morning but haven't heard back from him on whether he was successful with it. If it works for him I will post it here. It's basically what I suggested to begin with – but you have to use the divide function from the palette and not the divide function from the Effect > Pathfinder menu. This is the quickest method I've found and it works for me every time, but I'm using CS3 ... maybe it's different in older versions. :confused:
 

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you can also have the pattern, then put your shape on top, have both selected and hit the "crop" button in the pathfinder palette
You are right! That also works and bypasses my first step which is creating a clipping mask! I noticed you also have to select the crop from the palette and not the drop-down menu though. Weird.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
I got it working - finally. The problem I was having was that I kept selecting crop, divide, etc. from the Effect's drop-down menu rather than the sidebar menu under Window. As such, it would not work,; why I have no idea. I was tearing my hair out and getting no sleep. Now that I have my sanity back (like I was sane before) and rested, I wish to thank everyone so much for taking time to help me. What an amazing group of folks Thank you, thank you, . . . This list-serve is a definite keeper. Thanks again. Fred
 
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