BUILDING ARTBOARD: I recommend establishing an Artboard that you can use for all of your artwork. The initial Artboard Size can be changed at any point without ruining your own artwork. LEARNING TARGET: Create a "Building Template" that includes Artboards, Resources, and Template Layers.

DOWNLOAD RESOURCES: In the Beginner Tutorials and Playlists, I will be using Resource Images, Color Swatches, and Brush Libraries to create my artwork. LEARNING TARGET: Download Resource Images, Color Swatches, and Brush Libraries for your own Artwork and Designs. 

DRAWING TEMPLATE: Use the Resource Type you intend to use for your artwork (Drawing, Sketch, or Traced Stock Photo). Give yourself a "Traceable Path" by using a Clean Line Drawing or Traced Photo. LEARNING TARGET: Create a "Drawing Template" that includes Resources and Layer Adjustments. 

STOCK PHOTOS: Photo References are FREE on the Internet. In this example, I am creating my Popsicle Character. For your artwork, Type your own Subject Matter into the search bar to find a Photo, Drawing, or Color Reference. You can download Free Stock Photos for your own Designs, Drawings, and Sketches. UNSPLASH / PEXELS / PIXABAY

DRAWING REFERENCES: When you are looking for Drawing or Design References, look for clean photos to Trace or Draw. If you are Tracing, remember you will be adding Transparency to your Template Layer. It will be hard to see the details if the image is too complicated. LEARNING TARGET (1): Start from a Drawing, Sketch, or Traced Stock Photo. 

RESOURCE IMAGES: If you are a Beginner, the easiest starting point is a Clean Line Drawing or Traced Stock Photo. In the Tutorials, you will see me aligning the Building Tools to the Design Elements (Shapes and Lines) within my own Sketch or Drawing. LEARNING TARGET (1): Create a "Traceable Path" to align with the Building Tools in Adobe Illustrator.

TEMPLATE LAYER: File-Place in your Resource Image (Traced Stock Photo, Drawing, or Sketch). Scale to Fit Artboard Size. In your Layers Panel, select the Menu in the Upper-Right Hand Corner. Drop down to Template. This will create a 50% Opacity and Lockout the Layer. Create a New Layer above to start working in Adobe Illustrator. LEARNING TARGET (1): Create a Template Layer. Add a new Layer above for "Building." LEARNING TARGET (2): Break down your Drawing, Sketch, or Traced Stock Photo into Design Elements (Shapes + Lines).

PRIMARY BUILDING: Many of you will be deciding between Shapes, Pencil, and Pen Tools as your Primary Building Tool. Look at your Resource Image, Drawing, or Sketch for obvious Shapes or Lines to align with the Building Tools. LEARNING TARGET (1): Apply the Building Tool and Options in Adobe Illustrator.

SAVING + OPENING: If you saved Color Swatches from Adobe Color as an .ASE File. Open Swatch Libraries from the “Other Library” Option. If you added to your Library (CC). Open from the Library Panel. Most Color Themes will use Hues as the Base Color. In the Beginner Tutorials, will be using Live Paint to create our Basic Fills or Flat Color Layer. LEARNING TARGET (1): Save or Download Color Swatches for your own artwork and designs. LEARNING TARGET (2): Open through the Swatches Panel or Library. 

ADVANCED COLORING: In our Advanced Coloring Tutorials, we will be using Live Paint to create our Basic Fills or Flat Color Layer before moving on to Values and Gradients. LEARNING TARGET (1): Apply Color, Values, and Gradients using Advanced Coloring Techniques.