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Opacity Mask With Multiple Images (Illustrator CS5)


Question

I am trying to do an opacity mask and it is driving me crazy.

Bascially I have a layer of ice. It's four different pictures of ice overlapping each other so it looks like a whole bunch of ice. I want to have it fade in from both sides (left and right) until it is completely opaque in the middle.

I've select all of the pictures and chosen 'Make Opacity Mask' from the Transparency Panel and it disappears but then I don't know how to manipulate the opacity.

In the Transparency panel it doesn't show a picture of what I'm working with so I can't simply click next to it to create the opacity mask like I've seen in tutorials.

I've also tried to overlay a rectangle over the objects, choose them all then try 'Make Opacity Mask' but that didn't work either. Any ideas? Thanks.

2012/03/07
1
0
3/7/2012 10:30:00 PM

Accepted Answer

Do this....

Draw a new shape over your ice. Fill it with a black to white gradient.

Now select the ice and your new shape. NOW choose Make Opacity Mask from the Transparency panel.

The top shape is what is used for an opacity mask. Simply alter the top shape to alter the opacity.

My guess is you are simply drawing a solid color rectangle over the object so everything is masked. Opacity masks really only work when the masking object is not a flat color.

Additional

I'm not certain what you mean by "disappears".

Once you apply an opacity mask, you must click the mask thumbnail on the Transparency Panel to edit the mask shape. Then click the artwork thumbnail (on the Transparency panel) to go back to the artwork.

Even More

This VIDEO at Vimeo shows the basic steps in creating an opacity mask.

I believe what you may be doing is not actually clicking the mask after you create it. You must click it to alter it.

2012/03/08
2
3/8/2012 11:27:00 PM