We’ve had a number of people inquire about the gradient mesh tool in Illustrator. Many people find the tool difficult to use at first glance, but trust me – once you get the hang of it, it can be one of the most versatile ways of creating realistic looking forms. Here are a few tutorials that explain how to use this tool.
Magical Butterfly presents a tutorial on how to create drapery folds using Illustrator.
Check out this amazing potrait created with gradient mesh from Creative Bush.
Kevin Hulsey gives an in-depth explanation of the facets of Gradient Mesh and how to apply them effectively in this basic tutorial.
In this video tutorial, Bert Montroy from PixelPerfect shows you 2 different methods of applying the gradient mesh to your illustrations.
Sarah Froelich from Designorati goes bananas in this D-I-Y tutorial, and so will you!
Veerle Pieters offers a PDF download tutorial on creating realistic illustrations with the gradient mesh tool. Don’t be fooled by the date – just because its from 2004 doesn’t mean its out of date! Veerle has been doing this successfully for a long time!
Leo Blanchette, a freelance illustrator and a regular contributor to istockphoto, has posted this in-depth tutorial on creating realistic looking crayons from a photo reference.
Create a cloth bag illustration in a few easy steps!
Cheryl Graham offers this tutorial at AdobePress on scalable vector based Gradient Mesh clouds.
This link isn’t a tutorial; it’s more inspiration – check out the amazing work from some of the pros in the industry using advanced gradient mesh!
I hope this answers some of the burning questions you may have on how to apply gradient mesh effectively!