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I am trying to create some blobs that flow into each other and take up the entire artboard (kind of like this image but not as much lines as shapes similar to my attempt below).

In Inkscape I used the star tool along with the randomization parameter to create shapes seen below. This is somewhat adequate, but I'd like to have the shapes flow into/around each other more than the layered look you see here.

I can get access to Illustrator if I need to.

layered random shapes

Is there a way to better make them flow into each other?

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    I'm really unclear about what you are envisioning. Any "layered" appearance is a direct result of having the same color on multiples sides of a shape. Especially if it's broken - for example the center orange shape with green on both sides of it - that creates the "layered' appearance. Add the fact that the medium blue is also broken by the orange, and it further cements the "layered" perception. – Scott Jan 3 at 2:57
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    That's a good point, I hadn't thought of that. Any thoughts on how to make it appear less so that way? – Zach Saucier Jan 3 at 3:00
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    Well no single color should be completely broken, creating multiple pieces of the same color, by another color. How you do that in Inkscape is a mystery to me :) In Illustrator I'd create a simple grid of colored rectangles, then use a mesh distort to move the grid around and distort the rectangles to different shapes. This would keep colors from ever overlapping. – Scott Jan 3 at 3:02
  • @Scott /i assume that you voted to close as unclear. If you read in chat from here you may get a better idea. Specifically this message – WELZ Jan 3 at 3:04
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    It was indeed my vote.. Questions shouldn't depend upon chat in my view :). I'd provide my illustrator method.. but alas.. this is tagged for Inkscape :) – Scott Jan 3 at 3:05
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With Illustrator, I'd basically use the same technique I posed in this question.

Create base artwork.
Object > Envelope Distort > make with Mesh
Adjust the mesh.

enter image description here

Once you have the mesh, you can move the mesh points, add new ones, etc to create different "blobs".

enter image description here

I started with rectangles but really you can start with any configuration of objects which touch each other - heck, even if they overlap a little it won't matter for the mesh. Using the mesh will keep shapes from overlapping and leading to the "layered' perception. Rectangles, or straight edges which butt against each other help to ensure that no "gaps" are created when moving things around in the mesh though.

It's also possible to use more automated adjusting such as rotating a couple mesh points, scaling mesh points, etc. rather than manually moving everything.

You can also readjust the colors by using Object > Envelope Edit Contents and merely changing a fill color

enter image description here

Or add more objects.. Drew 2 circles, copied, Edit Mesh contents, select a rectangle, paste in front, then move to front so they are on top of all the rectangles.

enter image description here

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    Thanks for the help! This is the closest to what I was looking to do. Though I didn't realize that I needed to line up the rectangles with the mesh grid to prevent white space from being created. But I worked around that issue by adjusting some anchor points to remove the white, rasterizing it, then vector-fying it to get the shapes as their own object. – Zach Saucier Jan 3 at 16:29
  • Aligning the mesh with the rectangle helps, but you can always edit the mesh contents and adjust rectangle sizing (causing hem to overlap inside the mesh) to fix some holes which may occur. It's a bit unpredictable when you resize inner contents, but it's not crazy ridiculously unpredictable. – Scott Jan 3 at 19:13
  • Right, I did that before rasterizing – Zach Saucier Jan 3 at 23:41
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    Not a big deal, but could have merely expanded to get to individual shapes. No need for the rasterizing. – Scott Jan 3 at 23:53
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Here's a technique that works for Inkscape.

  1. Switch on Snap Nodes, in the Snap Controls bar.

  2. Use the Bézier or Pencil tool to draw four sided random shapes, however ensure that each side of the shape is a separate open path, and they must all join up at end nodes. Snapping to Nodes will help you get it exact.

  3. Select All and then Path > Combine.

  4. Draw a filled rectangle with no stroke, around all the shapes, and move it to the back of the stack.

  5. Select All

  6. Then Path > Division

  7. Select and delete the square

  8. Fill each shape as desired

enter image description here

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    Thanks a lot for the Inkscape tutorial! Also a good approach – Zach Saucier Jan 3 at 16:31
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This is a technique for Adobe Illustrator.

  1. Draw some lines with the Pencil Tool (or Pen tool).

  2. Select all, and make shapes with the Shape Builder tool

  3. Fill the shapes as desired, remove the strokes

enter image description here

  • This is a very good approach but I suck with drawing using the pen tool so I used Scott's approach – Zach Saucier Jan 3 at 16:30
  • @ZachSaucier - you can also use the Pencil tool. It's simpler. – Billy Kerr Jan 3 at 18:29
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With a rectangle and some random straight path, select them and apply Pathfinder > Divide

divide

Recolor the artwork, I used the script of this answer. Add a same color thick stroke to each shape. You can use the Magic Wand Selection Tool and the Eyedropper Tool.

color

Select all and make some clics using the Bloat Tool and Warp Tool

enter image description here

Use the Direct Selection Tool, select the half of the vector points and click the Convert to Smooth icon. Do the same with the other half.

Convert to Smooth

Menu Object > Path > Simplify

Simplify

Fix the holes moving or scaling shapes and delete the surplus ones

enter image description here

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