enter image description here

Curious how the effect in this logo was made. I'm trying to achieve the effect of multiple gradients on a single object put can't seem to mimic what was done in this logo.

My assumption is that I need to use the Gradient Mesh tool but the 'W' shaped object starts to select the object in a funny way when I try to add mesh points


Chances are that particular image wasn't created via Illustrator. I know Xara is great at complex gradient objects, as are many, many 3D applications.

That's not to say this couldn't be done in Illustrator. It would probably just take a bit more work.

The trick to odd shaped objects with gradient meshes is the start with a standard shape for the mesh, then alter it, and use several mesh objects.

Too many users think that mesh artwork has to be a single thing. It doesn't. Use multiple meshes to get the appearance you want, and overlap them. This somewhat limited thinking is similar to thinking that every drawing has to be created from one shape. Most use multiple shapes when creating anything. Meshes are no different.

In addition, since the implementation of opacity in mesh points, things got much easier because with opacity you can seamlessly blend one mesh object over another by merely setting a few mesh points to transparent.

So.... you overlay meshes onto other objects to create the appearance, adding mesh points as needed. By starting with a rudimentary shape for the mesh, you don't have to deal with those wild, uncontrollable, mesh handles and points you get when adding a mesh to a complex shape.

enter image description here

... I gave up on this once the (wonderful) Adobe lack of accuracy reared it's head.... but here's a sample...

enter image description here

  • Really appreciate the length you went to explain this - thanks! That limited thinking was what had me. I haven't used the mesh tool a lot in the past so I was assuming that one shape was all I needed. Thanks to your gif at the end I can see the potential it has of blending colors together. Do you have experience using Xara? Is the experience that much easier/intuitive that it's worth learning the software for? Feb 26 '17 at 22:32
  • @IanCrvenkovic I've always been a Mac user. Xara is 'Doze-only. And in general, as a life-long Mac user, it's just too much of a headache to worry about. I tried once, but gave up. However, I have seen many things created via Xara (including outline modes) and it appears to have some advantages if you are heavily into mesh work or trying to create photo-realistic vector artwork. There's also the Mesh Tormentor plug in you may want to check out if you're looking into mesh work. It has some fairly handy features.
    – Scott
    Feb 26 '17 at 22:58

It may have been done by using one big shape on the bottom with a basic orange-to-red gradient and then other shapes above which may have gradients going from a color to transparent. They might have used some blending modes to get interesting color combinations. For example, if you place a shape which contains a black-to-white gradient over a shape of any color fill and use the Multiply blending mode, it will have a shading effect where the dark color shades the color underneath and the white just disappears. This is one of the most common uses, and may have been used on the logo above where there appear to be dark inner corners. For adding such gradients that are not meant to shade shapes below, you can use a simple normal blending mode and just have a gradient going from a color to transparent, or from a color to the color of the shape below.

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