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I'm new to graphic design and self learning adobe illustrator.

I have been attempting to create almost like contour lines around an image but cannot seem to figure it out.

Any tips on how to go bout achieving this would be greatly appreciated. Attached an image of what I would like to do.

enter image description here

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To create a single offset contour; select the path and go to "Object → Path → Offset Path..."

enter image description here

You could repeat that process for as many contours as you need, or you could create a single offset for the largest and use a blend to create the intermediary contours.

So create a single offset, then select the resulting paths (including the original) and go to "Object → Blend → Make" to create a blend, then go to "Object → Blend → Blend Options..." to set an appropriate number of steps:

enter image description here

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