In an earlier post I showed how to find, edit, and import raster (i.e. PNG) patterns into Lectora and Photoshop. Want to use vector backgrounds in Lectora? Well you're in luck. I personally love working with vectors—they're infinitely scalable and the details are highly editable—great for a detail person like me. Vector patterns can imitate fabric or wallpaper, can be abstract or botanical, and range from retro to modern; whichever ones you choose to use, they'll definitely spark your creativity and contribute to gorgeous eLearning designs and GUIs.
Now, Adobe Illustrator comes with several patterns within the application. To find them, open up the Swatches palette, select the palette's drop down menu, select "Open Swatch Library" and then "Patterns" which shows the options you have here.
You can layer and edit these patterns using the transparency palette or using the Scale: Pattern option. Below you can see an example of a GUI I started using just layers of dots and color.
Vector Background Pattern Resources
Next, let me tell you about some great, free vector pattern resources. A great roundup can be found here. You can download your favorites, then open them up in your vector program and edit the shapes, colors, transparencies, you name it. There are tons of neat resources out there, too many to list—go nuts and check out some of the resources other designers have put out there.
I want to show you guys one way to use one of these for a GUI. For this example, I downloaded a neat cogs and gears pattern. I brought it into Illustrator and changed the colors to be much more neutral and quiet. I can then save out the pattern as a PNG. Then to make it tile as the background in Lectora, just go to the Design Ribbon, to the Title Background section, select the image drop down and import your PNG.
To learn about making your own patterns within Adobe Illustrator, check out this tutorial from Adobe.
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