3D Fruit Bowl in Adobe Illustrator CS5

In my earlier tutorial ‘3D apple in Adobe Illustrator CS5 in 3 easy steps’, you learnt how to create a 3D apple in 3 simple steps. In this tutorial, we will place the apples in a 3D Fruit Bowl. See below:

3D Fruit Bowl

Lets get started.

Follow these steps:

1. Choose the ‘Blob Brush’ tool from the Toolbox.

Blob Brush Tool

2. Draw a shape like letter ‘J’,with color of your choice.

J shape using Blob Brush

3. Now go to Effect > 3D > Revolve… and with the default options selected, switch on the Preview (by checking the Preview box). If you are happy with the shape of the bowl, click OK.

This is what I got from the above shape.


The shape is still editable, using the handles you can modify the shape of the bowl.

4. Our next step is to create apples. Read 3D apple in Adobe Illustrator CS5 in 3 easy steps to learn how to create apples. We will create 3 in this example and color each one with a different color, but do not color your apples in blue or black =)

3D Apples

Our apples are ready, but before we proceed with placing them into the fruit bowl, I would like to show you how you can change the angle of these apples to make them look more realistic when they are placed in the fruit bowl. We will create one more apple, by selecting one that was created earlier, holding down the ALT key and dragging the shape apart. Consider this apple;

An apple

At this point we are not drawing a stem to it, we will do that once we rotate it. Now with the apple selected, open out the  Appearance palette. Then click on the ‘3D Revolve’ layer to open the ‘3D Revolve Options’ dialog box. At first, you may see that your shape is flattened back to an ellipse, but switch on the Preview, and you should be able to see your apple.

NOTE: Any changes to be made to effects that are already applied should be done through the ‘Appearance’ palette. If you try using the Effects menu again, Illustrator will ask you if you want to replace your older effect with a new one.

Now drag the cube manually to adjust the angle on enter values for X,Y and Z axis as shown below:

Revolve Options dialog box

Click OK to close the dialog box. Then once you draw the stem, it would look like this:

Tilted Apple

5. Group each apple and its stem so that it is easy to move them together. Select the apple and its stem, right click and choose ‘Group’.

6. Arrange the apples the way you would want to place them into the bowl. At this stage we will add a drop shadow to them, which will give them a depth when they are placed into the bowl. By selecting the apples, go to Effect > Stylize > Drop Shadow… Make any necessary changes in the settings and click OK to exit. (Always preview before you finalize them)

Bunch of apples

7. Now we are ready to place our fruits into the bowl. Drag them onto the bowl and arrange them again if you feel its necessary.

Fruits on bowl

8. We need to create a clipping mask to clip the portion of fruits that are outside the rim of the bowl. To do that, draw an ellipse, of the exact shape and size of the rim of the bowl. See below:

Clipping fruits

Make sure you cover the rim of the bowl, where the fruits should be clipped. Also make sure your ellipse covers the top portion of the fruits since we do not want the upper portion of the fruits to be clipped.

TIP: Color it with a different (contrast color) to make it easy to draw the exact shape. Alter the shape with the help of the handles.

9. Now select the ellipse and all the three apples below it. Then go to Object > Clipping Mask > Make or Ctrl + 7.

3D Fruit Bowl

Filed Under: Adobe IllustratorFeatured


About the Author: Minal is a freelance web and graphics designer. She specializes in designing Logos, Stationery, Graphics and Icons as well as website templates using graphical tools like Photoshop, Illustrator and Expression Web. Twitter @saffronstroke

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