Complex paths won't convert to shape = Pathfinder Exclude tool not preserving 'cutouts' properly :'(

New Here ,
Nov 20, 2019 Nov 20, 2019

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Hi, all!

 

I have been ripping my hair out about this for a week now, contacting Adobe support and searching online for hours to no avail, so any help would be MUCH appreciated! 

 

I am simply trying to subtract the artwork in the foreground (white) from the background (black). So essential if they were one layer, everything in white would be transparent.

 

I drew the background myself in Illustrator, but used brushes to create the white artwork, also in Illustrator:

WHAT ITS SUPPOSED TO LOOK LIKE.png

 

All I want to do is cut the white details out of the black silhouette. However, when I use the Exclude or Minus Front via Pathfinder, it loses a lot of the detail like so:

 

CART ON BOTTOM.png

I've tried expanding the white detail but that does nothing. I've tried converting it to a shape but keep getting the same error message: "1698 of 1709 objects not converted." So clearly it's a very complex design. Outline Stroke doesn't do anything either.

 

I've tried using the Shape Builder tool but it was literally taking something over an hour to delete a single teeny tiny white shape, and was still losing detail in the end.

 

I'm at a total loss! This is for a really rad food cooperative trying to make healthy, local food more accessible within the community, especially for underserved groups.  I'm happy to share the ai file should someone want to try their hand at it themselves. Thank you in advance for any and all help!

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Draw and design , How to , Tools

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Community Expert ,
Nov 20, 2019 Nov 20, 2019

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Is there a stroke applied to the black paths?

 

Peter

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Enthusiast ,
Nov 20, 2019 Nov 20, 2019

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Hi, barbaram31234940
How about trying to use “Opacity mask” instead of “Minus Front”?

MinusFront.png

OpacityMask.pngOpacity Mask.png

(Sorry, I'm using the Japanese version.)

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Community Expert ,
Nov 21, 2019 Nov 21, 2019

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Outline stroke won't do anything if you have used brushes to paint this. Have you?

In that case use "Expand appearance"

If that doesn't work, upload the file to Dropbox or the like and share a link here.

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Community Expert ,
Nov 21, 2019 Nov 21, 2019

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Outline stroke does what it should, also with brushes.

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Community Expert ,
Nov 21, 2019 Nov 21, 2019

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There are several ways to approach this, but I'll give you a series of steps that should work no matter the construct of your art, or Illustrator version.

 

Try this on a copy of the file:

  1. Select > Select All
  2. Object > Expand Appearance
  3. Object > Expand
  4. Deselect
  5. Select a black-filled object
  6. Select > Same > Fill Color
  7. Object > Compound Path > Make
  8. Deselect
  9. Select a white-filled object
  10. Select > Same > Fill Color
  11. Object > Compound Path > Make
  12. Select > Select All
  13. Pathfinder > Minus Front

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New Here ,
Sep 16, 2022 Sep 16, 2022

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LATEST

I LOVE YOU

 

Thank you so much for this, exactly what I needed.

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Community Expert ,
Nov 21, 2019 Nov 21, 2019

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If you can share the file, that would be great.

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