I am new to Illustrator and am working through a course on using Illustrator to create characers for animation. I am currently working on a project that involves tracing over an imported sketch using the "over shoot method" which involves cleaning up the image after you have traced it. That requires selecting and deleting small parts of the path. I was able to do it once, but now the direct select tool won't select just small parts of the line. It only selects the whole line. The only difference that I can think of is the second time I tried it was with a file I imported from my iPad. I found it easier to draw on the ipad than with my mouse. Could this be the problem? The instructor had us do some things to the strokes like expanding their appearance and simplifying the stroke, but I followed exactly what he said to do and it worked on the first project, but not the second. It's a video course so I ran through it a couple of times to make sure I was doing just what he said. Maybe I have selected or deselected an option? Sorry for being so clueless. Any help is much appreciated. Thanks!
Let me move this to the Illustrator forum for you, which is the appropriate forum for your question.
The Using the Community forum is for help in using the Adobe Support Community forums, not for help with specific programs. Product questions should be posted in the associated product community.
Ok. Thanks! Sorry didn't realize I was in the wrong place.
To select part of a path with the Direct Selection tool, click the tip of the arrow on the edge of the path. Make sure that you have the Direct Seletion tool and not the Group Selection tool (looks the same but has a + sign next to it). The Direct Selection tool can select part of a path between anchor points so if it is selecting too much you would need to add an anchor point.
That worked. Interesting that the first time I didn't need to do that. It seemed like Illustrator knew to add an anchor point where lines crossed. This time that didn't happen. Could I have made an adjustment somewhere that changed that from one project to the next? Was just a little faster to do the other way, but adding an anchor point works. Like I said super new to Illustrator. Thanks for your help!
Is the path deselected when you click the segment, or what happens if you deselect first (click somewhere off the path)?
If I deselect first it still selects most of the path. I needed to add anchor points I found out. That's going to fix my problem. Thanks for your help!
For my part you are welcome, Tracy.
"It only selects the whole line."
You (could have) fooled me with that sentence.
"It seemed like Illustrator knew to add an anchor point where lines crossed"
That behaviour in independent paths would be completely disruptive/destructive in most other contexts.