I have been tasked with producing a geological cross section in Adobe Illustrator. It is a lengthy process, as I am new to the software. I never learned it in my GIS studies. I know that there is plenty of GIS software out there to produce x sections automatically (we have Petrel for example), but they want it done in Adobe Illustrator as it's not a data driven x section.
Does anyone have any familiarity with doing such a thing? I am having to basically use the cutting tool to divide up a box into the sedimentary layers. Then I fill the cut shapes with the correct colour. Complications arise, however:
I have to show wavy lines between some sedimentary layers to indicate a gap, or layers which aren't shown. I am using the distortion tool to automatically produce the wavy line, which means I need to:
a. copy/paste the original area b. change the appearance so there is no fill, delete all strokes except the one which will turn into the wavy line, apply distortion c. copy/paste the original area d. change the appearance so there is no fill, delete the stroke that will turn into the wavy line, change stroke to black line
This means I have 3 elements whenever there is a part of the cross section showing a wavy line: the area which has a fill but no stroke, the wavy line (derived from the area by deleting the fill and strokes which aren't wavy), the rest of the stroke around the area.
Does anyone know of a faster way to do such a thing?
I wish I could just draw a shape using some sort of line tool and AI would detect when there is a closed off area so I could then select a colour fill.
Another problem is the cutting tool does not make it easy to produce matching curves:
In this image you can see that there is a wrinkle across many sedimentary layers, but my cutting skills in Illustrator mean that the lines do not follow a nice uniform shape. Of course this is the case in the real world as well, although at the moment the image has a bit too much of a 'hand drawn' look to it. Part of the problem is that the cutting tool, usually helpfully, smooths out the cut line as one goes (digitising a smooth curve with a mouse is impossible!). Sometimes this smoothing has undesired effects. It would be good to know if I can apply an offset to another line when cutting.
Is it right that I should be using the cutting tool as my primary way of setting up a x section, anyway?
I'm thinking a better way to do all of this would be to somehow have a tool that enables me to select vertices across multiple lines in sedimentary layers, then drag them up or down. This would then apply the same amount of curve across the layers.