Prof. Mary Brown | COMD 1162 - E058 | Spring 2023

07 Discussion

Each week you will need to respond to two questions posted. Your response should be a minimum of 300 words for both questions. You should also include at least one response to your fellow students. The responses are a requirement for participation part of your grade.

Question 01 –

What is the value of creating layers in Illustrator?

Question 02 –

What is the difference between feathering and Gaussian Blur?


  1. Jamil

    It’s always good– In fact, I would say necessary or mandatory even, to use layering in Illustrator. For one, It’s the best way to manage and keep track of different levels of hierarchy within a design project. They allow you to move things around and temporarily hide specific design elements so that you can better work on one or two things at a time. Layers allow you to lock and unlock items in place without having to group them. This usually works best with complex drawings as they have many different components going on at the same time and you will want to be able to have organized control over them. I think a really concrete way to verbally illustrate how layers work is to try and visualize each design element in its own clear folder. If you shuffle the folders and move them around, take some out and set one or two to the side, and maybe even have sub folders within other folders; you’ll get a sense for how layering works in Adobe Illustrator and other similar programs. 

    Also, there is definitely a significant distinction between feathering and Gaussian blur. Feathering typically refers to softening the hard edges of an image. This effect makes the image have a gradient effect that softens it into the background of another object. Gaussian blurring or average blurring both take an image/object and make them sort of obscure or hazy so that it makes a visual aesthetic that can now blend with another image. When both these tools are used in conjunction with one another, the feathering creates a solid opacity mask that is tailored to the shape and size of a given image. Gaussian blur then obscures or blurs that opacity mask. The blur effect Gaussian creates now rasters the object.

    • Sarah

      The way you described the difference between gaussian blurs and feathering really helped the concept click for me!

  2. jasmin M

    creating layers in illustrator helps you lay different objects down without messing up what’s already there. you are allowed to lock and unlock different layer to choose what you would like to work on. you can make any and however many layers you want visible to see how things may look with or without something and isolating work. Editing in layers helps you not interfere with anything else but whatever your working on.

    The difference between feathering and gaussian blur is that feathering creates a solid mask of the shape while gaussian blur creates a rasterized mask. Feathering blurs out the edges of the picture. by eliminating unwanted variations gaussian blurs evens out pixel values in a picture that are uneven.feathering turns out to be a little bit darker while gaussian blur is a little bit brighter.

  3. Sarah

    The three big benefits of using layers in illustrator are. Organization: Layers can help you organize the different elements of your design. You can group similar objects on a layer and easily toggle the visibility of different layers to focus on specific parts of your design. This can help you work more efficiently and keep your workflow organized. Editing: Layers allow you to isolate specific parts of your design and make changes without affecting other elements. For example, if you have a logo with text and graphic elements, you can put the text on a separate layer and make changes to the text without affecting the graphics. Efficiency: By organizing your design into layers, you can work more efficiently and save time. You can quickly navigate to specific layers, turn on and off layers as needed, and make changes without having to search for specific elements in a cluttered design.

    Feathering and Gaussian Blur are both image editing techniques that are used to soften or blur the edges of an image. However, they achieve this effect in different ways and have different strengths and weaknesses. Feathering is a technique where the edges of an image are gradually faded or blended into the background, creating a soft transition between the foreground and the background. Feathering can be used to blend two images together, to create a vignette effect, or to soften the edges of a selection. Feathering can be adjusted to create a soft or hard transition, depending on the amount of feathering applied. Gaussian Blur is a technique where the image is blurred using a mathematical algorithm that calculates the amount of blur based on the surrounding pixels. Gaussian Blur is a more aggressive technique that can be used to blur an entire image or a specific area of the image. Gaussian Blur can be used to create a shallow depth of field effect, to soften skin texture in portraits, or to remove noise or artifacts from an image. The main difference between feathering and Gaussian Blur is that feathering is a more subtle technique that is used to create a soft transition between two areas, while Gaussian Blur is a more aggressive technique that is used to blur an entire image or specific areas of the image. Feathering is best used for blending or softening, while Gaussian Blur is best used for blurring or removing noise.

  4. Mark James Laurel

    Question 01 –

    Creating layers in Adobe Illustrator is extremely valuable because it allows you to organize your artwork and make it easier to work with. Layers allow you to keep your artwork organized by separating different elements into different layers. This makes it easier to find and edit specific parts of your artwork. By separating your artwork into different layers, you can control which parts of your artwork are visible and which parts are hidden. This makes it easier to work on specific parts of your artwork without being distracted by other elements. Layers make it faster and more efficient to work on your artwork. By isolating specific parts of your artwork on separate layers, you can work on them without affecting other parts of your artwork.

    Question 02 –

    Feathering and Gaussian Blur are two different effects that can be used in Adobe Illustrator to create different visual effects. Here are the key differences between the two:


    • Feathering is a method of softening the edges of an object or a selection.
    • Feathering applies a gradient effect to the edges of an object or selection, gradually blending the edges into the background.
    • Feathering can be applied to a selection or a mask, and it can be adjusted to control the level of softness and the width of the gradient.

    Gaussian Blur:

    • Gaussian Blur is a method of blurring an object or a selection.
    • Gaussian Blur applies a uniform blur effect to an object or a selection, creating a softer and more diffuse appearance.
    • Gaussian Blur can be applied to an entire object or to a specific area within an object, and it can be adjusted to control the level of blur and the radius of the blur effect.
    • Jamil


      I really like how you laid out your answers to the questions here. The bullet point type of layout helps me to visualize the concepts much better. Ironically, that’s what using layers in Illustrator is all about. Structurally compartmentalizing different parts of a design to view them individually or in smaller groups.

      Thanks for sharing that.


  5. britney

    I had notice as I work on my project that Creating layers is what will help you stay organized. When it came to working in a layer you would always name it. Whenever you wanted to work on one thing without messing any other part of the design up if you had each object layered and labeled it would be easier to lock the other parts of your design and just work on the one you want to focus on without messing any other design you have already done. You are also allowed to see if you like that part in your design my pressing the eye on the layer which will make it appear and pressing on the eye again to make the design disappear. It is just more organized and easier to work in layers which you can also work on top of layers making on visible in another. 

    Feathering is to make the image or design more visible marking the edges of it more transparent. While the Gaussian blurry is what makes it have for pixels being more blurry blending it into another imagine that is layered at the bottom. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *