One thing that makes it hard to write a clear, concise article about using any kind of software is that there are often so many different methods to achieve the same task. Here’s an example: Let’s say that you want to make a “doughnut” shape (two circles on top of each other). How many different ways can you achieve this in Illustrator? I can think of three off the top of my head…
1. Make two circles, one smaller than the other. Click on one circle to select it and show the center point, then click on the center point and drag it over the other object. If you pay attention, you’ll see that the objects “snap” when you mouse near the center of the second object.
2. Use the Align palette: Select both circles, then click the “Horizontal Align Center,” then the “Vertical Align Center.” Pretty fast; the only con is that your objects will move around the page, and maybe you don’t want that.
3. My preferred method: Make one circle, select it, then use the Scale tool while holding Shift-Alt to scale down a copy of the circle.
(Feel free to post a comment if you came up with other ways to do the same thing…)