Clearly, the engineers at Adobe feel that 3D, both actual and perceived, will play a prominent role in the future of illustration, design and motion. The past several generations of the Creative Suite have brought us tools like Vanishing Point (Photoshop) and 3D Effects (Illustrator). CS5 brings us Repousee in Photoshop for creating 3D graphics from 2D vector art and Perspective Drawing in Illustrator for creating the illusion of depth and three dimensions within a vector design.
The basics of working with the perspective drawing tools are quite easy to grasp and it’s fun to begin working with the grids and dropping artwork on the pre-generated perspective planes to build pseudo-3D designs. Like Vanishing Point in Photoshop, the more advanced controls within Perspective Drawing are less intuitive and take more time to master.
For me, the biggest disappointment with the Perspective Drawing tool is the limitation of working solely with vector graphics. It would be great to be able to take photos and quickly drop them along the perspective grids. My guess is, we are limited by vector graphics because they are simple to scale and aren’t limited in resolution, like photographs are.
If you’re interested in playing with the new Perspective Drawing feature in Illustrator CS5, I highly recommend investing 20 minutes to watch these two tutorials below from Mordy Golding. I am decidedly not a master at working with Adobe Illustrator, but Mordy is and he does an excellent job of explaining the grid controls and illustrating how to map your vector artwork onto the grid.
Defining Perspective Grids
Mapping Flat Artwork To The Perspective Grid