illustrator hacks

10 Best Illustrator Hacks that Instantly Save your Time

Adobe illustrator hacks could help you in saving tons of time and lots of money. Illustrator CC is one of the best tools for designing graphics and illustration. The illustration CC provides you with a pixel-perfect shape that allows you to scale the graphics without breaking it.

With multiple options and lots of settings, adobe illustrator can be a little challenging to learn and master, but if you could do that, you are halfway there to become a professional graphic designer.

As a graphic designer, time is a very valuable asset. You have to be productive in order to create more designs hence, more money. Using these hacks may sound obvious, but, if you are new to designing or have years of experience in this field, these hacks could help you in quickly becoming a pro.

Here are the top 10 Adobe illustrator hacks that instantly save you time. You can also find 1 Bonus feature in the adobe illustrator CC 2020 offers which can come in very handy. So, stay tuned!

Use Pen Tool Like a Pro

The pen tool is one of the foundational tools in illustrator. As a designer, you have to draw custom images and shapes to create awesome graphics, hence, a pen tool can help you in creating custom shapes. With a pen tool, you can draw any shape like lines, curves, angles, etc.

Convert Text Into a Vector Image

Custom Typography is the most desired skill that anyone would want for their designs and that can be possible by converting text into a vector image.

When you convert text into a vector image, you can manipulate the image and create some awesome typography.

Use Clip Mask to Create an Amazing Effect

Clip mask is an amazing tool to introduce patterns and effects into shapes, images, text and much more. For example, if you need to create a text with a pattern like below. You can create a clip mask feature of adobe illustrator to do that.

Use Grids to Design Like a Pro

Grids can make your jobs so easy and clears any doubts. To create beautiful graphics like business card designs you have to keep the balance and alignment of different elements. Grids make it easier for you to design your graphics effectively.

Grids allow the designers to create visual hierarchy in the design and helps in arranging the elements in such a way that the elements do not fight with each other for attention.

Detach Regularly Used Tools

If you are to use a number of tools frequently, then it is best for you to save these tools in a custom toolbar. You can create a custom toolbar in adobe illustrator. To pluck them you can click and hold the right mouse followed by dragging it anywhere in the work space. Now, you have a custom toolbar that you can use without needing to search. However, this can only be done with certain tools.

Create a Customized Brush

Creating a custom brush is a cool feature that adobe illustrator allows you to play with. You can use this tool to create amazing designs. A custom brush allows you to create patterns and remove any area of error or complexity from the equation.

You can use this guide by Teela Cunningham to create your own custom brush.

Use Pathfinder Tool to Manipulate Shapes

Manipulating shapes allows designers to create custom shapes. The tool that I would have to use is called the pathfinder tool. Pathfinder tool allows you to create a custom path by combining, subtracting, divide, trim , merge and a lot more. This adobe illustrator hack is one of the most important hacks that you would need in order to be professional logo designers. The reason being a logo design containing many elements that you want to customize and Pathfinder tool enables this need and provides your logo with a seamless look like a single piece element.

You can use the following guide by satori graphics to learn more about pathfinder tool-

Make Your Own Swatch Set

Let’s say you are working for a company and they use only a few colors to create the graphics. You could type in the hex code in the color selector tab but, doing it every time for every color could result in things getting time-consuming, therefore, you can use create your own swatch set library to save this color.

You can use the following steps to create your own swatch set library-

  1. Enable the swatch panel

    Click on Windows and click on the swatch. This enables the swatch panel in the work space. Enable Swatch Panel

  2. Select the color you want to add

    Now using the eyedropper tool you can select the color you want to save. Select the color using eyedropper tool

  3. Create a new swatch

    After selecting the color, click on the create new swatch set button at the bottom of the swatch panel.

  4. You have successfully added your custom swatch

    You can find the custom color is now listed among the other swatches. New swatch added

Use “Replace Spine” to Create Beautiful Graphics

If you want to wrap a patter around a shape or line you could do that by replacing the spine option using a blend tool. The blend tool allows you to blend the pattern or shape about the line of the object.

Freeform Gradient Tool

The freeform gradient tool allows you to create amazing gradients into your designs. Since using gradient in designs has become a trend, having freedom over the use of gradient color is such a great feature allowing you to create an amazing and cool effect in your design.

Martin from Yes! I’m a designer who has provided a guide for using this feature.

[Bonus] Use Auto SpellCheck

In the latest 2020 version of adobe illustrator, you can find the auto spellcheck option under the Edit section. By default, it is not enabled and you have to manually enable this feature.

Wrong spelling creates a very bad impression among your client as well as clients’ clients and many designers in the past faced a big problem when they type instead of copy-paste from the word document.

Adobe released this feature in its 2020 version of adobe Photoshop that enabled the designers to correct the spelling mistake by right-clicking on the wrong spelling which is marked with red and replacing it with the right suggestion.

You can use all these adobe illustrator hacks to make your designing process faster as well as more efficient. To keep yourself updated with the graphic design world, signup to our newsletter.

Did i forget something? Comment below on what is your most used illustrator hacks.