Since its release, Adobe’s Illustrator has grown to become the designer’s right hand man when it comes to creating premier vector graphics and elements. There’s so much you can do with it that it can be difficult to know where to start.
Happily, we’re here to round up the best Adobe Illustrator tutorials, covering everything from illustration to logo design, adding depth to your typography and much more, to help you get the most from this amazing app. Jump directly to a section using this handy category guide, or just get started browsing the whole list!
- Getting started (this page)
- Master your tools
- Understanding gradients
- Using patterns
- Creating characters
- Adding texture and detail
- Working with 3D
- Building objects
- Analogue effects
- Go retro
- Pro techniques
- Inspirational techniques
With so many to choose from, you’re sure to find a project to inspire you, whether you’re using an older version of Illustrator or are signed up to the Creative Cloud. Here goes!
If you’re just starting out with Illustrator, here’s a fantastic guide to some of its tools. It’ll take you from the basics of getting to grips with Bézier curves, strokes and paths, through to more advanced techniques such as warping objects with the effects tool, editing type and creating eye-catching blends using gradients, and plenty more besides.
In this video tutorial presented by Angie Taylor you’ll learn how to set up a new Illustrator document. She looks at options in the New Document dialog box like Width and Height, Color Mode, and Transparency Grid.
The Pen and Pencil tools are very useful but require a little practice to get comfortable with. This video tutorial explains how to start using the Pen tool to create clouds and the Pencil tool to create hills.
In this video tutorial you’ll see how to use Illustrator’s shape tools to create primitive shapes that you can use as the basis for objects. You’ll also learn how to use the Shape Builder tool to combine shapes.
Here, Terry White shows you how to get started with Adobe Illustrator CS6.
In this video, artist Mordy Golding explains five tips to make drawing easier in Adobe Illustrator CS5. These are great tips for beginners as well as experienced users that are new to CS5.
Here, you’ll learn how to master artwork techniques in the new realms of CS6. This handy video tutorial is easy to follow and uses processes that are simple enough for beginners.
Steven Bonner looks at how to use Illustrator’s Blend tool to create smooth and curved blends, blend by specific distances and to blend different transparencies and shapes.
Next page: Master your tools
The revamped Pencil tool in Illustrator CC offers a new way to draw vector paths. These videos from Adobe show you how to use it.
The warp tools, also known as the liquify tools, are not dissimilar to Photoshop’s Liquify tool but instead are set out into seven different categories. Master their art with this Illustrator tutorial.
Illustrator comes with a selection of default brushes but it’s really easy to create your own too. This tutorial explains how!
If you’re unfamiliar with the process of creating graphs in Adobe Illustrator, this article will help in giving you some insight into the work-flow. You’ll be a pro in no time!
Retain the hand-drawn, linear quality of your artwork in Adobe Illustrator. Artist Anna Wray shows you how to get to grips with the Image Trace tool.
Tom Mac reveals how to create a drip-effect portrait using Illustrator’s Pen tool and some clever object layering techniques.
Next page: Understanding gradients
This quick video tutorial will show how you to use a basic gradient as an opacity mask over text. Once you know this method, you can utilise it in different ways to benefit your designs – as an easy-to-use alternative to a clipping mask, for example.
Here, you’ll learn how to create volume in vector illustrations using a few colours per object. Bring a sketch of a beautiful tropical bird to life using vectors and a handy colouring process.
Follow this tutorial by Iaroslav Lazunov and by controlling the transparency of gradient meshes with the help of blending modes, and by adjusting color transition between mesh points and changing its opacity, you’ll make a brush that you can use to create an impressive pearl necklace in seconds!
Many images that look complicated are really made using simple effects. Get to grips with gradients by layering and building up small, straightforward segments, always varying them to prevent monotony.
Using Illustrator with finesse and perfecting the finer details can take practice. This tutorial looks at a selection of transparency and gradient tools and uses them to create a lifelike but contemporary animal study. The techniques covered can be applied to any subject matter that requires a striking dynamic look or an elegant subtle shine.
Brought to you by Lynda.com, you’ll get to grips with some of the new tools in Adobe Illustrator CS6. The video will show you how to apply a gradient swatch to a stroke that is surrounding an object.
Next page: Using patterns
In this 15-minute Illustrator tutorial, Andy Buckle explains how to …read more
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