Adobe Illustrator Tips and Tricks 2022

A computer screen displays a digital illustration software with a close-up of a detailed, stylized human face in progress. The face features textured skin, green eyebrows, and illuminated eyes. Tool panels with various options and color palettes are visible on the sides.

Whether you’re just getting started in Adobe Illustrator or simply looking for some ways to speed up your workflow, you’re in the right place. Today, we’re shedding light on some not-so-obvious tips and tricks in Adobe Illustrator that will end up saving you countless hours of work. 

1. Use Color CC

One aspect of creating professional looking art is picking colors that work with each other. Adobe Illustrator has a tool already built in that can help you with this, called Color CC. “This tool helps you pick colors that work together from a color wheel” says beginner designer Angela Hutton from Best British Essays. “I’ve used it to pick my colors and then save them to a palette, making it easier to find them again.

2. Draw inside a shape

If you’re not a fan of using the Clipping Mask tool, try drawing inside a shape instead. It’s much more intuitive and quickly gives you visible results. As shown in the example below, you’ll need to select your desired shape, then click on the pie chart icon at the bottom of your main Adobe Illustrator Tool Panel. Grab the pencil or brush tool and start drawing over the selected object. You’ll quickly see that everything drawn outside of it is automatically removed.

3. Global Editing

Listen up because the Global Editing tool will forever change your workflow for the better. With global editing, you can edit a group of objects that are similar in appearance all at the same time without having to copiously select every object you’d like to edit.

Find the Global Edit tool in your top control panel or by navigating to Select -> Start Global Edit. (Remember you’ll need to have an object selected first). Notice in the example below, we used Global Editing to simultaneously increase the size of the green circles across each Art board. Global editing can be used for just about anything—changing colors, editing shapes, etc.

4. Try Using Clipping Masks

Clipping masks are a tool that can make your work a whole lot easier, and every beginner should use them. They’re a tool that restrict any pattern or design to a pre determined area. If you can use them properly, they can save an awful lot of time.

5. Make Your Own Brushes

Many people don’t know that you can actually make your own brushes with Adobe Illustrator. If you’re finding that the basic tools aren’t quite what you need for the job, you can create them. Again, you can search online for good tutorials, or you can actually custom made tools online.

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