How to use eyedropper tool in Illustrator

In this article I will show you how to use eyedropper tool in Illustrator. If you are new, then this may sound a little foreign. However, once you understand how it works, I am sure it will be one of your most common go to tools in Illustrator.

I have been working as a graphic designer since 2015. The eyedropper is a quick tool for me that totally helps make my life easier in this field. 

What does the  eyedropper tool in illustrator do?

To bring things to perspective, we can say that the Eyedropper tool is used to sample objects and copy the elements and style on other graphic elements.

For example, assume you have a colorful image and you want to pick a certain specific color from it and use it in your design or create a swatch. To pick the exact color, you use the eyedropper tool. I will show you the steps shortly.

We will use this Rose Image by Photo by Jovana Nesic. After opening Illustrator.

Step 1: Go File>Open and choose the image you want to use.

Step 2: Click Shift+O then click, drag and drop to duplicate the artboard and delete the second image.

How to use eyedropper

Step 3: Select the rectangle tool or any other shape tool and draw a couple of shapes on the second artboard.

How to use eyedropper in illustrator

Step 4: Select the first shape, then click shortcut i to pick the eyedropper tool or this tool.

Step 5: Click on a color you want to pick from the Rose image. The tool samples the exact color you pick and the shape changes to the exact same color.

How to use eyedropper tool

Step 6: If you sample another part of the image, the shape changes color again to match the sample area.


How to use eyedropper tool in illustrator for text

If you have created a text element, you can click on a color sample from a shape or other element to change the text color to match the sample element.

change color in illustrator

If you have text created in a certain font and color, and want to replicate it on your text, the eyedropper is the best tool for this. Just select your text then click i to pick the eyedropper tool.

>>>Get our Free Graphic Design Bundle Collection<<

With your text selected, click once on the sample text. Your text will change to match the sample text font size, font style, color and alignment. This works the same for paragraph styles too. Here is an example.

eyedropper tool for illustrator text

Another great  feature of the eyedropper tool is copying the font style, size and color from a sample text to your own text.

The text in navy blue was center aligned and in a different font Gotham Black Title heading and Gotham XLight body center aligned.

When you select it and click the eyedropper on the red rugged design heading in ALL AGES FONT and perfectly aligned Gotham book body, it picks these exact traits and style.

Whereas this will involve copying styles from other graphics, it is no excuse to copy other people’s designs and creative work.


With the eyedropper tool, colors are no longer a problem. Just pick your preferred ones and use the eyedropper to create your own swatches.

>>>Get our Free Graphic Design Bundle Collection<<

denis maina kamau

Written by: Denis Maina

I am an experienced and skilled graphic designer with a strong focus on Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator. He specializes in creating a wide range of design materials, such as digital art, business cards, stationery, logos, flyers, posters, banner ads, brochures, PSD templates, and other graphics.

More Posts