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What is Adobe Illustrator used for? A Full Beginners Guide

What is Adobe Illustrator used for? Adobe Illustrator is used to develop vector-based graphics. If you do not know what this means, do not worry, this article is for you.

Before we go further, I will give a brief introduction of the tutor and quickly run through what you will learn on this article and site. My name is Denis Maina and I have been a full-time graphic designer for the last 10 years.

In case of any questions or want to see some of my work, you can get in touch with me by visiting our contacts page.

What is Adobe Illustrator? Illustrator Definition

Adobe Illustrator is a drawing software from the Adobe Series of software. It is used to develop vector-based artworks and drawings. Combined with a drawing tablet, it is one of the best software you can use to develop drawings and digital art.

Illustrators’ ability to work with vector graphics, makes it an industry standard when in the digital drawing and printing industries. You will use it to make Logos, Illustrations, and shapes.

Adobe Illustrator is a powerful software that also allows you to manipulate text and import images. This ability makes it possible to use it to create fliers, posters, brochures, and banners.

What can you make with Adobe Illustrator?

You can use Illustrator to make:

  1. Logos
  2. Fliers and Brochures
  3. Signage
  4. Digital Illustrations
  5. Infographics
  6. Social Media Graphics
  7. Branded Icons
  8. Email Signatures

How difficult is it to learn Adobe Illustrator?

Learning How to use Illustrator is not too complicated if you have the right guidance. Here are some basic tools and navigation to get you started with the software.

  1. How to use Illustrator, tools, and tricks

How to use Illustrator, tools, and tricks

In this article, we will go through a quick walk of the important tools and features we will be using and navigate around Adobe Illustrator. 

We will be using Illustrator CC 2020 but you can use any version of Illustrator you have. If you are using a MAC where I use Control replace it with the Command key.

When you open the software, you will have a blank screen. To open a new page or artboard to work on, go to File >New or Control N shortcut. You will get a pop-up window like the one below where you can fill in the requirements of your job.

From the onset, you can hit Control S to save the document or Shift >Control >S to save as.

Once you are in a document you can hit Space and click and drag your mouse to move around. Alternatively, you can click the hand tool on your left.

To zoom in click Control + and Control – to zoom out. You can click Control 0 to view the actual size of a document.

How to create text in Illustrator

On the right side, we have a layers panel. You can add or remove layers, you can lock and unlock layers and basically what is on the top layers appears on top of your design. If you cannot see your Layers panels just go to Window then Layers.

To create text, just hit T on your keyboard then the type tool is selected. Click once on the artboard and type. Clicking and holding the type tool brings other type options.

How to make shapes in Illustrator

Next, we have the shape tool. You can hit M to select it, then click and drag to draw your shape. You can draw a rectangle. To change the fill and outline color click the down arrow on the top with the shape selected. The one on the left for fill and one on the right for stroke. 

When you click and hold more shapes come up and you can choose the one you want to draw.

How to make shapes in illustrator

To change the rectangle we have drawn hit V on the keyboard to select the selection tool. You can now move it around or resize it. 

Shapes are made of points. To move only a specific point instead of the whole shape, click A to bring up the direct selection tool. You can move 1 point. To move a group of points click and hold the direct selection tool.

Clicking and dragging the circled object converts a point to a curve.

To add a point to a shape or line click P to choose the Pen tool. When you hold down the tool, 4 options come up. You can add or delete a point by clicking on it.

The Pen tool enables you to draw a curve or line by clicking once to create a point and clicking a second time to create a line. Clicking and dragging on the second point will make the line form a curve.

If you need to hire a freelancer to do it for you, just contact me on Fiverr.

  1. What is a vector image or Graphic?

    A vector-based graphic is a kind of graphic made of points that when stretched to any size does not lose its resolution and clarity. The opposite of it is an image file.If you blow up an image file to be too large, it continuously loses its clarity and quality.