Adobe illustrator Tools & Shortcuts - Complete Guide


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Having knowledge about Tools is the most basic requirement for mastering ADOBE ILLUSTRATOR. So In this blog, we will take a brief look at the Adobe Illustrator tools, their functions, and shortcuts.

There can be more than one way to do a specific task, but that doesn’t mean that it is the fastest and most efficient way.

Tools can help us to do that task in the fastest and most efficient way.

Adobe Illustrator has a large variety of tools which we can find in the toolbar.

This blog is the continuation of the Adobe Illustrator series, so if you haven’t read my previous blogs, I recommend you must read the previous blogs on Introduction to Illustration and Workspace and Environment.

Every Adobe Illustrator Tools

The tools in Adobe Illustrator toolbar can be divided into 6 main categories

  1. Select
  2. Draw
  3. Type
  4. Paint
  5. Modify
  6. Navigate
Source – Adobe Documentation

Most Popular Adobe Illustrator Tools

we will discuss the most commonly used tools in these categories :

Selection Tool (V)

This tool is used to select the entire object on the artboard.

Direct Selection Tool (A)

With the help of this tool, we can do fine adjustments like moving an anchor point, making an edge curve, adjusting the curve, etc.

Artboard Tool ( Shift + O )

We can select the whole artboard with the help of this tool.

Pen Tool (P)

The pen tool is the most popular drawing tool, with the help of this tool we can draw irregular shapes. With this tool, we can also make curve lines by just clicking and dragging.

Add Anchor Point Tool (+)

To add an anchor point in a line or curve, we use this tool.

Delete Anchor Point Tool (-)

It is the opposite of the Add Anchor Point Tool and We remove anchor point on a line or a curve using this tool.

Curvature Tool ( Shift + ~ )

This tool is similar to that of the Pen tool but it is modified specially to make curves and we can also make straight lines by just double-clicking on an anchor.

Line Segment Tool ( \ )

We can make a straight line with the help of this tool.

Rectangle Tool (M)

To make a Rectangle in our artboard we use the Rectangle tool.

Ellipse Tool Tool (L)

We can make ellipses with the help of this tool.

Polygon Tool

If we want to make a different shape with more number of angles we use the Polygon tool. we can give the number of angles and it will make a polygon with a specified no of angles.

Star Tool

To make stars on our artboard we use this tool.

Paintbrush Tool (B)

With the help of this tool, we can make strokes like that of a real paintbrush, we can choose between various brush strokes and we can also choose the size.

Pencil Tool (N)

This tool is used to do the freehand drawing on our artboard.

Text Tool (T)

With this tool, we can add text to our artwork.

Text On a Path Tool

If we want our text to be on a line either straight or a curve we use this tool.

Gradient Tool (G)

we can add a color gradient with this tool and we can also change the direction of the gradient.

Shape Builder Tool ( Shift + M )

With this tool, we can either merge multiple shapes or remove a part in shape and we can also apply color or border to a specific part of a shape.

Rotate Tool (R)

To rotate a shape we use this tool, we have to first select the shape and then with the help of this tool, we can specify the angle at which we want to rotate that shape.

Reflect Tool (O)

It is similar to that of the Rotate Tool but in this tool, we can reflect our shape either vertically or horizontally.

Width Tool ( Shift + W )

This tool is used to alter the width of any line.

Eye Dropper Tool (I)

We can pick any color in our artboard with the help of the Eye Dropper tool and we can also drop color on a shape by pressing the alt key on our keyboard.

Hand Tool (H)

To navigate in our artboard when we have zoomed our artboard, we use this tool, in order to move we have to right-click and hold and drag.

Zoom Tool (Z)

This tool is used to zoom-in and zoom-out in our artboard, this tool is by default set to zoom-in mode, in order to zoom out we have to press the alt key.

Hope you like it!

Stay tuned for more such blogs.

Interested in Adobe Photoshop learn it from Hack The Developer Adobe Photoshop Tutorial Series.

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