Dotted line in Illustrator tutorial

How to create a dotted line in Illustrator tutorial

Basics

dotted line tutorial for IllustratorYou want a dotted line in Illustrator - this is a quick guide to creating the dotted line in seconds as a vector design for your projects

 

Of course, you could create a quick dotted line in Illustrator by simply creating a dot and then duplicating that and repeating that multiple times and then aligning them and distributing them along a linear path but that is really not very elegant. Or perhaps use the blend tool. A better (I think) solution can be found below

 

1) First step, create a single line path. Set the stroke color to black and set the stroke width to 10pt.

 

2) Click on the stroke underline and you will see the weight, cap, corner etc.

 

3) Set the Cap to "round cap"

 

4) Set the corner to "round corner"

 

dotted lines illustrator different colors5) Set the dashed line to ON by clicking the checkbox

 

6) Set the dash to 1pt or 0.5pt (at least something low) and the first gap to 20pt or 10pt for the gap between the dots.

 

There, you now have your dotted line in Illustrator CC 2017 2015 2014 etc. If you go to the appearance panel then you can see the same settings and now you can also graphic styles panel and then add a new style with that stroke / gap etc so you can re-apply it any time.

 

Of course, you don't have to use just the above and other settings work great such as

stroke 60pt and dash 1pt and gap 120pt

stroke 20pt and dash 1pt and gap 120pt

stroke 10pt and dash 0.5pt and gap 120pt

 

You can also create some more interesting combinations of dots and gaps by duplicating the paths and then shifting them slightly but keeping the paths on the same alignment

 

Width profiles and dotted lines in Illustrator

You can create many interesting variants of the dotted line by using the width profile which can be found in the top bar of Illustrator,

 

1) select the line with the dots

 

2) select the first width profile and then you will see small dots at the start of the line with the full size dots in the center and then again small dots at the end of the line.

 

3) Or use the width profile 4 option in the dropdown list to create a large dot at the start shrinking to a smaller dot at the end of the line.

 

You can also just modify the width profile by using the width tool in Illustrator to modify the dotted line and the effect of the width profile or use a tool like the widthscribe plugin from Astute graphics to create some truly amazing dot themed designs

 

You can find many dot designs on the site such as dot fonts and eps vector shapes for Illustrator, Affinity Designer and others

 

Appearance panel and dotted lines in Illustrator

dotted line illustrator transformYou can also use the appearance panel to add multiple strokes to a single line and then you can also add multiple dotted lines to the same line so you can generate say a pink dot and then a black dot and then a pink dot and then a black dot and so on.

 

You can also use other effects with the dotted line such as using the effect menu and free distort or create multiple dotted lines by using the transform command in the effect menu with copies greater than 0.

 

Dotted lines in Illustrator and gaps

Just set the gap for the dotted line to increase or decrease the gap between the dots

 

Expand appearance

You can also simply select the dotted line in Illustrator and use the object menu and expand the appearance and then ungroup the artwork to create a line of dots.

 

Other tutorials

There are many other tutorials on Illustrator such as Bristle brushes in Illustrator and how to use them in seconds for great designs