Illustrator ® Symbols / Shapes

Updated: November 22nd, 2014

 

1000s of vector symbols / shapes for Adobe Illustrator CC22014 CS6 CS5 CS4 CS3 CS2 CS1 10 as well as 17 - 10 etc, royalty free AI format including spirals, Christmas diamonds, embellishments etc

 

  1. Abstracts

  2. Alien / space

  3. Arches

  4. Arrows

  5. Art nouveau

  6. Backgrounds

  7. Bow ties

  8. Butterflies

  9. Buttons

  10. Cats

  11. Checkerboards

  12. Chevrons

  13. Christmas

  14. Circles

  15. Clouds

  16. Contours

  17. Crosses

  18. Diamonds

  19. Dinosaurs

  20. Dogs

  21. Doodles

  22. Dots

  23. Easter eggs

  24. Faces

  25. Flames / fire

  26. Fleur-de-lis

  27. Flowers

  28. Frames

  29. Floral

  30. Gears

  31. Grids

  32. Greek

  33. Haltone dots

  34. Hearts

  35. Insects

  36. Lattices

  37. Letter / type

  38. Mixed

  39. Octagonal

  40. Orbit

  41. People

  42. Pipes

  43. Radial

  44. Rings

  45. Ripples

  46. Rosettes

  47. Snowflakes

  48. Spheres

  49. Spirals

  50. Starbursts

  51. Starflash

  52. Stripes

  53. Sunburst

  54. Swirls

  55. Triradial

  56. Turtles

  57. Twirls

  58. Vintage text

  59. Wave

  60. Zooms

Illustrator symbols / shapes

Freebie symbols for Illustrator

FREE sampler to download 1

FREE sampler to download 2

FREE sampler to download 3

FREE sampler to download 4

Editing the Illustrator symbols

They can all be edited in Adobe AI by double clicking the instance. Once you are in edit mode, you can then re-color the individual elements of the AI symbol as well as modify the paths - such as distorting them or rotating elements or adding new paths. They can be seen as a starting point for millions of stunning unique graphics.

 

Once you have finished modifying the symbol, right click and select exit isolation mode. You can also exit the isolation mode via the arrows on the top left of the document. You can also edit the shapes by selecting the presets and then using the edit symbol command on the control bar. You don't have to edit the instance to modify it, you can also add live effects such as 3D extrude without changing the source Ai shape.

 

flag shape red and black and blue wave

 

The flag / wave - red and black color - one of the presets included in one of the volumes (pack 1)

wave shadow

 

From the pack 1 set, a wavy vector with a shadow (included) in purple - you can quickly re-color this by using isolation mode or adding a fill via the appearance palette or by using the color tools in the edit menu such as adjust color balance or recolor artwork

warped and twirled instance in color

 

Warped and twirled vector from pack 1 set

blue grid windows

 

Blue grid / windows from pack 1

color guide to recolor the art as well as backdrop

 

You can combine them with other paths (yellow path behind for lights) You can also re-color the artwork by using the color guide via the edit menu

zoom manga instance bursting in blue on a white background

 

Zoom and impact artwork in blue, great for manga / comics etc as well as highlighting a particular path or image. The zoom is from pack 3.

Loading shapes into Illustrator

The format for Adobe ® Illustrator is AI and this is used for brushes, as well as shapes. You can open the file and modify the source tiles. You can also open the file and use as tiles by selecting the AI document via the palette. Select via the library and then they are added to the current document's library and then they can be edited and used on your artboard.

 

window menu and options for shapes etc

 

If you can't see the palette - go to the windows menu.

other library and save library and menu commands and other libraries in AI

 

Use the browse / other library feature if the AI documents are not included in the presets folder

Examples of use

The presets can be used to create items for sale such as templates, books, logos, adverts, packaging, records, videos and much more - if you have any questions, please contact us. You can see the thumbnail galleries of all the items included in the sets on most of the product pages. If you want other examples, please e-mail us. There are also some free samplers above.

 

diamonds hex combined vectors

 

They can be combined in millions of different combinations, you can use the same or different instances to fill an artboard in Adobe AI.

circles and text combined

 

They can be combined with text in numerous ways - circle from the pack 36

circles combined with text - use instance with one character

 

You can combine the instance with a single letter - the circle / radial is from pack 36

corner borders in AI tiles

 

You can align the border / corners to create a pattern - you can align and distribute them using the smart guide. Easier would be to use them as swatches. The corner is from the pack 37

spiral vector with stripes and yellow on a blue background

 

Many different sets are included in the packs from graphicxtras - spiral above made up of brown and yellow stripes. vector graphic for any size of work

Many uses of the shapes

There are many different sets and they all include many different colorful artworks with that theme. The AI documents can be placed in any folder but if you wish to quickly access the shapes then place them into the folder path (either in the en_US or en_GB section - in my case). Once there, the artwork files can be quickly accessed via the right side menu dropdown of the palette. If you are happy to leave the files in any location then you will have to use the browse functionality and look for other libraries (generally, I do that as I have all my AI documents in a central location).

 

Once loaded, the shapes are not actually in use until they are selected and placed in the current document's library and they are then saved with the other add-ons and artwork for the file. Many of the source files include the shapes in the palette as well as in multiple artboards and the source artwork can be modified and re-saved as a new preset. All can be modified by effects, they can also be re-colored, modified, warped and much more.

 

Combine colorful effects with the appearance palette.

 

instances and the palette and 3D spheres multiple instances in AI

 

Instance applied with various effects in AI

You can also use them with the new pattern editor with CC CS6, as well as use the as mapping artwork with extruded paths and much more.

 

All are saved in version 10 format though if you wish to re-edit the sets, you can save them in your current version's file type (I save them in 10 for maximum use - they were were added to AI in version 10 (a long time ago now it seems). The Illustrator shapes can be applied either by dragging it from the palette to the artboard or they can be applied via the powerful sprayer tool. They can also be converted to use as brushes and swatches. You can also use them in some of the effects tools from graphicxtras

Combine effects with the symbols via appearance palette

They can be modified by using the isolation mode but if you want to superficially modify the instance without a fundamental change to the artwork, appearance palette is the best approach. Select an instance and then go to the appearance palette and the right side menu.

 

appearance palette and the contents and opacity setting

 

Appeaarance palette - not much information other opacity and contents but you can add additional fills and strokes as well as effects

ai artwork before extrude blue arrows

 

The original before any extrude effect has been added

 

add fill illustrator

 

You can remove any effects via new art option

fill appearance palette and changing transparency of vector and adding fill and stroke etc

 

And the fill is added on top of the existing - so if a red fill is set then the selected vector is filled with red. You can use the transparency settings such as changing the opacity or the blending mode for the fill to see the underlying vector. You can add multiple fills and they can also include other options and not just solid fills. You can also add strokes as well as live effects such as blurs. You can add the live effects to the contents or the fill

 

extruded arrow 3D like with shading in purple and red vector

 

Extrude using the extrude command in effects menu

repeat  transform and live effects into a spiral of all the paths using the transform effect

 

You can then also scale live effects as well as rotations and repeats and much more to create a vast range of artworks from the same AI instance. And the result is still live so can be changed at any moment and all the settings can be stored for future use and projects.

Control bar for Adobe ® Illustrator presets

You can modify a number of settings for the selected vector graphic via the control bar such as edit, break link, reset and replace (as below) as well as give the instance a name

 

control bar symbols

 

Other options further along are position as well as width and height and the opacity for the preset - you can also quickly click the re-color artwork (which is useful for some presets but not all) - as below. Some of these options can be done manually purely by stretching the instance as well as shifting the position of the artwork. Some such as the re-color and the opacity are available via other panels such as transparency. The replace option is very useful though as you can select one vector and then instantly re-place the placeholder with another from the palette and this can be repeated with any of the presets found in the palette or subsequently added to the palette.

control bar

 

You can break the link or expand if you no longer wish to use it as an instance

Tutorials for Illustrator symbols

Converting AI to PNG and PDF etc

 

Video tutorials

How to add additional colors to decorative graphics, especially useful if you don't want to use the default color scheme How to add additional color to spirals (Youtube video)

 

If you have 100s of symbols libraries, it can be quite slow to load them via the window menu or via the palette load menu. Here is a video showing how to quickly look through all the libraries How to load / rapidly access multiple libraries (Youtube video)

 

Updating the bevels.ai extrude file in AI to create a whole range of new bevels for the live effect. Video showing the update of bevels.ai file (youtube)