logoIllustrator ® Symbols / Shapes

Updated: September 10th, 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 designs 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

The designs 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 the design 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 design, 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 apply live effects such as 3D extrude without changing the source Ai shape.


flag symbols for Illustrator red and blue and black


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

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. Only when you actually select the designs are they added to the current document and they can then be modified within that document and saved with the current document. They are all vectors for any size of work.


windows menu symbols illustrator


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

other library browse for Illustrator


IUse 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. If you would like to see thumbnail galleries of any of the sets, please contact us as well and we will send them on as well as more samplers.


spiral symbols for Illustrator band  and stripes


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 symbols 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 designs 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.


symbols instances


Instance applied with various effects in AI

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


All the shapes 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 designs can be applied either by dragging the design 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 more - so they are not just limited to shapes format. 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 shapes without a fundamental change to the artwork, appearance palette is the best approach. Select the symbol and then go to the appearance palette and the right side menu.


appearance palette in Illustrator


Appaearance palette - not much information other opacity and contents but you can add to the design in millions of ways

ai artwork before extrude blue arrows


The original design before any extrude etc


add fill illustrator


You can remove any effects via new art option

fill appearance for Illustrator symbols


And the fill is added on top of the existing design - so if a red fill is set then the shape 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 design. You can apply multiple fills and they can also include other options and not just solid fills. You can also apply strokes as well as live effects such as blurs to the shape. You can apply the live effects to the contents or the fill


extrude path / symbol for Illustrator


Extrude the shapes using the extrude command in effects menu

repeat symbols transform and live effects Illustrator


You can then also apply scale live effects as well as rotations and repeats and much more to create a vast range of artworks from the same AI shape. 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 settings for the selected symbol 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 illustrator


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 shape 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 symbol and then instantly re-place the placeholder design 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 for Illustrator symbols


You can break the link or expand the design if you no longer wish to use the design

Tutorials for Illustrator symbols

Converting shapes to PNG and PDF etc


How to add additional color to spiral shapes

How to add additional colors to shape decorative graphics, especially useful if you don't want to use the default color scheme for the design


How to load / rapidly access multiple libraries

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