Illustrator ® SymbolsTweet
Illustrator ® symbols shapes for CC, CS6-10 (as well as Illustrator 17-10) commercial (CU4CU) use
Updated: October 21st, 2013
Symbols / shapes for Illustrator
Popular symbols sets for Illustrator
Text / type symbols for Illustrator
Animal symbols / shapes for Illustrator
Latest symbols pages
People related symbols
This page doesn't have all our Illustrator symbols - you can find more on these pages.
Free Illustrator symbols
Tutorials for Illustrator symbols
Videos for Illustrator symbols
Editing Illustrator symbols
The Illustrator symbols (those on this page) can all be edited in Illustrator by double clicking the symbol instance. Once you are in edit mode, you can then re-color the individual elements of the Illustrator symbol as well as modify the paths - such as distorting the design or rotating elements or adding new paths to the symbol. The symbol can be seen as a starting point for millions of different designs.
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 symbol by selecting the Illustrator symbol and then using the edit symbol command on the control bar. You don't have to edit the symbol to modify it, you can also apply live effects such as 3D extrude without changing the source Illustrator shape.
Loading shapes / symbols into Illustrator
The format for Adobe ® Illustrator is AI and this is used for brushes, as well as just symbols. You can open the file and modify the source tiles. You can also open the file and use as tiles by selecting the AI file via the symbols palette. Only when you actually select the symbols are they added to the current document and they can then be modified within that document and saved with the current document. All the Illustrator symbols are vectors for any size of work.
Adobe and Illustrator are registered trademarks of Adobe Systems Incorporated.
If you can't see the symbols palette in Illustrator - go to the windows menu.
If you don't add the symbols to the symbols folder then you can browse for the Illustrator AI files
Examples of use for the Illustrator symbols
The Illustrator symbols 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.
Illustrator symbols use
There are many different Illustrator symbols sets and they all include many different colorful artworks with that theme. The AI files can be placed in any folder but if you wish to quickly access the symbols then place them into the Adobe Illustrator 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 Illustrator symbols 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 Illustrator libraries (generally, I do that as I have all my symbols files in a central location) Once loaded, the Illustrator symbols 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 Illustrator symbols source files include the symbols in the palette as well as in multiple artboards and the source artwork can be modified and re-saved as a new Illustrator symbol.
All the symbols can be modified by Illustrator effects, they can also be re-colored, modified, warped and much more. Combine colorful effects with the appearance palette.
You can also use the Illustrator symbols with the new tiles editor with Illustrator CC CS6, as well as use the as mapping artwork with extruded paths and much more.
All the Illustrator symbols 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 - symbols were added to Illustrator in version 10 (a long time ago now it seems)
The Illustrator symbols can be applied either by dragging the design from the palette to the Illustrator artboard or they can be applied via the powerful symbol sprayer tool. They can also be converted to use as brushes and more - so they are not just limited to symbols / shapes format. You can also use the symbols in some of the Illustrator effects tools from graphicxtras
Illustrator symbols - combine effects with appearance palette
The Illustrator symbols can be modified by using the isolation mode but if you want to superficially modify the symbol 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.
The original design is below (from one of the symbol sets)
Add new fill option
and the fill is added on top of the existing symbol - so if a red fill is set then the symbol 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 symbol
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 Illustrator symbol. You can apply the live effects to the contents or the fill
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 Illustrator symbol. 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 symbols
You can modify a number settings for the selected Illustrator symbol via the symbol's control bar such as edit symbol, break link, reset and replace (as below) as well as give the symbol instance a name
Other options further along are position as well as width and height and the opacity for the symbol - you can also quickly click the re-color artwork (which is useful for some symbols but not all) - as below. Some of these options can be done manually purely by stretching the symbol / 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 symbol with another from the palette and this can be repeated with any of the symbols found in the palette or subsequently added to the palette.
You can also break the link (make the symbol become a normal path) as well as edit the symbol instance - you can also do the same by double clicking the symbol. The control bar just puts all these options in a quick and easy location
By Andrew Buckle. Purchase worldwide / e-download. (c) 1995-2013. Phone (+44) 01622 688 375. Commercial (CU4CU) / unrestricted use