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Merge Illustrator graphic styles in Adobe Illustrator tutorial

merging graphic styles in Illustrator

Tutorial on how to merge graphic styles in Illustrator such as color effects, transformations etc

 

You can merge graphic styles. If you have a colorful style and another colorful style and you want to merge them, that can be done very quickly via the styles panel What is the point ? You have style 1 and you have style 2 (as well as perhaps other styles) in Illustrator and they are amazing on their own.

 

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Well, sometimes the result can be amazing when they are combined and of course this can all be done manually by using a combination of effects etc via the appearance panel and then saving that as the new graphic style but the merge tool, well, the style merge can just do all that in one go and not only that you may end up with a new truly awesome effect with a totally random effect.

 

I know when I merge styles I am often confident of the end result but sometimes the result can be totally wow and not what I expected. It would be great if there was a merge styles builder that allowed for a lot more randomization and trial and error and generate of even more unique results (some applications do have those sort of features)

Definitely would recommend saving your work before you apply a merge in Illustrator

I would always recommend saving your current work before you perforrm the action as the result may crash your Illustrator application especially if you merge more than two or three effects and then the wheel of doom will appear and the application will end up not responding. This doesn't always happen though but it is best to be on the safe side.

You can merge without any paths being selected, just select the styles and then use the merge styles command in Illustrator

merging graphic styles illustrator The Illustrator graphic styles can be merged.

 

  1. To merge, go to the graphic styles panel in Illustrator

  2. Select two or more styles in the graphic styles panel

  3. Go to the styles menu (right side)

  4. Select the merge option

Use this option to create stunning new unique effects for your projects. In some cases the effect might need additional work so you will need to manipulate the positions of the fills and effects via the appearance panel

 

On the right, merged using the method described - did require an additional change from a normal blending mode to an overlay (some mergings work better than others). The merge was of two gradient styles with lines and the result was an unusual blurry line design

 

You can also modify the styles before you actually perform the merge of the Illustrator graphic styles by changing blending modes of the styles in the appearance panel

You can merge styles such as scribble styles to create amazing new scribble and sketch styles for your work

sketch gradient
  1. Open a graphic styles Illustrator library (ai format) via the styles panel open library command

  2. Open a scribble library via the open library command

  3. Click a graphic style in the library (or more than one)

  4. Click an Illustrator graphic style in the scribble / sketch library (or more than one) They are now in the main panel of the graphic styles

  5. Select any of the effects you wish to merge

  6. Go to the right side menu and dropdown

  7. Select merge command

  8. Apply the new style to a selected path

  9. Go to the appearance panel - if you wish to further manipulate the effect. The appearance panel is useful as you can move the fills and effects and strokes up and down in the displayed order (as well as the actual appearance of the path).

You can see the end result of the gradient and scribble graphic style with the gradient now in the actual scribble

 

Moving a fill up or down can radically change the end result. The order of the fills might mean the scribble / sketch or other effect is behind a fill and not seen. With multiple fills and strokes you can end up with many different possible combinations and end results. Also changing settings such as the stroke width of the scribble will also alter the end result.

You can also merge pattern swatches in Illustrator to create super new unique styles and patterns

pattern colorful patchwork design in Illustrator vector graphic style

Merge of two line themed graphic styles in Illustrator with patterns included

 

  1. One with straight lines up and down

  2. One at 45 degrees.

Again, a slight change to blending modes from default to difference maybe required and actually it is really good to quickly run through the blending modes for the styles to see what works better in the merging of the graphic styles via the graphic style panel

Related items

1. Illustrator graphic styles You can find many 100s of great items to merge and create new items with.

Tutorials

1. how to modify graphic styles in Illustrator

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Updated: August 2017