How to use gradient mesh in Illustrator tutorial

How to use the gradient mesh command (found in the object menu) of Illustrator CC 2018 2017 2015 CS6 CS5 etc. The gradient mesh can be used with paths as well as images etc

Gradient mesh command in Illustrator

how to use gradient mesh in Illustrator tutorial
  1. Select Illustrator path / object

  2. Object menu

  3. Create gradient mesh command

  4. Set the rows and columns

  5. Set the appearance such as flat and to center and to edge

  6. Use highlight option with the latter two settings

  7. OK


The result of the gradient mesh in Illustrator is much the same as the mesh tool but instead of manually editing the path, you can add the mesh in seconds with the gradient mesh. The gradient mesh can also be edited by the mesh tool to change the colors and positions of the nodes in Illustrator

Gradient mesh and images in Illustrator

mesh tool image in Illustrator

You can also use the gradient mesh command with images and you can then generate a mesh based on the underlying colors of the image.

  1. Select image

  2. Object menu

  3. Gradient mesh

  4. Set to 10 rows and 10 columns etc

  5. Ok

The result is now an Illustrator mesh. The mesh can be modified by the mesh tool such as changing the color and also the position of the nodes (such as warping the mesh image)

  1. Select mesh / image

  2. Mesh tool

  3. Select a node

  4. Drag (and re-color if required)

Gradient meshes and color guide - you can re-color the mesh in 1000s of ways

color mesh tool with color guide in Illustrator

You can also use the generated Illustrator mesh from the mesh tool with the color guide (as well as the gradient mesh)

  1. Select path

  2. Generate nodes using mesh tool from toolbar

  3. Change color

  4. Repeat

  5. Select entire path

  6. Color guide panel

  7. Click the edit color button at bottom

  8. Change active colors

  9. Click randomly change color order button in color guide

You can then generate all kinds of color designs from the same mesh (image or standard paths)


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Sources and references

1. Gradient mesh for Illustrator on


gradient mesh command illustrator


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