How to make / use calligraphic brushes in Illustrator tutorial

How to create amazing calligraphic brush strokes in Illustrator CC 2018 2017 2015 CS6 CS5 CS4 CS3 etc tutorial.

Create calligraphic brushes

How to make / use a calligraphic brush in Illustrator tutorial
  1. Window menu in Illustrator

  2. Brushes

  3. Right side menu of brushes panel

  4. New brush

  5. Select calligraphic brush option

  6. Set name, settings etc

  7. OK

Video tutorial on the subject by (youtube)


Panel : The key panel is the brushes panel - you can access the calligraphic strokes there as well as create them via the right side menu and new command. You can also use the panel to edit the stroke and change the settings


Stokes use : You can use the stroke with the paintbrush tool as well as the pencil tool.



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Options : To display the options for any of the existing presets or presets you create, double click the preset in the panel. Six presets are supplied by default. There is also a library of presets available via the right side menu of the panel


Available settings :

Name - give it a basic name

Angle - of no use without the roundness set to less than 100

Roundness - set to less than 100% and then combine with the angle

Diameter - probably the key one and the diameter of the stroke applied


You will notice that there is an option beside all the settings to apply them as fixed as well as random etc. This does add some variation


Fixed / random : By default all the settings are fixed so they have only one value per application of the stroke but if you set them to 'random' then you will be able to set a certain amount of variation. Note that this variation is only per stroke and not as you apply a single stroke. If you set the diameter to 20px and the variation to 10px then you will only see artwork between 20px and 30px and not a variable width line (go to width profiles for that)


Use with the pencil tool: Set the color for the stroke via the stroke color.


Use with the Paintbrush: You can also use them with that tool.


Live effects : You can add live effects to the strokes as well so really interesting 3D or blurred lines can be created using this tool


Use with paths : You can create a path and then go to the panel and apply one of the presets. You can set the color for the line via the stroke color


Use with type : You can use them with type via the appearance panel. Go to the window menu and appearance panel. Type something.


Blobs : The presets can be used with blobs


Create new stroke : Go to the right side menu of the preset's panel and then select new. Select the required type and then set the values such as diameter and roundness etc. This is strored in the presets. It is saved with the current document. If you want to use it in another document then you have to save the current AI file and use that as a source library in the other document


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