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Intro to Adobe Illustrator

Lesson 10 of 12

Create and Apply Color Swatches


Intro to Adobe Illustrator

Lesson 10 of 12

Create and Apply Color Swatches


Lesson Info

Create and Apply Color Swatches

color swatches because we don't have many colors. And illustrator, when we started this up here, I want to show you how we can create color swatches and how we can apply them. So with this illustrator has a lot of different places where you can go when you can edit the color. We have our swatch panel on our color panel here, but we're gonna make this a simple is possible because it can get a little bit overwhelming with the number of color options in Illustrator. So we're gonna go ahead. We're gonna practice color here, and I could go to my properties panel and I see if I go in and select a shape here I have my fill click on the little Phil button and I can see my existing Swatch panel, which isn't much. But I can click on my mixer where I go in, and I can mix my colors as well. I can also click on the cheese grater and I can change the mixed mode so I can have rgb or C m y que and get those. And they can change those colors here. And I can actively change the color right there. Now, o...

ne of the problems with this. Is that what I select my object and I go in and I change the color right here. The problem is is that when I go back to my swatch panel, it actually doesn't put that swatch in my panel for future use. Okay, so, yes, I can set the fill. I can also go way. And I can do this stroke color as well, which is going to use the exact same panel here. I'm gonna call up the swatches panel because I want to do some swatch creation with color. So under window, all the way down to swatches here and here is my swatch panel. I'm gonna actually pull this off and closed the other panels here so we can see All right. I don't have many choices in here right now. When you started Illustrator, you'll have a lot more. I purposely limited this down. Here is we can add a whole lot more. A couple basic things. Different views here that we can have. We can have our list view. We can have our thumbnail view. And if you click on the cheese grater up above you can have a small medium and large thumbnail view. I'm gonna do a large thumbnail so we can see these colors a little bit better. Okay, easy way to create swatches, cheese grater, news watch. And I get my color picker or my sliders up here and I can go in and I can create sliders for these colors. And when I like that, then I could go ahead and click. OK, what's this? Add to my library. Well, when I create a color and illustrator, I may be working on other projects that require this color. It's a photo shop in design, and I don't wanna have to remember how I made this color. When I add this to my library, it will automatically add it to my library over here. And if I click, add to my library is gonna come up to my library over here. We're going to show you that in a second. These colors are then available in any adobe application that I open up the librarian and this library goes across all the applications so that I can pull that color into something else. So I'm gonna turn off my at the library here, But I'm gonna show you how that's done. So I've got my color. I picked that there. I click. OK, it shows up in by watch panel, and I can keep doing this with each and every individual color here. It does take a little bit of time. There you go. If you don't have that kind of time and you'd like a preset mix of colors, just go ahead and ready to use. You're gonna have a lot when you start up, illustrator. But I can also go down to my library down here in the lower left hand corner. Hundreds of pre done swatches. And I may be working with something, and I go into foods and I want something like vegetables. But it's gonna open up a floating panel here of all these fantastic color palettes here. If I want to put these into my swatches palette for use, I'm just gonna go in here and either drag the color directly in, or if I want the whole folder, I'm just gonna grab the whole folder, drag it right in. There is my colors. Now I have these colors for use. When I put them into my swatches panel keeping buying that when I go over here to my fill panel. This is an exact replica of my SWATCH panel. This watch panel here has more options and so on to create colors. I like to do that here to be able to go through and use those colors. Can you use this watch panel? Sure. I use this watch panel only because it's up here all the time and I don't have to go over here and click on something and then get to apply a color. I can go directly to my Swatch panel here. However, watch out for this. The one nice thing with dealing with the Properties panel is if I want to fill with color, I click on the Phil button and they come over here and fill that color. If I'd like a stroke that I can click on the stroke, call up the exact same panel and bring this up when I'm using the swatches panel itself and I click on a color say, Oh, I'd like to go ahead and change that stroke to blue. Why did it change the Phil Well? Because in the swatches panel here, you have to decide what is active. Is your fill active or is your stroke active? Whatever you click to bring to the front, that's what's active. So while this is nice because it separates it out, this is nice because you have the full reference. But you also have to remember to activate what that color is being used for filler stroke. You'll notice over here at the bottom of the control bar, it's also much larger as well. And when you click on your filling stroke over here, it also calls up your color panel here if you'd like to edit these colors. So keep in mind that this is one extra step that you can go through here and you can go ahead and fill or stroke using this watch panel. It's always up all the time, but keep in mind you do have to go in an activator. Fill in your stroke now one quick little shortcut right here. The letter X. If you don't want to go up here and select the filler the stroke simply type in the Letter X, and that's just going to go ahead and bring what's not active, active right there so x you can see brings them to the front, sends them to the back. A very common problem that I have. I go in and I select. I think the Phyllis elected. So I add this to the Phil. It's like that wasn't right. And I want to swap these colors for the Phil and the stroke. I could go into my tool bar, you knows to get the little swap arrow right here. But I don't have it here in my swatches. If I hover over the swap arrow, it also tells you Shift X will flip them. It's something that I like, you know, can't hurt for the shortcuts right there. And that actually flips those colors right there. If you do not want any fill or stroke, you can always go and turn off the stroke. Wait here, or you can just simply say whatever's active Stroker Phil. I can say you know what? I do not want that fill or stroke to be active. I think whatever that may be. But I can always set the weight of that stroke over here in the stroke panel. The shortcut for no Phil or no stroke is select either the filler, the stroke and then user slash key. If you look at your keyboard on the question markers that slash right there, that's slash on the way I remember it is you got this forward slash right here. And I just use the slash key. And that will shut off. Whatever is active so kind of cool stuff. So that works really well, I like that. I like having my swatches panel up nice and big, but you can go ahead and have this item over here to get those options. Now, one more thing we can do with the appearance panel is opacity. I may be working, and I would like some of these shapes to go ahead and work with each other to show through each other. Now, I can go into my fill here, but I don't have the ability to go ahead and adjust the opacity of this. But I can right here. And the opacity allows me to take whatever I've done and allows it to actually show through so we can see something else behind it, which is great, because once you start doing creation and illustrator here, you may wanna have some transparent items very easily done with the capacity slider right there. Works really good. Now I've gone ahead and I've created some backpacks and these air, actually on my blog's. So if you want to know how to do this, I do these a couple of months ago and you can take you through step by step to actually see. So I did these for a client and the clients like, Great. I'd love to have you go in and give me five different colors so that they look really good and it's like, Wow, Okay, going through here and changing the colors on this stuff, This would be crazy. I'd have to go in and I have to get into these things and they're all grouped together. And it's like, Oh, my gosh, How do we get in here and get to this? Well, a couple things. When I create my objects and I have them all together, I would probably end up grouping them together. So everything moves together, and I can do that by under the Object menu choosing group, which is command G. When I group all these together, This allows me to move them all together. But trying to get into this and just change one color is really difficult. I don't wanna group at all because then things may change the arrangements. I just want to get into this. So here's a cool trick that I love to use. If you click on a group, I don't have to group to get into it. I can click on, um, a zoom in here so we can see this a little bit better. And then I'm gonna double click on the object here and you'll notice when I double click on something and you may have done this yourself. Everything else on the screen goes gray, and what I've done is I've gone into what's called isolation. I have gone and I've clicked into my group and isolated this section, and the more I double click on my sections, it will isolate this without ungroomed ing it in taking it all apart. Now, one of in isolation mode, it is truly isolated from everything else. If I would like to change the attributes of this one shape, I could go in here and I could change those attributes just to that one shape without on grouping it. Isolation no. Gives me the gray bar across the top to get out of isolation. Note. I can click on this arrow to get back through the multiple clicks that brought me in or simply hit Escape, right. They can change that color. But could you imagine going in and changing this color on all these shapes all the time and making sure you get the same? Absolutely not. We're going to use the re color artwork. I'm gonna undo this here so that we don't have that. Here we go. I'm gonna use the re color artwork, and this is slickers can be if you've ever tried to use the recall, er artwork. And it didn't work for you. I understand because it could be a little obtuse if you've never used it. Great. Let me show you the right way. I'm gonna select my artwork. Yes, it's all grouped together, Been a re color. My artwork here and one of the things I can do over my properties panel is I have my re color artwork button or I can also go into the edit menu, edit colors and I can choose re color artwork. Either way is gonna work. Okay, Let me just use the quick action here and choose re color. I come up with this box and I have all these colors here, and it's like, Oh, my gosh, what do I do with this? Well, if you want to go in and you want to target a very specific color in here, say the blue and you've got the blues and you would like to go ahead and you would like to change just the blue color. Here, you can go in and you can double click on the blue right here. And you can change that to something else. And it changes it right there. So I don't have the ungroomed hunt them all down. Select all these little pieces, and it's like, Wow, just at one color. If I want to do that, I don't want to do just that. One color here. But you can do that If you wanted to. I'm gonna click Cancel cause I want to get out of that. But yes, you can. You can go and change that color any color. Just double click on the new color here and you get that color change, fill, stroke, whatever. I want to change this globally overall. So I'm going to go up to the edit tab right here and I get my color wheel. Now I want to change all these colors together so that I'm not changing one color. I could just by clicking on any one of these little wheels right here and moving these around and is going to target just that one color and change it. But if I'd like to change all the colors together, I'm going toe link them all together here that's now linked together. And I could go through and I could move these all around the wheel. And Aiken, get this beautiful harmony that I started off with. And I can change these colors overall and shift that color now. I could go ahead and go more intense or more saturated here, and I can also go in and I can change the colors overall on that one color. If I so choose to kind of change that and edit that and it's like, Wow, OK, so this is pretty awesome. I could go through and do a global color shift and show them exactly how these things are going to look without having to go in and edit everything. I love the re color artwork. It's a lot of fun. Now there's videos on this, too. This is a really quick tutorial, but I just wanted to show you how that re color, artwork and work. Because, yeah, it can be super daunting. When you look at this, you look at this and you're like, Oh, my gosh, I don't understand. Well, there it is, in a nutshell. So I was able to go through and re color my artwork without having to take it all apart, fills strokes, put it all back together and reassemble it. Get that all done. Super awesome. Tohave colors, re coloring artwork.

Class Description


  • Navigate the Illustrator workspace
  • Draw and transform shapes
  • Create and apply color swatches
  • Choose and edit the perfect font for your project
  • Create a project from start to finish in Illustrator


The world’s top designers use Adobe® Illustrator® for its powerful, vector-based drawing environment – and now you can too. In this short course, Jason Hoppe takes you through the Illustrator basics to take a project from beginning to end. Learn helpful shortcuts and how to use core powerful tools to create and customize the graphics you need. Jason will show you how to create a new document, navigate the interface with ease, draw and manipulate shapes, apply color and text and save your file to be used across Adobe platforms. In Intro to Adobe Illustrator, learn the fundamentals to create high-quality vector illustration.


This class is for beginner designers interested in creating logos or graphics, freelancers building their business and brand, and anyone new to the Adobe Cloud.


Adobe Illustrator CC 2019


An Adobe® Certified Expert and Adobe® Certified Instructor, Jason Hoppe has accrued more than 17 years’ experience in high-end production training, photo retouching, color correction, and creative workflow management. Active in high-end electronic production since the industry’s inception, he’s also taught prepress and electronic design to hundreds of Seattle-based creative professionals and aspiring designers in various settings, including one-on-one tutoring, classroom instruction, live webcasting, and large group training. A founding Instructor at Creative Live, he currently teaches the Adobe® Creative Suite at The School of Visual Concepts, Luminous Works and Seattle Central College.

You can find Jason’s website and blog with Adobe Illustrator tutorials at


  1. Class Introduction

    Entering Illustrator: what are the interface basics you need to know? Jason gives you a quick overview of toolbars, panels and notable features of the newest version of Illustrator.

  2. Zoom and Navigation

    Learn how to use different zoom options to navigate the workspace with ease and efficiency. Jason shows you how to use floating and nested panels, helpful shortcuts, and how to access presets and customize your workspace.

  3. Create a New Document

    Beginning a project presents options: do you use templates, presets, or custom options? Jason models how to create a new document.

  4. Drawing Shapes

    Logo design begins with the shape builder tool; learn how to use one of the most fundamental drawing tools in the graphic design toolkit. In this lesson, Jason demonstrates not only how to draw basic shapes, but also how to toggle between variations, how to use the selection tool, and the power of corner widgets in creating vector graphics.

  5. Properties Panel

    Learn why the properties panel is your home base and how to best utilize it.

  6. Live Shapes and Transform Panel

    Go beyond basic shape building: the transform panel offers what you need to create more complex shapes in vector art. What possibilities does a live shape offer? Which features can you toggle on or off? Watch Jason model shape transformation in real time.

  7. Drawing Lines

    Switch drawing modes from shapes to lines, as Jason teaches you how to draw lines and arcs, use the stroke panel to edit lines, and utilize the curvature tool. Learn how to easily create dotted lines and different line variations available in Illustrator.

  8. Combine Shapes

    How do you build a coffee cup out of simple shapes? Learn to add and subtract shapes and see shapes in a different way; in this lesson Jason models creating complex figures and step by step icon design.

  9. Transform Shapes

    Professional graphic designers don’t waste time painstakingly drawing complex shapes: learn how to create bursts, gears, splatters, and other shapes in a matter of seconds. Jason will teach you how to rotate, resize, duplicate, change, and group shapes together.

  10. Create and Apply Color Swatches

    Why should you use the color swatches panel? How can you quickly create different colored mock-ups of the same object? Jason shows you how to create new colors, apply them, and recolor artwork without time-consuming editing. Learn how to access your custom colors across the platform in Adobe Photoshop or InDesign as well.

  11. Choosing Fonts and Editing Text

    In this lesson, Jason demonstrates how to choose type, edit text, add color, and navigate through properties panel text options. What is the difference between point vs. paragraph text? What are the limitations of each? Jason models managing text challenges.

  12. Saving Your Files

    In closing, Jason shows you to save in different file formats, export file formats, and export assets to asset libraries if you want to work on a specific item in another Adobe application.


Pattianne Pascual

This is magnificent! What a beautiful gift. I am 56 and always learning. This free class inspired me even more. I will be telling everyone about creative live,sharing and urging others to buy some of these great classes and bundles. Thank you so very much,again and again.i look forward to taking classes on a regular basis.

Sherrie Alexander

Jason was super knowledgeable, made working in illustrator fun and simplified . Love his easy to follow instructions. As we all know starting up in illustrator can be overwhelming. Thank you so much I needed this!


Good course, very basic though. Although I wished more details could have been added. Jason's explanations were very good and thorough..