User Guide Cancel

Add colors and gradients

  1. Illustrator User Guide
  2. Get to know Illustrator
    1. Introduction to Illustrator
      1. What's new in Illustrator
      2. Common questions
      3. Illustrator system requirements
      4. Illustrator for Apple silicon
    2. Workspace
      1. Workspace basics
      2. Learn faster with the Illustrator Discover panel
      3. Create documents
      4. Toolbar
      5. Default keyboard shortcuts
      6. Customize keyboard shortcuts
      7. Introduction to artboards
      8. Manage artboards
      9. Customize the workspace
      10. Properties panel
      11. Set preferences
      12. Touch Workspace
      13. Microsoft Surface Dial support in Illustrator
      14. Undo edits and manage design history
      15. Rotate view
      16. Rulers, grids, and guides
      17. Accessibility in Illustrator
      18. Safe Mode
      19. View artwork
      20. Use the Touch Bar with Illustrator
      21. Files and templates
    3. Tools in Illustrator
      1. Tools at a glance
      2. Select tools
        1. Selection
        2. Direct Selection
        3. Group Selection
        4. Magic Wand
        5. Lasso
        6. Artboard
      3. Navigate tools
        1. Hand
        2. Rotate View
        3. Zoom
      4. Paint tools
        1. Gradient
        2. Mesh
        3. Shape Builder
      5. Text tools
        1. Type
        2. Type on a Path
        3. Vertical Type
      6. Draw tools
        1. Pen
        2. Add Anchor Point
        3. Delete Anchor Point
        4. Anchor Point
        5. Curvature
        6. Line Segment
        7. Rectangle
        8. Rounded Rectangle
        9. Ellipse
        10. Polygon
        11. Star
        12. Paintbrush
        13. Blob Brush
        14. Pencil
        15. Shaper
        16. Slice
      7. Modify tools
        1. Rotate
        2. Reflect
        3. Scale
        4. Shear
        5. Width
        6. Free Transform
        7. Eyedropper
        8. Blend
        9. Eraser
        10. Scissors
        11. Dimension
    4. Generative AI (not available in mainland China)
      1. Generate a vector graphic using a text prompt
      2. Recolor your artwork using a text prompt
    5. Quick actions
      1. Retro text
      2. Neon glow text
      3. Old school text
      4. Recolor
      5. Convert sketch to vector
  3. Illustrator on the web (beta)
    1. Illustrator on the web (beta) overview
    2. Illustrator on the web (beta) FAQ
    3. Troubleshooting issues FAQ
    4. Keyboard shortcuts for Illustrator on the web (beta)
    5. Create and combine shapes on the web
    6. Add and edit text on the web
    7. Apply colors and gradients on the web
    8. Draw and edit paths on the web
    9. Work with cloud documents on the web
    10. Invite collaborators to edit on the web
  4. Illustrator on the iPad
    1. Introduction to Illustrator on the iPad
      1. Illustrator on the iPad overview
      2. Illustrator on the iPad FAQs
      3. System requirements | Illustrator on the iPad
      4. What you can or cannot do on Illustrator on the iPad
    2. Workspace
      1. Illustrator on the iPad workspace
      2. Touch shortcuts and gestures
      3. Keyboard shortcuts for Illustrator on the iPad
      4. Manage your app settings
    3. Documents
      1. Work with documents in Illustrator on the iPad
      2. Import Photoshop and Fresco documents
    4. Select and arrange objects
      1. Create repeat objects
      2. Blend objects
    5. Drawing
      1. Draw and edit paths
      2. Draw and edit shapes
    6. Type
      1. Work with type and fonts
      2. Create text designs along a path
      3. Add your own fonts
    7. Work with images
      1. Vectorize raster images
    8. Color
      1. Apply colors and gradients
  5. Cloud documents
    1. Basics
      1. Work with Illustrator cloud documents
      2. Share and collaborate on Illustrator cloud documents
      3. Share documents for review
      4. Upgrade cloud storage for Adobe Illustrator
      5. Illustrator cloud documents | Common questions
    2. Troubleshooting
      1. Troubleshoot create or save issues for Illustrator cloud documents
      2. Troubleshoot Illustrator cloud documents issues
  6. Add and edit content
    1. Drawing and dimensioning
      1. Drawing basics
      2. Edit paths
      3. Draw pixel-perfect art
      4. Draw with the Pen, Curvature, or Pencil tool
      5. Draw simple lines and shapes
      6. Draw rectangular and polar grids
      7. Draw and edit flares
      8. Image Trace
      9. Simplify a path
      10. Symbolism tools and symbol sets
      11. Adjust path segments
      12. Design a flower in 5 easy steps
      13. Create and edit a perspective grid
      14. Draw and modify objects on a perspective grid
      15. Use objects as symbols for repeat use
      16. Draw pixel-aligned paths for web workflows
      17. Measure and plot dimensions
    2. 3D objects and materials
      1. About 3D effects in Illustrator
      2. Create 3D graphics
      3. Map artwork over 3D objects
      4. Create 3D Text
      5. Create 3D objects
    3. Color
      1. About color
      2. Select colors
      3. Use and create swatches
      4. Adjust colors
      5. Use the Adobe Color Themes panel
      6. Color groups (harmonies)
      7. Color Themes panel
      8. Recolor your artwork
    4. Painting
      1. About painting
      2. Paint with fills and strokes
      3. Live Paint groups
      4. Gradients
      5. Brushes
      6. Transparency and blending modes
      7. Apply stroke on an object
      8. Create and edit patterns
      9. Meshes
      10. Patterns
    5. Select and arrange objects
      1. Select objects
      2. Layers
      3. Group and expand objects
      4. Move, align, and distribute objects
      5. Stack objects    
      6. Lock, hide, and delete objects
      7. Copy and duplicate objects
      8. Rotate and reflect objects
      9. Intertwine objects
      10. Create realistic art mockups
    6. Reshape objects
      1. Crop images
      2. Transform objects
      3. Combine objects
      4. Cut, divide, and trim objects
      5. Puppet Warp
      6. Scale, shear, and distort objects
      7. Blend objects
      8. Reshape using envelopes
      9. Reshape objects with effects
      10. Build new shapes with Shaper and Shape Builder tools
      11. Work with Live Corners
      12. Enhanced reshape workflows with touch support
      13. Edit clipping masks
      14. Live shapes
      15. Create shapes using the Shape Builder tool
      16. Global editing
    7. Type
      1. Add text and work with type objects
      2. Create bulleted and numbered lists
      3. Manage text area
      4. Fonts and typography
      5. Convert text within images into editable text
      6. Add basic formatting to text
      7. Add advanced formatting to text
      8. Import and export text
      9. Format paragraphs
      10. Special characters
      11. Create type on a path
      12. Character and paragraph styles
      13. Tabs
      14. Find missing fonts (Typekit workflow)
      15. Arabic and Hebrew type
      16. Fonts | FAQ and troubleshooting tips
      17. Create 3D text effect
      18. Creative typography designs
      19. Scale and rotate type
      20. Line and character spacing
      21. Hyphenation and line breaks
      22. Spelling and language dictionaries
      23. Format Asian characters
      24. Composers for Asian scripts
      25. Create text designs with blend objects
      26. Create a text poster using Image Trace
    8. Create special effects
      1. Work with effects
      2. Graphic styles
      3. Appearance attributes
      4. Create sketches and mosaics
      5. Drop shadows, glows, and feathering
      6. Summary of effects
    9. Web graphics
      1. Best practices for creating web graphics
      2. Graphs
      3. SVG
      4. Slices and image maps
  7. Import, export, and save
    1. Import
      1. Place multiple files
      2. Manage linked and embedded files
      3. Links information
      4. Unembed images
      5. Import artwork from Photoshop
      6. Import bitmap images
      7. Import Adobe PDF files
      8. Import EPS, DCS, and AutoCAD files
    2. Creative Cloud Libraries in Illustrator 
      1. Creative Cloud Libraries in Illustrator
    3. Save
      1. Save artwork
    4. Export
      1. Use Illustrator artwork in Photoshop
      2. Export artwork
      3. Collect assets and export in batches
      4. Package files
      5. Create Adobe PDF files
      6. Extract CSS | Illustrator CC
      7. Adobe PDF options
      8. Document info panel
  8. Printing
    1. Prepare for printing
      1. Set up documents for printing
      2. Change the page size and orientation
      3. Specify crop marks for trimming or aligning
      4. Get started with large canvas
    2. Printing
      1. Overprint
      2. Print with color management
      3. PostScript printing
      4. Print presets
      5. Printer's marks and bleeds
      6. Print and save transparent artwork
      7. Trapping
      8. Print color separations
      9. Print gradients, meshes, and color blends
      10. White Overprint
  9. Automate tasks
    1. Data merge using the Variables panel
    2. Automation with scripts
    3. Automation with actions
  10. Troubleshooting 
    1. Known issues
    2. Crash issues
    3. Recover files after crash
    4. File issues
    5. Supported file formats
    6. GPU device driver issues
    7. Wacom device issues
    8. DLL file issues
    9. Memory issues
    10. Preferences file issues
    11. Font issues
    12. Printer issues
    13. Share crash report with Adobe
    14. Improve Illustrator performance

Learn how to apply fill colors, gradients, and strokes to create captivating designs in Illustrator on the web (beta).

  Illustrator on the web (beta) is now available for testing and feedback.

Explore new features and share your thoughts.


The app is available as part of your Illustrator subscription.

Adding colors, gradients, and strokes to your blank canvas is the easiest way to spark magic into your designs. 
Illustrator on the web (beta) lets you apply color effects to your artwork and elevate your creations using quick and simple steps.

Fill color in Illustrator on the web (beta)

What is fill color in Illustrator on the web (beta)?

A fill is a color or gradient added
to a shape or an object in your design. You can use fill color to explore color blends or highlight specific areas in your design.

Gradients in Illustrator on the web (beta)

Is it easy to use gradients in Illustrator on the web (beta)?

Yes, you can experiment with different gradient types to emphasize text, simulate metallic surfaces, or add depth and three-dimensionality to your creations.

Strokes in Illustrator on the web (beta)

How can you use strokes to enhance your designs?

Strokes are outlines that define the shape of an object or path. You can use strokes to design logos, create borders, or add artistic flair to your artwork and make them stand out.

Try the hands-on tutorial in the app

Play this video for an introduction to the hands-on tutorial about adding colors, gradients, or strokes to your artwork.

Adobe Illustrator deeplink

Try it in the app
Now that you've watched the video, follow along with the tutorial to learn how to apply color and gradients.

Apply fill color

You can apply fill color to your object selections to differentiate elements in your artwork. You can also control the opacity and blending modes of the fill to create various visual effects.

Use the Fill tool to color your artwork.

  1. Select an object and then select the Fill tool from the toolbar.

  2. Select a Solid color or a Gradient from an assortment of colors using the Color wheel, HEX code, or Swatches.

Solid colors

Solid colors are single colors that you can use as a foundation for more complex designs and effects. These single colors have a uniform and consistent appearance, and you can apply them to shapes, text, or other elements in your artwork.

Select an object and use the Color wheel to pick and apply any color to your selection. You can also use the Color Picker   to pick and apply any color from another artwork.

Apply solid color using the Color panel.

  1. Select the HEX code and use the More menu   to choose a different color model.

  2. Select Swatches and use the More menu    to choose any color from the Grid or the List. Alternatively, you can also select a Solid color from the Color books

Apply a gradient

A gradient is a gradual blend of multiple colors or tints of the same color. Besides creating color blends, you can apply or modify a gradient to add depth or shadow effects to your object or selection using the Fill panel.

  1. Select the Fill tool from the toolbar.

  2. Select Gradient and then select Linear  Radial   , or Point   gradients.

  3. Select any color from the Color wheel, HEX code, or Swatches, and use the Gradient Annotator, the slider on your object, to change the color of the color stop.

  4. In the Gradient panel, drag the Opacity slider to modify your gradient.

Use the Linear Gradient to blend colors from one point to another along a straight path.

Use the Radial Gradient to blend colors from one point to another in a radial pattern.

Use the Point Gradient to blend colors around a color stop within the shape.

Modify Point Gradients

You don't need a Gradient Annotator to modify a Point   gradient. You can place color stops anywhere on your object and then apply the gradient by setting the spread, a circular area around the color stop.

Modify Linear and Radial Gradients

Use the Gradient Annotator, to modify Linear    and Radial   gradients. It consists of a starting point, a midpoint, an endpoint, and two color stops representing the starting and endpoints.

Apply and modify strokes

You can apply and modify strokes to change the appearance of the outlines of your objects. To make your artwork more dynamic and appealing, you can then adjust the stroke attributes to create various visual effects.

You can apply any stroke color to your selection from a wide range of colors using the Color wheelHEX code, or Swatches. You can also use the Color Picker   to pick and apply any color from another artwork.

Modify or edit strokes using the Properties panel.
Modify or edit strokes using the Properties panel.

  1. Select an object, and then select the Stroke tool from the toolbar. 

  2. Select Properties     > Stroke and then select a Solid or Dotted stroke.

  3. In the Stroke weight field, type the weight you want to set for the stroke.

  4. Adjust your stroke styles further using the Align Stroke, Cap, and Corner options.


When you create an object, the stroke of the object is set to 1 pt by default.

Pro tips and tricks

  • Hover over a tool to view a short clip and tip on how the tool works.
  • Add any selected color to the swatch and use it in your design for easy access.
  • Select the shape and then use the Contextual Task Bar to change the Stroke width   .
  • You can apply any stroke color to your selection using the Color wheelHEX code, or Swatches. You can also use the Color Picker   to pick and apply any color from another artwork.

Finalize your artwork

You can also take your artwork to Illustrator on the desktop and refine it by selecting the Open in desktop app button. Once your artwork is complete, select Share > Publish and export to save it in other formats (PNG, JPEG, AiT, Ai, PDF, and SVG) and share it with anyone, anywhere.

Have a question or an idea?

Ask the Community

If you have a question to ask or an idea to share, come and participate in Adobe Illustrator on the web (beta) Community. We would love to hear from you and see your creations.

More like this


Get help faster and easier

New user?

Adobe MAX 2024

Adobe MAX
The Creativity Conference

Oct 14–16 Miami Beach and online

Adobe MAX

The Creativity Conference

Oct 14–16 Miami Beach and online

Adobe MAX 2024

Adobe MAX
The Creativity Conference

Oct 14–16 Miami Beach and online

Adobe MAX

The Creativity Conference

Oct 14–16 Miami Beach and online