Artboard options

You open the Artboard Options dialog box by double-clicking the Artboard tool , or clicking the Artboard tool and then clicking Artboard Options button  in the Control panel.

Preset

Specifies artboard dimensions. These presets set the video ruler pixel aspect ratio appropriately for the specified output.

Width and Height

Specifies the size of the artboard.

Orientation

Specifies portrait or landscape page orientation.

Constrain Proportions

Keeps the aspect ratio of the artboard intact if you manually resize it.

X: and Y: Position

Specifies the position of the artboard according to Illustrator’s workspace rulers. To view these rulers, choose View > Show Rulers.

Show Center Mark

Displays a point in the center of the artboard.

Show Cross Hairs

Displays cross lines through the center of each side of the artboard.

Show Video Safe Areas

Displays guides that represent the areas that fall inside the viewable area of video. You want to keep all text and art that must be viewable to users inside the video safe areas.

Video Ruler Pixel Aspect Ratio

Specifies the pixel aspect ratio used for the video rulers.

Fade Region Outside Artboard

Displays the area outside of the artboard a darker shade than the area inside the artboard when the Artboard tool is active.

Update While Dragging

Keeps the area outside of the artboard darker as you drag to resize the artboard. If this is not selected, the outside area displays in the same color as inside the artboard while resizing.

Artboards

Indicates how many artboards exist.

Artboards panel

The Artboards panel allows you to perform various artboard operations such as:

  • Add, reorder, rearrange, and delete artboards

  • Reorder and renumber artboards

  • Select and navigate through multiple artboards

  • Specify artboard options such as presets, Artboard size, and relative artboard position

Artboards panel
Artboards panel

A. Up Arrow  B. Down Arrow C. Add new artboards D. Delete artboards 
  • To access the Artboards panel, click Window > Artboards.

  • To add artboards, do any one of the following:

    • Click the New Artboard icon at the bottom of the Artboards panel.

    • Select the New Artboard option from the Artboards panel menu (flyout menu) of the Artboards panel.

  • To delete a single artboard or multiple artboards, do the following:

    • Select the artboard to delete. To delete multiple artboards, press Shift key, and click the artboards listed in the Artboards panel.

    • Click the Delete Artboard icon at the bottom of the Artboards panel or select the Delete option from the Artboards panel menu (flyout menu). To delete multiple non-contiguous artboards, press Ctrl (Windows) or Command (Mac OS) key and click the artboards from the Artboards panel.

  • To rearrange artboards in the Artboards panel, select the Rearrange Artboards option from the Artboards panel menu (flyout menu). Notice, however, that rearranging the artboards does not change the order the artboards.

  • To duplicate artboards, do the following:

    • Select the artboard that you want to duplicate. You can also duplicate artboards by dragging one or more artboards on to the new artboard button in Artboards panel.

    • From the Artboards panel menu, select Duplicate.

  • To reset the artboard options, such as presets, artboard position, and display, select Artboards Options from the Artboards panel menu (flyout menu).

Create an artboard

  1. Do any of the following:
    • To create a custom artboard, select the Artboard tool , and drag in the workspace to define the shape, size, and location.

    • To use a preset artboard, double-click the Artboard tool, select a preset in the Artboard Options dialog box, and click OK. Drag the artboard to position it where you want.

    • To create an artboard within an active artboard, hold down Shift and drag using the Artboard tool.

    • To duplicate an existing artboard, select the Artboard tool, click to select the artboard you want to duplicate, and click the New Artboard button in the Control panel ; then click where you want to place the duplicated artboard. To create multiple duplicates, Alt-click as many times as you want. Or, using the Artboard tool, Alt-drag (Windows) or Option-drag (Mac OS) the artboard you want to duplicate.

    • To duplicate an artboard with the contents, select the Artboard tool, click to select the Move/Copy Artwork With Artboard icon on the Control panel , press Alt (Windows) or Option (Mac OS), and then drag.

    If you want the artwork to contain a bleed, make sure that there’s enough artwork beyond the artboard rectangle to accommodate the bleed.

  2. To commit the artboard and exit the artboard-editing mode, click a different tool in the Tools panel or click Esc.

Delete an artboard

  • Click the artboard and press Delete, click Delete  in the Control panel, or click the Delete icon  in an artboard’s upper-right corner. You can delete all but the last remaining artboard.

Select and view artboards

  1. Select the Artboard tool .
  2. Do any of the following:
    • Click an artboard to make it active. (Clicking in or drawing over an artboard using a different tool will also make the Artboard tool active.) If artboards overlap, the artboard with the left edge closest to the click location becomes the active artboard.

    • To navigate between artboards, press Alt (Windows) or Option (Mac OS) and click an arrow key.

    • To view artboards and their contents as outlines, right-click and choose Outline. To see artwork again, right-click and choose Preview.

Edit artboards

You can create multiple artboards for your document, but only one can be active at a time. When you have multiple artboards defined, you can view them all by selecting the Artboard tool. Each artboard is numbered for easy reference. You can edit or delete an artboard at any time, and you can specify different artboards each time you print or export.

  1. Select the Artboard tool , click to select an artboard.
  2. Do any of the following:
    • To resize the artboard, position the pointer on an edge or corner until the cursor changes to a double-sided arrow, and then drag to adjust. Or, specify new Width and Height values in the Control panel.

    • To change the orientation of the artboard, click the Portrait or Landscape button in the Control panel.

    • To rotate between artboards, press Alt (Windows) or Option (Mac OS) and click an arrow key.

    • To view artboards and their contents as outlines, right-click and choose Outline. To see artwork again, right-click and choose Preview.

Move an artboard

  1. Select the Artboard tool and click to select an artboard.
  2. Do one of the following:
    • To move the artboard and its contents, click to select the Move/Copy Artwork With Artboard icon on the Control panel , and then position the pointer in the artboard and drag. Or, specify new X and Y values in the Control panel.

    • To move the artboard without its contents, click to deselect the Move/Copy Artwork With Artboard icon on the Control panel, and then position the pointer in the artboard and drag. Or, specify new X and Y values in the Control panel.

Reorder artboards

In the Artboards panel, you can use the Up and Down Arrows at the bottom of the panel to reorder the artboards. However, reordering artboards in the Artboards panel, does not reorder the artboards in the work area.

Rearrange artboards

To fit all artboards in view, you can rearrange artboards using the Grid by Row, Grid by Column, Arrange by Row, and Arrange by Column options.

To rearrange artboards, do the following:

  1. Click the Artboards panel menu (flyout menu) and select the Rearrange Artboards option.

  2. In the Rearrange Artboards dialog box, select the layout. The options are:

    Grid by Row

    Arranges multiple artboards in the specified number of rows. Specify the number of rows in the Rows box. The default value creates the most square appearance possible with the specified number of artboards.

    Grid by Column

    Arranges multiple artboards in the specified number of columns. Choose the number of columns from the Columns menu. The default value creates the most square appearance possible with the specified number of artboards.

    Arrange by Row

    Arranges all the artboards in a single row.

    Arrange by Column

    Arranges all the artboards in a single column.

    Change to Right-to-Left Layout/Change to Left-to-Right Layout

    Arranges the artboards from left to right or right to left. By default, artboards are arranged from left to right.

    note: If you select the Change to Right-to-Left Layout option, the Grid by Row and Grid Column options change to Right-to-Left Grid by Row and Right-to-Left Grid by Column.

  3. Specify the spacing between the artboards. This setting applies to both horizontal and vertical spacing.

  4. Select the Move Artwork with Artboard option to move the artwork whenever the artboards location changes.

Additionally, an artboard within an artboard is treated like a crop area and is moved along with the containing artboard.

Customize artboard names

Each artboard can now be given a custom name, when in artboard edit mode.

To assign a custom name to an artboard, do the following:

  1. Select the Artboard Tool to edit the artboard.

  2. Select the artboard and specify the artboard name in the Name box of the Artboard Control Panel.

    Alternatively, you can provide a custom name in the Name field of the Artboard Options dialog box. To open the dialog box, click Artboard Options in the Artboards Panel menu (flyout menu). Click OK to commit the new name for the chosen artboard.

The new artboard name appears on the upper-left side of the artboard. The custom name also shows up in the Artboard Navigation field and drop-down next to document’s status area.

If you assign a custom name to artboards, these names are added as suffix to the filename while saving artboard specific files to all formats.

Artboard control panel
Enter a custom name for an artboard in the Control panel.

Note:

To return to the default name, clear the name of the artboard from the Name field in the Control panel.

Set reference points for artboards (9-point referencing)

To set reference points for artboards, use the Artboard Options dialog box or the Artboard options in the Control panel.

This option allows you to hinge a corner or center of an artboard while its size is being changed.

Display artboard rulers, center mark, cross hairs, or safe area

You can choose to display a center mark, cross hairs, video safe markers, and rulers around an artboard. Rulers are useful when you’re working with art intended for export to video. The numbers on the rulers reflect device-specific pixels, regardless of the measurement unit specified in preferences. The default Video Ruler Pixel Aspect Ratio (VPAR) for Illustrator is 1.0 (for square pixels)—this value changes according to the preset you choose either in the Artboard Options dialog box or the New Document dialog box.

If you’re using nonsquare pixels, the ruler provides for easier device-specific pixel calculations. For example, if you specify an artboard of 100 x100 Illustrator points, and you want to know the exact size in device-dependent pixels before exporting the file for use in an NTSC DV Widescreen, you can set the video ruler in Illustrator to use a video ruler pixel aspect ratio of 1.2 (for wide pixels) and the ruler will reflect the change and display the artboard as 83 x100 device pixels (100/1.2 = 83.333).

Artboard with rulers
Artboard with rulers

Display center mark, cross hairs, or video safe areas

The center mark, cross hairs, and video safe area are video properties that assist you in creating videos. To display these properties:

  1. Double-click the Artboard tool  in the Tools panel, or, with the Artboard tool active, click the Artboard Options icon  in the Control panel.
  2. In the Display section, select the options you’d like displayed in your artboards.

    Note:

    You can also set or remove the center point by clicking the Show Center Mark icon  in the Control panel.

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