User Guide Cancel

Touch Workspace

  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 scenes, subjects, and icons using text prompts
      2. Generate vector patterns using text prompts
      3. Generate vector shape fills using text prompts
      4. Recolor your artwork using text prompts
    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 and export
      1. Save artwork
      2. Export artwork
      3. Create Adobe PDF files
      4. Adobe PDF options
      5. Use Illustrator artwork in Photoshop
      6. Collect assets and export in batches
      7. Package files
      8. Extract CSS | Illustrator CC
      9. 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

Workspace layout and basics

The Touch workspace is an all-new reimagined, intuitive, and simplified workspace, designed to work with your Windows 8 -powered touch-enabled device. The workspace is optimized for easy, quick, and efficient touch-based interactions.

The new Touch workspace in Illustrator CC (October 2014)
The new Touch workspace in Illustrator CC (October 2014)

A. App bar B. Tool bar C. Control panel bar D. Document bar 

The layout has a cleaner interface that allows you to comfortably use a stylus or your finger tip to access the tools and controls of the Touch workspace. Some important notes while working with the Touch workspace:

  • Compared to the classic workspaces, panels are consolidated and reimagined to make using them easy
  • Annotator sizes are larger to eliminate issues related to accuracy. This makes it easier to work with widgets, control points, and handles
  • Drawing tools use a precise cursor to help pinpoint the exact origins and endings of paths
  • Panels like the Align panel have been redesigned and recreated for an intuitive approach to drawing and repositioning of objects
  • Illustrator-native gestures and Operating System gestures are supported

Switching between workspaces

Switching to the Touch workspace or back to a classic workspace is similar to switching between any of the previous workspaces. However, the interface has additional options to switch quickly, and some special conditions under which workspaces switch automatically.

Switch to the Touch workspace

Do one of the following while working in a classic workspace (for example, Essentials, Typography) in Illustrator CC 2014.1:

  • Tap in the App bar
  • From the Workspaces menu, choose Touch
  • Tap Window > Workspace > Touch
  • If attached, detach the keyboard for the device

Exit the Touch workspace

When you exit the Touch workspace, the last used workspace is activated. Do one of the following in the Touch workspace:

  • Tap in the app bar
  • From the workspaces menu, choose a different workspace.
  • If detached, attach a keyboard to the device

App bar

App bar in Illustrator
App bar in the Touch workspace

The App bar provides information and options related to the active Illustrator document:

  • File dropdown: Tap to create, close, save, or share documents.
  • Save As / Save button: Tap to save the open document.
  • Filename: Tap to view a list of open documents or close the current document.
  • Previous workspace: Tap to switch the previously used workspace
  • Workspace dropdown: Tap to view a list of available workspaces. Choose a workspace to switch to that workspace.
  • Help overlays icon: Tap to view the Help Overlays that describe various parts of the Touch workspace and the gestures supported in this workspace.

Tool bar

The Toolbar lists the various tools and basic editing actions (undo, redo, delete) available. Tap any tool to use it. 

Tool bar in Illustrator
The Tool bar in the Touch workspace

When you tap a Tool group, a drawer opens to display all the tools belonging to the group. Tap a tool in the group to select it.

Tools and Tool groups

Tools available in the Touch workspace are consolidated to best suit touch-enabled workflows:

  • Selection tool
  • Selection tools group: Direction Selection tool, Group selection tool.
  • Pen tools group: Curvature tool, Pen tool, Anchor Point tool.
  • Type group: Type tool, Touch Type tool.
  • Shaper tool: The Shaper tool. More about Shaper tool.
  • Shapes group: Rectangle tool, Rounded Rectangle tool, Ellipse tool.
  • Drawing tools group: Brush tool, Pencil tool, Stencil tool, Join tool.
  • Shape Builder tool
  • Free Transform tool
  • Undo, Redo, Delete buttons

Control panel

Control panel in Illustrator
The Control panel in the Touch Workspace

The Control panel consists of other panels that are available for the selected tool or object. Available panels are:

  • Color panel: Modify fill and stroke proxies using the RBG, CMYK, or Color picker tabs.
  • Stroke panel: Specify the weight or profile of a stroke.
  • Transparency panel: Choose blending modes or specify the opacity of an object.
  • Transform: Modify the shape of an object, or manipulate corners in Rounded Rectangles.
  • Align panel: Select objects and specify how they must align using this intuitive panel.
  • Context menu: Choose from various actions you can perform on a selected object.
  • Text panel: Specify font, font families, or the alignment of text in this panel.

Document bar

Document bar in Illustrator

The Document bar provides information and options about the currently open Illustrator document:

  • Artboard: Tap to view available artboards and tap an artboard name to switch to the artboard.
  • Artboard controls: Navigate between artboards or create an artboard.
  • View controls: View artboards, all at once, fitted to screen, or zoomed in at 100% magnification.


The Touch workspace provides gesture support to enable you to quickly work with objects drawn on your artboard:

  • Zoom in (increase magnification): Pinch outward to zoom in on the artboard.
  • Zoom out (reduce magnification): Pinch inwards to zoom out of the artboard.
  • Pan: Drag across to screen with two fingers to pan across the artboard.
  • Context widget: Tap and hold an object to bring up the Context widget.
  • Select objects (Selection tool): Tap an object, or Tap on the artboard and drag across objects to select.
  • Switch Selection / Drawing modes: Tap with two fingers to toggle between selection and drawing modes.

 Illustrator also supports Touch Bar, the multitouch display at the top of the MacBook Pro keyboard. For more information about Touch Bar fundamentals, see this Apple documentation page.

Related resources

Join the conversation

If you have a question to ask or an idea to share, come and participate in Adobe Illustrator Community. We'd love to hear from you.


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