How To Use Live Paint In Illustrator: A Tutorial

If you are an illustrator, designer, or artist, Adobe Illustrator is a powerful tool for creating vector graphics. One of the features that makes Illustrator stand out is Live Paint, a tool that allows you to color in graphics quickly and easily. In this tutorial, we will walk you through the basics of using Live Paint in Illustrator.

What is Live Paint?

Live Paint is a feature in Adobe Illustrator that allows you to color in graphics with ease. It is a way of creating shapes that are filled with color, rather than creating individual paths and filling them in one by one. With Live Paint, you can quickly create complex shapes and color them in with just a few clicks.

How to Create a Live Paint Group

To use Live Paint, you first need to create a Live Paint group. Here’s how:

  1. Create a new document in Adobe Illustrator.
  2. Draw a shape using the Shape tool.
  3. Select the shape and go to Object > Live Paint > Make.
  4. The shape will now be enclosed by a Live Paint group.

How to Use Live Paint

Once you have created a Live Paint group, you can start using Live Paint to color in your graphic. Here’s how:

  1. Select the Live Paint Bucket tool from the toolbar.
  2. Click on the color you want to use from the Swatches panel.
  3. Click on the area of the shape you want to fill with color.
  4. Continue filling in areas with color until your graphic is complete.

Using Live Paint with Multiple Shapes

Live Paint is particularly useful when working with complex graphics made up of multiple shapes. Here’s how to use Live Paint with multiple shapes:

  1. Select all the shapes you want to include in the Live Paint group.
  2. Go to Object > Live Paint > Make.
  3. Use the Live Paint Bucket tool to fill in each shape with color.
  4. When you’re done, you can use the Direct Selection tool to adjust individual shapes within the Live Paint group.

Tips for Using Live Paint

Here are some tips to help you get the most out of Live Paint in Illustrator:

  • Use the Tab key to switch between areas that can be filled in with Live Paint.
  • Use the Eyedropper tool to pick up colors from existing graphics.
  • Use the Live Paint Selection tool to select and move individual areas within the Live Paint group.


What is the difference between Live Paint and Live Trace in Illustrator?

Live Paint is a tool for coloring in graphics, while Live Trace is a tool for tracing raster images and converting them into vector graphics.

Can I use Live Paint with text in Illustrator?

No, Live Paint does not work with text in Illustrator.

Can I use Live Paint with gradients in Illustrator?

Yes, you can use Live Paint with gradients in Illustrator. Simply apply the gradient to the shape before creating the Live Paint group.

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