Illustrator on iPad- My First Experiences

Feb 18, 2021 | Design Tips

I’ve been using Illustrator since version 5.5, and we are now on version 25.0.1. I don’t consider myself an illustrator, but I use it for all my logos and other graphics designs.

Throughout the years, I’ve tried to used Wacom tables, but could never get the hang of looking down at what I was drawing and not seeing anything. If I looked at my monitor to follow along what my hand was doing, my hand would eventually get lost.

When Apple came out with the first-generation Pencil, I was ecstatic thinking I could now draw on my iPad. Well, my hopes and dreams were soon crushed with the Adobe Draw app. There were different pencils and/or brushes that I couldn’t figure out much to do with.

Even though Adobe came out with Illustrator on iPad app last October, I just got around to experimenting with it in the last couple of weeks and have been pleasantly surprised. I like to draw flowers, for greeting/note cards.

Using the desktop version, if I was drawing a daisy, I would draw one pedal and then copy and paste my way around a circle. No longer! In the iPad app, it’s the Repeat/Rotate tool to the rescue. Under the Repeat tool is the Rotate tool. In the example above, I drew one petal and let the app rotated how many I wanted. I used the same process with the circles. All done in a few minutes and perfectly spaced out.

There are some downfalls to the app and Adobe admits it and says, the app will continue to grow. Here are a couple:

  • The Rotate tool is not available in the Desktop app and if you use it you will get the following message:

“Repeat objects are not yet supported

This document contains repeat object created with Illustrator on iPad. Repeats is coming soon to desktop and until then you can use these objects as is. Any repositioning or modification expand and break a repeat.”

  • There is no Drop Shadow or Feathering option. Reading various reviews both options are important for many people. Adobe says there are coming.
  •  Missing also are brush options, something I use a lot on the desktop app.
  • At times it does seem a little glitchy. While creating and deleting layers it would freeze. The fix was simple. Close out the file, an advantage it auto saves and then reopen it.

The leaps and bounds Adobe have made with this app are great and I’ve enjoyed the little bit of drawing I’ve done so far. Once I finished adding the other objects to this piece, the only thing missing will be drop shadows. I’ll open it up in the desktop app and add them. Being sure not to reposition anything.

Coming soon will be step-by-step demonstrations on the app as I get more familiar with it.

I’d love to hear what others have to say on the Illustrator on iPad app.


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