If you regularly use Illustrator CC, you’ll know it’s got most of your design needs covered. However, that doesn’t mean it’s perfect.
The Illustrator CC 2019 update, released in mid-October, brings some new features that — while not revolutionary — should help you save time and make the design process more efficient.
The main new additions are Global Edits, Freeform Gradients, and Adobe Fonts Integration. However, smaller upgrades such as new viewing modes and scalable interfaces can help make the design process a little bit smoother.
Let’s look at the new features and what they do.
WebProof Plugin: Now Optimized for Illustrator CC 2019
New Illustrator features means a new WebProof plugin; allowing you to combine the design work efficiencies brought by Adobe with WebProof’s workflow optimizations.
A more efficient process — from design to project finalization — means less time spent on projects and potentially a lower overall cost. To see for yourself why the WebProof plugin is the perfect companion for professionals working with Illustrator CC 2019, download it here.
Illustrator CC 2019 New Features
Freeform Gradients: Easily Experiment with Gradients
Adding gradients to objects can add a level of realism to your design. The new Freeform Gradients feature lets you do this in a way that is both quick and easy. It works slightly differently to the existing gradient options.
To use Freeform Gradients, you need to select the option in the “Gradient” tab. The feature works by assigning color points to the part of the image you want your gradient to appear on. The gradient changes depending on how the color points are placed in relation to each other.
It is also possible to change the specifications of each color point. For example, you can adjust the color and the spread of the gradient — making it incredibly easy to experiment with new combinations until you settle on a design you like.
Global Edits: Save Time When Editing Similar Shapes
Global Edits aims to make it quicker to edit similar objects such as logos or icons. It does this by reflecting any change you make to one version of an object to all related objects in your document. The changes it works with include switching colors, editing shapes, and rotating the image.
To use the option, select a shape and then click “Start Global Edit” in the “Properties” panel. From here, you can choose whether you want the changes to be reflected across all your artboards, or only on specific boards within the document.
It will also let you choose how Illustrator selects similar objects; based either on appearance or size. Additionally, the program will match shapes even if the colors are different.
The feature could be a serious time saver if you an illustrator who often uses the same shape across multiple boards or you frequently work with logos and icons.
Custom Toolbar: Organize Your Tools
One of the main reasons to use Illustrator is all the tools Adobe includes in the program. As there are over 80 of them, it can be hard to keep track of the ones you like.
However, the new custom toolbar should make this much easier. You can now drag and drop tools from the tool menu into the custom toolbar, giving you quick access to them.
Another significant change is that Adobe has updated the tool menu, so tools are better organized and — potentially — easier for you to keep track of.
Adobe Fonts Integration: Access and Preview Thousands of Fonts Within Illustrator
Adobe Fonts integration is also one of the main features of the 2019 updates to InDesign CC. It makes it much easier to choose the correct style of text for your work by giving you access to all the Creative Cloud fonts from within Illustrator. This means you can now access over 14,000 fonts without having to download them separately.
All you need to do is click the “Find More” tab from within the “Fonts” menu. From here, you can view all the fonts that come with your Creative Cloud membership as well as filter fonts based on criteria such as their family or properties. Once you have a font you like, you can also choose to see similar fonts.
Another cool update is that you can now preview how the text you have selected will look in both the font menu and within your document. Once you choose a font you like the look of, select it within the menu and activate it.
Scalable Interface and True-size View: Adapt Illustrator to Your Monitor
Your monitor’s display can affect how your image is displayed. However, the new Scalable Interface feature allows Illustrator to identify the resolution of the monitor you are using and choose the optimal settings.
In a similar vein is True Size view. This feature adapts the scale to your display’s resolution so when you set the zoom to 100 percent, and it will reflect the artwork’s exact size when printed.
This allows you to see how an image will look which could help when selecting design elements such as the size of the images and text you use.
Presentation Mode: Quickly View Your Work
Presentation View is an option that turns your work into a slideshow. When you enter this mode, all the toolbars and borders disappear. Additionally, if you have multiple artboards in one document, you can flick through them without ever leaving presentation view using the arrows on your keyboard.
The mode is super useful for quickly checking out how your different designs look, or for showcasing work to clients.
Cut Costs and Save Time with Illustrator CC 2019 and WebProof
The above changes are designed to help you save time when using Illustrator. WebProof’s workflow optimizations can help you continue to work efficiently as your team finalized the document.
Download the WebProof Illustrator plugin here to see how it can help your organization.