Using the Live Paint Function in Illustrator to Modify Graphics for eLearning Courses


Here are some tips for using the Live Paint function in Illustrator to modify graphics for eLearning courses. Sometimes once you’ve downloaded a vector line illustration from a stock graphics site, you may decide it would look better with colour.

Most vector graphics handle colour by having every area to be filled with colour as its own separate vector object. So, anything you need coloured normally needs to be a vector shape, then you select the shape and change the fill colour. But if your graphic isn’t completely composed of separate vector objects, you won’t be able to change the colour in the areas that doesn’t have its own vector shape.



For instance, this graphic only has the 3 square vectors – the triangle can’t be coloured in because it’s not a vector object.

You could create a vector shape for every part of your graphic that needs to be coloured, however, Adobe Illustrator has an easy function to colour in areas that aren’t closed shapes.

Using Live Paint

To use Live Paint, first select all parts of the graphic that you want to colour in. Then select Object from the top menu bar, select the Live Paint option, and select Make. This will enable all spaces in your graphic to be filled in with the Live Paint Bucket. You can swap to the Live Paint Bucket from the pull down menu from the Shape Builder Tool. Once you’ve enabled the Live Paint Bucket tool, you can select a colour with it, and then click on any part of the Live Paint Object you’ve created to ‘colour in’ that part of your graphic.



Live Paint even works with objects that aren’t fully touching. You can set the Gap Options in the Live Paint Menu for the colour to stop at gaps of a minimum distance you can customize.



This is a particularly effective feature, when you are looking to modify graphics to make them work in your eLearning course. For more information about Pathways and the eLearning courses we develop, email us at info@pathwaysinc.ca or phone us at 1-888-961-6011.

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