Clipping Mask Illustrator – Be creative

Clipping Mask Illustrator

Written by Mejba Biplob

I am a passionate and experienced professional photo editor with over a decade of experience in the industry. I have an eye for capturing life’s most precious moments and using my skills to create beautiful images that last forever. In addition to photography, I also teach Photoshop and other photo editing software as well as providing creative consultation on how best to showcase your photography work online.

September 27, 2017

One design software for graphics professionals that has proven very useful is the Adobe Illustrator and it happens to be one of many programs the adobe creative suite offers users. This is a leading program as far as graphic design is concerned. Instead of using the pixel-based graphic, this program makes use of vector graphics and this makes it a perfect program for the print and web. Every designer just knows they must be familiar with the program as you can’t avoid this program as far as professional graphic design is concerned. One of the terms usually associated with the Adobe Illustrator is what is known as Clipping Mask. Let’s take a look at what it means and how you can create using the Adobe Illustrator.


What is Clipping Mask

Clipping Mask allows you to be able to fill up an enclosed shape with a designed graphic or an image that perfectly fits inside such shape, irrespective of its complexity. Also, we can say that it is an object that masks other artwork with its shape. In effect, the artwork is clipped to the shape of the mask. When this happens, areas lying within the shape are the only visible. Here’s how to create a Clipping mask in Adobe Illustrator in the following few steps.



Step #1

Open your Adobe Illustrator


Step #2

You will immediately receive a prompting Illustrator to declare name and size of a file, together with other specifications of file/ document.


Step #3. 

A panel tool appears in a vertical manner displaying the icon on the left side. It is important that you familiarize yourself with the functions of the icon.


Step #4. 

At this point, you will be required to provide a photograph or an image that will be in the shape. This image or photo should be ethically sourced – either purchasing the right to use or crediting the artist.


Step #5.

Save the photo or image once you decide on it. Make sure you take note of the location you saved.


Step #6. 

Back to Illustrator and Click >File > Place. This command presents a dialog box; now select the photo you intend to put in the program according to step 5 above.


Step #7.

Resize the image or photo you have selected to your desired specifications. This is done using the “handles” on the edges of the image.


Step #8. 

Now it’s time for the image you selected to be nested by either using the pen tool to make a shape or choose from the preloaded shapes on the “rectangle tool”.


Step #9  

Once the shape is nested, place it on the top of your graphic or image. This is the order of stacking.


Step #10

Select the shape and the image. To do this, hold your cursor down and one dotted triangle appears and that allows you to simultaneously select the shape and image.


Step #11

Right-click on the selected image and then click on  “Make clipping mask”. Now you have a perfectly punched image.


Whether it is for an enhanced appearance or for emphasis, clipping mask Illustrator is a great way to make beautiful graphics.




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