How to create a colorful Infographic in Adobe Illustrator

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Sometimes we need to communicate difficult information or that might seem boring at first, but if we put it inside an infoographic we can make it more appealing. By using graphics, icons or even illustrations we can present the information in a clear way, making reading much easier to understand and retain. So today, we're going to learn how to create a numeric infographic which we'll use to get a clear vision of a theme. So let’s get started!

1. Preparing the new document

The first step is to create a new document (File>New) with the following values:

  • Dimensions: 800x600px
  • Color mode: RGB
  • Resolution: 72ppp

Activate the option “Align new objects to Pixel Grid”

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2. Create a background

Step 1

We'll start by creating a background with a rectangle that covers the whole artboard with the Rectangular marquee. Make sure that the layer is centered with the Align panel.

2-1a

Step 2

We'll copy and paste the background on top (Ctrl C+ Ctrl F) and apply a pattern to the fill color with Swatches>Patterns>Basic graphics>Dots/Lines. And on the Transparency panel, Color Dodge and 60% opacity.

2-2

3. Create numeric banners

Step 1

We'll make 6 rectangles (where we'll put the text later on), with the fill color we like and no stroke.

3-1

Step 2

Let's apply an Effect>Stylize>Drop Shadow to all the rectangles.

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3-2b
3-2c

Step 3

Add the numbers. I’m using  Caviar Dreams which I got from fontsquirrel.com. We'll convert the text into a shape Object>Expand, ungroup, Object>ungroup and add a Drop Shadow.

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3-3b
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Step 4

Adjust the banners with the number. We'll do this with the Add anchor point, adding as many points as we need and adjusting with the Direct Selection Tool until we get everything nicely integrated.

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4. Create the icons

We'll make 6 icons, one for each banner, that define or complete the information. In this case, we'll create our own icons, but you can find a lot of useful free icons on the web, like for example on Flaticon.

Step 1

ICON 1- This icon is made from basic geometric shapes with the Elliptical marquee and a rounded corner rectangle.

4-1a

ICON 2- We'll make the clock with the Pen tool and the Elliptical marquee.

4-1b

ICON 3- We'll do the same for the magnifying glass

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ICON 4- For the cogs, Ellipse, rectangle, Pathfinder>Combine

4-1d

ICON 5- For the speech bubbles, Ellipse, rectangle, pen, Pathfinder>Combine.

4-1e

ICON 6- And for the lightbulb Ellipse, rectangle, pen, Pathfinder>Expand

4-1f

**Don’t forget to group every icon when you're done with them and then Expand.

Step 2

Merge the icons, the flags and the numbers. We'll add  Effect>Outer glow.

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5. Add text

Step 1

Create a text box on each banner (I’ve used a PT Serif font, once again from Fontsquirrel) wherever we want the text to go. We'll also add a vertical text (Bebas) by rotating.

5-1

Step 2

Create a separation to organize the information, using the Pen tool and play around with the stroke widths. Expand.

5-2

6. Effects

Now we're going to create an effect that makes it look like the banners come out of the background.

Step 1

We'll create an elongated vertical ellipse and apply a Blur>Radial Blur. And then with the Eraser tool and Alt pressed, we delete half the ellipse.

6-1

Step 2

Now we'll apply the effect on the right side of the banners.

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Step 3

Now we'll copy and paste the same effect on top but with the blending mode Multiply.

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7. Final background effect

We'll make a rectangle the same size as the Artboard and we'll make sure it’s centered with the align panel. Then, change the blending mode to Multiply and apply a Blur>Radial.

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And we're done! Now we have our infographic ready to use. It’s a very versatile design which we can use for many different purposes. I hope you found it interesting and useful!

Enjoy!

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