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How to create a lovely boating illustration

Beginner level Adobe Illustrator Adobe Illustrator

New document and set up

Step 1

Press Ctrl + N to create a New Document. Set the units to pixels and the Artboard to 800x600 px. Then in Advanced options, select RGB and set the Resolution to 72 ppi.

Go to Preferences (Ctrl + K) and input a value of 1 px in Keyboard Increment. Press OK.

You can activate the Info panel (Window > Info) to preview the size and position of your objects. Remember to set the measurement units to pixels in Edit > Preferences > Units.

How to create the boat

We’ll start by drawing the scene inside a circle.

Step 1

Start by making a 296x296 px ellipse with the Ellipse Tool (L) and fill it with this color: #FEEFD8. Then take the Pen Tool (P) and draw two mountains (#FDDFB1). Select both shapes with the Shape Builder tool (Shift + M) and delete the parts outside of the ellipse.

Step 2

Now draw a rectangle about halfway down the circle (#29D3FF) and then add ellipses all along the top of the rectangle. Select all of them and apply Minus Front to the rectangle from the Pathfinder panel. Finally, get rid of the parts that are outside of the circle with the Shape Builder tool (Shift + M).

Step 3

Now draw the boat with the Pen tool (P) and use this color: #FFFFFF. Then, slightly round the corners using Live Corners with the Direct Selection Tool (A).

Step 4

Now draw the top part of the boat (#FBB03B) using the Pen Tool (P) and slightly round the top corners. Draw another rectangle the same way (#F7931E) on the bottom of the boat and use the Shape Builder tool again to fit it into the boat.

Step 5

Draw the windows using the Rounded Rectangle tool on the boat, the cabin, the prow and right at the bottom of the boat too.

Step 6

Now we’ll make the mast using a long rectangle (#23B9E0). Then, with the Pen tool (P), draw a sail (#FFFFFF), and another blue one (#0071BC) and the flag (#D9821A).

Step 7

Then draw two small rounded rectangles (#736357) near the cabin.

Step 8

Now we’re going to make the waves on the bottom of the boat by duplicating (Ctrl + C > Ctrl + F) the waves me made for the sea and then bringing them to front (Shift + Ctrl + ]). Adjust the scale with the Selection tool (V) until they fit at the bottom of the boat.

Step 9

Draw some more waves in the sea making the letter “W” with the Pen tool (P) and a stroke weight of 2 px (#FFFFFF). Then, round the corners using the Live Corners with the Direct Selection Tool (A), make a few copies and place them in the water.

Step 10

Now, we’re going to make the clouds in the sky and a sun. To do this, draw two small ellipses (#FFFFFF) with the Ellipse Tool (L). Then draw a straight line that crosses both ellipses with the Line Segment tool (/).

Take the Shape Builder tool (Shift + M) and delete all the shapes underneath the straight line you just drew. Group the cloud (Ctrl + G) and place some copies around the scene. Finally, draw another ellipse (#FBB03B) for the sun.

Step 11

Make a copy of the background ellipse (Ctrl + C > Ctrl + F) and bring to front (Shift + Ctrl + ]). Then, with the Direct Selection tool (A), delete the top section of the ellipse, leaving a half circle or arch and remove the fill color so you’re just left with a stroke.

No apply a stroke style from the top panel and a stroke weight of 2 px.

Step 12

The next step is to expand the appearance of the stroke (Object > Expand Appearance). Then Ungroup (Shift + Ctrl + G) the object to be able to modify the elements inside. Change the fill colors to the ones indicated below.

Step 13

Select the top banner and duplicate it (Ctrl + C > Ctrl + F). Remove the fill color and apply a stroke fill (#FFFFFF) with a width of 2 px. The apply an Offset of -7 px in Effects > Path > Offset Path.

With the Pen tool (P) add points on the edges to make the horizontal lines of the banner.

Step 14

Now draw the strokes on the rest of the banner using the Pen tool (P) with a width of 2 px.

Step 15

We’re going to create a text on the semi-circle by firstly duplicating the bottom arch (Ctrl + C > Ctrl + F). And then using the Type tool (T), click on the arch and write “SUMMER BOATING” and apply the settings as shown in the image below.

Add two small ellipses (#FFFFFF) to either side of the text.

Step 16

To finish up, we’re going to create some lines that radiate from the badge. First, double click on the background ellipse to enter Isolate Mode. Create a stroke with the Pen tool with a stroke weight of 3 px (#FDDFB1) and fix the anchor point in the middle of the circle, duplicating every 30º with the Rotation tool (R) and Alt –clicking on the anchor point.

Repeat the same process with a shorter stroke of this color: #FEEFD8.

Step 17

Then, select all the strokes and group them (Ctrl + G). Press Escape to exit Isolate Mode. Now send the strokes to back (Shift + Ctrl + [). Finally, make an 800x600 px rectangle (#FFD59E) as a background.

Great! You’re done!

So we’re finished. You’ve got a lovely illustration, made in simple and easy steps. I hope you put what you’ve learned into practice and enjoy making some new designs. I’d love to see what you come up with!

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Best answer
Edited 4 months ago


Best answer
Edited 4 months ago



- ducanger123 Edited 4 months ago
Best answer
Edited 4 months ago


Best answer
Edited 4 months ago

Great !!

We are at the beginning of the summer season! This tutorial is great to illustrate the good vibes of this lovely season!

Tut Details

Beginner level 45m 6,970 views



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