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Illustration: Create Skateboard Stickers

Beginner level Adobe Illustrator Adobe Illustrator

How to Set Up a New Document

As we do with all of our projects, we’ll start by setting up a New Document (File > New or Control + N) which we will adjust using the following settings:

  • Number of Artboards: 1
  • Width: 800 px
  • Height: 600 px
  • Units: Pixels

And from the Advanced tab:

  • Color Mode: RGB
  • Raster Effects: Screen (72 ppi)

We’re going to be creating the icons using a Pixel Perfect Workflow, so I highly recommend you take a moment and read this in depth tutorial (https://www.tutpad.com/tutorials/how-to-create-pixel-perfect-icons) that will get you up to speed in no time.

1-setting-up-a-new-document4.png

How to Set Up the Layers

Once I have my new document, I like to separate my assets using a couple of different layers, since this way I can streamline my workflow by focusing on one item at a time, which allows me to keep track of each and every shape at all time.

So, open up the Layers panel, and let’s create a total of four layers which we will name as follows:

  • Layer 1 > reference grids
  • Layer 2 > street
  • Layer 3 > cruiser
  • Layer 4 > longboard
2-setting-up-the-layers3.png

The way we’re going to be using these layers within our workflow is pretty easy. We’ll want to lock all except the one that we will be working on, so that we won’t move or misplace some of the shapes by accident. Then, once we’re done with the current icon, we can then lock its layer and move on up to the next one.

How to Create the Reference Grids

As soon as we’ve layered our project file, we can start creating the reference grids, which will help us create our icons by focusing on consistency and size.

Step 1

Grab the Rectangle Tool (M) and create a 128x128 px square, which we will color using #F15A24, and then position it to the center of the Artboard using the Align panel’s Horizontal and Vertical Align Center options.

3-creating-the-main-shape-for-the-reference-grids4.png

Step 2

Create another smaller 120x120 px square, which will act as the active drawing area, thus giving us an all-around 4 px padding. Color the shape using white (#FFFFFF) and then group the squares (Control + G) and create two more side copies (Control + C > Control + F two times), distancing them at 40 px from the original.

4-creating-and-positioning-the-remaining-reference-grids3.png

Once you’re done creating and positioning the reference grids, you can lock their layer, and then move on up to the next one, where we’ll start working on our first icon.

How to Create the Street Skateboard Icon

Assuming you’ve positioned yourself onto the next layer (that would be the second one), let’s kick off the project by creating the first icon, which is the popsicle shaped skateboard.

Step 1

Start by creating the board’s main body using a 36x116 px rounded rectangle with an 18 px Corner Radius, which we will color using #EFA36A, and then center align to the underlying active drawing area.

5-creating-and-positioning-the-main-shape-for-the-street-skateboards-board.png

Step 2

Once you have the board’s main body, you can focus on adding its subtle texture by creating seven 6 px tall 2 px thick Strokelines (#C97D53) with a Round Cap, which we will vertically stack at a distance of 2 px from one another (4 px if you’re using the Align panel’s Distribute function). Select and group all of the lines using the Control + G keyboard shortcut, positioning them at a distance of 3 px from the board’s left edge, and 4 px from its top one.

6-creating-and-positioning-the-main-shapes-for-the-street-skateboards-first-texture-column.png


Step 3

Create a copy (Control + C > Control + F) of the column that we’ve just created and position it onto the original’s right side, at a distance of just 2 px, making sure to push it upwards by a distance of 4 px using the Move tool (Right click > Transform > Move > Vertical > -4 px).

7-adding-the-second-texture-column-to-the-street-skateboards-board.png

Step 4

Add the remaining texture columns, using three copies of the ones that we’ve just finished working on, which we will position onto the board’s right side as seen in the reference image. Take your time, and once you’re done select and group (Control + G) all of them together before moving on to the next step.

8-adding-the-remaining-texture-columns-to-the-street-skateboards-board.png

Step 5

Start working on the board’s white section, by creating a 40x48 px rectangle which we will color using #FFE5D7, and then center align to the active drawing area’s bottom edge.

9-creating-and-positioning-the-main-shape-for-the-street-skateboards-white-section.png

Step 6

Give the shape that we’ve just created an outline using the Stroke method, by creating a copy of it (Control + C) which we will paste in front (Control + F), and then adjust by first changing its color to #232020 and then flipping its Fill with its Stroke (Shift + X). Set the resulting shape’s Weight to 4 px, making sure to select and group (Control + G) the two together afterwards.

10-adding-the-outline-to-the-street-skateboards-white-section.png

Step 7

Mask the board’s texture and white section, using a copy (Control + C) of its main body, which we will paste in front (Control + F) and use as a Clipping Mask. Once you have the copy in place, select both it and the two sections that we want to mask and then simply Right click > Make Clipping Mask.

11-masking-the-street-skateboards-texture-and-white-section-using-a-clipping-mask.png

Step 8

Take a couple of moments and add the board’s 4 px thick outline (#232020) following the exact same process used for the white section, selecting and grouping (Control + G) all its composing sections together afterwards.

12-adding-the-outline-to-the-street-skateboards-main-body.png

Step 9

Draw the decorative symbol’s top section, using a 4 px thick Stroke (#232020) with a Round Cap and Join, which we will position at a distance of 10 px from the white section’s outline.

13-creating-the-upper-section-of-the-street-skateboards-decorative-symbol.png

Step 10

Create the symbol’s bottom section using a copy (Control + C > Control + F) of the one that we’ve just finished working on, which we will horizontally reflect (Right click > Transform > Reflect > Horizontal) and then push to the bottom by a distance of 4 px (right click > Transform > Move > Vertical > 4 px). Once you’re done, select and group (Control + G) all its composing shapes together before moving on to the next step.

14-adding-the-bottom-section-to-the-street-skateboards-decorative-symbol.png

Step 11

Move a few pixels towards the bottom, and start working on the little “xo” text, by creating the first letter using two 2 px thick diagonal Stroke lines (#232020) with a Round Cap, which we will group (Control + G) and then position at a distance of 10 px from the board’s left edge, and 4 px from it's bottom one.

15-creating-and-positioning-the-first-letter-onto-the-street-skateboards-board.png

Step 12

Create the second letter using a 4x4 px circle with a 2 px thick Stroke (#232020), which we will position onto the right side of the previously created letter. Once you’re done, select and group (Control + G) the two together, doing the same for the entire board afterwards.

16-creating-and-positioning-the-second-letter-onto-the-street-skateboards-board.png

Step 13

Start working on the front truck, by creating a 20x6 px rectangle, which we will color using #BFC9D8, and then center align to the board, positioning it at a distance of 24 px from its top edge.

17-creating-and-positioning-the-main-shape-for-the-upper-section-of-the-street-skateboards-front-truck.png

Step 14

Create the truck’s bottom section, using a 12x6 px rectangle (#BFC9D8), which we will position below the larger section from the previous step, selecting and uniting them into a single larger object using Pathfinder’s Unite Shape Mode.

18-creating-and-positioning-the-main-shape-for-the-bottom-section-of-the-street-skateboards-front-truck.png

Step 15

Adjust the shape of the resulting object, by setting the Radius of its inner facing corners to 2 px, and its bottom ones to 4 px using the Live Corners input box.

19-adjusting-the-shape-of-the-street-skateboards-front-truck.png

Step 16

Give the resulting shape a 4 px thick outline (#232020), followed by a 2x2 px circle (#232020) towards its bottom, selecting and grouping all three of them together afterwards using the Control + G keyboard shortcut.

20-adding-the-outline-to-the-street-skateboards-front-truck.png

Step 17

Create the front section of the truck’s baseplate, using a 10x6 px rectangle (#937C7C) which we will adjust by setting the Radius of its top corners to 4 px from within the Transform panel’s Rectangle Properties. Give the resulting shape a 4 px thick outline (#232020), grouping (Control + G) and then positioning the two on top of the truck upper section.

21-creating-and-positioning-the-main-shapes-for-baseplate-of-the-street-skateboards-front-truck.png

Step 18

Add the wheels using two 12x14 px rounded rectangles (#E07861) with a 4 px Corner Radius, and a 4 px thick outline (#232020), which we will individually group (Control + G) and then position onto the sides of the truck. Once you’re done, select and group (Control + G) all of the truck’s composing sections before moving on to the next step.

22-adding-the-wheels-to-the-street-skateboards-front-truck.png


Step 19

Finish off the skateboard and with it the icon itself, by adding the back truck using a copy (Control + C > Control + F) of the one that we’ve just finished working on, which we will horizontally reflect (Right click > Transform > Reflect > Horizontal), and then position onto the opposite side of the board, making sure to maintain the same 16 px distance from its bottom edge. Once you’re done, select and group (Control + G) all of the icon’s composing sections together, before moving on to the next one.

23-finishing-off-the-street-skateboard-icon.png

How to Create the Cruiser Skateboard Icon

Assuming you’ve successfully finished working on the first icon, lock its layer and then move on to the next one (that would be the third one), where we will focus on creating the little cruiser board.

Step 1

Start working on the board’s main body, by creating its nose section using a 40x80 px ellipse, which we will color using #ED6BAC, and then center align to the active drawing area’s top edge, at a distance of just 2 px.

24-creating-and-positioning-the-main-shape-for-the-cruiser-boards-nose-section.png

Step 2

Add the tail section using a 28x20 px rounded rectangle (#ED6BAC) with an 8 px Corner Radius, which we will position at a distance of 2 px from the active drawing area’s bottom edge.

25-creating-and-positioning-the-main-shape-for-the-cruiser-boards-tail-section.png

Step 3

Take a couple of minutes and open up the paths of the two shapes, by individually selecting their inner facing anchor points using the Direct Selection Tool (A), which we will then remove by pressing Delete.

26-opening-up-the-paths-of-the-cruiser-boards-composing-shapes.png

Step 4

Unite the two paths into a single larger shape, by selecting them and then pressing Control + J twice.

27-uniting-the-cruiser-boards-composing-paths-into-a-single-larger-shape.png

Step 5

Start working on the board’s bottom decorative section, by creating a 44x64 px rectangle, which we will color using #6CD2EA, and then center align to the active drawing area’s bottom edge.

28-creating-and-positioning-the-main-shape-for-the-cruiser-boards-decorative-section.png

Step 6

Adjust the shape of the decorative section, by adding a new anchor point to the center of its top edge using the Add Anchor Point Tool (+), selecting and pushing its side anchors downwards by a distance of 16 px using the Move tool (Right click > Transform > Move > Vertical > 16 px).

29-adjusting-the-shape-of-the-cruiser-boards-decorative-section.png

Step 7

Give the resulting shape a 4 px thick outline (#232020), selecting and grouping both of them together using the Control + G keyboard shortcut.

30-adding-the-outline-to-the-cruiser-skateboards-decorative-section.png

Step 8

Mask the board’s decorative section, giving it a 4 px outline (#232020) using the Stroke method, making sure to select and group (Control + G) all its composing shapes afterwards.

31-adding-the-outline-to-the-cruiser-skateboards-main-body.png

Step 9

Start working on the circular decorative symbol, by creating a 20x20 px circle (#E5C15C) with a 4 px thick outline (#232020), which we will group (Control + G) and then position to the center of the board.

32-creating-and-positioning-the-main-shapes-for-the-cruiser-skateboards-decorative-symbol.png

Step 10

Create the energy symbol, using two 8x12 px rectangles (#232020), which we will overlap (1) and then unite into a single larger shape (2) making sure to adjust it by removing its top-left and bottom-right anchor points (3). Once you’re done, position the resulting shape to the center of the larger circles (4), selecting and grouping them together using the Control + G keyboard shortcut.

33-creating-and-positioning-the-main-shapes-for-the-cruiser-skateboards-energy-symbol.png

Step 11

Add the brake using a 16x8 px rounded rectangle (#ED6BAC) with a 4 pxCorner Radius and a 4 px thick outline (#232020), which we will group (Control + G) and then center align to the board’s tail, positioning them at a distance of 2 px from its bottom edge.

34-creating-and-positioning-the-main-shapes-for-the-cruiser-skateboards-brake.png

Step 12

Create the little screw holding the brake to the board using two 2x2 px circles (#232020), which we will position at a distance of 2 px from the underlying shape’s outer edges. Once you’re done, select and group (Control + G) all of the current section’s composing shapes together, doing the same for the entire board afterwards.

35-adding-the-two-screws-to-the-cruiser-skateboards-brake.png

Step 13

Add the board’s front truck using a copy (Control + C) of the first icon’s bottom one, which we will paste onto the current layer (Control + F) and then position at a distance of 16 px from its top edge.

36-adding-the-front-truck-to-the-cruiser-skateboards-main-body.png

Step 14

Adjust the width of the truck, by individually selecting its side sections’ anchor points using the Direct Selection Tool (A), which we will then push to the outside by a distance of 2 px using the Move tool (Right click > Transform > Move > Horizontal > ±2 px depending on which side you star with).

37-adjusting-the-width-of-the-cruiser-skateboards-front-truck.png

Step 15

Take a couple of minutes to change the wheel color, by selecting their inner fill shapes using the Direct Selection Tool (A) which we will then adjust by setting their color to #AE67D3.

38-changing-the-color-of-the-cruiser-skateboards-front-truck-wheels.png

Step 16

Finish off the board and with it the icon itself, by adding the back truck using a copy (Control + C > Control + F) of the one that we’ve just finished adjsuting, which we will position at a distance of 16 px from its bottom edge. As always, once you’re done don’t forget to select and group (Control + G) all of the icon’s composing sections before moving on to the last one.

39-finishing-off-the-cruiser-skateboard-icon.png

How to Create the Longboard Skateboard Icon

We are now down to our third and last icon, so without wasting anymore time make sure you’re on the right layer (that would be the fourth one) and let’s finish this!

Step 1

Start working on the board, by creating its center section using a 40x40 px square, which we will color using #EFA36A, and then center align to the underlying active drawing area.

40-creating-and-positioning-the-main-shape-for-the-longboard-skateboards-main-body.png

Step 2

Add the board’s front and back sections using two 20x38 px rectangles (#EFA36A), which we will position onto the top and bottom edges of the larger square. Once you have them in place, select all three shapes and unite them into a single larger object using Pathfinder’s Unite Shape Mode.

41-creating-and-positioning-the-main-shapes-for-the-longboard-skateboards-top-and-bottom-sections.png

Step 3

Adjust the resulting shape by setting the Radius of its inner facing corners to 8 px and its top and bottom ones to 10 px using the Live Corners input box. Take your time, and once you’re done move on up to the next step.

42-adjusting-the-shape-of-the-longboard-skateboards-main-body.png

Step 4

Next, we need to add the little texture lines using nine columns of seven 6 px tall 2 px thick Stroke lines (#C97D53), vertically stacked at 2 px from one another, which we will group (Control + G) and then position onto the board as seen in the reference image.

43-adding-the-texture-columns-to-the-lonboard-skateboards-main-body.png

Step 5

Start working on the board’s white section, by creating a 44x56 px rectangle (#FFE5D7) which we will adjust by adding a new anchor point to the center of its top edge, which we will then push downwards by a distance of 12 px (Right click > Transform > Move > Vertical > 12 px).

44-creating-and-adjusting-the-lonboard-skateboards-white-decorative-section.png

Step 6

Give the resulting shape a 4 px thick outline (#232020) with a Round Join, making sure to select and group the two together afterwards using the Control + G keyboard shortcut.

45-adding-the-outline-to-the-lonboard-skateboards-white-decorative-section.png

Step 7

Start working on the two detail arrows by creating a copy (Control + C) of the white section’s outline, which we will paste in front (Control + F) and then adjust by selecting and removing its bottom anchor points. Create another copy (Control + C > Control + F) of the resulting path, vertically stacking the two at 8 px from one another and the larger white section.

46-adding-the-two-downfacing-arrows-to-the-longboard-skateboards-main-body.png

Step 8

Take a couple of minutes and mask all of the board’s details, adding the 4 px thick outline (#232020) afterwards. Once you’re done, don’t forget to select and group (Control + G) all the sections that we have so far before moving on to the next step.

47-adding-the-outline-to-the-longboard-skateboards-main-body.png

Step 9

Create the board’s front truck using a copy (Control + C) of the one from the first icon, which we will paste (Control + F) onto the current layer, positioning it at a distance of 12 px from the larger body’s top edge.

48-adding-the-front-truck-to-the-longboard-skateboards-main-body.png

Step 10

As we did with the cruiser board, adjust the width of the front truck by selecting its outer anchor points and pushing them to the outside by a distance of 4 px (Right click > Transform > Move > Horizontal > ± 4 px depending on which side you start with).

49-adjusting-the-width-of-the-longboard-skateboards-front-truck.png

Step 11

Since longboard usually have broader wheels, we’ll need to adjust those as well by selecting and pushing their outer facing anchor points to the outside by a distance of 2 px (Right click > Transform > Move > Horizontal > ± 2 px depending on which side you start with).

50-adjusting-the-width-of-the-longboard-skateboards-front-truck-wheels.png

Step 12

Finish off the board and with it the project itself, by adding the back truck using a copy (Control + C > Control + F) of the one that we’ve just finished adjusting, which we will horizontally reflect (Right click > Transform > Reflect > Horizontal) and then position at a distance of 12 px from its tail section. Once you’re done, don’t forget to select and group (Control + G) all of the icon’s composing sections together before hitting that save button.

51-finishing-off-the-longboard-skateboard-icon.png

Time to Roll!

There you have it fellow skateboard lovers, a quick and in-depth tutorial on how to create your very own boards, using nothing but the most basic geometric shapes and tools that Illustrator has to offer. As always I hope you had fun creating these little icons, and most importantly learned something new and useful along the way.

52-final-result-preview.png

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Discussion

In today’s tutorial we’re going to take a look behind the process of creating three different shaped skateboards icons, using nothing more than the basic shapes and tools that you probably already work with on a daily basis. That being said, grab a quick sip of that refreshing ice tea and let’s jump right into it!

Tut Details

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