by infinite_resolution

Created

May 3, 2009

Multiple Artboards–Tips and Tricks Part 1

We’re going to devote a few blog posts to help you understand how to use Multiple artboards and how they replace older features like Crop Areas and Page Tiling.
Q: How can I specify crop areas, especially when saving as EPS, PDF, or other graphic file formats? What about printing?
A: Use Multiple artboards.

By default, you have an artboard on which your artwork will be present. Now just draw an artboard equal to size of the Crop Area you want.

How to do this: Select the Artboard Tool from the toolbox and bring it over the artboard.

Hold down the Shift key. Immediately you will see that the cursor has taken the shape of Artboard Tool. Now click and drag to create an artboard equal to the size of crop area you want.

Or draw a rectangle equal to the size of the size of crop area you want, select the rectangle, and choose Object>Convert to Artboards. Once the new artboard has been created inside your original artwork you will have two artboards–one that was originally present, and the one you just created. (Select the Artboard Tool or press “Shift +O” to see this). The part you wanted inside the crop area lies inside second artboard and the part of the artwork you didn’t want lies inside first artboard.

If you want to export or print only the content of the second artboard, do the following:

For saving to EPS/PDF format: In the Save As dialog, check the “Use Artboards” option, select the Range radio button and input a value “2” in the Range text box, click Save and then click OK.

Crop&Save as EPS.png

Save as EPS dialog with “Use Artboards” checked on, and second artboard saved to EPS.

Similarly, for exporting only the cropped content to other graphic file formats: In the Export dialog, choose the file format you want, check the “Use Artboards” option, select the Range option and input a value “2” in the Range text box and click Export.

Crop&Export raster.png
Exporting a second artboard to PSD will only export the cropped content.

If you are saving to the web and want only the content lying inside second artboard, do the following: Using the Selection Tool, click anywhere inside second artboard to make it the active artboard. Then choose File>Save for Web & Devices. Inside the Save for Web dialog, go to the Image Size tab and make sure that “Clip to Artboard” is checked. Then press Save.

If you want to print just the cropped portion of your artwork, do the following: Invoke the Print dialog using File>Print, select the Range check box and input a value “2” in the Range text box, choose the Media equal to the size of the paper in the printer and click Print.

Crop&print.png
How to print an artboard inside another artboard. This works similar to printing the crop area in CS3.

Watch out for our next section on Multiple Artboard Tips and Tricks on how to create and preserve crop marks in EPS using Illustrator CS4.

Comments

  • By mutuelle - 6:03 AM on May 4, 2009  

    Useful article. Thank you for these informations.

  • By Sigurdur Armannsson - 5:55 PM on May 7, 2009  

    I was very skeptical about the artboard thing but have come to love it. Really makes some workflow much faster.One thing that I wonder: Is there any trick to flip fast between the artboards? I know of the one at the bottom of the page but I am thinking of something more like InDesigns ‘Go to Next Page’ shortcut or Illustrators ‘Flip to Next Tabbed file’ kind of shortcut.Thanks for this blog. It adds a different angle to the discussion.

  • By George Coghill - 8:32 AM on June 23, 2009  

    Also, even with just one Artboard you need to check the “Use Artboard” checkbox to be able to export to PNG using only the Artboard bounds. Otherwise is exports all the visible artwork.

  • By George Coghill - 8:33 AM on June 23, 2009  

    Is there a way to delete both an Artboard *and* the artwork contained on it?

  • By Vestidos Para Damas - 10:40 PM on September 10, 2010  

    Discovered this site on searching yesterday and really liked it… I bookmarked it but will return to take a look some extra tips and also comments soon.

  • By Cheryl Manaker - 1:56 AM on December 19, 2010  

    Merely wanna state that this is extremely helpful, Thanks for taking your time to write this.

  • By Dan Sipple - 5:52 PM on March 8, 2011  

    You used to be able to do this multi step process by simply making crop marks and saving for web and devices. Thanks again Adobe for making something simple more complicated. This is why I don’t like to upgrade.

  • By Tim Brockman - 9:48 PM on April 13, 2011  

    At first, I could not “get” the artboards. Seemed like one of those “supposed to be wondrerful – but is really a dud” kind of things. Now I get it! They are better than a good idea, they are exceptional. Allows outputting specific items from mulitple item artwork, with precision, with or without corps, reg marks, bleeds, etc. They are a big step forward. Hope they are here to stay – just need a little more refinement.

  • By Marijn - 2:57 PM on April 23, 2011  

    The images of the post are gone…

    • By Terry Hemphill - 2:25 PM on April 28, 2011  

      Marjin,

      Apologies, we’re fixing this now.

  • By Andrew Bedford - 7:31 AM on November 9, 2011  

    Love artboards! Since their inception, my workflow processes for dealing with a variety of issues, from slicing web mockups to prepping large format designs, have become FAR more efficient. Efficient use of design time makes our clients happy. Go adobe!

    Artboards take the cake!

  • By Andromacha3898 - 4:19 PM on December 1, 2011  

    Great post. I was checking constantly this blog and I’m impressed!

  • By Kyle - 7:59 AM on August 22, 2012  

    I like the artboard feature.. but, when I’m saving for web & graphics, it often seems to not recognize that I have selected a specific artboard to save and instead tries to save the whole document. Is there a fix for this or a work around?

    • By LNM - 9:25 AM on December 13, 2012  

      @Kyle – they explain that in the article.

      “If you are saving to the web and want only the content lying inside second artboard, do the following: Using the Selection Tool, click anywhere inside second artboard to make it the active artboard. Then choose File>Save for Web & Devices. Inside the Save for Web dialog, go to the Image Size tab and make sure that “Clip to Artboard” is checked. Then press Save.”

      The checking of the Clip to Artboard is the important part.

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