How to create vector art: 40 amazing tutorials

August 8, 2013 • Posted in Design Tips

retrocarA technique rather than a style, vector art is based on geometric shapes and created using vector image software such as Adobe’s Illustrator and Photoshop. If you’re a fan of vector art and want to start creating your own, these brilliant tutorials will help you on your way.

Getting started

The pen tool

In order to create vector art, you must first master the pen tool. This comprehensive guide aims to introduce you to features, shortcuts, and methods for working with what is arguably Adobe’s most essential tool.

Drawing vector graphics

This video tutorial is a really useful resource for explaining exactly how to create vector art in Illustrator.

Creating simple, organic shapes

Learn how to create simple, organic vector shapes in Illustrator with this easy-to-follow tutorial from graphic and web designer Veerle Pieters.

Add texture to your vector illustrations

Adding texture to your vector art is a great way to give it more dimension and perspective. In this easy to follow video, Illustrator expert Alexandra Cecilio explains how to get the most out of textures.

Creating faces

Creating a vector eye

This helpful video tutorial shows the process of creating a vector eye, as well as skin shading, from a photograph.

Create a line-based vector portrait

In another one of our favourite vector art tutorials, Ruslan Khasanov shows you how to manipulate vector line work and gradients to bring an unusual sense of movement to your work.

How to vexel hair

Dealing with hair can be tricky. But this useful step-by-step tutorial breaks down exactly how to transform a person’s hair into vector art from a photograph.

Create a self-portrait in a geometric style

In this tutorial, you’re going to learn how to create an illustrated self-portrait in a geometric style. You’ll be using a photograph of yourself as the base of the illustration, drawing a sketch from that, and then creating the final piece.

Cool characters

Creating vector characters in Illustrator

Character can add a recogniseable face to your work. Here, creative duo Peskimo talk through the process of taking your designs from a sketch to vector artwork.

Learn how to create vector characters with advice from creative duo Peskimo

How to create a vector art cartoon character

Want to bring your cartoon characters to life? This easy-to-follow vector art tutorial just how to do it.

Create a cool vector Yeti character

Check out this simple tutorial, which uses as many basic shapes as possible to achieve a quirky style of illustration, then bring the yeti character to life with a palette of cold colours.

Create a vector anime character in Photoshop

This tutorial explains the process of creating a simple anime character from start to finish.

How to Draw and Vector a Kawaii Vampire Chibi in Illustrator

With this tutorial, Mary Winkler is going to show you how to build a chibi character from scratch using the Shape Builder Tool (Shift-M), Pen Tool (P), transparent gradients, and more in Adobe Illustrator.

vector art tutorials
The idea of a chibi character is to diminish the overall form, making it cute and simplistic

Create a cute bunny vector character

Learn how to create a cute bunny character in this vector art tutorial. This training uses simple shapes and gradients that are easy to apply to other character illustrations.

Vector a set of character poses

Here, you’ll look at how to design a character for a video game, in this case a “beat ‘em up”. You’ll work from the very first sketch to the final artwork.

Create a cartoon snail character

Vector art tutorials
Discover techniques to help build this cool snal character

Discover how to create this cool snail character in this easy-to-follow tutorial.

Special techniques

Create retro car vectors

Vector art tutorials
Turn your car photographs into cool vector illustrations with this tutorial from John Kelly

All you need is some inks and some brushes to turn a photograph of a car into a vector illustration. John Kelly of Joke Art talks you through the process.

Layer up vectors for unique effects

Tom Mac reveals how to create a drip-effect portrait using Illustrator’s Pen tool and some clever object layering techniques in this vector art tutorial.

Vector polishing techniques

Discover how to add more depth, colour, contrast and texture into your vector art with this set of simple tutorials.

Create a retro Batman logo

Want to learn how to create the iconic Batman logo using simple shapes in Illustrator? Then look no further…

Recreate the iconic Batman logo with this easy-to-follow tutorial

Craft a vector landscape environment

This vector art tutorial shows the intermediate Adobe Illustrator artist how to make a dramatic vector landscape environment.

Create a vector glitter text art effect

Give your typography some sparkle! Follow this tutorial and learn how to create a vector glitter text effect in Adobe Illustrator.

Give your type some sparkle with this tutorial from vector tuts +

From sketch to vector illustration

Artist William Beachy explains all the technqiues you need to master in order to transform a hand-drawn sketch into a beautiful vector illustration.

Create vector halftone effects

Halftone is a way of reproducing a monochrome image using only dots of varying sizes. One of the hardest things to accomplish in vector illustration, artist Chris McVeigh walks you through the process in this four-step tutorial.

Convert a bitmap to a vector image

This Inkscape tutorial demonstrates how to convert a bitmap image into a vector image by using Inkscape’s Trace Bitmap function.

How to create a vector RSS icon

Probably one of the most popular and recognisable icons in the web universe; the RSS icon is displayed on many websites to indicate the availability of a subscription feed. In this vector art tutorial, learn how to create your own custom vector RSS icon in Illustrator.

How to create a vector image slider

Image sliders have been a common element of website design in recent years, especially in portfolio designs. This tutorial explains how create an image slider in Adobe Illustrator.

Learn how to create vector image sliders for your website or portfolio

Create vector effects

Use brushes and masks to mix a photo with really cool vector art effects to create an eye-catching design.

Roughen up your vector work

Vector art and an authentic look needn’t be mutually exclusive, as artist Ollie Munden proves in this tutorial by bringing hand-drawn details to bold vector art.

Isometric vector art made easy

Isometric graphics have become increasingly popular with a lot of artists and designers. Here, Aaron Miller demonstrates how to take the pain out of pixel art.

 pixel art
Learn how to take the pain out of pixel art with this tutorial from Aaron Miller

Create vector clouds

This step-by-step tutorial explains how to create impressionistic, infinitely-scalable vector clouds with Illustrator’s Gradient Mesh tool.

Create vintage vector textures

Vintage and retro-style illustrations have made a big comeback over recent years. Here, designer Ben Steers shares some insider tips and techniques to help give your vector illustrations a retro look.

Create a simple vector web ribbon in Photoshop

This 45-minute beginner tutorial explains exactly how to create a simple web ribbon using Photoshop.

Create a blissful vector scene

Vector art tutorials
Discover how to create a simple vector scene from scratch with this easy to follow tutorial

Follow this Adobe Illustrator tutorial through the process of creating your own simple vector scene from scratch.

Animate your vector artwork

Use Illustrator and Flash to turn your vector illustrations into an animation for the web.

Vector tracing a photo

In this tutorial from studio, learn how to draw and trace people from a photo. This training also uses simple gradient fill to create a realistic illustration.

Create an ice-cream sundae in Illustrator

Summer is just around the corner and what better way to celebrate than creating a delicious vector ice cream sundae with this easy-to-follow tutorial.

Create sketchy-style vectors

There are many illustrations that call for a sketchy or hand-drawn feel. Learn how to achieve this in Illustrator in this easy-to-followvector art tutorial.

Create a vector cross stitch effect in Adobe Illustrator

Here, you’ll be using the Appearance panel and patterns in order to create the design then you’ll be creating a simple Aida fabric background pattern. This is a great tutorial for those who are beginners but want to try out some advanced tools,

Create a vector polygonal background

Polygonal Art Style became very popular over last year. It is often used in printing, designing T-shit, cell-phone backgrounds and websites. Here you will learn how to create quickly vector polygonal background with the help of web based tool and Adobe Illustrator.

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