How to Insert/Add an Image in Adobe Illustrator

Even though Adobe Illustrator isn’t a photo editor, at some point, will need to insert an image into your designs or projects. Luckily, Adobe Illustrator makes this a fairly simple process for you to add an image and place it wherever you need it to be.  

My name is Aly, I have been working with Adobe Illustrator for over five years. In this article, I show you two easy ways to add an image in Adobe Illustrator. 

Method 1: File > Place 

Follow the steps below to learn how you can insert an image into Illustrator.   

Step 1: Create a new document or open a file that you need to add an image to. 

Step 2: Once your document is open, go to the top menu, select File > Place, and this will allow you to insert the image you need. 

Step 3: Choose the image you want from your device and click Place once you have selected it. 

Step 4: Your image will now appear on your artboard, and you will see a cross box on your image, which means your image isn’t embedded. 

Tip: You can also directly drag an image from your computer to your Illustrator file.

If you want to embed the image in Illustrator, with the image selected, you can click on Embed on the Properties > Quick Actions panel.

Method 2: Copy and Paste an Image

If you don’t want to embed an image, or only need to use the image for a quick image trace. You can directly copy and paste the image into Adobe Illustrator. 

For example, let’s say you want to trace a fish outline and you’ve found an image on the internet. 

Note: Make sure to check the copyright of your image before you copy and paste it.

You can simply right-click to copy the image, go to Adobe Illustrator, and use the keyboard shortcut Command/Ctrl + V to paste the image into your Illustrator document. 

Quick Tips

  • After adding the image to Illustrator, you may move and resize it using the Selection Tool. To resize an image proportionally, hold the Shift key and drag a corner on the bounding box. 

Final Thoughts

Learning how to insert an image into your document in Adobe Illustrator is super easy and important! Either of these methods is a good way to add images to your designs or projects. 

Any questions about adding images to your Illustrator document? Leave a comment and let me know.

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