Creative Communities of the World Forums

The peer to peer support community for media production professionals.

Forums Adobe Illustrator Frustrations with AI that are slowing down my workflow

  • Frustrations with AI that are slowing down my workflow

  • paul fisher

    July 11, 2018 at 6:23 pm

    Hello everyone,

    I am creating a cartoon show and working to develop my workflow before I get started with production. I will be using Illustrator, Character Animator and After Effects.

    I recently dove deeper into Illustrator and I love this software but there are a few annoyances / hang-ups that I’m trying to resolve. I’ve done several full Illustrator courses on Lynda as well as searched Google and YouTube for answers. I am hoping someone can offer answers or insight to some of these. I wanted to post in the Adobe forums but I keep getting too many redirect errors, has anyone else experienced that?

    Anyways, I really love Illustrator but coming from a Photoshop background there are a few things that are driving me crazy and slowing me down.

    The number one thing I’m frustrated with is the workflow of working with objects and layers. The workflow of creating and modifying art by selecting and targeting layers. I went through the How Layers Work from Adobe and this doesn’t seem to answer these questions:

    1. Is there a keyboard or mouse or ANY type of shortcut (or Script?) to Target a Layer without having to get my mouse pointer to the Layers Panel and locating the Target Layer Button by the correct layer (through looking or clicking the Magnifying Glass). It seems to be a very cumbersome process. I am used to the Auto Select feature in Photoshop where I can click something and it automatically jumps to that layer so I can alter stuff very quickly. Having to stop drawing or designing to find the Target Layer button on the Layers Panel every step of the way is slowing me down, it’s very frustrating.

    2. When I create a New Layer, it is not Targeted. I am constantly having to go to the Layers Panel to find that Circle by the Layer to Target my newly created layer. Is there a Preference or Script somewhere to always Auto Target a New Layer?

    3. When I create a New Layer within a Sublayer, the New Layer is placed outside of the Sublayer so I am forced to constantly stop and drag that Layer to the correct place every time. Is there a way to automatically have AI place a new Layer WITHIN whatever Sublayer / Layer Group you are working in?

    4. Is there any way to program Illustrator to set Layer Thumbnail Size to Large by Default for new documents? This is a minor thing but I prefer large layer thumbnails so I am constantly changing that option every time I create a new document.

    One more thing!! This doesn’t relate to layers but it drives me up the wall with the Scale Tool. When I press S and then use the mouse to scale an object, I hold down SHIFT to constrain the proportions and it seems to be dependent on where the cursor is located but it usually jumps around from uniform scaling to only horizontal or only vertical scaling for the object and it is very annoying.

    5. Is there a way to set Illustrator to always Scale in uniform or am I just clicking in the wrong spot when resizing objects?

    I have more questions but this has been a lot and I will stop here. If anyone can offer input on any of these it would be greatly appreciated !!

    Thanks!! -Paul

  • John-Patrick Crowe

    January 25, 2019 at 4:47 pm

    For #1 on your list: The auto select feature in Photoshop is the default way that Illustrator works. When you click on an object in your artboard with the selection tool or the direct selection tool, it selects that object and layer in your layers panel. If there’s a setting hiding somewhere that you’ve changed that’s causing this to be different for you, you could return to the default by resetting your preferences.

    I haven’t heard of any settings for the other things you’re looking for.

    – JP Crowe (

Viewing 1 - 2 of 2 posts

Log in to reply.

We use anonymous cookies to give you the best experience we can.
Our Privacy policy | GDPR Policy