Grunge Splat Background in Illustrator

    ●   Create a Grungy Looking Splat background for your composition using this simple technique.

Learn About:

SymbolsDrop Shadow Send to Back

   •   This tutorial is part of the Cereal Package Design, the Shadow Life, and CD Cover Design Project.

Other People's Work:

Here are examples of work inspired by this tutorial.


Step #1: Open your Project in Illustrator ~

Open YOUR CURRENT PROJECT in Illustrator


… (Remember: all these tutorials are intended to be
applied to YOUR PROJECT) …


… make a New Layer, lock lock your other layers, and drag the new layer below the your main important objects …


Step #2: Symbols ~

Open Symbols or go to: Window > Symbols

… click the Symbol Libraries Menu icon in the lower left corner …

… and choose Dot Pattern Vector Pack.

Step #3: Drag an Instance ~

Drag an instance of the symbol over your image.

Step #4: Free Transform Tool ~

Get the Free Transform Tool or hit the keyboard shortcut letter (e) …

… and adjust the symbol size.

Step #5: Break Link ~

Break the link to the master symbol by Right-Clicking and select Break Link to Symbol or hit the button in the Control panel.

Step #6: Colors ~

Click the Swatches icon or go to: Window > Swatches

… pick a Fill color from your Swatches and apply your colors to the symbol.

Step #7: Send to Back ~

Then Right-Click again and go to: Arrange > Send to Back (if necessary).


Step #8: Apply a Grime Vector Pack ~

Click on the Symbol Libraries Menu panel again …

… and go to: Grime Vector Pack.

Drag a symbol to the artboard.

As you did before, hit the Break Link button to make this an editable shape, change the color, etc.

Step #9: Fill the Grime Shape ~

In the Swatches panel, chose the another color to fill the shape and change up the feel of your graphic.

Use as many splats as you need.

Step #10: Change Perspective of the Symbols ~

Select one of the shapes and go to: Effect > 3D > Rotate, hit Preview, and rotate the cube.

Also, set the Perspective to give it an exaggerated look that adds more interest.

You can apply the same effect to every symbol by going to: Effect > Apply Rotate.

Last Step: Save and Attach ~


Attach it!

  •   ALWAYS save your projects using the following naming convention:

  •   DO NOT name your project any other way - Improperly named projects will not receive credit and you will be sad.

  •   NEVER leave your work on the desktop or depend on a flash drive - instead, save your work in a folder you can find later - preferably on a virtual drive where it can be backed up.

Other Resources: http://www.bittbox.com/illustrator/easy-illustrator-trick-oversized-stroke