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Adobe Illustrator - Grouping and Expanding Objects

This guide will show you how to combine several objects into a group which can be treated as one unit.


Grouped objects are stacked in succession on the same layer of the artwork and behind the frontmost object in the group; therefore, grouping may change the layering of objects and their stacking order on a given layer.

To Group Objects

  1. Select the objects to be grouped or the group to be ungrouped with one of the selection tools.
  2. Choose either Object > Group or Object > Ungroup.

Expand objects

Expanding objects allows division of a single object into multiple objects that make up its appearance.

Typically expanding is used to modify the appearance attributes and other properties of specific elements within it.

  1. Select the object.
  2. Choose Object > Expand.
  3. If the object has appearance attributes applied to it, choose Object > Expand Appearance and then choose Object > Expand.
  4. Set options, and then click OK:
    • Object- Expands complex objects, including live blends, envelopes, symbol sets, and flares.
    • Fill- Expands fills.
    • Stroke- Expands strokes.
    • Gradient Mesh- Expands gradients to a single mesh object.
    • Specify- Sets the tolerance for color values between color stops. Higher numbers help maintain a smooth color transition; low numbers can create a more banded appearance.

If you need further assistance please contact the Information Technology Help Desk at 920-424-3020 or

Keywords:Group, Expand, Fill, "Gradient Mesh", "Selecting and Transforming"   Doc ID:64304
Owner:Richard L.Group:UW Oshkosh
Created:2016-06-21 10:37 CDTUpdated:2016-12-20 13:32 CDT
Sites:UW Oshkosh
Feedback:  5   1