How to Create a Transparent Artboard in Illustrator

By design, Illustrator stores your artwork with a white backdrop, which corresponds to the white artboard you will use. There are many instances when you might want to utilize a translucent background instead of a white background, even if the white background occasionally helps you see your work more clearly.

The Properties panel, the View menu, or a keyboard shortcut all make it simple to display the Transparent artboard. You may pick the selection to save a vector with a translucent backdrop whenever you export the file.

We go into more depth about this below, so keep reading.

Why Do You Need a Transparent Background?

It can appear that a translucent backdrop is a really simple design feature. However, these straightforward design strategies frequently prove to be among the most effective and original methods to make your design stick out.

There are various ways to benefit from a translucent background. You may employ it to produce eye-catching designs, such as contemporary logos, or to offer your design additional depth and concentrate attention on those elements you wish to highlight.

How to Create Transparent Artboard in Illustrator

To build a translucent artboard in Illustrator, follow the instructions provided in this section.

For more information on how to create a transparent background in Adobe Illustrator, watch this video below:

Step 1: Launch Illustrator and Open a New File

The first thing you must do is start a fresh Illustrator file. To do this, select “Create new” from the menu on the main screen.

You may also use the file menu to load an existing file and then follow the instructions to modify the picture file with a transparent backdrop.

There are two methods for doing that:

  • To add the file to your workspace, select File > Open from the menu.
  • Drop the file onto your workspace by dragging it there.

Step 2: Enable a Transparent Background

  • Click the “View” tab in the menu bar, scroll to the bottom, and choose “Show Transparency Grid” to enable the Adobe Illustrator Transparency Grid and disable the white artboard backdrop that is set as a preset.
  • The white backdrop is no longer translucent when it “transforms” into a white and gray grid
  • You may insert a new graphic onto the transparent backdrop as the white background has vanished.

Step 3: Save the File

  • Once you save the finished product, a translucent backdrop will also be stored with the file.
  • Go over to “File,” scroll downwards, choose “Export,” then “Export As” to store the document.
  • You will be given a variety of options for saving your work. Among the most important file formats include PNG, SVG, and TIFF.

Making an Image’s Background Transparent in Adobe Illustrator

How often have you downloaded a picture under the impression that its backdrop is translucent only to discover it has a white background? Although there is a simple cure, it can be unpleasant.

Using Image Trace Tool

Image trace is useful for many different things. Image Trace, for example, may transform raster pictures (such as those in the JPEG, PNG, and PSD file formats) into vector images.

Using Image Trace from the Trace Window, you may also turn any print design (such as a pencil sketch) into a vector form.

After converting your design to vector graphics, you utilize the Image Trace feature to change the white backdrop into a translucent background.

  • Launch Adobe Illustrator and open the image of your choosing.
  • Examine the transparency grid to determine the extent to which the image has a transparent backdrop. Hit Ctrl + Shift + D to accomplish this (or Command + Shift + D on a Mac).

Feel free to go on to the following stages if the image’s backdrop needs to be translucent.

  • Choose the picture on the canvas using the Selection Tool. Use your keyboard’s “V” button to enable this tool.
  • Activate Image Trace. Navigate to the menu bar at the top and select Window to find “Image Trace.” The moment a dropdown option appears, pick Image Trace.
  • Switch “Mode” from “Black and White” to “Colored” when the “Image Trace” option displays.
  • After that, select the triangle beside it to see the advanced settings. Select the “Ignore White” box when the choices display.
  • Within the same window’s bottom right, select the “Trace” button as the last action.

Following all these procedures will enable “Image Trace,” which will convert your photographs into vectors. In addition, it will make the backdrop translucent by removing its white hue.


A few options in Adobe Illustrator are provided to users so they may remove the backdrop from their work. Wherever they choose, artists may use this approach to create artwork with translucent parts. Follow the steps listed in this article to make your artboard transparent.