Algonquin College Graphic Design Program Computer Graphics Course Curriculum Algonquin College Graphic Design Program Computer Graphics Course Curriculum

Gradients & Blends

Apps Used: Adobe Illustrator

Create, edit and apply gradients to strokes and fills in Adobe Illustrator.

This is a formative assignment

That means that you'll be learning and practising new software skills. This assignment contributes to your final grade in the course. This work will be graded as either:

Complete Incomplete

If needed, I will provide written feedback on your performance.



The Gradient Tool is a very powerful one. And with great power comes great responsibility. We’ll learn to wield it like a true Jedi Master. The danger here is to create muddy colour transitions between our gradient stops. We’ll build a drawing of a pencil using gradients in class. Once you’re done, you’ll possess secrets of the Gradient Tool.


This pencil gets its shading with the graient tool. There are linear and freeform gradients.

We’ll explore:


The end-product of a blend can often look like a gradient, but they’re much more versatile.

You can blend objects to create and distribute shapes evenly between two objects. You can also blend between two open paths to create a smooth transition between objects, or you can combine blends of colors and objects to create color transitions in the shape of a particular object. Adobe

This banner is created with blends.

We’ll practice creating blends in class, starting with the basics, then move on to more advanced techniques. We’ll draw a banner like this one, which contains a number of blends. Some are masked. Some are not. They’re all stacked to create this wonderful graphic.

Formative Activity

Download the provided file and complete the gradients and blend illustrations as directed below.


Use gradients to add colour to the ping-pong paddle and ball.

There are linear, radial and free-form gradients here.

Feel free to use colour swatches from Illustrator’s swatch libraries to get the wood colours. Add them to your Swatches panel


Draw a colouring pencil like the one shown below. You choose the colour of the pencil. These are the steps.

You can leave copies of artwork as you go to show the steps as I have done above.

Supplemental Links

What you'll submit:


Once you've completed your work, save and close each document. Rename the provided assignment folder as LastName-FirstName-Group-Nº-Assignment-Name. So,

Appleseed-Johnny-1-Gradients & Blends

Right-click, then choose Compress... to create a zip file for submission. So...

Paradis-Alain-1-Gradients &

The zip file is what you submit.

Failure to submit your files as directed will incur a proportional loss of points. If your file/folder is not named with your name, you will earn a zero. Why?